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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (Baroness Hayman): We have today published the report of the steering committee guiding the Financial Management and Policy Review of the Radioactive Waste Management Advisory Committee (RWMAC). Copies of the report, which was completed in March 1997, including a list of those who responded to the consultation exercise, have been placed in the Library of the House.
The conclusion of the prior options stage of the review were announced by the previous Government on 28 November 1996. This was that RWMAC should continue to operate for at least the next five years. It was also announced at that time that the steering committee would go on to consider the structure and operation of RWMAC. The report being published today sets out the considerations leading to the decision that RWMAC should continue, and the steering committee's proposals for modifying the structure and operation of the committee to suit current requirements.
The Government welcome the majority of the steering committee's recommendations but have given further consideration to two of the recommendations; the membership template and the deletion of "civil" from RWMAC's terms of reference to reflect its practice, now well established under invitation, of also considering the management of radioactive waste from defence establishments.
The membership template has been amended to place a greater emphasis on environmental and societal perspectives and lay perspectives. The new membership template printed below will become an attachment to all copies of the steering committee's report.
|Specialism||Indicative organisation(s) from which members drawn||Proposed Number|
|Nuclear and radioactive waste management||Industry, consultancies, overseas operator||4|
|Geology, hydrogeology, geochemistry, chemical modelling||University, research institute or private sector||4|
|Industrial waste management, pollution control||Non-nuclear industry||1|
|Environmental health/medical health||Medical Research Council, university, medical research, charity or hospital health physicist||2|
|Local government/planning||Local authorities, NGOs||1|
|Environmental and societal perspectives||Environmental NGOs and associated individuals, relevant university disciplines||3|
|Health and safety||Trades unions, regulators||1|
|Environmental law||Academia and private practice||1|
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