Read the documents relating to Sellafield nuclear site radioactive particles.
The Sellafield site is located on the West Cumbrian Coast and was first developed as a plutonium production site in the 1940s. The world’s first commercial nuclear power station was built on the site at Calder Hall in 1956 and generated electricity until 2003.
Today the site is home to a wide range of operations including the decommissioning of redundant buildings associated with site’s early defence work; spent fuel management including Magnox and Oxide fuel reprocessing; and the safe management and storage of nuclear waste. The site is operated by Sellafield Limited.
The Environment Agency regulates discharges and radioactive waste disposals from Sellafield. It has set stringent discharge limits in Sellafield Limited’s environmental permit and makes sure the company uses the best available techniques to minimise discharges and their impact on people and the environment. Nuclear regulators attend and provide reports to the West Cumbria Sites Stakeholder Group (SSG).
Monitoring the environment for radioactivity around nuclear sites helps assess any potential impacts from on-site activities on the environment and people. Some of this monitoring is carried out by the operators of nuclear sites, and some by the Environment Agency.