Estonia prepares to build new nuclear waste repository
The Estonian Ministry of the Environment submitted a proposal to the government to begin preparations for a new deep geological repository for nuclear waste.
The new repository is expected to be completed by 2040 and to cost about €89m.
The current storage facility in Paldiski is only a temporary solution, where waste can’t be deposited in large-enough amounts in the long term. A final disposal facility for this purpose needed to be completed by 2040 at the latest, as the cabinet memorandum reads.
Minister of the Environment Marko Pomerants (IRL) said the construction of the new repository would involve environmental impact assessments as well as permits that may take up to ten years to get.
Pomerants also said that according to preliminary studies, building the final repository, demolition of the old nuclear reactor sections, handling the waste created this way, and the final disposal between 2017 and 2050 would cost about €89.1m.
Currently all radioactive waste in Estonia is deposited at the temporary storage facility in Paldiski.
In Soviet times, Paldiski was a closed town. In 1967 and 1982 nuclear reactors were built on the local submarine base to train engineering personnel. The reactors were permanently deactivated in 1989, the last of the fuel rods left Paldiski in 1994.