Nuclear Decommissioning Authority: priorities and progress
NDA's priorities and progress are outlined in our Strategy, Business Plan, Performance Reports, and Annual Report and Accounts.
Our top priorities are safety, security, environmental responsibility and providing value for taxpayers’ money.
Plans for decommissioning and clean-up activities on our sites are based on our Strategy and the budget allocated to NDA.
These activities are:
- outlined in advance in our Business Plan
- reported on during the year
- reported on at the end of the year in our Annual Report and Accounts
Our work programme is moving at speed and we have made significant progress, including reducing the risks around our most hazardous sites.
What we have achieved so far…
Since our creation in 2005, we have:
- developed a detailed understanding of the legacy and produced the first-ever UK-wide strategy for tackling it
- prioritised funds towards the highest hazards
- reshaped the industry and introduced international delivery partners
- delivered value for money by driving performance and efficiency
- maximised income to reduce cost to taxpayers – over £10 billion of income in the last nine years – including £470 million from land sales to new nuclear operators
- invested in skills to build the future capability of the UK’s nuclear workforce
- developed our approach to open and transparent engagement with stakeholders
- worked with communities in priority areas to help them plan for sustainable futures
What we expect to achieve in the future…
During the next 10 years we expect…
- all Magnox stations defuelled and spent fuel reprocessed to long-term stable form
- 4 Magnox sites to have entered Care and Maintenance
- progress on high hazard reduction, including retrievals from Legacy Ponds and Silos at Sellafield
- all NDA’s non-core assets to have been disposed of
During the next 20 years we expect…
- all other Magnox sites to have entered Care and Maintenance
- decommissioning to have been completed at Harwell and Winfrith
- at Dounreay, all Intermediate Level Waste (ILW) to have been removed from the shaft and all residues removed from the Dounreay Fast Reactor (DFR)
- at LLWR, the Plutonium Contaminated Material (PCM) facilities to have been removed
- confirmation of a site’s suitability to host a Geological Disposal Facility (GDF)
We implement policies set by government. The devolved administrations for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are responsible for developing their own policies in this area.
How we implement these policies is set out in our Strategy, which develops over time to reflect any policy changes introduced by government. UK government and the Scottish ministers approve our Strategy and business plans.
We deliver our role through 5 overarching core processes:
Our strategy is reviewed every 5 years and provides the framework for delivering our mission on behalf of government. It sets out our strategic direction and long term objectives and determines what the NDA is going to do to deliver its policy obligations. We’ve developed a Strategy Management System to support the development of strategic options and make decisions on a series of distinct issues.
Our plans set out how we will deliver the key outcomes required to achieve our mission in the right timeframe and within the funding agreed with government.
The planning process helps us to make estate-wide decisions over the short and long term and ensures we are prepared for government spending reviews.
Our Business Plan provides:
- a 20 year overview of estate activities
- planned activities across the estate within the next 3 years
The contracting process enables us to run competitions and put in place contractual arrangements for the management and operation of SLCs using contracts with both the SLCs and the PBOs.
Our contracts provide a framework for setting out our requirements and expectations and are designed to:
- deliver our desired outcomes
- enable effective performance management
- provide appropriate reward to our contractors
4. Managing performance
We manage the performance of SLCs through relevant contract mechanisms. We do this by analysing:
- performance and programme / project plans
- proposals for managing deviations from plans
We ensure that the SLCs comply with their contracts and deliver the required outcomes. Using appropriate contractual mechanisms, incentives and governance frameworks, we rigorously verify claims ensuring that there is robust professional challenge and dialogue as appropriate. We report performance of the SLCs to the NDA board, government and stakeholders.
We ensure the SLCs, the NDA and our subsidiaries achieve the outcomes our mission requires by:
- using risk-based planning
- conducting assurance
- providing specialist support
This process ensures that we have the right people, processes and plans in place to ensure that hazards are reducing as planned. We need to know that projects and programmes are on track in line within agreed funding limits.
The Energy Act 2004 requires that we review and publish our Strategy at least every 5 years. UK government and the Scottish Ministers approved our latest Strategy in April 2016.
The final Strategy incorporates stakeholder views, feedback and responses to the consultation on our draft Strategy.
We use 5 themes to deliver programmes of work.
We develop options and make recommendations within these programmes of work. Our stakeholders help develop these credible options and the preferred option on a range of issues within the programmes of work.
- Corporate report
Every year we invite comments on our draft Business Plan which:
- reflects the Strategy published in 2016
- sets out key activities and the progress the NDA expects across all its sites during the next 3 years, in line with the funding allocated by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS)
We seek to maintain progress and maximise value for money by focusing on the highest hazards, whilst ensuring that safe, secure and environmentally responsible site operations are maintained across our estate.
Our current Business Plan includes a 20 year overview and planned activities for the next 3 years.
Specific targets sit behind this planned activity. Progress against these Business Plan targets for the current year is published in our Quarterly Performance Reports.
- Consultation outcome
- Corporate report
Quarterly Performance Reports against Business Plan
We publish quarterly reports on the status of progress against our business plan targets. These reports also summarise safety information for the same period.
We give details on any reportable incidents and environmental impact that has occurred at an NDA site in the reporting period.
- Corporate report
- Corporate report
Annual Report and Accounts
In 2015 to 2016 there was significant progress on hazard reduction, particularly at Sellafield.
Performance highlights included:
- NDA’s third Strategy was published after a period of consultation with stakeholders and outlines long-term priorities
- the current estimate for the future clean-up costs across the UK is around £117 billion (£161 billion discounted), spread across the next 120 years or so. Last year’s estimate was £118 billion.
- increased savings from collaborative procurement, which combines demand in goods and services across the estate, to almost £87 million, compared to the previous year’s £65 million savings
- achieved 22 per cent of spend with SMEs which is on trend for achieving the overall target of 31 per cent with this group of suppliers by 2020. The total 2015-2016 supply chain spend was almost £1.76 billion
- achieved more than £1 billion of commercial income of through contracts for reprocessing and management of spent fuels, electricity generation at Wylfa and ongoing asset disposal
- reduced radioactivity levels by 70 per cent in Sellafield’s Pile Fuel Storage Pond, through removal of the entire bulk stock of metal fuel. This 1940s facility is the world’s oldest open-air fuel storage pond and one of the site’s most hazardous legacy facilities.
- for the very first time, begun removing bulk quantities of radioactive sludge from another ageing facility, the First Generation Magnox Storage Pond
- achieved a research breakthrough in understanding the characteristics of waste at the Magnox Swarf Storage Silo, allowing much simpler treatment and potentially saving hundreds of millions of pounds.
- set up new management arrangements for Sellafield Ltd, effective from 1 April, replacing the previous private-sector ownership model with a simpler structure. Now owned directly by the NDA, the structure will allow for better long-term planning and greater efficiencies, while accommodating complexities and uncertainties more easily.
- completed the removal of spent fuel from the nuclear power station at Oldbury, thus removing 99 per cent of the radioactive hazard from the site
- continued defueling and preparing for decommissioning the nuclear power station at Wylfa on Anglesey following closure in December 2015 after almost 45 years of operation - 5 years later than originally planned generating £785 million in extra revenue for the UK taxpayer
- made good progress on transferring nuclear material to Sellafield, where it will be consolidated with similar material in safe, secure storage until a long-term disposal route is agreed
- continued to divert material away from the Low Level Waste Repository to alternative treatments such as recycling, combustion and use of licensed landfill sites, bringing the total diverted to 89 per cent of material, reducing demand for space at the facility
- Corporate report
- Corporate report
- Corporate report
Priority Programme and Major Project Performance Reports
Across the NDA estate there are many projects underway and given the complexity and interdependency of many of these, they are often grouped into distinct delivery programmes.
We describe those programmes that are the highest priority in achieving our mission as our ‘Priority Programmes’. As a non-departmental public body, we use the UK government’s definition of a Major Project as being: ‘A central government funded project or programme that requires HM Treasury approval during its life, as set out in Delegated Authority Letters’.
We publish annual reports on our Priority Programmes and Major Projects, with performance information against original schedules and budgeted costs.
Published: 3 August 2015
Updated: 27 March 2017
- Includes NDA: Quarterly Performance Report Quarter 2 status for 2016-17
- NDA: Quarterly Performance Report Quarter 1 status for 2016-17added
- Quarterly Performance Report - Quarter 4 2015-16 added
- Added the 2015 to 2016 Annual Report and Accounts to this collection.
- Added Priority Programmes and Major Projects Performance Report (data as at September 2015)
- Changed link so that latest Strategy is available from this page and added link to the Business Plan for 2016 to 2019.
- Quarterly Performance report Quarter 3 status for 2015-16 published
- NDA: Quarterly Performance Report Quarter 2 status for 2015-16 published.
- First published.