5 February 2016 |

Espoo-consultation on the final disposal of spent nuclear fuel

On 5 February 2016 the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency sent out a consultation letter to the participating countries in the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) transboundary procedure for the planned Swedish system for final disposal of spent nuclear fuel. The Espoo consultation process for the repository system has been on-going for several years but can now continue because the application for final disposal of spent nuclear fuel was announces as being complete by the Land and Environmental Court on January 29th 2016. The countries are now being asked to send comments on the EIA report and associated documents no later than 15 April 2016, and will be invited to attend to a consultation meeting arranged on the 21 March 2016. Update 1: An invitation to the consultation meeting has been sent to the contact points, and can be seen below. There is now also information in German. Update 2: Responses in english has been submitted and can be downloaded on the Swedish news that is linked here >>

In accordance with article 4 and 5 of the Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (Espoo Convention) and the EU directive 2011/92/EU for interim storage, encapsulation and final disposal of spent nuclear fuel, Sweden in December 2005 notified all rim countries around the Baltic Sea regarding the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) procedures for the encapsulation plant and the repository for final disposal of spent nuclear fuel in Sweden. The countries that answered that they intended to participate in EIA procedures were Finland, Germany Lithuania, Poland and the Russian Federation. Denmark, Latvia and Estonia answered that they abstained from participating in the EIA procedures but wished to be informed about the final EIA Report and the application.

In February 2008 Sweden started the consultation process by sending out background information, the general structure of the EIS, and documents regarding the safety and radiation protection and the long-term safety. The Espoo consultation process can now continue because the Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Company’s, SKB’s, application for the final disposal of spent nuclear fuel was announces as being complete by the Land and Environmental Court the 29 January 2016. Sweden has asked the participating countries to provide comments concerning the assessment of the environmental impacts of the project affecting the country, and
to submit any comments the country might receive from the public and the authorities in the country. The comments should be sent to the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency no later than 15 April 2016. 

The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency will also arrange a consultation meeting on the 21 March 2016 for the countries that have showed interest to attend to such meeting. Information about this meeting will be sent out separately by the Agency. Update: On February 16, the Environmental Protection Agency sent out an invitation to the responsible authorities of the countries that have declared their interest. The meeting will be held on March 21 in Stockholm. It is possible to visit the site in Forsmark the day after, March 22.

Links:

The consultation letter from the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, 160205 >>

Available documents on the Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Company’s website >>

More information about Espoo on UNECE:s webpage >>

Draft version in English of a report with the MKG and SSNC requests for complementary work >> 

Update:

Consultation meeting:
The invitation to the consultation meeting 21st of March, 2016 >>

In German:
Information from the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety >>

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