The Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority states that it has identified several serious violations of license conditions for the storage of nuclear waste.
According to Aftenposten, the authority reacts strongly and alerts inspections at both the so-called KLDRA plant for low and intermediate nuclear waste in Himdalen, Aurskog-Høland, and at a nuclear waste treatment plant at Kjeller.
The Department of Energy Technology is responsible for the deposit management. Despite being aware of the violation of the license terms and conditions which may cause a security risk, the institute still rejects that the storage has posed a danger to health and the environment. It also states that radiation has not been detected in the environment.
Per Strand, head of department in the NRPA, however, is very serious about the matter.
He says, “the breaches of the discharge permit and the license terms mean that we can no longer be completely sure that the landfill is as safe as it should be, in relation to what the plant was designed and planned for, especially in a long-term perspective after it was closed.”
The Department of Energy Technology was reported by the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority in February for the illegal storage of eight barrels of liquid oxygenated nuclear waste in the Aurskog-Høland landfill.
“This is waste that should not have been in Himdalen and the most serious relationship we are reacting to,” Strand says.
Three of the containers stored in Himdalen contained radioactive amounts that exceeded the limit values 40 to 50 times. Six other containers were well above the limit permitted in the discharge permit and license terms.
According to the National Radiation Protection Act, the storage, which occurred in 2013 and 2014, caused a risk of chemical reactions that could damage the containers. This in turn can lead to pollution in the long run.