Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd today welcomed an independent expert report about radioactive particles in the marine environment around the site.
The Fourth Report of the Dounreay Particles Advisory Group makes a number of recommendations that the company says it will take forward as part of the clean-up.
Seabed clean-up started in August 2008 following the largest public consultation in the site’s history. It is expected to take several years to complete.
DSRL managing director Simon Middlemas, who attended the launch of today’s report in Edinburgh, said: “The expert work carried out by DPAG over several years has made an enormous contribution to our understanding of this problem.
“Without their expert scrutiny advice we would not have been able to begin cleaning up the seabed and so begin recovering the remnants of past practices.”
A 10-minute film showing the offshore clean-up in action has been released by DSRL and Fathoms Ltd, a contractor involved in the clean-up. It can be viewed at www.dounreay.com.
Phil Cartwright, manager of the particles clean-up project, said: “This report is the culmination of many years of work. It has defined the limited extent of the area where the highest activity particles remain and made possible the definition of a clean-up project.
“It highlights improvements made in particle detection techniques and records improved knowledge of the physical characteristics of particles. It assists validation of the technical basis of our clean-up programme, increasing our confidence that we are able to remediate the impact of this legacy insofar as is practicable.
“The report also contains new information on the westward plume and makes a number of recommendations, including continued monitoring on-shore during the clean-up phase. We support all the recommendations and will continue to focus our efforts on implementing the clean-up in co-operation and partnership with others.”
Mr Geoffrey Minter of Sandside Estate said: “We appreciate DPAG providing us with an embargoed copy of the Fourth Report in advance simultaneously with DSRL – the report is a major work in itself and contains much to consider.”
The Fourth Report is available at www.sepa.org.uk/radioactive_substances/rs_publications/dounreay_reports.aspx