National Inventory

In Spain, the definition of radioactive waste is established in article 2 of Law 25/1964, from 29th April, about nuclear energy (LEN) as follows: "Radioactive waste is any material or waste product, for which there is no expected use, that contains or is contaminated with radionuclides in concentrations or levels of activity over those established by the Ministry of Ecological Transition and Demographical Challenge, with a previous report of the Nuclear Safety Council (CSN)”.

According to article 6.c) of Royal Decree 102/2014, among the contents of the GRWP there must be “An inventory of all spent nuclear fuel and radioactive waste, as well as estimates of future amounts, including from decommissioning. This inventory shall clearly indicate the siting and amount of spent nuclear fuel and radioactive waste, according to a classification that takes into account the final management scheduled for it”. Thus, the final management route is key in the classification of radioactive waste. Although there are many types of radioactive wastes, these wastes are categorized in Spain according to the management facilities authorized for a volume, radiological inventory and specific activity concentration limits, depending on the nature of the different radionuclides present. These categories are:

Radioactive waste classification

Low and Intermediate Level Waste, short-life (LILW):

Those whose activity is mainly due to the presence of radionuclides beta-gamma emitters, with a short-medium disintegration period (below 30 years) and whose content in long-life radionuclides is very low and limited. This group integrates wastes that can be temporary stored, treated, conditioned and finally disposed of in the disposal facility for LILW in El Cabril (C.A. El Cabril), in the province of Córdoba, including the subgroup of Very Low Level Waste (VLLW). Enresa is the operator of this disposal facility.

Special Waste (SW)

This includes the attachments of nuclear fuel, neutronic sources, used intranuclear instrumentation or replaced components from the reactor vessel system and internal components from the reactor, generally metallic, that present a high radiation dose from the neutronic activation, and all those wastes that, according to their radiological characteristics, cannot be disposed of in the existing Surface Disposal Facility in Spain, C.A. El Cabril [Instruction IS-29 of CSN]. Their management is associated to High Level Waste.

High Level Waste (HLW)

Those that have significant concentrations of long-life alpha emitters and beta-gamma emitters and generate heat in a significant way. This category includes the spent fuel discharged from nuclear reactors (PWR and BWR type), once decided it is not going to be reprocessed, and the vitrified waste produced in the reprocessing activities which took place in the past for some amounts of spent fuel [Instruction IS-29 of CSN].

Did you know?

Radioactive isotopes tend to become stable elements, that is, they lose their radioactivity. The time a radioactive substance takes to reduce its activity to the half is called "semidesintegration period".

Origin of the radioactive wastes in Spain

The following map shows the main radioactive waste producers in Spain.


National interactive map of the Radioactive Wastes in Spain

La Coruña: 26 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Lugo: 4 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Pontevedra: 13 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Ourense: 0 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Asturias: 32 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Cantabria: 16 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Vizcaya: 46 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Decommissioned research reactor

Guipuzcoa: 18 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Alava: 19 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Navarra: 20 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

La Rioja: 4 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Huesca: 4 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Zaragoza: 28 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Teruel: 4 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Lleida: 9 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

NPP Ascó I y II

NPP Ascó I y II

Girona: 10 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Barcelona: 138 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Decommissioned research reactor

Tarragona: 16 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

NPP Vandellós I

NPP Vandellós II

León: 5 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

NPP Santa Mª de Garoña

Palencia: 1 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Burgos: 9 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Soria: 2 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Zamora: 2 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Valladolid: 14 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

">

Nuclear fuel manufacturing facility "Juzbado" (Salamanca)

Salamanca: 9 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Ávila: 0 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Segovia: 0 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Uranium mills closured in Saelices el Chico

Research centre

Madrid: 190 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Cáceres: 3 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

NPP Almaráz I y II

NPP Almaráz I y II

Badajoz: 7 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Uranium mills closured in La Haba

Guadalajara: 4 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

NPP Trillo

NPP José Cabrera

Cuenca: 1 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Toledo: 9 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Ciudad Real: 6 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Albacete: 3 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Castellón: 5 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Valencia: 52 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

NPP Cofrentes

Alicante: 21 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

El Cabril Disposal Facility for LILW and VLLW

Uranium mills closured in Andújar

Huelva: 8 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Sevilla: 46 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Córdoba: 10 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Jaén: 9 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Cádiz: 19 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Málaga: 10 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Granada: 20 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Almería: 7 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Murcia: 14 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Santa Cruz: 18 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Las Palmas: 11 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Baleares: 12 Radioactive facilities with technical specifications suscribed as at 2018/12/31.

Main producers of radioactive wastes. Currently, there are 7 reactors in operation, in 5 sites: Almaraz I and II (Cáceres), Cofrentes (Valencia), Vandellós II and Ascó I and II (Tarragona), Trillo (Guadalajara).

  • José Cabrera Nuclear Power Plant (Guadalajara), currently in the dismantling and decommissioning phase.
  • Vandellós I Nuclear Power Plant (Tarragona), currently in the latency phase after its partial dismantling.

Santa María de Garoña NPP (Burgos), which will undergo in a near future its dismantling process.

Reactor JEN-1 (CIEMAT, Madrid), Argos (Barcelona) and Arbi (Bilbao). These research reactors are currently dismantled, and their associated wastes have been sent to C.A. El Cabril.

Centro de Investigaciones Energéticas, Medioambientales y Tecnológicas (CIEMAT), in Madrid, has a series of radioactive facilities in operation and a series of nuclear facilities already dismantled.

Nuclear fuel manufacturing facility “Juzbado” (Salamanca), where oxide uranium fuel elements for NPP reactors are manufactured.

Uranium mills, already closured and located in Andújar (Jaén), La Haba (Badajoz) and Saelices el Chico (Salamanca).

El Cabril is the Spanish disposal facility for very low, low and intermediate lever radioactive waste. It is located within the minucipal area of Hornachuelos (Córdoba).

We consider those facilities located all over the national territory that have technical-administrative specifications signed with Enresa at inventory date. According to Royal Decree 1836/1999, of 3rd December, radioactive facilities are defined as:

  • Any kind of facilities that have an ionizing radiation source.
  • Devices that produce ionizing radiation working with a potential difference over 5 kilovolts.
  • Locations, laboratories, factories and facilities that produce, use, own, treat, manipulate or store radioactive materials, except disposal facilities.

National Inventory

According to article 38 bis of the Law 25/1964, from 29th April, on Nuclear Energy (LEN), radioactive waste management in Spain, including spent fuel, and decommissioning, dismantling and closure of nuclear sites, is categorized as an essential public service entrusted to the State, being this responsibility submitted to Empresa Nacional de Residuos Radiactivos, S.A. S.M.E. (Enresa), according to the General Radioactive Waste Plan (GRWP) approved by the Government. Currently, the 6th Radioactive Waste Plan approved in 2006, is in force.

Additionally, Royal Decree 102/2014, from 21st February, for a safe and responsible management of the nuclear spent fuel and the radioactive wastes, sets in its article 9, as one of Enresa’s responsibilities, the preparation and management of the National Inventory for Spent Fuel and Radioactive Wastes, which shall include wastes and spent fuel definitively disposed of, after the closure of the installation where they are allocated.

This is the reason why, in 2014, Enresa began working in a new National Inventory for Spent Fuel and Radioactive Waste, closed as at 31st December 2015. Since its creation in 1984, Enresa has developed an inventory of radioactive wastes in Spain, with the data received from all waste producers. Since then, there has been a close cooperation and an improvement on the detailed knowledge of the situation, which has allowed the elaboration of more precise strategies and management programmes.

The National Inventory is based on a series of reports, which reflect both the origin of the radioactive wastes and spent fuel, and the hypothesis considered to reach the final values for the expected wastes, according to the established uncertainties.

In the interest of transparency, Enresa acknowledges the importance of having the national inventory data publicly available in a simple and accessible way for the population.

Inventory of 31st December 2018

Within the inventory data, it is interesting to know the origin of the data and the way the information is generated.

Origin of the data for wastes generated at one date

The data for elaborating the Inventory come, mainly, from the producers of spent nuclear fuel and radioactive wastes. Enresa receives the information according to the technical-administrative specifications for accepting nuclear spent fuel and radioactive wastes, as required in article 11 of Royal Decree 102/2014.

Inventory of wastes generated as of 31st December 2018

The inventory of wastes generated as of 31st December 2018, is reflected in the following table:

Table that reflects the inventory of wastes generated as of 31st December 2018,  during the operation and the dismantling of the NPPs (55206 m3 y 15051 m3 respectivamente). Wastes generated are classified as LILW, VLLW, SW and HLW and SF. By 31st December 2018, a total volume of 70257 m3 has been generated, mainly low and intermediate level wastes and very low level wastes.

From the total amount of LILW and VLLW generated, some of them are already disposed in the vaults of C.A. El Cabril, others are temporary stored in that facility, and some others are still in the producers’ facilities. The graphics below show the distribution of this type of wastes according to their location:

Figure that shows VLLW generated. 0,5% are temporary stored in C.A. El Cabril, 30,5% are in Waste Producer's Facilities and 69% are in C.A. El Cabril Vaults.
Figure that shows LILW generated. 0,5% are temporary stored in C.A. El Cabril, 16,1% are in Waste Producer's Facilities and 83,4% are in C.A. El Cabril Vaults.

Additionally, this is the amount, at inventory date, of VLLW and LILW disposed in vaults or structures of C.A. El Cabril facility, counted on primary waste packages received on site:

Table that shows VLLW and LILW disposed in vaults or structures of C.A. El Cabril facility, counted on primary waste packages, being VLLW 15.491 m3 and LILW 33.602 m3. Figure reflecting that 68% of the wastes disposed of in C.A. El Cabril are LILW, and 32% are VLLW.

Regarding the fuel elements generated, although for the national inventory the occupational volume is estimated in m3, it is interesting to know the number of total fuel elements generated, and the corresponding uranium tones:

Table indicating the total amount of fuel elements generated, 15.838, and the corresponding uranium tones: 5.246.

Spent Fuel Characteristics

Nuclear fuel consists of a series of cylindrical ceramic pellets of uranium oxide, whose U-238 is enriched to a variable degree (up to 5%) with U-235. These are encased in zirconium alloy tubes to create fuel rods, which are arranged into a structure to form the fuel assembly.

Since it is in the reactor, the uranium and other radionuclides generated are subject to neutron capture and nuclear fission reactions, resulting in fission products, activation products and the generation of plutonium and minor actinides. The composition of these products includes virtually every element of the periodic table.

Quantities and characteristics of the components of the irradiated fuel depend on its initial U-235 enrichment, its degree of burnup and the operation of the reactor.

infographic of a fuel element
Fuel assembly model

Expected generation

In order to estimate the future generation, a series of hypothesis and the reference scenario considered in the General Radioactive Waste Plan must be taken into account.

Reference Scenario

Hypothesis

Total inventory at 31st December 2018

Considering all the uncertainties and hypothesis previously explained, estimates of the inventory for each type of waste, are shown below:

Table that shows the inventory at 31/12/18 by type of waste (VLW, LILW, SW, SF and HLW), the expected generation at that date, and the total inventory giving a maximum and a minimum value, in m3. At 31/12/18 the total inventory is estimated between 258800 m3 and 213800m3; between 140400 y 106500 m3 of them are VLLW, and between 101700 and 91200 m3 are LILW. The rest correspond to SW and SF and HLW.

This implies that, at inventory date, 30% of the radioactive wastes expected are already generated. According to the estimates of the total inventory, considering the average value, the distribution related to the type of waste is as follows:

Table that reflects the distribution of the total inventory accoridng to the origin of the wastes. According to the average value for the total inventory (236300 m3), 64255 m3 come from the operation of the NPPs, 133955 m3 from the dismantling of NPPS, 1015 m3 from the nuclear fuel manufacturing facility “Juzbado” and 37075 m3 from CIEMAT, Cabril, CTS, DGR and others.
Figure that shows the average value for the total inventory in m3, accrding to the type of waste generated and their origin. NPPs in operation generate all type of wastes, being most of them LILW 42650 m3, 11065 m3 VLLW, 10350 m3 HLW and SF and a small amount of SW 190 m3. During the dismantling of NPPs the biggest volume of VLLW is generated 86825 m3, but they also generate 46480 m3 of LILW and 650 m3 of SW. Juzbado only generates VLLW 885 m3 and LILW 130 m3. CIEMAT, Cabril, CTS, DGR and others mainly generate VLLW 24675 m3, but they also generate some LILW 7190 m3 and SW 5210 m3.

NOTE! This site uses cookies and similar technologies.

If you not change browser settings, you agree to it. Learn more

I understand

Cookie Policy

What is a cookie?

A “cookie” is a file that contains small amounts of information that is downloaded on your computer -or other device- by accessing certain web pages and that gathers information regarding your browsing on the websites. Once downloaded into your device, your browser sends these cookies in subsequent visits to the websites already visited, providing them with information (such as, for example, the browser used, the language selected, the number of times you have visited the page, etc.), in order to facilitate, personalise and make the navigation more effective according to the information provided by cookies.

What type of cookie do we use?

Our website uses cookies to personalise the content and provide you with a customised, efficient browsing. We use cookies to help us to identify your browser and the language that you use, as well as other characteristics of your browsing patterns, with the aim of directing you to the suitable home page and facilitating you the navigation on our website. We use identifiers, such as IP addresses to obtain the number of individual visitors that access to our website, their geographical location, and their usage trends across the different pages that make up the site. In no case shall we use cookies to personally identify the user.

By browsing our website you accept the implementation of cookies, which you can control and administrate using the properties of your browser. Note that removing or blocking cookies may affect your browsing on our website, and it is possible that some functions may not be available and may even disable browsing.

The website www.enresa.es uses cookies with different functionalities:

Our website cookies installed on the users’ devices are not everlasting, rather, depending on their functionality, they have a limited permanence: from those cookies that delete themselves at the end of a browsing session, to other cookies that expire after 24 hours, up to the longest lasting cookies which expire 365 days after they were last updated.

The following table displays the first-party and third-party cookies that the website www.enresa.es current uses and the purpose for which each one is used:

FIRST-PARTY COOKIES OF THE DOMAIN: www.enresa.es
NAME OF THE COOKIEEXPIRYPURPOSE AND TYPE OF INFORMATION IT GATHERSFUNCTION AFFECTED IN CASE OF DEACTIVATION
1f616252c666968921000a2b5ef44e1c At the end of the browsing session    
c48b3f668f69f01659341181a9bb31e8 365 DAYS Users’ preferred language. Impacts on the functionality of the Web www.enresa.es
cookieaccept 365 DAYS If users have accepted the cookies Disablement of the browsing on the website www.enresa.es
THIRD-PARTY COOKIES
NAME OF THE COOKIEEXPIRYPURPOSE AND TYPE OF INFORMATION IT GATHERSFUNCTION AFFECTED IN CASE OF DEACTIVATION
_ga 1 day This type of cookie is associated with Google Universal Analytics- which is an update of the commonly used Google analysis service. This cookie is used to distinguish unique users by assigning them a number as a client identifier. It is included in each website request and is used to calculate visits, sessions and company data for the analytical reports of the website. By defect, they expire after 2 years, but this can be modified by the website owner. Impacts of the functionality of Google Analytics
_gat   This type of cookie is associated with Google Universal Analytics. Pursuant with their documentation, they are used to speed up the ratio of requests, limiting the gathering of data on websites with lots of traffic. They expire in 10 minutes. Impacts on the functionality of Google Analytics
_gid 1 day This type of cookie is associated with Google Universal Analytics. It saves and updates a unique value for each web page visited. Impacts on the functionality of Google Analytics
_streamio_session At the end of the browsing session    
FIRST-PARTY COOKIES OF THE DOMAIN: www.oficinaelectrónica.enresa.es
NAME OF THE COOKIEEXPIRYPURPOSE AND TYPE OF INFORMATION IT GATHERSFUNCTION AFFECTED IN CASE OF DEACTIVATION
JSESSIONID At the end of the browsing session Platform session cookie with a general purpose. Used on sites written in JSP. It is normally used to maintain the users’ session anonymous for the server. Impacts on the management of users.

This website uses “Google Analytics” analysis cookies, an analytical web service provided by Google, Inc. with registered address in the United States with central headquarters at 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway, Mountain View, California 94043. For the provision of these services, cookies are used which gather the information, including the users’ IP address, which will be transmitted, processed and stored by Google in the terms established on the Google.com website, including the possible transmission of said information to third parties for legal reasons or when said third parties process the information on behalf of Google. The configuration of these cookies is predetermined by the service offered by Google, as such we recommend that you check the Google Analytics privacy page https://www.google.com/analytics/learn/privacy.html?hl=es to obtain more information regarding the cookies they use and how to disable them, understanding that we are not responsible for the content or veracity of third-party websites.

CONTROL AND HANDLING OF COOKIES

Users can allow, block or remove cookies stored on their device through the browser setting options on their computer. Please read carefully the corresponding help section on your browser to learn more about how to activate the “private mode” or unblock certain cookies:

Enresa wishes to point out that the variation of cookies that this website handles cannot be related to its management and maintenance. Consequently, reviews are carried out periodically to improve and update Cookies Policy.

Enresa does not assume any liability which may arise from legal or technical problems caused due to non-compliance with the recommendations included in this policy. This communication is made for inform the users and, therefore, it should not be used for any other purpose. Likewise, responsibility for the content and veracity of the privacy policies of third parties included in this Cookies Policy is not assumed.

If you have any question regarding the Cookies Policy outlined in this document, you can contact us at registro@enresa.es.

UPDATES AND CHANGES IN THE COOKIES POLICY

Enresa can modify this Cookies Policy pursuant to the legislative or regulatory requirements, or in order to adapt that policy according to the instructions given by the Spanish Data Protection Agency. For that reason, users are advised to check this policy regulary.