Is it true that nuclear wastes represent a problem that has no safe solution?


Opponents of nuclear energy claim that final disposal of highly radioactive nuclear wastes has no practical solutions. In fact, it is a common challenge to the nuclear industry worldwide, but it can be solved.

Operation of nuclear plants causes emission of solid, liquid and gaseous radioactive wastes with levels of radioactivity ranging from low, medium and high. Nuclear plants are equipped with systems to deal with wastes according to its nature and quality. All stages of handling, transporting and storing radioactive waste are carried out according to strict standards and procedures regulated by international and local standards and regulations basically aim to protect humans, property and the environment from any radioactive release.

Spent fuel are considered high radioactive wastes in some countries. The common practice that it is stored in water pools inside the plant for 4-5 years until its level of radioactivity and temperature drops to a level that can be transported and stored in other facilities equipped with the necessary arrangements for radiation protection and fuel cooling for longer periods that may reach decades.

There are 2 types of radioactive waste storage for these facilities;

First type (wet storage) in which spent fuel is kept under the water surface in pools equipped with cooling and water purification circuits

Second type is used in El Dabaa (dry storage) in which spent fuel is kept in special containers/casks and to be cooled by air “same containers used in spent nuclear fuel transporting”.

As for Arab Republic of Egypt; the Supreme Council of Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy headed by His Excellency president Abd El Fattah El Sisi in July 2017 approved the Egyptian Strategy for the management of radioactive wastes and spent nuclear fuel and decommissioning of nuclear plants. All the competent nuclear authorities and relevant bodies set that strategy which aim to provide the suitable solutions to handle the radioactive wastes and to keep human and environment safe and not to bear future generations additional burdens taking into account the economic aspects and modern scientific trends.

The contract with Russian Party included fuel constructing special dry storage facility for dry storage of spent nuclear fuel for a period of 100 years so if in the future a new technology may enable us to use it, and then it is disposed in the correct way followed in all counties of the world. In addition, the EPC contract included establishing units for treatment of gaseous, solid and liquid radioactive waste