Talvivaara's plans to produce by-product uranium in Finland have taken a step nearer to licensing with the release of a positive opinion on the uranium recovery process from the European Commission, while Finnish regulators have found the radiation risks from the operation to be low.
The European Commission ruling, that uranium recovery at Talvivaara's Sotkamo nickel-zinc mine complies with the goals set by the Euratom Treaty and may improve the security of supply of nuclear fuel in the European Union, is a requirement under the Finnish government's licensing procedure. It follows on from the Euratom Supply Agency's November 2011 approval of a uranium off-take agreement between Talvivaara and Canadian uranium company Cameco.
Meanwhile, Finnish nuclear and radiation safety authority STUK has formally expressed its opinion that radiation risks to both the environment and population from the proposed operations are "very low". STUK gave its opinion on the uranium recovery plant to the Northern Finland State Provincial Office as part of the environmental permitting process. Environmental radiation monitoring plans must be submitted to STUK for approval before uranium recovery operations begin.
Researched and written
by World Nuclear News