- Define Credible Options
- Assess and Select Preferred Option
- Approve Strategy
- Implement Strategy
Keep informed with the latest news and developments from the NDA
13 May 2013
Box project to help Sellafield
A huge procurement programme to produce thousands of high integrity stainless steel boxes to house radioactive waste at Sellafield was launched today.
13 May 2013
Government call for evidence
The Government has issued a “Call for Evidence” to gather views on the Managing Radioactive Waste Safely site selection process.
10 May 2013
ILW storage options for England and Wales
The NDA has published a Strategy Paper on optimising the number and location of Interim ILW Storage Facilities on Magnox Limited and existing EDF Energy Sites in England and Wales.
10 May 2013
FED treatment options at Magnox sites
The NDA has published a strategy paper on optimising the number and location of FED Treatment (Dissolution) Facilities in Magnox Limited.
30 April 2013
Preferred option for ILW Storage in Scotland
NDA has now completed its strategic review of the options for the storage of Intermediate Level Waste (ILW) in central and southern Scotland.
Find more News Items
NDA Strategy Document
We published our revised Strategy in March 2011.
NDA Strategy - Effective from April 2011 (full colour version) (5Mb)
For more information see Our Strategy
Find more documents in our comprehensive Document Library.
- To ensure safe, secure and cost-effective lifecycle management of spent fuels.
The NDA inventory of spent nuclear fuels is diverse and consists of large quantities of Magnox and oxide fuels, with smaller quantities of non-standard fuel types which we refer to as 'exotic fuels'.
Historically the UK's approach has been to reprocess spent fuel, but the facilities for this are ageing or, in some cases, shut down. Some of the facilities have been operated on a commercial basis. The majority of the NDA's direct income comes from the provision of spent fuel management services including a number of contractual commitments to reprocess utility customers' spent fuel.
UK Government policy states that spent fuel management is a matter for the commercial judgement of its owners, subject to meeting the necessary regulatory requirements.
We manage spent fuels appropriately to avoid creating legacies for future generations similar to those we inherited. Managing our spent fuels effectively is essential to enable us to restore our sites and release them for other uses.
Since 2006 we have completed and published a macro-economic study into the options for spent fuel management, and involved stakeholders in its development. We have also set up industry-wide discussion groups to advance strategy development for spent fuels, involving representatives from Government departments and nuclear regulators.
Reprocessing of spent fuels gives rise to authorised liquid and aerial discharges which must be managed in line with the UK discharge strategy commitments (UK Strategy for Radioactive Discharges).
Our strategy is to secure and subsequently implement the most appropriate management approach for Magnox and oxide fuels and, where possible, take advantage of these approaches to manage exotic fuels. Any remaining fuels will continue to be managed on a case-specific basis in a safe and secure manner pending subsequent disposition.
All fuels are managed through the following lifecycle phases (see diagram below) and decision points to secure the optimal management route:
Value chain for spent fuel management from reactor to final re-use, near surface management or disposal
The most cost-effective solutions for Magnox and oxide fuels will include continued and extensive use of our existing reprocessing and storage facilities.
We intend to continue using the oxide, Magnox and, where appropriate, exotic fuels management routes in an integrated way to optimise utilisation of facilities at Sellafield and across our estate.
Where appropriate, we will invest in our spent fuel management capability. In particular, we will continue to invest in developing contingency and alternative options in the event that reprocessing or long-term fuel storage management capabilities are not available. This will enable us to make fully informed investment decisions for optimising spent fuel management as required in the near future.
If approached by third parties to provide additional spent fuel management services, we will discuss the options with UK Government.
With UK Government agreement we will, if requested, supply advice and information to utilities involved in the UK's new reactor programme, on a commercial basis.
- Spent Magnox Fuel: To ensure the safe management then ultimate disposition of spent Magnox fuel.
- Spent Oxide Fuel: To ensure receipt, safe management and ultimate disposition of UK owned oxide fuel and optimise the management of overseas owned oxide fuel held in the UK.
- Spent Exotic Fuels: To ensure that all exotic fuels are managed in a safe and secure way for the lifetime of the fuel.