In this section
Section highlightHouses into homes This report details findings to emerge from the evaluation during the first six months of delivery (April to September 2012).
Written Statement - Update on tobacco policy »Standardised packaging of tobacco products and Sub Committees on The Smoke-free Premises etc. (Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2012.Learn more »
National Library base for US Radio Travel programme
On Saturday 25 May, The National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth will be host to US radio star, Peter Greenberg.
- Industry and government plan for a healthy future for farming in Wales
- Historic garden is a breakfast TV star
- National Library base for US Radio Travel programme
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- Business and economy
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- Environment and countryside
- Equality and diversity
- Health and social care
- Housing and community
- Improving public services
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Section highlightAccess to information
The Welsh Government has followed the principles of openness in government for many years. Find out how you can make a freedom of information request or see requests that have already been made.
Sky lanterns: environmental and risk assessment »To establish an evidence base to help any future policy decisions on sky lanterns and helium balloons.Learn more »
- Future management of private water supply pipes
- Amendments to the Motor Vehicle (Competitions and Trials) Regulations 1969 and the Motor Vehicles (Off Road Events) Regulations 1995
- Higher Education (Wales) Bill: Technical consultation
- Consultation - Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (Wales) Regulations 2006 (Amendment) Regulations 2013
- Draft action plan for pollinators
Featured consultation »Implementing the Domestic Fire Safety (Wales) Measure 2011
23 days left
In this section
Section highlightFurther and Higher Education (Governance and Information) (Wales) Bill 2013
Removes a number of technical restrictions and controls on colleges without changing the principal powers of colleges to provide further, higher and secondary education.
Legislative programme 2012 - 2013 »
Addressing the Assembly in the Senedd today, the First Minister, Carwyn Jones, detailed the eight bills in the Welsh Government’s 5-year Legislative Programme that will be brought forward during the second year of the Welsh Assembly.Learn more »
Section highlightCommunity Infrastructure Levy
Local authorities can charge a Community Infrastructure Levy on new developments to support the infrastructure needed.
2nd Supplementary Budget 2012-13 »
Proposes a number of changes to the 1st Supplementary Budget for 2012-13, which was published on 26 June 2012.Learn more »
Health Effects of Sellafield
Jane Hutt, Minister for Health & Social Services
- In view of the concerns expressed by some Members about the health implications of Sellafield, I would like to bring the Assembly up to date on recent developments. Mr Presiding Officer, I am grateful to you for this opportunity to make a short statement.
- It is important to recognise that most radiation exposure – around 87% - comes from natural sources. Artificial radioactivity currently contributes about 13% of the annual average UK dose, a very large proportion of this comes from medical treatment. Discharges from nuclear installations contribute less than 0.02% of the total average UK dose.
- Radioactive discharges in the UK are regulated under the Radioactive Substances Act 1993 to ensure that discharges remain within internationally agreed levels which are designed to protect both human health and the environment. Such regulation is carried out by the Environment Agency who, together with the Food Standards Agency, conduct surveys of the UK terrestrial and marine environments.
- The Environment Agency’s monitoring of radioactivity in the environment provides an independent assessment of the exposure of the public from non-food pathways. These include the occupation of beaches, riverbanks and other areas accessible to the public in North Wales.
- The Food Standards Agency (FSA) monitors the impacts of discharges from BNFL Sellafield by examining a wide range of samples from the Irish Sea, including fish, shellfish, sediments and seaweed. The Food Standards Agency has recently published its “Radioactivity in Food and the Environment, 2000” report. The report provides a reassuring picture and demonstrates that consumers’ exposure to radioactivity from eating food remains well below the EU limit for artificially produced radioactivity. This limit is set at 1 millisievert.
- Exposures of groups representative of the wider fishing communities, who catch and eat fish from the Irish Sea including the fisheries community in North Wales, have been kept under review. The doses received by these groups were all significantly less than that for the local Sellafield group. On land the concentration of all radionuclides was also low.
- The UK Government’s Committee on Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment (COMARE) is an independent expert advisory committee with members chosen for their medical and scientific expertise from Universities and research institutes. The Committee offers UK Government and the Welsh Assembly Government independent medical and scientific advice on the health effects of ionising and non-ionising radiation in the environment, whether natural or man-made.
- In recent years COMARE have been invited to consider whether there is a real raised incidence of childhood leukaemia near the coast of North Wales and whether further study was required. The Committee published its advice in June 1999 and a further statement in March 2001. It confirmed that it had found no evidence to support the contention that there is an increased incidence of childhood leukaemia or other childhood cancers amongst the Welsh population living close to the Irish Sea.
- As part of its work programme, the Committee is looking more widely at geographical variations in childhood cancer based on data held by the Oxford Registry of Childhood Tumours. It has been asked to advise on which, if any nuclear installations in Great Britain have incidences of childhood cancer and leukaemia in their vicinity that are significantly outside the distribution seen nationally. COMARE is therefore considering the geographical distribution of cancer to see how the pattern of cases around nuclear installations compares with the national pattern.
- The UK Government has also asked COMARE to set up a new broad based working – group to review the risks associated with internal ingestion of radionuclides and the need for further research. The working group will discuss whether current risk models continue to be valid in the light of a number of differing views.
- I shall continue to ensure that we keep in close touch with the work being undertaken in this area.