The clean-up and decommissioning of the Sellafield Nuclear Licensed Site is currently estimated by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority to cost between £60 - 140 billion over a 120-year period. However, this cost will be profoundly influenced by the chosen end-state for the site and research exploring acceptable end states for Sellafield aligns with the priorities of the Nuclear Sector Deal as a critical enabler of reduction in decommissioning costs. Far from a technical or financial matter only, deciding on potential end states involves ethical and environmental considerations that warrant wider debate.
New approaches such as in situ disposal of certain infrastructure with radioactivity present on site could radically alter the technical, environmental and social challenges involved and potentially reduce costs. In addition, the availability and capacity of future radioactive waste disposal facilities including both surface and deep disposal facilities will have a significant influence on which end states are ultimately achievable.
Here, we will take a whole systems approach to consider Sellafield’s possible end states to explore the implications of different options. We will host a series of workshops to identify the technical, ethical, regulatory, socioeconomic, and ecological implications of realizing different end states. This will allow us to formulate the major research questions to be addressed in future research proposals.
The researchers include Katherine Morris (nuclear environment and waste expert), Liz Thomas (heritage and communities peace and reconciliation expert) and Petra Tjitske Kalshoven, (social anthropologist) with Richard Taylor and Francis Livens (nuclear networking via the Dalton Nuclear Institute). The proposal builds on extant connections with industry, government and local and national stakeholders to create a platform for engagement focussed on site end-states through a fully collaborative process.
Notably, the interdisciplinary team will collaborate equitably with all stakeholders in the process so that a holistic research programme will emerge that includes the social and natural sciences alongside engineering and business. Distinctively, this proposal draws together a wide range of disciplines, stakeholders and diverse investigator backgrounds, thereby offering whole-system coverage of a key issue for the UK’s future.
The project will explore a series of credible end state scenarios for the Sellafield Site based on the collective expertise and perspectives of the participants. These scenarios would be accompanied by a detailed list of research questions and an outline route to resolution identifying the expertise, facilities and investment required.
Project contact: Prof Katherine Morris, University of Manchester (email@example.com)
by Grant Wilson 28 Mar 2019
As we approach the end of this year’s teaching, we are counting down to the inaugural TeachEnergy workshop to start to create a community of practice around teaching energy.
Decarbonising heating systems in the UK presents a major challenge. UKERC and University of Exeter researcher Richard Lowes offers 10 steps to make it a reality.
A UKERC-funded workshop brought together researchers with expertise in energy, environmental and behavioural economics, stakeholders and industry to understand the role of age, latency, gender and how to empower the next generation of elderly women for a transition to low-carbon technologies at the household level.
Many countries are realizing the enormity of the Energy Transition. This has been prompted by commitments made in Paris COP21 Agreement. In this energy transition, whatever the timeframe, the fundamental part of it is justice. Society needs this just transition. And the momentum is gathering.
01 Feb 2019
IVUGER presents a unique opportunity for female Early Career Researchers (ECRs) to apply for up to £12,000 to support collaborative research projects through a FREE 2-day residential funding retreat.
Networking Fund Event, 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM, 21 May 2019
University of Birmingham, Murray Learning Centre, Building R28,University of Birmingham, United Kingdom
9:30 AM 2 May - 2:30 PM 9 May 2019
10:10, Museum of London, United Kingdom
Networking Fund Event, 9:30 AM - 4:30 PM, 30 April 2019
10:10, Museum of London, United Kingdom
Networking Fund Event, 12:30 PM - 8:00 PM, 25 April 2019
10:10, Manchester , United Kingdom
9:00 AM - 2:00 PM, 13 February 2019
Centre for Sustainable Technologies, Ulster University , Loughview Suite, Floor H, Block 8, Ulster University, Shore Road, Newtownabbey , United Kingdom