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Contaminated Land and Groundwater Management at Sellafield: A Large Operational Site With Significant Legacy and Contaminated Land Challenges

[+] Author Affiliations
Phil Reeve, Katherine Eilbeck

British Nuclear Group Sellafield Ltd., Sellafield, Cumbria, UK

Paper No. ICEM2007-7051, pp. 431-437; 7 pages
  • The 11th International Conference on Environmental Remediation and Radioactive Waste Management
  • 11th International Conference on Environmental Remediation and Radioactive Waste Management, Parts A and B
  • Bruges, Belgium, September 2–6, 2007
  • Conference Sponsors: Nuclear Division and Environmental Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4339-0 | eISBN: 0-7918-3818-8
  • Copyright © 2007 by ASME


Sellafield is a former Royal Ordnance Factory used since the 1940’s for the production and reprocessing of fissile materials. Leaks and spills from these plants and their associated waste facilities has led to radioactive contaminated ground legacy of up to 20 million m3 . Consideration of land contamination at Sellafield began in 1976, following discovery of a major leak from a waste storage silo. Over the past three decades there has been a programme of environmental monitoring and several phases of characterization. The latest phase of characterization is a £10million contract to develop second generation conceptual and numeric models. The Site Licence Company that operates the site has been subject to structural changes due to reorganizations within the British nuclear industry. There has also been a change in emphasis to place an increased importance on accelerated decommissioning. To address these challenges a new contaminated land team and contaminated land and groundwater management plan have been established. Setting and measuring performance against challenging objectives is important. The management plan has to be cognizant of the long timescales (ca. 80 years) for final remediation. Data review, collation, acquisition, analysis, and storage is critical for success. It is equally important to seize opportunities for early environmental gains. It is possible to accelerate the development and delivery of a contaminated land and groundwater management plan by using international experts.

Copyright © 2007 by ASME
Topics: Groundwater



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