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Dounreay - UKAEA History - The First Fifty Years By Andy Munn
UKAEA At Dounreay
Aspects Of The
Early History On The Site
UKAEA – THE FIRST FIFTY YEARS
A New Mission
Since 1994 UKAEA has amassed considerable experience in decommissioning and site remediation - probably more than any other nuclear body in Europe. A total of 14 reactors out of 26 have now been completely removed as have several major radioactive facilities. In addition, it has successfully kept the level of its liabilities under control with a steady reduction over ten years.
At the same time, its management of the fusion programme has gained plaudits from its European partners, a good omen for the future fast-track development of this exciting technology.
It is this experience which will put UKAEA in a good position for the next major change in its development. Following a five-yearly review of UKAEA in 2001 the Government proposed the formation of a national body to be responsible for all the UK’s civil nuclear liabilities. A White Paper was subsequently published and the Energy Bill enacted in July 2004. Its measures include the formation of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, for whom both UKAEA and BNFL will manage the sites as contractors, though competition is expected after an initial period.
UKAEA faces the start of its next 50 years with confidence. Its major strength during the first fifty years was its workforce’s ability to innovate and adapt to change. It is this strength that will ensure its continuing success during the next fifty.