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5 July 2014

Gamma Shine - Scottish nuclear plans go missing

*** Gamma Shine - Scottish nuclear plans go missing ***

From Alan Turnbull,

OK, the title got your attention. The story is less alarming but still poses some awkward questions.

I noticed that the emergency preparedness planning documents, under the REPPIR legislation for Scotland's nuclear submarine z-berths and nuclear reactor research establishments, had been removed from the Highlands Council website.

I sent a query to the Emergency Planning Officer, Steve Mardon, at the council's Inverness HQ. Mardon is a career policeman, joining Northern Constabulary in 1982 after obtaining a masters degree in History from Edinburgh University. He rose to Inspector and then from 2002 he spent ten years in Emergency Planning. Since November 2013 he has been performing the same role at Highlands Council.

I pointed out that the English councils at Southampton, Portsmouth, Plymouth and Portland all on the south coast had continued to update their REPPIR documents and made them available to the public. Nothing in them is classified material. The highly technical stuff that would be classified is edited out for the public versions.

Mardon's response was short and aggressive.

"The documents you refer to are for the sole use of Category 1 and 2 agencies, as defined by the Civil Contingencies Act."

Comically, his email featured one of those ubiquitous and always meaningless "mission statement" type footers:-

"Listening, Open, Valuing, Improving, Supporting, Partnering, Delivering".

The message to me was obvious - "nanny knows best". So much for "open government".

Meanwhile, the documents scrubbed under Mardon's watch can be found collected together here:-

The documents I retrieved are quite dated and I would be pleased to hear from any readers who are in possession of newer versions.