One of Her Majesty's Government's most embarrassing failures in British industrial history


How's this for timing? A week ago The Daily Telegraph published a confidential cable from the US embassy calling a controversial plant at Sellafield "one of Her Majesty's Government's most embarrassing failures in British industrial history". Then, within days, ministers said they were minded to build another one like it.

The embassy was not wrong. The so-called Mox plant, which makes nuclear fuel out of uranium and plutonium at the Cumbrian nuclear complex, is not just – as the cable put it – a "white elephant", but one that could well go rogue. Built at a cost of £473 million, despite repeated warnings that it would be uneconomic and could be a security risk, it has never worked properly. Supposed to churn out a grand total of 560 tons of fuel by the end of its first decade of operation, later this year, it has so far produced just 15. More in The Daily Telegraph.

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