High-level waste: Finnish Government grants a licence for construction of a final disposal facility

The Finnish Government has granted a licence for the construction of a final disposal facility for spent nuclear fuel. The disposal of the spent fuel is planned to start in the early 2020s.

On 12th November 2015, the Finnish Government granted a construction licence for a final disposal facility for spent nuclear fuel to the waste management organisation Posiva. This follows on from the statement in February 2015 by the Finnish safety authority STUK that Posiva's final repository can be constructed safely. Posiva submitted the application for the construction licence at the end of 2012 and, together with the underlying disposal concept, this was subjected to a detailed review by the authorities.

The facility comprises two parts: the above-ground encapsulation plant for the packaging of the spent fuel in the final disposal canisters and the repository at a depth of 400 metres in the granite bedrock, with tunnels in which the spent fuel will be placed. The repository will be located on the Olkiluoto peninsula in the community of Eurajoki.

The Finnish project for a high-level waste repository is the first worldwide to enter the construction phase. The facility is expected to start operation in the early 2020s.

Image: Posiva Oy

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