Auditors clear BNFL of losing nuclear material

The auditors of British Nuclear Fuel’s Sellafield complex have cleared the company of losing nearly 30kg of plutonium, enough to make several nuclear bombs.

The UK Atomic Energy Agency Authority said the loss was due to ‘uncertainties inherent in the measurement systems used to produce basic data’. It added that ‘there is no evidence to suggest that any of the apparent losses reported were real losses of nuclear material’.

BNFL claimed that some years had shown a gain in radioactive material, rather than a loss.

It said ‘Negative numbers do not mean material has disappeared; positive numbers don’t mean material has been created. These uncertainties exist in all industrial processes,’ reported the Financial Times.

Related reading