Public consultation on application to change how Hinkley Point C stores radioactive waste

Our role
­The Environment Agency is the independent environmental regulator for the nuclear industry in England. We make sure that nuclear power stations meet high standards of environmental protection.
Any company that wants to operate a nuclear power station must show that it can do the following safely and securely, whilst also protecting the environment:
• build, commission, operate and decommission the power station
• manage the radioactive waste it produces.­
­Our consultation
In June 2022 NNB Generation Company (HPC) Limited applied to us to change its existing radioactive substances environmental permit for Hinkley Point C Nuclear Power Station. 
Pressurised water reactors at Hinkley Point C will use uranium fuel to create heat and generate electricity when operating. Once used within the reactor, nuclear fuel (radioactive waste) will be stored on-site before being sent off-site to a Geological Disposal Facility (GDF). We issued the original radioactive substances environmental permit in 2013. In the original design radioactive waste was to be stored on-site in ‘wet storage’ – a method of submerging and storing in water.  The operator has now decided to change the technology by which it will store radioactive waste, from wet storage to ‘dry storage’. Dry storage will see radioactive waste stored in sealed containers within a facility before it is sent to the GDF. This means the operator now seeks to change its radioactive substances environmental permit to remove or amend specific conditions related to the previous wet storage technology that are no longer relevant. NNB Generation Company (HPC) Limited is not seeking any changes to the site boundary, permitted activities or permit discharge limits. There is no change in the radiological impact to members of the public or environment resulting from discharges.  Separately, NNB Generation Company (HPC) Limited will be seeking the necessary changes to its Development Consent Order (DCO) for Hinkley Point C in the autumn. Viewing the documents and making your comments We have launched a four-week public consultation where you will be able to view the application and send us your comments.This consultation is aimed at:members of the publicthe communities local to the site for which the permit has been appliedstatutory consulteesacademics with an interest in nuclear power, energy production or the environmentnon-governmental organisations (NGOs) Comments from any other interested parties are also welcome.All the documents are available to view and download online We have designed the online consultation to make it easy to submit responses to the questions. We would prefer you to comment online as this will help us to gather and summarise responses quickly and accurately. Please send us your comments on the application: Online consultation websiteEmail us Post to: Hinkley Point C Consultation, Environment Agency, Nuclear Regulation Group, Red Kite House, Howbery Park, Wallingford, Oxfordshire, OX10 8BD The consultation closes at 23.59 on Sunday 14 August 2022. Information about how and why we consultNext steps After the consultation ends we’ll complete our determination, including carefully considering all comments made during consultation. We’ll publish our final decision in September 2022.­
­Read the whole story

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