The Supreme Administrative Court confirms the government's decision on the repository for spent nuclear fuel

On May 11, 2023, the Swedish Supreme Administrative Court decided to confirm the decision of the Swedish government to approve the planned repository for spent nuclear fuel in Forsmark. On April 27, 2022, the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation (SSNC), the Swedish Friends of the Earth, Nature and Youth Sweden, SSNC in Uppsala County, SSNC in  Östhammar and the Swedish NGO Office for Nuclear Waste Review (MKG), requested a judicial review in the court of the government decision taken in January 2022. The request was supplemented with new information by the organisations on January 27 and May 8, 2023.

On January 27, 2022, the Swedish government approved the planned repository for spent nuclear fuel repository in Forsmark. In a request for judicial review on April 27, 2022, SSNC and the other organisations stated that there is a lack of sufficient knowledge about all the barriers that are to guarantee the long-term safety of the repository system. There is thereby not enough knowledge to validate the assumptions made in the models in the safety analysis. The problem of insufficient knowledge to guarantee the long-term integrity of the copper canister was particularly emphasized. According to the general terms of consideration according to the the Environmental Code, a condition for obtaining a license for the repository is that sufficient knowledge exists at the time the license is granted. In addition, the precautionary principle must be considered in the licensing review according to the Environmental Code. To further highlight the lack of knowledge regarding the function of the copper capsule, the organisations supplemented the request on January 27 and May 8, 2023.

In the judgment of 11 May 2023, the Supreme Administrative Court, HFD, states the following:

"What the applicants [of the request] have objected to, in summary, does not mean that the government's admissibility decision according to the Environmental Code or license decision according to the Nuclear Activities Act is contrary to any legal rule and thus does not constitute a basis for annulling the decisions. It is also not clear from the circumstances that the decisions are contrary in any other way against any rule of law. The government's decision must therefore stand."

MKG comments the decision on the Swedish website.


Other links:

News on MKG's English website about that MKG and member organisations twice add new information to the appeal of the government’s decision to approve the repository for spent nuclear fuel, 230127 and 230508 >>

News on MKG's English website about the government's yes to a repository for spent nuclear fuel, 220127 >>

News on MKG's English website about SKB R&D programme report "Fud-22”, 230223 >