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Low & Intermediate Level Waste Repository To Be Built In Bulgaria

A consortium comprising Empresarios Agrupados Internacinal SA, VT Nuclear Services and ENPRO Consult of Bulgaria has won a contract to manage the design of a new national disposal facility for low level and intermediate level waste in Bulgaria.The three year contract is valued at €2.6m ($3.5m). It will see the consortium work with the Bulgarian State Enterprise for Radioactive Waste (SERAW) to select a suitable site for the near surface repository and prepare environmental impact assessments, as well as manage the technical design of the new facility and the public consultation process.Managing Director of VT Nuclear Services, John Chubb, said: "Our experience and success on projects such as the Drigg Repository and the innovative and ground breaking work at Kozloduy in Bulgaria illustrates our ability to deliver to the very highest standard in the UK and Eastern Europe."The company will help to set up a project management unit (PMU) for site selection, design, safety assessment, construction and commissioning of the national disposal facility.Bulgaria currently has two operating reactors, Kozloduy 5 & 6, which produced 32% of the country electricity in 2008 according to the IAEA. There are four other VVER-440 units at the site. Units 1 & 2 were shutdown at the end of 2002 and are currently being decommissioned, with units 3 & 4 shutdown at the end of 2006, both as conditions for Bulgaria's accession into the EU. A new Russian-designed reactor is being built at Belene and is due to begin operation in 2014.