Belgium: For a fair consultation on radioactive waste - #covidsolidarity

7 July 2020

Stories of solidarity under coronavirus

Coronavirus hasn’t affected everyone equally. We're sharing stories from across our European and global network of what lockdown and life under coronavirus look like around the world. Hearing from those who are among the worst affected, and how they are taking action.

I'm with Wallonia

On the 15 April Belgium's national institute for radioactive waste (ONDRAF/NIRAS) launched a long awaited public consultation on the final storage of highly radioactive and/or long lived radioactive waste from Belgium's nuclear reactors. 

Amis de la Terre Belgique (Friends of the Earth Wallonia) was astonished that the government had decided to start this process in the middle of the lock-down, not allowing for any public events to discuss this important topic. Together with other organisations and concerned citizens they decided to ask for postponing the consultation process till after the lock-down. 

After consultation with a lawyer, Amis de la Terre prepared a list of arguments and reached out to the press to increase pressure on the government to postpone the consultation process.

“We demand the ONDRAF postpones the public consultation till after the COVID19 crisis, so that citizens can properly react to it, according to the fundamental rights of equality and non-discrimination. Not all citizens have access to a computer and therefore it is necessary that the government organises physical spaces where people can give their opinion.”