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Nuclear Fuels (Reprocessing)

Volume 934: debated on Tuesday 28 June 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Energy (1) what thermal oxide reprocessing capacity will be required at Windscale, Cumbria, for reprocessing oxide fuels under existing overseas contracts and to meet domestic (AGR) requirements;(2) what is the projected capacity of the thermal oxide plant referred to in the planning application currently under inquiry at Whitehaven.

I am advised that the design capacity of the proposed oxide reprocessing plant at Windscale is 1,200 tonnes per annum, but the average expected throughput of the plant assuming a 10-year operating life is 600 tonnes per annum. Depending on the outcome of the present public inquiry into the oxide reprocessing plant, it is proposed that 1,150 tonnes of oxide fuel under existing contracts would be reprocessed by 1995. Over the same period 3,000 tonnes of spent oxide fuel will have arisen from the operation of AGR plants under the existing programme.