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(Credit: Frederike Helwig)

Music

Super Furry Animals call out EDF for dumping nuclear mud in the Severn Estuary

@SamWKemp

Super Furry Animals have called out EDF for allegedly dumping nuclear mud in the Severn Estuary. The Cardiff rockers have also requested that the Marine Management Organisation revoke the licence they granted to EDF.

Back in 2018, EDF was the subject of controversy after environmental activists took the energy company to court in an effort to stop 300,000 tonnes of nuclear mud from a Somerset power station from being dumped outside Cardiff.

Now, Super Furry Animals have taken up the cause. In a tweet made on February 12th, the rock group wrote: “We call on @The_MMO to stop EDF’s nuclear mud dumping. The damage to the safety and wellbeing of our Severn Estuary, its marine life, and the coastal populations of Avonmouth, Bristol, Cardiff, Barry and beyond is incalculable”.

In a separate tweet, they continued: “Dredged sediment from @hinkleypointc’s intertidal site – a significant area of radioactive, contaminated seabed – is being dumped in the waters off Portishead. Strong tidal currents whip up the toxic mud, depositing it across the Severn. Help stop the dump!”.

The 2018 court battle against EDF was led by Super Furry Animals keyboardist Cian Ciarán. At the time, he explained his motivations to The Guardian: “I’m involved as a Welshman and a concerned earthling. I felt compelled to play a part. I felt at a loss over the lack of action by the Welsh Labour government and the apathy of NRW. This is about reasonable people asking reasonable questions”.

The musician-come-activist has now launched a campaign to ‘Save The Severn Estuary’, which has raised £25,000 so far. A statement on the CrowdJustice page reads: “Already many 100,000s of tonnes have been dumped – with much more still to be dredged and dumped. Given the absence of evidence, a blatant misuse of regulations and lack of any meaningful public consultation the MMO have behaved recklessly, treating fishing and ecological interests with utter contempt.” Ciarán aims to raise £60,000 in total to cover the costs of legal action. The ‘Save The Severn’ group are set to take part in a Judicial Review hearing on March 8th.

Speaking up for the community’s surrounding the Severn, Ciarán said: “An energy giant is taking the health, wellbeing and good nature of the people of Bristol and other Severn communities for granted in proceeding with dumping waste materials in sight of Portishead. EDF are pursuing this in the knowledge that the 2018 dump near Cardiff was unlawful, so instead avoid further scrutiny by running to the English side of the Estuary to try and get away with it again. We have to come together as a community as people to protect our valuable Severn and its ecology.”