Minatom to build radioactive repository on Kola Peninsula

Publish date: August 7, 2003

The Russian Atomic Ministry decided to construct repository for solid radioactive waste on the Kola Peninsula, ITAR-TASS reported.

Russia has decided not to construct a nuclear waste storage facility on the island of Novaya Zemlya in the Arctic Ocean. Scientists and geologists conducted an analysis of potential changes of the region’s climate and came to the conclusion that rising temperatures over the next 150 to 200 years are threatening to thaw the region’s permafrost. This could lead to leaks of the radioactive materials. Rumyantsev said that the ministry is looking into building a storage facility in a remote part of the Kola Peninsula. He added that the issue was almost resolved. The Atomic Energy Ministry had approved the construction of a USD 70 million nuclear waste storage facility on Novaya Zemlya in June 2002. The project had also been approved by experts from Finland, France, Germany, Norway and the UK and had undergone a government environmental analysis. The Russian Research Institute of Industrial Technology spent 10 years and $2 million to develop the design of the future storage facility on Novaya Zemlya. Such situation can also raise concerns among western donors who partially had financed this research, which turned out to be useless.