Deep repository

In Switzerland, radioactive waste will in the future be disposed of in deep geological repositories. These are situated located several hundred meters below the surface of the Earth in geologically stable rock layers. Geodata documents the federal governments sectoral plan procedure.

The deep repository for radioactive waste
The deep repository for radioactive waste from Swiss nuclear power plants
© Nagra

Summary

Switzerland has been using nuclear energy for electricity production for over 40 years. In the process radioactive waste accumulates, from which humans and the environment must be protected. Medicine, industry and research also produce radioactive waste. The Nuclear Energy Act stipulates that this must in principle be disposed of within the country: in a deep geological repository.

The federal government has regulated the selection process for sites in the “Sectoral Plan for Deep Geological Repositories”. In doing so, safety has priority: The sites must fulfill all protection objectives. Furthermore, they should be technically feasible and be sensible to achieve from a spatial planning and socio-economical perspective. The sectoral plan coordinates all impacts of the deep repositories and includes the cantons, municipalities and the authorities of neighboring countries and the population at an early stage. The spatial data set shows which geological site areas for deep repositories are being investigated. At the same time, factors such as the distribution of the host rocks or the tectonics come into play. It records the planning results of individual stages and clearly represents the facts – also for the public. Based on the geological and spatial planning investigations, the National Cooperative for the Disposal of Radioactive Waste (Nagra) proposes sites for deep repositories.

Who is who

Deep repository: Who is who

Based on the geological and spatial planning investigations, the National Cooperative for the Disposal of Radioactive Waste (Nagra) proposes sites for deep repositories.


The Swiss Federal Nuclear Safety Institute (ENSI) is the supervisory authority for nuclear facilities in Switzerland. 


The Mont Terri Project is an international research project on the hydrogeological geochemical and geotechnical characterization of a clay formation, the Opalinus Clay. Clay formations are taken into consideration in various countries for geological deep disposal of radioactive waste. The Federal Office of Topography swisstopo has the mandate to lead the international Mont Terri Research Project and to operate the rock laboratory. The aim is to carry out the planned research projects of the Swiss and international partners under the best possible conditions.


The Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) is the competence center for questions on energy supply and utilization in the Federal Department of the Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications DETEC.

Data

Deep repository: Data

The federal government has regulated the selection process for sites in the “Sectoral Plan for Deep Geological Repositories”. The spatial data set shows which geological site areas for deep repositories are being investigated. At the same time, factors such as the distribution of the host rocks or the tectonics come into play. It records the planning results of individual stages and clearly represents the facts – also for the public.


Planning for the future

Sectorial plan deep geological repositories