Application of Ignalina NPP to issue a license for decommissioning of Maisiagala radioactive waste storage facility

The list of documents of the State Enterprise Ignalina NPP required to issue a license for decommissioning of Maisiagala radioactive waste storage facility and the schedule for their submission were agreed

On 12 April this year, the State Nuclear Power Safety Inspectorate (VATESI) has agreed the list of documents of the SE Ignalina NPP required to issue a license for decommissioning of Maisiagala radioactive waste storage facility and the schedule for their submission. In accordance with the agreed schedule, the SE Ignalina NPP will provide VATESI with the necessary documents for decision making. Specified application form*, in which the SE Ignalina NPP requested to issue a license for decommissioning of Maisiagala radioactive waste storage facility (Maisiagala RWSF) was accepted by VATESI in February this year. Together with the application, the SE Ignalina NPP submitted a list of documents necessary for obtaining a license and their submission to VATESI schedule.

The SE Ignalina NPP informs the public about the initiation of the licensing process and provides the opportunity to read the documents scheduled in accordance with the Nuclear Safety Requirements BSR-1.1.5-2017 “Rules of Procedure for Public Participation in Decision-making in the Area of Nuclear Energy” (hereinafter referred to as BSR-1.1.5-217), approved by the Head of VATESI on October 23, 2017, order No. 22.3-182.

License supporting documents submitted to VATESI and the schedule for submission of documents will be made public on the website of the SE Ignalina NPP.

Maisiagala Radioactive Waste Storage Facility is a 200 m³ capacity monolithic reinforced concrete basement, located at a depth of 3 metres in Bartkuskis Forest, Municipality of Sirvintai District. This “Radon”-type waste storage facility was closed in 1989. It stores radioactive waste collected from industrial enterprises, medical and scientific institutions during the 1963-1989 period. The storage is located 9 km from Maisiagala and 40 km away from Vilnius.

The decommissioning license is required to retrieve radioactive waste, structures and soil contaminated with radionuclides from Maisiagala RWSF. All retrieved waste will be sorted and transported to Radioactive Waste Management Facilities of the SE Ignalina NPP for further processing and disposal in storage facilities located nearby the SE Ignalina NPP.

The main objective of Maisiagala RWSF decommissioning is to remove all radioactive waste, structures and soil contaminated with radionuclides from Maisiagala RWSF territory, arrange the territory and dismiss its control in terms of radiation protection. To do this, it will be necessary to carry out the following works:

  • retrieve radioactive waste and contaminated soil stored at Maisiagala RWSF after installation of proper equipment;
  • transport radioactive waste and contaminated soil to the SE Ignalina NPP for further storage and processing after initial separation and preparation for transportation;
  • perform final radiological investigations and attribute Maisiagala RWSF territory and contained buildings and structures to free-release level after removal of radioactive waste and contaminated soil from the site;
  • abolish the control of Maisiagala RWSF in terms of radiation protection and its status as being a nuclear facility after substantiation of Maisiagala RWSF compliance with the free-release radioactivity level and final refinement criteria.

According to the plan, decommissioning of Maisiagala RWSF will form about 300 m³ of radioactive waste, i.e., approximately 0.23 per cent of the total amount of radioactive waste generated in the course of the SE Ignalina NPP decommissioning.

Once Maisiagala radioactive waste storage site has been arranged, it can be used for other activities without any restrictions.

(*) Initial application form was submitted to VATESI in January 2018 by the SE Radioactive Waste Management Agency. The application form has been specified due to the reorganisation of the SE Radioactive Waste Management Agency by merging with the SE Ignalina NPP. On 1 January 2019 the SE Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant took over the rights and obligations of the SE Radioactive Waste Management Agency.