Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Berkeley Site - Agreement to proceed with Safety Category 2 or lower Intermediate Level Waste (ILW) retrieval works

Permission requested

This report considers a request from Magnox Ltds Berkeley site for ONR Agreement to the commencement of certain packages of work in relation to the retrieval and processing of ILW.

Background

Berkeley Power Station ceased generation in 1989, and there has been significant progress with decommissioning since then: the ponds have been demolished, and in 2010 the reactors entered a safe store configuration. The major hazard reduction task that remains is to retrieve ILW and process it to a passively safe state suitable for interim on-site storage during the Care and Maintenance period.

Assessment and inspection work carried out by ONR in consideration of this request

As this request is for permission for lower safety significant operations, the work carried out by ONR has primarily involved inspections on site and the review of the safety submissions and associated documentation. ONR may consider that certain elements of these work packages may require further scrutiny, and this will be controlled by means of the Regulatory Schedule.

Matters arising from ONR's work

The report proposes a regulatory strategy for all the Berkeley ILW retrieval and processing projects. This strategy allows regulatory control of the lower safety significant work to be undertaken by means of the Regulatory Schedule. The higher safety significant work will be permissioned by a further Licence Instrument following assessment of the safety case and the preparation of a further Project Assessment Report.

Conclusions

The report summarises the sequence of safety submissions that has been issued since the planning for the initial ILW project commenced in 1996, and also reviews the Licence Instrument that was issued in 2004 to set hold-points on the active commissioning of this work. It provides a justification for the issue of a Licence Instrument to permission the lower safety category ILW work, subject to the placing of further regulatory controls as appropriate by means of the Regulatory Schedule.

Recommendation

The report recommends that an ONR Agreement to the commencement of certain work packages in relation to ILW retrieval and processing is issued.