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Radwaste Market Information

The radwaste market encompasses the waste management and decommissioning segments of the nuclear industry. In the United States, this business is centered around the following industry subsets:

  • the Department of Energy's remediation of its weapons production and research facilities
  • civilian radioactive waste activities, including low-level waste disposal, the onsite storage of used nuclear fuel and high-level waste, and efforts to develop a deep geologic repository
  • the management of waste from operating nuclear power plants and the decommissioning of plants no longer in operation
  • nonpower, non-DOE activities

Radwaste activities outside of the U.S. include decontamination and decommissioning efforts in the United Kingdom and the rest of Europe, where plants are closing as a result of post-Fukushima policies. Likewise, Japan continues to seek technical solutions to the challenges posed by the cleanup of Fukushima, including the management and remediation of the large volume of contaminated water resulting from the 2011 accident at the plant.

For fiscal year 2015, the DOE's Office of Environmental Management has requested $5.622 billion, which is a 3.6 percent decrease from FY 2014. As of late 2014, however, it appears likely that Congress will pass a continuing resolution, which will maintain current funding. The Obama administration, meanwhile, is seeking an additional $8 million to help in the recovery of the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, the temporary closure of which is forcing the DOE to reprioritize its waste management activities.

Last modified June 5, 2015, 2:10pm CDT

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