Bugey, Dounreay, EDF, Electricite de France, Energy Solutions, France, French decommissioning, Hunterston Nuclear Generating station, Intermediate Level Radioactive Waste, low level radioactive waste, Memphis Tennessee, Mississippi River, nuclear decommissioning, nuclear energy, nuclear reactor parts, nuclear waste, President's Island, radioactive waste, radioactive wastes, Scotland, SEPA, Studsvik, Sweden, Tennessee, Torness Nuclear Generating Station, UK
What appear to be large and small nuclear components at the Energy Solutions Low Level Waste Facility in Clive, Utah. Some large San Onofre (California) NPP components (Nuclear Reactor Vessel Head-Steam Generators) have been sent there.
Some French don’t want the reactor parts from their 9 old decommissioned reactors in France. The French government is majority owner of EDF. So, there seem to be very high stakes with this SEPA consultation, deadline on Oct. 3rd. Majority French govt. owned EDF appears basically to be asking for a carte blanche for importing and exporting EDF nuclear waste at Hunterston and Torness Nuclear Generating Facilities in Scotland. http://www.sepa.org.uk/about_us/consultations.aspx One critical point as explained by SEPA (buried on p. 10 of the 20 page document):
“EDF has applied to allow the receipt of radioactive waste on to both stations for interim storage and onward disposal. These wastes will have arisen at other EDF Energy nuclear power stations, and the intention is to allow for the accumulation of economic loads prior to disposal.”
[Ed. note: Majority (approx. 85%) French govt. owned EDF has 58 nuclear reactors in operation in France and 15 in the UK. They have 3 under construction and 9 being dismantled(decommissioned). That is 85 Nuclear Reactors which could fall under this SEPA permit request, depending if it includes the entire park of EDF reactors or “only” the 15 reactors in the UK (plus more planned). EDF Energy in the UK is a wholly owned subsidiary of EDF, SA.]
“EDF has applied to remove the authorised limits relating to radionuclide and activity as well as the specification of physical and chemical characteristics for radioactive wastes being disposed of by transfer to another facility.”
From: “SCOTTISH ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION AGENCY, RADIOACTIVE SUBSTANCES ACT 1993, Application by EDF Energy Nuclear Generation Limited for Changes to the Authorisation covering the disposal of Radioactive Wastes from Hunterston B and Torness Power Stations, CONSULTATION DOCUMENT FOR DISCRETIONARY CONSULTEES AND THE PUBLIC” http://www.sepa.org.uk/about_us/idoc.ashx?docid=5d0fca3f-9f32-4cc5-884b-b66817f708be&version=-1 (Emphasis our own)
The EDF request-consultation documents found here make the point and intent more clear and name potential locations. They clarify, among other things, that permission is sought to transfer Intermediate Level Waste off-site for treatment such that its final waste form can be “categorised as Low Level Waste and is suitable for disposal“. Sites where it may be “treated” include Lillyhall UK; Germany; Sweden; Tennessee, USA; and other UK facilities both named (4 more) and unnamed, as well as any new UK or overseas facilities. http://www.sepa.org.uk/about_us/idoc.ashx?docid=ce7bb05f-0654-40da-aaf1-e5605a820ab1&version=-1 (Hunterston dated December 2013) Regarding Torness, which we have not had time to examine in detail, but which appears almost identical (dated Nov. 2013): http://www.sepa.org.uk/about_us/idoc.ashx?docid=b6c87d20-3230-45db-af34-b3f5d05db2da&version=-1 (All documents found here; please comment before Oct. 3rd: http://www.sepa.org.uk/about_us/consultations.aspx )
President’s Island in the Mississippi River at Memphis, location of the R.A.C.E. facility, which was sold by Studsvik of Sweden to Energy Solutions of Utah, this year. Energy Solutions had or has another facility on President’s Island, too.
EDF does not say where it is suitable for disposal, but this could include Scottish landfills and/or Dounreay, Scotland. It may well include the Lillyhall, Cumbria, Landfill, and Tennessee and/or Utah, USA. In fact, the point seems to be that they don’t want to have to tell where it goes.
The way that the documents are written, it could be almost anyplace, at all – which seems the essence of the EDF request – to have carte blanche and do as they please. There is a UK dustbin category, as well as US loopholes and exceptions, which facilitate the disappearance of radioactive waste by declaring it non-radioactive! In the UK, this non-radioactive pass, for single items, ranges from 40,000 to 400,000 Bq (radioactive disintegrations per second), which “can be safely disposed of to an unspecified destination with municipal, commercial or industrial waste (“dustbin” disposal)” Furthermore, “Controls on disposal of this material, after removal from the premises where the wastes arose, are not necessary.” From: “MANAGEMENT OF RADIOACTIVE MATERIALS AND RADIOACTIVE WASTE ON NUCLEAR LICENSED SITES, Document Type: Nuclear Safety Technical Assessment Guide, Unique Document ID and Revision No: NS-TAST-GD-024 Revision 4, Date Issued: May 2013 Review Date: May 2016“Crown Copyright-Open government license http://www.onr.org.uk/operational/tech_asst_guides/ns-tast-gd-024.pdf
WHY WOULD EDF FRANCE WANT A CARTE BLANCHE FOR ITS WASTE?
Well, EDF-France has 9 reactors currently being decommissioned and subsequent to the cancellation of the construction permit for ICEDA (near Lyons), in 2012, no place for long-lived radioactive waste from the reactor vessel and primary circuit. Although some of the legal challenges to ICEDA were thrown out in April, there are still other legal challenges outstanding. So, it appears that EDF-French gov cooked up an idea of using Scotland as a radioactive waste hub less than 2 years after the ICEDA construction permit was cancelled. Perhaps they thought that by filing when they did no one would notice because of the Scottish Referendum? We fear that they are right and that this passes largely unnoticed.
For the Chooz reactor, only, this homeless long-lived radioactive waste is 30 tonnes. There are 9 reactors. Some have much more waste, some less. 30 tonnes times nine, would be 270 tonnes of such waste:
1 pressurized-water reactor (PWR) Chooz A, 1 heavy-water reactor (HWR) Brennilis, 6 natural uranium / gas-cooled reactors Chinon A1, Chinon A2, Chinon A3, Saint-Laurent A1, Saint-Laurent A2, Bugey 1, 1 fast-breeder reactor (FBR) Creys-Malville (Superphenix) http://www.iaea.org/OurWork/ST/NE/NEFW/WTS-Networks/IDN/idnfiles/Decom-of-EDF-NPP.pdf
Don’t be charmed by the soft murmuring sounds of most of the names, this is dangerous radioactive stuff, which is why the French don’t want it. They want their nuclear power, they want their jobs making new reactor components in the area of Le Creusot, France. But, they want someone else to take the waste! Maudit! Even Geneva, Switzerland filed a complaint, against the waste facility, near Lyons, France.
According to wikipedia: One difficulty for decommissioning the Chooz nuclear reactor is the future of radioactive waste. The 10,300 tons of radioactive waste, which is short-lived, should be placed in storage centres by the National Agency for the Management of Radioactive waste at Morvilliers and Soulaines-Dhuys, in the l’Aube. On the other hand, the 30 tons of long-lived radioactive waste, from the reactor vessel and primary circuit, was supposed to go to the Iceda storage centre on the site of the nuclear reactor at Bugey, in the Ain. But, the Iceda construction project has been stopped since January 2012, when its construction permit was revoked. http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centrale_nucléaire_de_Chooz
A French anti-nuclear group notes that ICEDA was intended to hold the wastes not only from Bugey 1, but also the other 8 EDF reactors which are being disassembled (decommissioned). It would also gather metallic wastes from the operations of operating nuclear reactors. The wastes would be cut, cast in concrete and stored on location for 50 years. http://www.sortirdunucleaire.org/ICEDA-une-poubelle-nucleaire 50 years is too short-term storage! But, oh, why even bother to do that when you can export it elsewhere?
May God help everyone who gets their water from the Mississippi River! This includes the City of New Orleans.
Studsvik recently sold this facility to Energy Solutions:
“The Studsvik facility on President’s Island in Memphis is the only place in the U.S. where radioactive steam generators from pressurized water reactors are taken for processing, or dismantling. These units are up to 70 feet tall and weigh as much as 800 tons. These must be taken apart, piece by piece to separate the parts that are highly radioactive. These contain a significant amount of plutonium and other dangerous radionuclides. Much of the material deemed to be “extremely low level” by Studsvik will end up in the North or South Shelby landfills.”
“Tennessee’s role as the nation’s destination for low-level radioactive waste processing, disposal and more” by Don Safer, President, Tennessee Environmental Council (Read the entire article here: http://www.nonukesyall.org/Tennessee_rad_waste.html Also with more info here: https://www.nirs.org/radwaste/llw/senatepresentation032011.pdf
Front Fence of Facility. Notice the Radioactive Warning Sign.
Side of the Facility with Radioactive Warning Sign.
Side view of facility, same side as the sign.
Back side of Studsvik, now Energy Solutions, Facility
Scrap metal of unknown ownership, elsewhere on President’s Island. There is more than one scrap metal company there. This is one possible way that the nuclear metal pieces may disappear either legally or illegally.
THE SWEDISH OPTION
Waste brought into Torness could easily go to Sweden.
“Upwards of 50 non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and groups from a dozen nations, and over 150 individuals throughout and beyond the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway have signed onto a resolution (pasted below) opposing Bruce Power’s plan to transport radioactively contaminated equipment through the Great Lakes, along the St. Lawrence River, across the Atlantic Ocean and into the Baltic Sea to Sweden for melting and release into the marketplace.” http://www.caccmi.org/press/Steam%20Generators%2010-13-2010.pdf
EDF is trying to leave ALL of its options open? Are people going to let them?
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Henri Proglio, CEO and Chairman of the board of EDF, is from an Italian family which arrived in France at the beginning of the 20th century from the Piedmont region. His father was a fruit and vegetable salesman. http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henri_Proglio
Listen to the 1972 testimony by Carlos Marcello about his job selling tomatos: http://youtu.be/6Gdgwpci-ZI