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Green Living

What happened next to Cumbria's nuclear dump 'bribe'?

Cumbria last week took the first steps towards volunteering to be the site of Britain's first underground nuclear dump, in return for a hefty government "bribe".

Its county council decided on Thursday to start talks about the implications of the deal with two local borough councils: Copeland, which has already made an "expression of interest" in hosting the dump, and Allerdale, which is expected to follow suit.

Earlier this month – as The Independent on Sunday exclusively predicted in January – ministers offered to pay councils to take in nuclear waste.

The Environment Secretary, Hilary Benn, said it was "only fair" to reward them for this "essential service to the nation".

A payment for the dump, which would take highly toxic intermediate and high-level waste, is expected to amount to at least £1bn.

Environmentalists denounce the scheme as "development by bribery".