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Home > Stakeholders and Community > Insight - Stakeholder Newsletter > International delegations visit NDA sites  

Insight Stakeholder Newsletter

International delegations visit NDA sites

14 December 2012

International visitorsThe NDA and its Site Licence Companies were pleased to welcome a series of international delegations to the UK in the months of November and December 2012.

On 14 November members of the Nuclear Energy Agency, a specialised agency within the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development visited Sellafield after holding their 13th Plenary Meeting of the Working Party on Decommissioning and Dismantling, which was held over two days in Penrith. The meeting included updates on decommissioning activities from delegations of the Nuclear Energy Agency member states and a special session focussing on the decommissioning scene in the UK. Following the meeting it is customary for the hosting country to arrange a visit to a local facility undergoing decommissioning and working with Sellafield Ltd the NDA arranged for the members to visit Calder Hall and the Windscale AGR, to see first-hand the decommissioning activities which have been undertaken at the site. 

In the first week of December the NDA welcomed a delegation from Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), one of Japan's largest utilities firms who operate a number of nuclear power stations, including the Fukushima Daiichi power station. A packed schedule saw the delegation visit a range of NDA sites including Hunterston A, Sellafield, the Low Level Waste Repository, Berkeley and Harwell, concluding with meetings held in London as part of a fact-finding mission to learn about the UK's experiences in decommissioning nuclear facilities. 

The visit was coordinated by the NDA together with its Site Licence Companies and International Nuclear Services Japan, and was arranged under the auspices of the Memorandum of Understanding signed by the UK and Japanese Governments in early 2012 on nuclear cooperation, with a particular focus on how the UK can assist Japan in its strategy to deal with the task of clean up and decommissioning at Fukushima. 

Also in the same week the NDA welcomed a delegation from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as part of their Peer Review of the NDA's Interim Storage of Higher Activity Waste Packages Guidance. As part of their review the IAEA visited Sellafield where they saw the Encapsulation Products Store in operation and construction of the latest store nearing completion. The delegation also visited the Vitrified Product Store and the Windscale AGR waste storage facility. The visit continued to Trawsfynydd, where the delegation were able to see the Intermediate Level Waste Store which was constructed at the site to house the processed and packaged wastes produced as by-products during the operational phase of the station. 

Commenting on the visits, Adrian Simper, NDA Strategy Director, said: "Whilst the UK is well respected around the world for the progress we are making on nuclear decommissioning, it is important that we continue to share examples of best practice and work in cooperation with organisations at an international level. Together with our Site Licence Companies we hope that the delegations were able to gain a good understanding of the UK's nuclear decommissioning industry during their visits to the NDA's sites.