The Low Level Waste Repository (LLWR) is the national repository for low-level radioactive waste in the UK. The repository was previously faced with the need to expand capacity to accommodate the expected amount of waste generated across the UK nuclear estate and based on the forecast inventory full capacity would have been reached in 2020. Sourcing an alternative LLWR site was expected to cost more than £2bn and would therefore be a significant cost burden to the UK government budget. Seeking industry’s expertise, the NDA in 2008 decided it involve industry experts, and an Amentum led consortium took over the Management & Operation contract of the LLWR and create the National Waste Programme. The challenge ahead was understood.
Through an integrated approach, a holistic minimization strategy was introduced across the industry, establishing connections and waste routes between the generators and the supply chain, incentivising re-use and alternative disposal routes where possible. Rigid and consistent focus on waste characterisation methodology was introduced and implementation of the waste hierarchy.
Successful implementation of our initiatives led to:
- A decrease from 95% of waste generated in 2009 that was disposed of at LLWR to just 2% in 2020 with 98% treated or alternatively disposed.
- Extended the life of the repository by 100+ years,
- Saving of £2 billion through the elimination of an additional waste vault,
- Cost avoidance savings of £455m through waste diversion
- Opening of new waste treatment and disposal opportunities.
Our work at LLWR and creating the LLW’s National Integrated Waste Programme is a clear display of Amentum’s values and expertise — we’re passionate about providing the best solutions for our clients, on time and within budget.