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Environmental Monitoring for West Cumbria in 2011 (Sellafield & LLWR nr Drigg) John Titley Monitoring, Assessment and New Reactor Permitting.

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Presentation on theme: "Environmental Monitoring for West Cumbria in 2011 (Sellafield & LLWR nr Drigg) John Titley Monitoring, Assessment and New Reactor Permitting."— Presentation transcript:

1 Environmental Monitoring for West Cumbria in 2011 (Sellafield & LLWR nr Drigg) John Titley Monitoring, Assessment and New Reactor Permitting

2 Contents Permitted discharges from Sellafield Permitted disposals of solid wastes to the LLWR Effluents and gaseous check monitoring. Solid LLW check monitoring Environmental monitoring in West Cumbria. Doses to public in West Cumbria. Fukushima. Other events. Conclusions.

3 Sellafield’s permit in 2011 - 1 Varied twice in 2011 1 st August 2011 RSA-93 to EPR-10 template Added routes for metallic low level waste (LLW) (combustible & high volume very low level waste (HV- VLLW) Start up of the new Separation Area Ventilation (SAV) stack & its discharge limits. 9 th September 2011 To allow optimisation of EARP operations No change to permit limits for discharges

4 Sellafield’s permit in 2011 - 2 No change to site permit limits for discharges Discharges of gases; mists; dusts Gross alpha & beta activities. 12 specified radionuclides. All discharges of radionuclides below permit limits. Liquid releases via sea pipe-line. 16 nuclides specified, 2 alpha/beta and 1 for U by mass. Variation in discharges from changes in amount of fuel reprocessed. All discharges of radionuclides well below permit limits.

5 Reporting discharges in 2011 In 2011 RIFE reported discharges and disposals in Bq - as opposed to TBq which was the unit of report up until 2009 10 TBq = 1.0E+13 Bq 1 TBq = 1.0E+12 Bq 0.1 TBq = 1.0E+11 Bq

6 Sellafield’s sea pipe discharges (Bq/y) Note:- 1.0E+12 Bq = 1 TBq Nuclide Discharge 2010 Discharge 2011 Limit Tritium1.39E+152.07E+152.00E+16 Carbon-144.37E+126.39E+122.10E+13 Cobalt-609.81E+106.46E+103.60E+12 Strontium- 901.02E+121.93E+124.80E+13 Technetium-991.41E+121.59E+121.00E+13 Caesium-1374.85E+125.86E+123.40E+13 Plutonium alpha1.34E+111.06E+117.00E+11 All discharges 2-39% of limits

7 Sellafield’s atmospheric discharges 2011 (Bq/y) Note:- 1.0E+12 Bq = 1 TBq NuclideLimitDischarge% of Limit Tritium1.10E+159.79E+138.9 Carbon-143.30E+123.96E+1112.0 Krypton-854.40E+176.43E+1615.0 Antimony-1253.00E+105.73+0919.0 Plutonium alpha1.90E+081.58E+078.3 Americium- 2411.20E+081.63E+0714.0 All discharges 1- 160% of site limits 12 nuclides specified, 2 alpha/beta

8 LLWR permit status in 2011 Permit revised in 2011 to allow the LLWR to act as a waste broker as well as a disposer. Allowance for LLW transfer from LLWR to other sites that can receive it. Extension in time or the transfer of PCM from LLWR to Sellafield (2022) – in line with planning permission No change to limits on liquids, gases and solid waste disposal at the site. No disposals of LLW - pending review of EA’s Environmental Safety Case (ESC) outcome Waste continues to be sent for storage pending disposal.

9 Disposals to LLWR in 2011 (Bq/y) NuclideLLW Limit LLW Disposal % of Limit Tritium1.0E+13NilN/A Carbon-145.0E+10NilN/A Cobalt-60 Iodine-129 2.0E+12 5.0E+10 Nil N/A Uranium3.0E+11NilN/A Other alpha3.0E+11NilN/A

10 Metals recycling facility - permit status 2011 Operated by Studsvik UK Ltd. Located at Lillyhall Industrial Estate. Processes metallic LLW for recycling. Permitted discharges – Liquids - alpha and beta – nil during 2011 Gases - alpha and beta - <1% during 2011

11 Effluent and gaseous discharge check monitoring 2011

12 Effluent & gaseosu discharge check monitoring 2011 Agency checks on radionuclides in discharges & disposals in its check monitoring programme –Aerial discharges (bubblers & filters) –From Sellafield (Magnox Reprocessing & THORP) –Liquid effluents –From Sellafield (EARP, SIXEP, SETP, Factory Sewer, Lagoon & Laundry) –From site boreholes – introduced in 2006. –From LLWR (near Drigg) –Solid LLW disposals –To LLWR from nuclear sites in England and Wales.

13 Sellafield - gaseous monitoring 2011 Overall 2011: 53 analytical comparisons.

14 Sellafield - liquid effluent monitoring 2011 Overall 2011: 470 analytical comparisons

15 Sellafield borehole liquids - 2011 Regular programme – started 2006 Quarterly check monitoring samples from 5 boreholes Compare with Operator’s results Provide reassurance that Operator’s monitoring arrangements for borehole water is satisfactory Checks - total alpha, total beta, H-3, Sr-90, Tc-99, and gamma emitters (Cs-137 etc).

16 Sellafield borehole liquids check – 2011 115 analytical comparisons carried out of which: 84% good comparison 4% poor - Sellafield finding higher results than EA 12% poor - Sellafield finding lower levels than EA Majority of the poor comparisons were very low activity samples were or only just classed as “poor”

17 LLWR - liquid effluent monitoring 2011 Overall 2011: 14 analytical comparisons.

18 Effluent check monitoring – things on the horizon New ‘MCERTS’ for radiochemical analysis (environmental & waste waters) - May 2012 Based on ISO-17025 and states the requirements that are additional to ISO-17025. Precision and bias in the results defined. Our contractors will adopt it for liquid effluents Existing nuclear industry - voluntary uptake. New nuclear build will be required to adopt it.

19 Checking of solid LLW

20 Waste Quality Checking of solid LLW Agency facility for investigating solid LLW - WQCL at Winfrith. Ceased operation at the end of December 2010 New monitoring capability being worked up

21 Checking of LLW for LLWR 2011 No checking by EA during 2011 Winding down the facility at Winfrith Setting up a new contract New contract in place April 2012 Consortium of the National Nuclear Lab (NNL), and various other suppliers

22 Checking of LLW – new contract NNLCourierNuvia Instrument manufacturer Frazer NashBabcock

23 Future of checking of LLW Changes to LLW management and disposal. Wastes - segregated, sorted and treated. Much less material for disposal to LLWR. Fewer ISO consignments of mixed waste. New EA checking (assurance) arrangements for LLW. New contract in place Targeted checking at key locations.

24 Environmental Monitoring in 2011.

25 Environmental Monitoring in 2011  The Environment Agency is responsible for monitoring non-food parts of the environment.  Sediments, water, seaweed, grass, soil, dose rates, gulley pots  Ensuring the dose limit of 1 mSv/y is not exceeded  The Food Standards Agency is responsible for monitoring the food chain.  Fish, shellfish, milk, vegetables and meat.  Ensuring that doses from foods are assessed.  Results from both organisations are used to assess total dose – compared with dose limit.

26 Environmental Monitoring in 2011 Monitoring of Gully pots- Seascale and Whitehaven:-  Gully pots in road drains - good indicators of urban contamination.  Seascale - high activity concentrations from pigeons in 1998  Concentrations in gulley pots much reduced since remedial measures in 1998.  In 2010, elevated Sr-90, Cs-137, Am-241 and Pu concs were found in one Seascale road drain.  Very wet weather conditions in Nov 2010 – radioactivity held in the drainage path may have been released.  Additional monitoring carried out in 2011  In 2011 levels similar to those in previous years.  Elevation seen in 2010 was not sustained in 2011. Further review of gully pots in 2012 by MSc Student.

27 Environmental dose rates 2011 Cumbrian and Lancashire Coastlines Average UK background dose rates –silts 0.07  Gy/h –sand 0.05  Gy/h Highest annual dose rates (2010 in brackets) –River Mite 0.16  Gy/h (0.16  Gy/h) –Newbiggin 0.14  Gy/h (0.13  Gy/h) –Upper River Calder 0.11  Gy/h (0.10  Gy/h)

28 W Cumbria Coast - Dose rate trends

29 Gamma dose rates above mud and salt marshes in the NE Irish Sea (Fig 2.22)

30 Summary - silt concs – Eskmeals

31 West Cumbria – Eskmeals. Co-60 levels in sediments (Bq/kg) and discharges (TBq/y)

32 West Cumbria - Eskmeals Ru-106 levels in Sediments (Bq/kg) and discharges (TBq/y)

33 West Cumbria - Eskmeals Cs-137 levels in Sediments (Bq/kg) and discharges (TBq/y)

34 West Cumbria - Eskmeals Am-241 levels in Sediments (Bq/kg) and discharges (TBq/y)

35 West Cumbria - Eskmeals Pu-239/40 levels in sediments (Bq/kg) and discharges (TBq/y)


37 Conc’ns of Am-241 and Cs-137 in coastal sediments in the NE Irish Sea (Figure 2.21)

38 Doses in West Cumbria in 2011

39 Presentation of doses in RIFE – 17 for 2011 RIFE-17: Presents ‘total dose’ first ‘Total dose’ methodology agreed in 2004 Information on habits around nuclear sites ‘Total dose’ assessments completed at all nuclear sites Doses using other slightly different methods retained – but not highlighted at the front of the report

40 Summary of non food doses (mSv/y) Group200920102011 Recreational user of beaches – North Cumbria 0.0120.0130.011 Ravenglass, nature warden0.0480.0440.038 Houseboat dweller, Ribble0.130.160.13 Dose limit for public111

41 Total dose summary (mSv/y) GroupSource200920102011 Fish/shellfish and external dose 5 y habits Sellafield0.200.180.15 Whitehaven factory Total0.380.26 Total dose method ‘mollusc consumers’ Sellafield & Whitehaven 0.280.18 Inhabitants and consumers of local food Sellafield0.0280.0220.02 Dose limit for publicAll sources111

42 Total dose (mSv/y) West Cumbria (local seafood consumers)

43 Fukushima Fukushima in March 2011 Environment Agency detected arrival of radioactivity late March to late April 2011. High volume air samplers network at 7 locations HPA also detected the using similar equipment

44 Our air monitoring locations UK air and rainwater monitoring HVAS Filters capture particles and radionuclides on them.


46 Fukushima I-131, I-123, Cs-137, Cs-134, Te-132, I-123 Levels about 2000 times lower than from Chernobyl Pooled EA and HPA results and published them regularly on the HPA website:- April-July. Monitoring of grass Dose to the public < 0.001 mSv/y Compilation of results in RIFE – in a new chapter 8 “over seas incidents”

47 Fukushima - activity concs in air in UK

48 Other events The European Commission verification visit of the environmental monitoring arrangements for Sellafield & Lillyhall landfill sites, August 2011. Follow-up to visit in 2010 (on-site monitoring) Air, rain, river water, dose rate and shellfish monitoring by Sellafield Limited, Environment Agency, the Food Standards Agency and HPA EC team concluded SL is fulfilling its monitoring obligations under Article 35 of the Euratom Treaty.

49 Other events Sellafield Limited and NDA published their plans for decommissioning the Sellafield site. SL continues to prepare for retrievals of intermediate level waste from legacy facilities and to reduce environmental risk. Some of projects could affect discharges. Magnox swarf liqours sent to SIXEP for treatment. Removal of sludge from pile storage pond

50 Conclusions – 1 Disposals and discharges No changes to permit limits for LLWR in 2011. No changes to permit limits for Sellafield site in 2011. Discharge monitoring – broadly acceptable agreement for liquid and gaseous discharges from Sellafield and from LLWR. Waste Quality Checking (LLW) by EA - ended in 2010. New contract in place at the start of 2012

51 Conclusions – 2 Environment Dose rates - general unchanged Co-60, Ru-106 levels in marine environment follow discharges closely Pu-239/40, Am-241 and Cs-137 concs in environment (in particular Esk Estuary) don’t follow discharges closely. Residue of higher historic environmental burden from 1970s and 1980s continue to affect levels seen. Results are “noisy” with variation from year to year Am-241 levels influenced by ingrowth from Pu-241. Po-210 concs in shellfish increased in 2011 v 2010.

52 Conclusions – 3 Doses Dose to the public associated with Sellafield decreased slightly because of reduced consumption of winkles in 2011. Dose to the public associated with past discharges from Whitehaven phosphate plant increased because of higher levels of Po-210 in fish – dab - and slightly increased fish consumption. Total dose from past discharges from both plants unchanged. Total dose < 1 mSv/y dose limit.

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