While the GDF was initially intended to be for existing (legacy) waste alone according to the Committee on Radioactive Waste Management, over time it has become clearer that the UK government wanted to remove this restriction. During the failed Managing Radioactive Waste Safely (MRWS) process, the question of inventory was left open. There was a 2010 baseline inventory of legacy waste and two further possible inventories, one using the assumption of a 10 GW(e) new build nuclear programme, and another based on a 16 GW(e) new build nuclear programme. The difference between the baseline inventory, and 16 GW(e) inventory was to approximately double the required footprint of the GDF, taking it from 10 to 23 square kilometres for example if constructed in a sedimentary rock.
Cumbria Trust 14th Sept 2016 read more »
On November 10, 2011, a hundred or so residents of Andrews, Texas, gathered at a large hole in the ground to celebrate the grand opening of America’s newest nuclear waste dump. Assembled amongst the locals were political and business luminaries from Dallas, Austin, and Washington D.C.. For the ribbon cutting, hedge trimmer-sized scissors were passed out to the various men in suits responsible for making Andrews County a repository for the nation’s radioactive trash. Among them were the senior managers of Waste Control Specialists (WCS), the company that owns the site, Harold Simmons, the conservative Dallas billionaire who owned that company; and Bob Zap, the mayor of Andrews at the time. The inauguration of the low-level radioactive waste facility, Texas’ first, ended with a barbecue. Most communities would not find the prospect of housing nuclear refuse cause for celebration. And yet, two years earlier, the town had narrowly voted to fund the construction of the disposal site with a $75-million bond. Despite the enduring opposition from a handful of locals and the state Sierra club, most of Andrews’ 15,000 residents were eager to celebrate their accomplishment. And it was an accomplishment. With the opening of the WCS facility, the town of Andrews had done what no other community in the United States has accomplished in two decades: it wrangled the necessary political support to open a new nuclear waste disposal site.
Priceonomics 13th Sept 2016 read more »