NWS to be ‘one stop shop’ for nuclear waste management and disposal

We are here to provide solutions for a challenge that affects us all. Over the last 70 years, nuclear technology has been a part of our lives in the UK. It provides around 15% of the UK’s electricity and is used in industry and medicine.

Today, nuclear power is viewed by the government as essential to the green energy mix and securing our energy supply in the future. This waste needs to be managed safely and securely, both now and for the very long-term.

The NWS strategy, published today (25 April), is focused on key strategic objectives to ensure that the right waste form, in the right package, is managed or disposed of at the right facility. NWS will support accelerated decommissioning through innovation, with legacy and future waste streams managed in the most sustainable and efficient way through technology development, expertise and setting worldwide standards to provide value for the UK.

What this means for example, is that capping will start on the Low Level Waste Repository in 2024-25; thermal treatment technologies will be developed as a proven technology by 2026-27; and decisions on the communities to progress as part of the Geological Disposal Facility programme will be made by 2026.

In a joint statement, NWS Chair Adrienne Kelbie and NWS CEO Corhyn Parr said:

“Our purpose is clear: to make nuclear waste permanently safe, sooner. And we want to become the ‘one stop shop’ for nuclear waste management and disposal solutions in the UK. This strategy sets our direction, objectives, key milestones, and the transformation needed to succeed by 2030. Our strategic objectives are focused on ensuring all our operations are safe and secure and the right waste is in the right place, accelerating decommissioning, and adding value for the UK.

“We’ll prioritise working with and doing the right thing for our people, partners, customers, and communities where we operate. Our strategy objectives are built to be enduring and responsive to influences from the global and nuclear landscape as it evolves and changes.”

Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) CEO David Peattie said:

“Publication of the first Nuclear Waste Services strategy is a welcome and positive step for the NDA group. Managing waste is fundamental to our decommissioning mission and the creation of a single, waste focused organisation has been an important part of reshaping the group to deliver our commitments.

“A year after launching the business, the strategy shows how the team is developing its thinking and providing safe, sustainable and cost-effective solutions to help achieve our nationally important work. I’m looking forward to seeing the results, with nuclear waste being made permanently safe, sooner.”

NWS brings together the UK’s leading nuclear waste management capabilities and is part of the NDA group, which has a collective long-term mission to clean up nuclear sites safely, securely, and cost-effectively.