National framework for the management of spent fuel and radioactive waste

The national framework for the management of spent fuel and radioactive waste is based on the Council Directive 2011/70/Euratom of 19 July 2011 establishing a community framework for the responsible and safe management of spent fuel and radioactive waste, which is trransposed to the national legislation by the Presidential Decree no. 122, Government Gazette no. 177/A/12.08.2013, and the Presidential Decree no. 91, Government Gazette no.130/Α/01.09.2017. According to the European Directive, all Member-States are responsible for the management, from the production till the final disposal of the radioactive waste they generate.

In Greece, the national policy is based on the pillars below:

  • disposal of radioactive waste in Greece is only allowed for waste generated within the Greek territory, and can take place in an authorized disposal facility. Until the establishment of such disposal facility, radioactive waste generated within the Greek territory is kept in authorized interim storage facilities or storage areas; 
  • the generator of the waste has the primary responsibility for their management;
  • the import of radioactive waste for any purpose, including processing, storage or disposal within the Greek territory is prohibited;
  • the research reactor spent fuel, e.g. the spent fuel of the research reactor GRR-1 of NCSR "Demokritos", is returned permanently to a country where research reactor fuels are supplied or manufactured, based on an international agreement concluded at the time of import of any nuclear fuel; 
  • the imported sealed radioactive sources, after their useful life, are returned to the manufacturer or to an authorized recycling facility abroad (back-end solution);
  • scientifically accepted technical solutions are applied for the spent fuel and radioactive waste management;
  • the storage of radioactive materials and waste is not a final management solution; the maximum time of storage is not allowed to exceed 100 years in an authorized facility and 10 years in authorized places within the facility where they were generated; 
  • on a periodic basis (e.g. every 10 years), if necessary, a withdrawal project of radioactive sources and radioactive materials, is organized. The goal is to export the radioactive sources and materials in authorized recycling facilities abroad. 
  • the spent fuel and radioactive waste management provisions are applied in the waste generated within the Greek territory. Notwithstanding this, regional solutions for sending radioactive waste abroad for final management could be considered.

The legal provisions of the Presidential Decree no. 122, Government Gazette no. 177/A/12.08.2013, as extended/amended by the Presidential Decree no. 91, Government Gazette no.130/Α/01.09.2017: 

• supplement the National Radiation Protection Regulations through additional provisions on the responsible and safe management of radioactive waste and provisions related to the drawing of national policy, strategy and programme for the management of radioactive waste;

• cover compliance requirements deriving from other international obligations, such as from the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management;

• confirm the will of the Greek State to implement a consolidated and long-term policy on safety with respect to ionizing radiation and radioactive sources, aiming at the protection of public health against possible risks.

 Additional links

The national regulatory framework

The national regulatory framework consists of the following legal documents:

  1. Transposition to Greek legislation of Council Directive 2011/70/Euratom of 19 July 2011 establishing a Community framework for the responsible and safe management of spent fuel and radioactive waste, Presidential Decree no. 122, Government Gazette no. 177/A/12.08.2013
  2. Legislative, regulatory and organizational framework for the responsible and safe management of spent fuel and radioactive waste and amendment of the Presidential Decree. 122/2013, Presidential Decree no. 91, Government Gazette no.130/Α/01.09.2017
  3. National policy on the management of spent fuel and radioactive waste, Ministerial Decision 131207/Ι3/20.08.2015, Government Gazette Folio No. 1858, Second Issue, August 27, 2015
  4. National programme of spent fuel and radioactive waste management, Ministerial Decision Π/112/214196, Government Gazette Folio No. 2941, Second Issue, December 31, 2015
  5. Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management, Law No. 2824, Government Gazette Folio No. 90, First Issue, March 16, 2000
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