Caithness Map :: Links to Site Map Paying too much for broadband? Move to PlusNet broadband and save£££s. Free setup now available - terms apply. PlusNet broadband.  

 

Dounreay Decomissioning Speeds Up Again

1/4/2012

Senior figures from government and industry are gathering at Dounreay today to hear the site's new clean-up team set out their vision to accelerate the demolition of Britain's second largest civil nuclear site.

Three of the world's biggest engineering and project management companies - Babcock International, CHM2HILL and URS - have come together to win the largest site closure contract ever let in the UK.

Their aim is to complete the decommissioning of the site by 2022-25 and reduce the cost to the UK taxpayer by over £1 billion.

The consortium, known as the Babcock Dounreay Partnership, officially took over Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd at the weekend. It will use the company's 950 staff and supply chain to clean up and demolish the remainder of the site.

"We will be setting new standards for decommissioning delivery, safety and environmental protection. We want to establish Dounreay as the European reference site for nuclear decommissioning and site closure," said Roger Hardy, a senior Babcock executive who becomes managing director of DSRL.

He is joined initially by a team of 10 other secondees from the three parent companies who now fill positions in the site licence company.

"We are delighted now to be officially in contract and able to implement the partnership's new vision for the Dounreay site," he added.

"Babcock, CH2MHILL and URS bring international know-how and proven technologies new to the UK to one of the world's most demanding clean-up and closure jobs. I'm excited by the opportunity to work with staff, the supply chain and regulators on their implementation.

"We will reduce the cost to the UK Government of closing down this site through proven innovation, not just by doing the same thing better. We are excited by the prospect of working with the DSRL team to complete the mission they've started and deliver a world-class clean-up safely and cost-effectively."

The redundant nuclear site consists of three nuclear reactors, fuel reprocessing plants, laboratories and various waste facilities that are a legacy of the site's 20th century role as Britain's centre of fast reactor research and development.

The first Dounreay site restoration plan published in 2000 projected a clean-up taking until 2063 to complete at a cost of £4 billion.

By 2005, when the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority was established and took over the site, this had reduced to 2036 and £2.7 billion.

Two years ago, the NDA invited companies to tender for a contract to complete the site's closure for a price not exceeding £150 million a year.

Babcock Dounreay Partnership's 2022-25 bid earned it preferred bidder status from the NDA in November 2011. Its acquisition of DSRL was completed at the weekend following a four-month transition period.

The contract is to clear away all the redundant plant, get the resultant radioactive waste into a condition that is safe for long-term storage or disposal, and the site into a condition that is safe for future generations.

The new management team today begin the process of overwriting DSRL's existing clean-up programme with their successful bid. Changes to the programme are subject to normal regulatory controls governing safety, security and environmental protection.

Key features include a new target cost incentive fee contract arrangement (involving sharing risk with the NDA), an accelerated closure date, a new project-focussed methodology and a programme of support and mentoring for the local business community as it adjusts to the site closure.

The Nuclear Decommissiong Authority today marked the completition of its competitive tendering process with a VIP event at the site. Guests included Michael Moore, Secretary of State for Scotland at the UK Government; Richard Lochhead, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment at the Scottish Government; NDA chairman Stephen Henwood and chief executive John Clarke; Kevin Thomas, chair of Babcock Dounreay Partnership; and local parliamentarians John Thurso MP and Rob Gibson MSP
.
During tours of the site, they were shown progress to date to dismantle the redundant nuclear plant and were taken inside the spherical reactor hall of the part-decommissioned experimental fast reactor.

About 80 invited guests attended a ceremony in the site's canteen to mark the contract award.
Tonight, the new management team hosts a reception for community representatives at the University of the Highlands and Islands campus in Thurso where they will outline their plans to help the area adjust to the social and economic consequences of site closure.

 

Related Businesses

 

Related Articles

Reactor demolition takes another step forward at DounreayThumbnail for article : Reactor demolition takes another step forward at Dounreay
A pioneering Dounreay innovation has allowed the team taking apart the Prototype Fast Reactor to complete one of the final phases ready for demolition.   The centre guide tube - which once housed the reactor's control and shutoff rods - was successfully raised from the reactor core, demonstrating that internal fixtures can be safely removed.  
Minister sees Dounreay decommissioning first handThumbnail for article : Minister sees Dounreay decommissioning first hand
Dounreay welcomed Fergus Ewing MSP, Minister for Energy, Enterprise and Tourism to see the world leading decommissioning work taking place at the site.   He also met with Andrew Wettern, business development director for Cavendish Nuclear, who was accompanying Hidehiro Segawa of Hitachi-GE Nuclear Energy on his knowledge sharing and fact finding visit to the site.  
Supply chain invited to attend free workshop
DSRL will be running a free workshop to train the supply chain on the new Complete Tender Management (CTM) system.   The workshop will be held on Thursday February 20, 2014 at the North Highland College, Thurso from 1pm to 4pm.  
Dounreay Jobs Will Last Longer Than Previously ThoughtThumbnail for article : Dounreay Jobs Will Last Longer Than Previously Thought
Management at Dounreay are facing the challenge of how to accommodate additional work from the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) whilst maintaining the same annual spend, the same Interim End State – and most importantly, the same priority on working safely and securely that the site is renowned for.   The additional work has arisen because activities that were not sufficiently developed by the NDA at the time the competition was run in 2012 have now reached a state of maturity that allows them to be added to the existing programme of work.  
Supply chain briefing on opportunities at Dounreay to be held
DSRL will be holding a supply chain briefing to give an update on future procurement opportunities at Dounreay.   This event will be held on Wednesday February 12, 2014 in The Weigh Inn Hotel, Thurso, starting at 14:00 hours.  
Creative thinking helps reactor demolitionThumbnail for article : Creative thinking helps reactor demolition
Another pioneering in-house invention has allowed the PFR reactor dismantling team to complete one of the final phases of the reactor dismantling ready for final demolition.  The centre guide tube was successfully raised from the reactor core, demonstrating that internal fixtures can be safely removed.  
Dounreay camera innovation wins NDA awardThumbnail for article : Dounreay camera innovation wins NDA award
The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority recognised the role played by a Wick-based manufacturer at Dounreay in its national awards for the UK supply chain.   Kongsberg Maritime Ltd supplied a camera capable of working in the harsh radiation environment inside the Dounreay Fast Reactor.  
Hazardous liquid waste cementation reaches milestoneThumbnail for article : Hazardous liquid waste cementation reaches milestone
The last batch of higher activity liquid waste produced during Dounreay’s Materials Test Reactor (MTR) research reactor reprocessing history was cemented into a drum on 7 November 2013.   It is an important milestone in the processing of the historic liquid waste created during the operation of Dounreay’s three reactors.  
[Local Authority]14/11/2013
Feedback sought on updated planning framework for DounreayThumbnail for article : Feedback sought on updated planning framework for Dounreay
Tomorrow (15 November 2013) The Highland Council launches a public consultation on the Dounreay Planning Framework 2: Draft Supplementary Guidance.   The Highland Council approved the existing Dounreay Planning Framework in January 2006, as a land use development brief against which to regulate and control future decommissioning and restoration works proposed at the former nuclear power research site at Dounreay, near Thurso in Caithness.  
Enhanced inspection to continue until hazards reduce furtherThumbnail for article : Enhanced inspection to continue until hazards reduce further
A report published on Tuesday 5th November 2013 underlines how much work remains to be done at Dounreay before the site can be left in a safe condition for future generations.   The Office for Nuclear Regulation Chief Nuclear Inspector's annual report says its inspection of the site will be at an “enhanced level” because of the continuing presence of major radiological hazards.  

[Printer Friendly Version]