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Gorleben

Gorleben (Source: © GNS)Preliminary Safety Analysis Gorleben 
The possibility of using the salt dome ‘Gorleben’ as a repository for high active waste has been in discussion in Germany since the 1970s. Since then, scientists have been exploring the salt dome from above and below ground. 
 
What is, however, the current understanding of Gorleben? Could Gorleben be a safe repository for high active waste? And if yes, under what premises? The answers to these questions can be provided by GRS through the preliminary safety analysis of Gorleben funded by the Federal Environmental Ministry. The implementation of such a project requires various specialist disciplines. Therefore, the Centre for Repository Research from GRS has come together with several project partners.

Tasks and Aims of the Preliminary Safety Analysis 
The aim of the proposal, taking into account the knowledge gathered up so far, is to issue a realistic appraisal, in which would state, under which circumstances would it be possible for Gorleben to be a repository for high active waste. In addition to the conclusions drawn from the research results, the main point of concern is to identify the future needs for research and investigation and to establish a concept for permanent waste disposal. The process of this project and its results will be made available here, soon.

Why do ‘Preliminary’ Safety Analysis at all? 
The analysis is ‘preliminary’ in that it is purely a prognosis to assess suitability based on today’s understanding of scientific knowledge. Therefore, it can not supersede any scientific proof of safety which would be required in a possible future plan approval procedure. The German Atomic Energy Act stipulates that such a plan approval procedure has to be completed prior to the issuance of permission for the construction of a repository for radioactive waste. The commissioning of a repository for radioactive waste is the responsibility of the Federal State and carried out by the Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS).