The UK’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) has released a statement on a set of draft recommendations for nuclear waste disposal delivered by the Committee on Radioactive Waste Management (CoRWM).

The NDA agrees with CoRWM’s preference for geological disposal of waste, assuming that, while the precise details are currently uncertain, repository vaults would be left open through an operational phase lasting for several decades and that waste packages would remain available for examination and potentially for retrieval during this period.

“However,” says the statement, “the actual approach to be used will depend on future technical and safety case developments, taking account of site-specific issues.” Implementation of a geological disposal solution may take a number of decades, says the NDA, but a ‘repository availability’ date for Intermediate Level Waste (ILW) of 2040 is used in the NDA baseline plans.