Continue We want you to get the most out of using this website, which is why we and our partners use cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to receive these cookies. You can find out more about how we use cookies here.

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Subscriptions  |  evouchers  |  Jobs  |  Property  |  Motors  |  Travel  |  Dating  |  Family Notices

Staff disappointed by plans for plant

END OF AN ERA: The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority has announced to staff, stakeholders and trades union representatives that the Thorp plant at Sellafield is due to stop reprocessing in 2017

By Natalie Chapples

REPROCESSING work at the Sellafield site will stop by 2018.

The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority announced to staff, stakeholders and trades union representatives on Wednesday the Thorp plant is due to stop reprocessing in 2017.

Although a large proportion of the 10,000 strong Sellafield workforce is employed in reprocessing, the anticipated number of job losses is not expected to be substantial due to more focus on removing Sellafield’s high-hazard risks and increased NDA financial resources to accelerate decommissioning projects.

It is also possible the government will eventually give the go-ahead for a second Mox plutonium recycling plant, which will create thousands of new jobs and absorb losses.

Thorp reprocessing was due to finish in 2010 but the serious liquor leak in 2005 has extended closure until 2018.

A spokesman for the NDA said: “Our strategic review has concluded that completing the Thorp contracts remains the most viable and cost-effective option.

“Any remaining fuels will be placed into storage pending disposal in a geological disposal facility.”

However, there is a hint that the plant might close earlier if it fails to perform reliably.

The spokesman added: “We will continue to examine options to reprocess less than the full contracted amount of spent fuel in Thorp in case it is needed.

“We have also considered reprocessing more than the contracted amount of spent fuel in Thorp. This has included extended AGR reprocessing and taking on new business.

“Our view is that neither of these options are credible and would not be cost-effective compared to the current strategy.”

Mike Graham, national secretary of Prospect, which represents a number of workers at the site, said: “The announcement comes as a great disappointment to our members at Thorp who believe firmly that the plant has a future and have been actively campaigning for new reprocessing contracts.

“The announcement, though not surprising, is sudden and it is fair to say that the way this was communicated to the workforce could have been better.

“The closure will see a reduction in the numbers employed on the plant once operations cease, with only a fraction of the existing staff remaining during the clean-out phase prior to decommissioning.”

Have your say

Be the first to comment on this article!

Make your comment

Your name

Your Email

Your Town/City

Your comment


North West Evening Mail What's on search

Powered by

Hot Jobs

Loading latest hot jobs...
Powered by Zoopla.co.uk

Featured companies

Searching for featured companies...
Search for:


Should social media sites be doing more to stop cyber bullying?



Show Result


Will you be voting in the 2015 General Election?



Show Result

Resource Cumbria

Choosing a pre-school

Luscombe Plant Hire

Great Daffodil appeal 2015

Homes and gardens 21

to switch

To save our contact details direct to your smartphone simply scan this QR code

North West Evening Mail

Evening Mail Going Out