Radioactive Waste Management

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Earlier experience, from the 1970s, shows that many voters were likely to change their traditional political preferences on the basis of energy policy options. The political situation was de-stabilised due to the nuclear power controversy, resulting in a change of government in 1976, the break-up of a coalition government in 1978 and a nuclear referendum in 1980, following the TMI accident in the USA. Temporary opinion changes have later been observed, and new political turbulence has resulted, such as the events following the Chernobyl accident in 1986 [19].

In those parts of the performance assessment where both types of assumptions are present, the assessment must err on the side of conservatism, but reviewers should be aware that this could obscure areas of uncertainty. Identifying what is a “conservative” assumption or approach may not be obvious. It may therefore be necessary for assessments to adopt realistic assumptions because of competing processes. In other words, what is conservative with respect to one process may not be conservative with respect to another competing process.

The higher level is the aggregation and characterisation of all possible evolutions, or of a large family of possible evolutions, into one assessment end-point, usually risk. Aggregation at a lower level can be those of scenarios, of situations in one scenario, etc, down to the aggregation of elementary phenomena. Aggregation of situations into scenarios is judged to be useful when situations are comparable in terms of their effect on safety functions. There was no consensus on the use of aggregation of situations that are different in terms of effects on safety functions, except if this is required to prove regulatory compliance.

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