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With a focus on climate change, younger generations of nuclear professionals are making a real difference

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Sellafield Ltd

3 min read Partner content

On International Women’s Day, Sellafield Ltd shine a light on one of their colleagues who is taking a leading role in ensuring that we make the right choices not just for today, but for future generations

Sellafield Ltd technical manager, Hannah Paterson, is making a real difference in the UK and internationally in promoting the nuclear industry among young professionals.  

This year, her busy schedule will culminate in leading a net zero nuclear campaign at the United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP26 in Glasgow.  

Late last year, Hannah was appointed chair of the Nuclear Institute’s Young Generation Network  (YGN) and has introduced a change of direction for the group for 2021 - setting a focus on climate change and nuclear advocacy.  

She said: “The YGN, with 1,300 members in the UK, promotes communication, collaboration and professional development across the nuclear sector, and I was delighted to be selected as chair.  Two other Sellafield colleagues, Grace Frost and Stacy Snook were also selected on to the committee.  

“This year, the Network will be part of the biggest international climate summit the UK has ever hosted, bringing together over 30,000 delegates including heads of state, climate experts and campaigners to agree coordinated action to tackle climate change.   

“The YGN will highlight the ability to achieve Net Zero by 2050, by driving collaboration between nuclear and renewable energy technologies.”   

Hannah set up a team of young, international YGN volunteers to drive forward a #NetZeroNeedsNuclear campaign that includes a dedicated website and a position paper that is available on the European Nuclear Society’s website to call policymakers to action.   

The YGN is also currently working with industry and international organisations to develop proposals for a booth and side event space at COP26, to provide a platform for young people to talk to attendees at the conference about the role nuclear has to play in a low carbon future.  

Hannah said: “We will be asking people to get involved with the campaign by reading the position paper, visiting our new website and getting involved in social media.   

“I can’t wait to drive forward the campaign as well as support a range of virtual and face to face events during the year through the YGN with young nuclear enthusiasts.”  

Alan Cumming, Executive Sponsor of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) group Carbon Net Zero Project said: “The nuclear industry is a key part in the UK’s low carbon future. Within the environmental remediation and waste management part of our sector, the NDA group have committed to help the government achieve the target of net zero by 2050.   

“Across the group we have been identifying ways to map and reduce our current carbon footprint, as well as developing meaningful targets and a roadmap. And our younger generations are taking a leading role in ensuring we make the right choices not just for today, but for future generations.”  

John McNamara, NDA’s head of stakeholder engagement added: “Hannah takes over as chair of the YGN at an interesting time for the organisation. The NDA group became the YGN’s first-ever Industrial Partner in 2020, in a unique relationship which sees the NDA group of companies supporting and underpinning the aspirations of the YGN.” 

 For further information on the YGN click here.


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