NDA awards 5 year extension to LLW Repository

The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) has today awarded the International Consortium UK Nuclear Waste Management (UKNWM) another five year term to manage LLW Repository Ltd (LLWR). This follows the successful implementation and delivery of key commitments since UKNWM won the contract in 2008.

The contract covers the management and operations of the National Low Level Waste Repository in West Cumbria and the development and implementation of the National Low Level Waste Strategy. It was the first NDA competition to secure Parent Body Organisations (PBO) to manage site licence companies, bringing additional expertise and innovation to the UK decommissioning industry.

During the first five year term the contract has realised around £30M in savings, extended the life of the LLWR facility well into this century, reduced volumes of waste bound for the Repository by a factor of three, and seen the opening a new Vault at the Repository.

John Clarke, Chief Executive Officer of the NDA said

“We’ve seen a consistent level of good performance both at the Low Level Waste Repository itself and across the broader low level waste management agenda. For those reasons we have taken the encouraging decision to let UKNWM continue with their oversight of LLWR Ltd for the next five years.

With progress on the decommissioning mission at the site, the development of a national strategy plus innovative ways of working that secure real cost savings for the UK taxpayer, we have together shown that a competitive decommissioning industry can reap real dividends for all concerned.”

Pres Rahe, the original Chairman of UKNWM, remembers the 2008 contract signing – the first of its type for the NDA and the nuclear industry as a whole – and the promises his organisation made to the NDA. He said:

“Our biggest challenge during the original contract was to extend the capacity and lifetime of the LLWR site. Our greatest success was in showing that LLWR was not merely a waste disposal facility, but a company recognised across the UK for implementing a nuclear industry waste minimisation program that uses creative technology and logistics to drive down waste disposal costs across the entire NDA estate. The entire LLWR workforce has embraced this mission and is rightly proud of it.”

Gerry McGill, Senior Vice President, International Business, GMOS, URS –  the majority shareholder in UKNWM and the current Chairman – is convinced that by extending innovative practices and thinking across the NDA estate to improve the efficiency of a future Low Level Waste system, further significant savings can be found. He said:

“Our vision is to continue with the challenge of bringing best world class practices and improvements to the UK nuclear Industry in the next contract term, and beyond, and building upon the UK’s reputation for safe and efficient management of nuclear waste.”