Development of a general concept for a deep geological repository

29 March,
Development of a general concept for a deep geological repository

The Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant (INPP), together with international experts, has developed a concept for the construction of a deep geological repository for radioactive waste (the Concept). It will take more than 40 years to construct the repository, which will be located at a yet-to-be-selected site in the country, but intensive preliminary work is already underway. The Concept has been developed by the Finnish company Posiva Solutions Oy.

Linas Baužys, Director General of INPP, says that the development of the concept is a crucial stage in the installation of the deep geological repository (DGR) in order to involve the public and municipal representatives in the decision-making process on the site.

"This month we started public consultations with the municipalities. From now on, we will have a concept of what the future repository will visually look like and what concrete measures will be taken to ensure its safety," said L. Baužys.

The DGR will be an engineered structure built in the ground, several hundred metres deep, for the safe containment of long-lived radioactive waste generated during the operation of INPP (1983-2009) and during decommissioning (until 2038). It will provide natural and engineered barriers to ensure the safety of people and the environment. The above-ground part of the DGR will consist of a radioactive waste reception facility, an administrative building and an information centre.

The DGR is expected to be constructed and operational by 2068. Approval of the site is anticipated by 2047. Until then, the concept will be adjusted based on the progress of project development.

The Finnish company Posiva Solutions Oy, which developed the concept, is a subsidiary of Posiva. The final disposal facility, designed, built, and commissioned by the Finnish company Posiva Solutions Oy, will be the first of its kind in the world.

The Development Programme for the Management of Nuclear Facilities and Radioactive Waste 2021-2030, which has been approved by the Government, states that the long-lived radioactive waste from the IAEA, currently stored in interim storage facilities, will have to undergo final treatment and be transferred to the DGR at the end of its operational life.

The INPP is currently in the initial planning phase of the DGR Siting Study Programme, which includes expert studies, assessments, data analysis and synthesis, in accordance with the recommendations of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).