Japan and Russia join forces on waste management

08 September 2017

Japan and Russia have signed a memorandum on the exchange of information on reactor physics experiments for minor actinoid transmutation for radioactive waste processing and management. The document was signed on 6 September in Vladivostok, Russia, during the Eastern Economic Forum by Rosatom Director-General Alexey Likhachov and Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) President Toshio Kodama.

Rosatom-JAEA - September 2017 - 460 (Rosatom)
Kodama and Likhachov at the signing ceremony (Image: Rosatom)

Rosatom said today that the two sides would work together on promoting innovative energy technologies in radioactive waste management.

"Scientific centres in Russia and Japan, having a long-term successful record of research and experimental work in radioactive waste management, are interested in joining their efforts in this direction, which is vital for human and environmental safety," Rosatom said.

A technology for transmutation of minor actinoid contained in radioactive waste - through burning in fast reactors or an accelerator-driven system of the long-lived radioactive isotopes americium, curium and neptunium recovered upon reprocessing of used nuclear fuel - enables a significant reduction in the volume and radiotoxicity of waste, Rosatom said.

Last year, Rosatom signed a memorandum of cooperation in peaceful uses of atomic energy with two Japanese ministries. The memorandum was signed in Tokyo on 16 December during a meeting between Japan's prime minister, Shinzo Abe, and Russian President Vladimir Putin. It was signed by Japan's minister of economy, trade and industry, Hiroshige Seko; the minister of education, culture, sports, science and technology, Hirokazu Matsuno; and Rosatom's Likhachov.

Rosatom said one of the key cooperation areas specified in the memorandum is the post-accident recovery at the Fukushima Daiichi plant, including radioactive waste management and possible decommissioning.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News