News story

Activities that produce radioactive waste

The NDA has published a new document to help people understand activities that produce radioactive wastes in the UK.

Waste drums
Waste drums

In the UK, we use radioactive materials for a wide range of purposes, such as generating power, treating medical illnesses and conducting research. Radioactive materials are also used in the industrial and defence sectors.

Radioactive waste is often generated as a by-product from these processes.

Understanding activities that produce radioactive wastes in the UK

The NDA is responsible for managing radioactive waste generated through the clean-up of the UK’s civil nuclear legacy, including the Magnox power reactors, various research and fuel facilities and our largest, most complex site, Sellafield.

Beth Ripper, NDA National Waste Inventory Manager, said:

This document provides an overview of how radioactive wastes are produced across the UK. We hope that it will be helpful to people who are new to the nuclear sector, or who have a general interest in the topic.

The document is in two parts. The first part provides:

  • an introduction to radioactivity
  • a high-level overview of key activities that produce radioactive waste
  • information about how radioactive wastes are managed

The second part is a series of fact sheets. These include more detail on the main activities and processes that create radioactive wastes.

The report is available via the UK Radioactive Waste Inventory website which provides further information about the types and quantities of radioactive waste in the UK. We updated the website last year to improve the layout and content for a non-technical audience.

If you have any feedback or suggestions about the new document, you can contact us on: enquiries@nda.gov.uk

Published 14 July 2015