Prospect welcomes plutonium recycling proposals

by - 1st December 2011, 14.23 BST

Prospect has welcomed today’s that the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) plans to explore the business case for recycling the UK’s plutonium and uranium stockpile.

Deputy general secretary Mike Clancy said: “Any possible re-use as MOX fuel would provide a holistic solution to the problem of managing the UK’s radioactive legacy which recognises the opportunities a new nuclear build programme may present.

“While it is right that the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and operators examine options for commercial viability, we would hope the government does not lose sight of the fact that the management of the UK’s plutonium stockpile is ultimately its responsibility. Therefore we urge that consideration is also given to the civil nuclear plans of ‘friendly’ nuclear power states, including those with fast reactor programmes.

“Not only would new reprocessing facilities convert a zero asset into a potential revenue stream, it would produce a substantial cost saving compared with the options for safe disposal and opportunities for highly skilled employment.”