Lithuania’s Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant (INPP) has received a permit from the State Inspectorate for Territorial Planning and Construction under the Ministry of Environment to build, reconstruct, overhaul or demolish nuclear power facilities, INPP said on 17 April.

INPP also received permission from the Shirvint District Administration for the construction of simple structures for storage, utilities and other purposes.

These permits are required by INPP, which has been made responsible for the decommissioning of the Maishyagala radioactive waste storage facility. Maishyagala stored waste generated as a result of the use of radioactive materials and radioactive sources in industry, medicine and scientific research from 1962 until 1989, when it was decided to close the facility because it did not meet modern European Union (EU) environmental requirements.

In December 2016 a contract was signed with the Agency for the management of environmental projects (APVA) on the project for decommissioning Maishyagala. This will involve the construction of the infrastructure for temporary structures to enable waste removal and demolition of the facility structures (reservoirs for solid and liquid radioactive waste). Work on equipping the new, temporary infrastructure at the site of the Maishyagala facility is expected to be completed by the middle of the second quarter of 2022. The waste should be removed to INPP and the site restored by the end of 2023. The project is financed by the EU Cohesion Fund and Structural Fund.

In late March INPP confirmed that it would receive the waste from Maishyagala for storage and further disposal. This includes various types of waste: short-lived very low-level radioactive waste, short-lived low- and medium-level radioactive waste, and long-lived radioactive waste. For final disposal, it must be sorted, packed in special containers and placed in the INPP radioactive waste repository intended for each type of waste.