The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) has a perpetual lack of knowledge about the state and location of waste on the 17 sites it is responsible for making safe, a powerful committee of MPs has found. This results from decades of poor record keeping and weak government oversight, the MPs said. Combined with a “sorry saga” of incompetence and failure, this has left taxpayers footing the bill for “astronomical sums”, they said. The NDA acknowledges that it still does not have full understanding of the condition of its sites, including 10 closed Magnox stations from Dungeness in Kent to Hunterston in Ayrshire, the MPs report said. The MPs recommended the NDA speed up its work: “It may be possible to reduce the time it will take to fully decommission the sites from around 85 years to more like 40-45 years. This could significantly reduce the long-term cost.” They also said taxpayers’ money could be saved by accelerating the programme to create a geological disposal facility to permanently store highly radioactive waste currently held in interim facilities.
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