Waste site at Novaya Zemlya

1 March 2002

A burial site for Russian radioactive wastes is to be built in Novaya Zemlya, an archipelago in the Arctic Ocean which was formerly a nuclear weapons test site.

This decision taken at a meeting of the Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring which included representatives from Severodvinsk, ecological organizations, defence enterprises, the Ministry of Atomic Energy, the Moscow design institute Gidrospetsgeologiya, the Kurchatov Institute and the Moscow Sechenov Medical Academy.

The site is said to be perfect for long-term storage of radioactive wastes, as permafrost will make it impossible for water to leak into the storage facility, preventing radionuclides from migrating. The waste will be transported there by sea.

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