Nuclear waste in France set to double

July 13, 2012 at 3:48 PM
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PARIS, July 13 (UPI) -- France's nuclear waste agency says the amount of such waste in the country will double by 2030, and some of it will remain radioactive for 2 million years.

The current 45 million cubic feet of nuclear waste in France is likely to reach 95 million cubic feet in the next 18 years, a report by Andra, the agency charged with stocking and disposing of nuclear waste, said.

The current amount of waste represents 4 pounds for every person in the country.

With nuclear power the principle source of electricity in France, the Andra report warns of major problems stockpiling waste, Radio France Internationale reported.

While only 0.2 percent of current stocks are highly radioactive, some of the material, such as neptunium 237, can remain active for more than 2 million years.

The socialist government of Francois Hollande has resisted pressure from its coalition partners to drastically reduce the nuclear power industry, responsible for 59 percent of all the nuclear waste generated in the country, RFI reported.

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