Glossar

 

Nördlich Lägern (HLW repository)

Nagra proposes that the geological siting region Nördlich Lägern (ZH, AG) be placed in reserve for Stage 3.

The region to the north-west of Bülach is one of the six potential siting regions for a deep geological repository confirmed by the Federal Council.

Geological siting region Nördlich Lägern for the HLW repository

The siting region is located in the deformed Tabular Jura and is defined geographically by the national borders along the Rhine river and geologically by a fault zone (to the north and south) and by the depth of the host rock (to the south). The rocks within the disposal perimeter show less quiet bedding conditions than in the Zürich Nordost siting region.

After optimisation, the disposal perimeter comprises 4.2 square kilometres.

The geological siting region Nördlich Lägern for a potential HLW repository with the optimised disposal perimeter and the siting areas NL-2 and NL-6 for the surface facility.

 

Siting communities

Canton Zürich: Bachs, Bülach, Eglisau, Glattfelden, Hochfelden, Neerach, Niederweningen, Oberweningen, Schleinikon, Schöfflisdorf, Stadel, Weiach

Canton Aargau: Fisibach, Schneisingen, Siglistorf

Results of the safety-based comparison in Stage 2

The geological siting region Nördlich Lägern for a HLW repository has insufficient underground space in the preferred depth range and there is no possibility of realising the repository at the optimum (from an engineering viewpoint) depth. Going deeper would provide more space but the engineering challenges would be significant and would lead to considerable impairment of the geological barrier.

Nagra proposes that the Nördlich Lägern siting region be placed in reserve for Stage 3.

Siting area designated for the surface facility

The siting area NL-2 for the surface facility of a potential HLW repository in the Nördlich Lägern siting region lies in the community of Weiach, to the east of the village. The siting area NL-6 lies in the community of Stadel. Based on collaboration with the region, the two siting areas were designated by Nagra in May 2014.

Next steps in the Sectoral Plan process

The proposals submitted by Nagra will be reviewed by the authorities and this will be followed by a public consultation process. At the end of Stage 2 – expected for 2018 – the Federal Council will decide which siting regions will remain in the process. These regions will then be investigated in more detail with 3D seismics and exploratory boreholes in Stage 3. Definitive site selection will be made in Stage 3, with the initiation of the general licence procedure as required by the Nuclear Energy Act.

Surface facility

In Stage 2, in January 2012, the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) presented the four proposals made by Nagra for the siting area for the surface facility of the deep geological repository. These proposals were discussed, supplemented and evaluated by the region, represented by the regional conference. 

Nagra then prepared four additional siting proposals and a variant on an existing proposal. A further proposal was also developed at the request of Canton Zürich. The regional conference thus evaluated a total of ten proposals. Based on the findings from the discussions, the regional conference concluded that, of all the proposals evaluated, siting areas NL-2 and NL-6 showed the most advantages and fewest disadvantages.

Based on the collaboration within the framework of regional participation, Nagra then designated the siting areas NL-2 and NL-6 as the potential areas for locating the surface facility. Siting area NL-2 for the surface facility lies in the community of Weiach. Siting area NL-6 lies in the community of Stadel.

The decision of the Federal Council at the end of Stage 2 is expected for 2018. This represents the definitive decision as to which siting regions will remain in the process and will be further investigated in Stage 3. Collaboration with the remaining siting regions will continue in the coming years on the concrete design of the surface facility and the possibilities for optimisation; the results will be taken over into a possible general licence application.

Geographical location of the siting areas NL-2 and NL-6 (surface facility for a L/ILW repository, HLW repository or a combined repository).

 

Siting area NL-2 for the surface facility

Potential configuration of the components of the surface facility for a HLW or combined repository (NL-2).

 

Orthophotograph of the NL-2 siting area in the community of Weiach. The area in red shows the space required for the surface facility of a HLW or combined repository.

 

Possibility for integrating the NL-2 surface facility into the surrounding landscape (photorealistic view) for the example of the HLW repository, looking north. The buildings in the background are part of the gravel and concrete plant.

 

Siting area NL-6 for the surface facility

Potential configuration of the components of the surface facility for a HLW or combined repository (NL-6).

 

Orthophotograph of the NL-6 siting area in the community of Stadel. The area in red shows the space required for the surface facility of a HLW or combined repository.

 

Possibility for integrating the NL-6 surface facility into the surrounding landscape (photorealistic view) for the example of the HLW repository, looking west.

In the siting region Nördlich Lägern, the Opalinus Clay has been examined as a host rock for disposal of high-level waste.

The Opalinus Clay is around 175 million years old and is around 110 metres thick in the siting region. It makes the main contribution to the barrier function of the overall system. The confining units above and below the Opalinus Clay ('Brauner Dogger' clay sequence, the Effingen Member and the Clay-rich Lias) also make a significant contribution to the barrier function. For the upper confining units, there are uncertainties that have to be considered in the evaluation. However, these have no influence on the selection of the siting regions. The space available in the siting region in the preferred (from a technical-scientific viewpoint) depth range is unsuitable.

After optimisation, the disposal perimeter for a deep geological repository for HLW in the Nördlich Lägern siting region comprises 4.2 square kilometres.

 

Geological profile from north-north-east to south-south-west through the North of Lägeren siting region. The grey arrow marks the Opalinus Clay.

 

Geological rock profile showing the rock strata occurring in the Nördlich Lägern region.

Questions about the siting region

Philip Birkhäuser
SR, ZNO, NL, JO, JS, WLB
+41 56 437 12 73

The Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) is responsible for the Sectoral Plan process. 

WWW.BFE.ADMIN.CH/RADIOActivewastE

 

The Swiss Federal Nuclear Safety Inspectorate (ENSI) is the regulatory authority for all questions relating to safety.

WWW.ENSI.CH

 

2016 (22 March) The SFOE publishes the Federal Office for the Environment’s review of the EIA preliminary investigations for the Jura Ost and Zürich Nordost regions.
2015 (30 Jan.) The SFOE announces Nagra’s siting proposals. The geological siting regions Zürich Nordost and Jura Ost will undergo further investigation in Stage 3. They are suitable for a HLW, L/ILW or combined repository. The other siting regions will be placed in reserve. The proposals (safety-based comparisons, EIA preliminary investigations...) will be reviewed by the authorities, followed by a public consultation process. The Federal Council decision on Stage 2 is expected for 2017.
2014 (24 May) Nagra presents the planning studies for the designated siting areas NL-2 and NL-6 for the surface facility at a full meeting of the regional conference for Nördlich Lägern.
2014 (15 May) Nagra presents the planning study for the designated siting area ZNO-6b for the surface facility at a full meeting of the regional conference for Zürich Nordost.
2013 (4 Dec.) Nagra presents the planning study for the designated siting area SR-4 for the surface facility at a full meeting of the regional conference for Südranden.
2013 (Sept.) Nagra presents the planning study for the designated siting area JO-3+ for the surface facility at a full meeting of the regional conference for Jura Ost on 26th September. The planning studies for the designated siting areas in the regions Jura-Südfuss and Wellenberg are also presented in September. The planning studies for the other three siting regions will follow in the coming months.
2012 (20 Jan.) Nagra announces its proposals for potential siting areas for the surface facility at a media conference held by the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE). These proposals serve as the basis for discussions within the framework of regional participation.
2011 (30 Nov.) The Federal Council decides to include the geological siting region Nördlich Lägern in the continuing Sectoral Plan process. Stage 1 of the process is complete and Stage 2 has been initiated.
2010 (1 Sept.) Start of the public consultation phase on Stage 1 of the site selection process for deep geological repositories. 
2010 (26 Feb.) The Swiss Federal Nuclear Safety Inspectorate (ENSI) approves Nagra's proposed geological siting regions based on a review of safety and engineering feasibility criteria.
2009 (10 Dec.) Announcement of the provisional planning perimeter by the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE).
2008 (20 Nov.) Together with representatives of ENSI and Nagra, the SFOE provides information on the proposals for geological siting regions at an event in Glattfelden.
2008 (6 Nov.) Announcement by the SFOE of the proposed siting regions for deep geological repositories.
2008 (2 April) The Federal Council approves the conceptual part of the Sectoral Plan for Deep Geological Repositories.
2006 (28 June) The Federal Council approves the "Entsorgungsnachweis" feasibility study for high-level waste disposal, but rejects the request for identification of a site as being premature. 
2005 Submission of a report setting out the options for disposal of high-level waste (NTB 05-02, in German). The report documents potential host rocks and siting regions based on safety and geological criteria.
2002 Submission of the "Entsorgungsnachweis" feasibility study for high-level waste disposal to the Federal Council. The project is based on the example of the Opalinus Clay in the Zürcher Weinland region.
1991 – 1992 Regional seismic investigations between the River Aare and Lake Constance (2D seismics).
1982 – 1984 Regional seismic investigations in the area Olten - Schaffhausen.
1982 – 1983 Weiach deep borehole (Canton Zürich).

More information

Nagra Technical Report NTB 14-01 on the safety-based comparison of the siting regions and the proposals for further investigation in Stage 3 (in German with English abstract); December 2014

Nagra Technical Report NTB 14-01 – Annex (in German); December 2014

Brochure (detailed overview) «Standortgebiete für geologische Tiefenlager – Sicherheitstechnischer Vergleich: Vorschläge für Etappe 3» (in German); January 2015

Brochure «Siting regions for deep geological repositories – Nagra’s proposals for Stage 3»; January 2015

Exploration concepts (only in German)

Arbeitsbericht NAB 16-28: Konzepte der Standortuntersuchungen für SGT Etappe 3 – Nördlich Lägern; April 2016

Environmental Impact Assessments (only in German)

NL-2

Standortareal NL-2-SMA, Nördlich Lägern; April 2016

Standortareal NL-2-HAA, Nördlich Lägern; April 2016

Standortareal NL-2-Kombi, Nördlich Lägern; April 2016

NL-6

Standortareal NL-6-SMA, Nördlich Lägern; April 2016

Standortareal NL-6-HAA, Nördlich Lägern; April 2016

Standortareal NL-6-Kombi, Nördlich Lägern; April 2016

Planning studies (only in German)

NL-2

Fact sheet «Standortregion Nördlich Lägern – Standortareal NL-2 für die Oberflächenanlage eines Tiefenlagers (SMA/HAA/Kombi)»; May 2014

Arbeitsbericht NAB 14-03: «Standortareal NL-2-SMA im Planungsperimeter Nördlich Lägern für die Oberflächenanlage eines geologischen Tiefenlagers SMA – Planungsstudie»; May 2014

Arbeitsbericht NAB 14-04: «Standortareal NL-2-HAA im Planungsperimeter Nördlich Lägern für die Oberflächenanlage eines geologischen Tiefenlagers HAA – Planungsstudie»; May 2014

Arbeitsbericht NAB 14-05: «Standortareal NL-2-Kombi im Planungsperimeter Nördlich Lägern für die Oberflächenanlage eines geologischen Tiefenlagers Kombi – Planungsstudie»; May 2014

NL-6

Fact sheet «Standortregion Nördlich Lägern – Standortareal NL-6 für die Oberflächenanlage eines Tiefenlagers (SMA/HAA/Kombi)»; May 2014

Arbeitsbericht NAB 14-06: «Standortareal NL-6-SMA im Planungsperimeter Nördlich Lägern für die Oberflächenanlage eines geologischen Tiefenlagers SMA – Planungsstudie»; April 2014

Arbeitsbericht NAB 14-07: «Standortareal NL-6-HAA im Planungsperimeter Nördlich Lägern für die Oberflächenanlage eines geologischen Tiefenlagers HAA – Planungsstudie»; April 2014

Arbeitsbericht NAB 14-08: «Standortareal NL-6-Kombi im Planungsperimeter Nördlich Lägern für die Oberflächenanlage eines geologischen Tiefenlagers Kombi – Planungsstudie»; April 2014

Surface facilities

What does a surface facility look like for a L/ILW repository?

What does a surface facility look like for a HLW repository?

Participatory approach to identifying the siting areas for the surface facility