Nuclear energy and breast cancer in Wales

This December 2011 video, in Welsh with English subtitles, says about itself:

Chris Busby, Nuclear Power and Cancer in North Wales near Wylfa Part 1

Welsh Language ITV flagship programme Byd ar Bedwar (20/12/2011) investigates breast cancer increases downwind of the Wylfa Nuclear Power Station on Anglesey.

Dr Chris Busby was commissioned by the programme to investigate cancer death rates in the 11 wards surrounding the plant. He found a significant 60% excess risk in women dying between 1999 and 2008 in the downwind wards compared with the distant wards.

There was also two-fold excess lung cancer risk in men in Amlwch Port downwind of the plant. Busby had previously studied cancer near three other nuclear power stations, Hinkley Point in Somerset, Bradwell in Essex and Trawsfynydd in Wales. All three have statistically significant excess risk of breast cancer in those living near the contaminated areas.

The Bradwell breast cancers were associated with living near the contaminated coastal sediment of the R[iver] Blackwater estuary. A joint CERRIE commissioned study between Busby, the nuclear industry (Richard Wakeford) and NRPB was shut down in 2004 by the committee chairman when it became apparent that Busby’s figures were correct and those of the government’s Small Area Health Statistics Unit incorrect. Latest figures for Burnham-on-Sea, downwind of the Hinkley Point plant show a continued excess breast cancer mortality, supporting the many earlier studies carried out by Busby’s Green Audit.

The Hinkley site is contaminated with enriched uranium. (See,, and the CERRIE Minority Report.) Data supplied by the official Public Health Wales obtained under a Freedom of Information request by ITV show a significant child leukemia excess in the downwind wards for the period 1974-2008. Ex-nuclear industry chief scientist Richard Wakeford, who denied these links when working for BNFL Sellafield, was recently appointed to the government’s COMARE committee who advise on radiation risk.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Breast cancer spikes near nuclear plant

Wednesday 10th June 2015

BREAST cancer levels near a defunct Welsh nuclear power station are five times higher than average, a researcher has revealed.

Environmental scientist Dr Chris Busby also said in a research paper that in areas around Trawsfynydd power station in Gwynedd, some other cancers were reported to be double average levels.

Trawsfynydd, which has been out of use since 1993, used a neighbouring lake for cooling. Contaminated water was returned to the lake.

Dr Busby’s report said that more than 90 per cent of those living downwind of the station were surveyed.

His paper, published this month in the Jacobs Journal of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, states: “Trawsfynydd is a ‘dirty’ nuclear power station. As it has carbon dioxide gas-cooled graphite block reactors its releases to air are higher than most other types of nuclear reactor.

“Results show very clearly that the downwind population has suffered because of these exposures.”

A spokesman for Public Health Wales said that it was liaising with local health teams covering Traswfynydd to see whether any cancer clusters had been identified in the area.

BEHIND THE NEW CANCER WARNING FOR RED MEAT “Specifically, the researchers found evidence that eating a 50-gram portion of processed meat daily (about one hot dog) can increase a person’s relative risk of colorectal cancer by 18 percent. Since a person’s lifetime risk of colorectal cancer is about five percent, daily meat consumption seems to boost that absolute risk by one point to 6 percent (or 18 percent of the 5 percent lifetime risk).” [Vox]

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