Switzerland chooses a place to store nuclear waste near the border with Germany | Switzerland

Swiss authorities have chosen a site in the north Switzerlandnot far from the border with Germany, to accommodate a repository for deep geological storage of radioactive waste.

After nearly 50 years of searching for the best way to store its radioactive waste, Switzerland is gearing up for its “project of the century” to bury spent nuclear fuel deep underground in clay.

The organization in charge of managing the country’s radioactive waste said on Saturday that it had decided that the Nördlich-Legern region was the best of the three locations it considered for underground storage.

We “selected Nördlich-Legern as the safest location for a deep geological repository,” said Felix Glauser, spokesman for the National Radioactive Disposal Cooperative. wasted in vain (Nagra), AFP told AFP by email, confirming the report by Swiss news agency Keystone-ATS.

“Extensive research has shown that Nördlich Lägern is the most suitable site and has the largest safety margins,” he added.

Nagra has informed the local population directly and is expected to present its proposal to the Swiss government on Monday, according to Keystone-ATS.

The Swiss government is not expected to make a final decision until 2029, but that is unlikely to be the last word as the issue is likely to be put to a referendum under the famous Swiss system of direct democracy.

Swiss nuclear power plants have been pumping out radioactive waste for more than half a century.

But after the Fukushima accident in Japan in 2011, Switzerland decided to phase out nuclear power: its reactors can operate as long as they remain safe.

At the moment, the waste is stored in an “intermediate warehouse” in Würenlingen, 15 km from the border with Germany.

With the new facility, Switzerland hopes to join an elite club of countries moving closer to deep geological repositories.

So far, only Finland has built a site in granite, and Sweden in January gave the go-ahead for the construction of its own site for the disposal of spent nuclear fuel in granite.

France also plans to store radioactive waste underground in clay.

Approximately 83,000 cubic meters of radioactive waste, including some high-level waste, will need to be buried in Switzerland.

This volume corresponds to 60 years of operation of the Beznau, Gosgen and Leibstadt nuclear power plants and 47 years of operation of Mühleberg before shutting down in 2019.

The filling of underground repositories with nuclear waste should begin by 2060, after which there will be several decades of careful monitoring.

This place will close sometime in the 22nd century.

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