The UK government secretly planned to dump the radioactive hulks of 22 nuclear submarines in the sea off north west Scotland, documents released by the National Archives reveal. A survey for the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in 1989 identified six sites for “seabed storage” of defunct naval submarines near the islands of Skye, Mull and Barra for up to 60 years – and probably longer. Detailed and highly confidential MoD studies concluded the plan was “feasible” and would “obviate the international problems which we would face were we to dispose of these vessels in international waters.” The 1989 sea-dumping plan ended up being quietly dropped. But the MoD has still not solved the problem of what to do with the accumulating number of nuclear submarines that have now been taken out of service. Since the 1980s seven defunct submarines have been laid up at the Rosyth naval dockyard in Fife. Since the 1990s, thirteen have been laid up at Devonport naval dockyard in Plymouth, nine of them still containing radioactive fuel. There are a further eight nuclear submarines in service, one in overhaul and nine due to come into service at Faslane on the Clyde, including the proposed new generation of four Trident-armed submarines. That’s a total of 38 nuclear submarines that will eventually require disposal.
The Ferret 30th Dec 2018 read more »
The National 30th Dec 2018 read more »