Greenpeace objects to "Super Waste" Storage

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Greenpeace has raised objections to the underground disposal of highly radioactive wastes from the new Olkiluoto 3 nuclear power unit.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Greenpeace says that the nuclear power industry has plans to create a new underground disposal facility at the Olkiluoto site for the ""super waste" spent fuel that will be created by the Olkiluoto 3 nuclear power unit.

Posiva Oy, a company responsible for the final disposal of spent nuclear fuel, has proposed doubling the size of the current repository to accommodate waste from new plants.

According to Greenpeace, once the underground repository is sealed in a hundred years, nearly 90% of its radioactive contents will be comprised of waste from new European Pressurised Reactor (EPR) facilities. The group says that the spent fuel from these plants is hotter and more contains more radioactive materials than waste from older plant types. In addition, it is more brittle and would dissolve more easily into the groundwater supply in the event of a leak.

Greenpeace pointed out that the nature of the waste from the new types of plants has not been taken into account in the latest environmental impact studies.

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