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Nuclear Safety Cooperation

Ukraine - Development of a National Plan for Intermediate Level Radioactive Waste Geological Disposal and its Implementation Schedule (U4.01/14B1)

  • Closed
Benefitting Zone
Eastern Europe
€ 133,430.00
EU Contribution
Contracted in 2019
Instrument for Nuclear Safety Cooperation II


Type of activity

Technical expertise



Method of Procurement

(FR2018) Simplified procedure – Services/Works < EUR 300 000 – Supplies < EUR 100 000. Legal services as in Annex 1 – 38.6 (Annex 1 – 38.1 (d))


20/09/2019 - 31/03/2021



Project / Budget year

Support measures 2018 for the INSC management / 2018


The overall objective of the U4.01/14B and U4.01/14B1 INSC project was to develop a national action plan for establishment, operation and closure of a deep geological disposal facility (repository) of radioactive waste (radwaste) in Ukraine.

Originally, the U4.01/14B project had focused on high-level waste (HLW) and spent nuclear fuel (SNF) disposal only. Later on, a complementary U4.01/14B1 project was created upon beneficiary request to include also intermediate level waste (ILW) in the project work. The reason for including the ILW were significant synergies between a geologic disposal of HLW/SNF and ILW, whereas implementing the ILW disposal facility in Ukraine was considered more urgent.

The specific objectives of the projects included:
-Providing options and detailed recommendations for selecting a geological repository site, building the geological repository and staff training,
-Development of missing legislation for activities related to site selection, construction, operation, closure and post-closure activities of a deep geological repository for HLW, ILW and SNF, as well as for public consultations during the siting stage,
-Giving recommendations for accumulating and storing information on a deep geological repository (cartographic, digital, etc.),
-Developing an outline plan (road map) for disposal of the intermediate and high-level waste and, as an option, used nuclear fuel in the deep geological repository in Ukraine,
-Developing a comprehensive and detailed structure and contents of the National Plan for establishing the deep geological repository in Ukraine,
-Analysing the costs and resources (including the associated uncertainty) needed for establishing the deep geological repository in Ukraine,
-Drafting and developing quality management and training programmes, and
-Supporting the Beneficiary and end user in the preparation of preliminary consultations with relevant stakeholders.


For the U4.01/14B project, the contract No. 2018/389-639 was concluded. The contractor for this project was an international consortium of ANDRA (France), BGE Technology GmbH (Germany) and KB International AB (Sweden) assisted by Posiva Solutions Oy (Finland) and Radioecological Center (REC) of the NAS of Ukraine. The beneficiary of the project was the State Agency of Ukraine on Exclusion Zone Management (SAUEZM), the end user was the Specialised State Enterprise Central Enterprise Management of Radioactive Waste (SSE CEMRW). The project formally started on 20 September 2018 with the implementation period of 24 months.

In the U4.01/14B project Kick-off meeting, the beneficiary requested including the ILW in the project work. A new tender procedure was therefore launched for the U4.01/14B1 complementary project on the ILW. Finally, the contract No. 2019/406-371 was concluded with the same consortium. The complementary project started on 20 September 2019 with the implementation period of 12 months.

Because of difficulties caused by the Covid-19 and organizational issues at the beneficiary/end user side, the project implementation was delayed and both projects were extended by 6 months. The projects finished on 31 March 2021.

The project work was divided in the following tasks:

Task 1: Project preparation and inception phase
The project kick-off meetings took place on 10 October 2018 and 26 September 2019 respectively. Project working groups were established and the contractor prepared an Inception Report for the U4.01/14B project and a renewed one for the U4.01/14B1 project.

Task 2: Review of the current status and input data for creating a deep geological repository.

Using a questionnaire sent to the beneficiary and the consortium members, the contractor analysed the development of a deep geological repository in Ukraine and internationally. Based on the analysis, the contractor prepared:
-options and detailed recommendations for application of international best practice in site selection, building a radwaste disposal facility and staff training,
-recommendations on development of missing legislation for site selection, construction, operation, closure and post-closure surveillance of a deep geological repository for HLW, ILF and SNF,
-recommendations on development of missing legislation for implementation of public consultations during siting of the deep geological repository,
-recommendations on how to accumulate and store information on the deep geological repository (cartographic, digital, etc.).

The recommendations are included in a Task 2 report updated with the U4.01/14B1 project activities.

The contractor also delivered to the beneficiary/end user a software for data accumulation and storage. The software had to support implementation of the proposed national plan on geologic disposal of radioactive waste in Ukraine.

Task 3: Development of an outline plan (road map) for the deep geological repository
Following extensive and detailed discussions with the beneficiary and end user, the contractor prepared the outline plan including:
-a list and sequence of activities needed for establishing the deep geological repository,

-time frames and key milestones (governmental and regulatory approvals, public consultations etc.),

-distribution of responsibilities for each activity (e.g. who submits a proposal for decision making and who endorses and/or approves it),
-an outline of the documentation (e.g. the contents of the safety case) that will be required to support decision making at each stage of the plan.

The plan is incorporated in a Task 3 report.

Task 4: Development of a detailed National Plan for the deep geological repository

The work within this task included preparation of a detailed plan of the establishment, operation and closure of the radwaste deep repository. The National plan has identified necessary activities in the repository implementation (siting, selection of disposal technology, design and construction of the repository, safety justification, etc.) and their schedule. The plan has also included detailed description of the site selection process. The contactor has delivered the National Plan as an annex to a Task 4 report.

Task 5: Cost and resource analysis, Quality Management

In this task, the contractor assessed costs as well as required material and human resources needed for establishing and operation of the deep geological repository for HLW, ILW and SNF in Ukraine. The contractor also prepared a quality management programme for geologic disposal of radwaste based on Ukrainian regulations and international experience. The contractor has presented results of the work in a Task 5 report.

Task 6: Training Ukrainian specialists in the field of radwaste geological disposal

The contractor organized a five-day training course in Kyiv on:
-Planning and management activities on establishing a geological disposal facility (21 participants),
-Safety assessment of the geological disposal facility (10 participants).
Additionally, four online session were organized to make up for study tours to Finland-Sweden and France-Germany that had to be cancelled because of the Covid-19 pandemic. The training provided is described in a Task 6 report.

Task 7: Public consultations

Within this task, the contractor organized a webinar on analysis of the current situation in Ukraine and suitable public involvement in establishing the geological radwaste repository. The contactor then prepared information materials, including a platform of key messages, to be used in the repository siting process and for outreach/consultations with various stakeholders. Recommendations have been provided on communication and public consultations during the different stages of the Ukrainian repository development programme. The result are summarized in a Task 7 report.

Task 8: Final report and dissemination

The final dissemination workshop was held on 24 March 2021. Because of the Covid-19 situation, it was an online event. The contractor then prepared a final project report.


Conclusions and recommendations

The project has contributed to developing the National Plan for establishing a facility for safe disposal of radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel in Ukraine. The project results include:
-identifying technology for safe and efficient radioactive waste disposal using experience gained in other European countries,
-defining processes for selecting a suitable and socially acceptable disposal technology,
-a detailed plan and estimated costs for establishing a deep geological repository,
-training of Ukrainian experts in establishment and safety of a radwaste geological disposal facility,
-recommended approaches to public consultations.

Although the COVID-19 restrictions considerably affected the project implementation, the contractor achieved all results expected in the contract Terms of Reference. The project was completed within the planned schedule and budget.

As lessons learned, the contractor suggested modifying the cooperation scheme in possible follow-up cooperation programmes. The responsible Ukrainian organisations should do the core work and EU assistance should be limited to providing guidance, document reviews and on-the-job training. The contractor then recommended for the beneficiary/end user to reinforce the project ownership and allocate necessary resources to ensure the project sustainability. A challenge has also been the language barrier; the contactor recommended that the Ukrainian project counterparts have sufficient command of English.