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UAE will not reprocess spent nuclear fuels

Waste set to be shipped to countries with reprocessing facilities.

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The UAE will not reprocess spent nuclear fuel.
The UAE will not reprocess spent nuclear fuel.

The UAE will not reprocess the spent fuel from the nuclear reactors coming online from 2017, Hamad Ali Al Kaabi, the permanent representative of the UAE to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has said. The country will instead look at shipping the spent fuel to countries with reprocessing programmes.

"The UAE has decided not to do both enrichment and reprocessing as part of its utmost commitment to the peaceful use of nuclear energy,” Al Kaabi was quoted in the Khaleej Times.

“The UAE can explore the possibility of shipping the spent fuel to countries which have reprocessing programmes. We are studying all these options, and this is something that we will have to do only after 40 to 50 years when our reactors are to be decommissioned after their lifetime,'' he added.

Al Kaabi told the paper that the contract with KEPCO, the South Korean company charged with building four reactors in Abu Dhabi, stipulates a special fund to be set aside for the decommissioning of the plants.

"Nuclear power is expected to contribute 25 percent of total electricity generated in Abu Dhabi by 2020, and this will be much higher than the seven percent energy to be contributed by the renewable energy sector,” Al Kaabi added. “By 2020 the country's power demand is expected to go up to 40,000MW, almost three times the level of total energy produced in the country in 2007, when the feasibility study for nuclear power was conducted.''
 

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