Shipping radioactive nuclear waste in no deal Brexit scenario

The new rules largely replicate the current regulatory procedures that exist between the European Atomic Energy Community and third countries

Operators may need to get new authorisations to ship radioactive waste or spent fuel if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

The new rules largely replicate the current regulatory procedures that exist between the European Atomic Energy Community, Euratom and third countries and ensure the continuation of the regulation and authorisation of shipments.

In practice, it will result in three operational changes for UK industry:

  • Operators will need to request authorisation from the relevant competent authority in order to import radioactive waste and spent fuel from Euratom states
  • They will need to notify the relevant competent authority of the completion of shipments to Euratom states
  • When importing from a Euratom state, operators will need to provide evidence that they have made an arrangement with the exporter and which has been accepted by the exporter’s authority. It should confirm the exporter will take back the radioactive waste or spent fuel if the shipment cannot be competed in accordance with the regulations

The competent authorities in the UK are the Environment Agency in England, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency, Natural Resources Wales and the Northern Ireland Environment Agency.

The new documentation will be published next month.

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