When a nuclear facility opens at Capenhurst next month it will be four years late and have cost more than double the original estimate at almost £1bn. Urenco has just announced the completion of the Tails Management Facility (TMF) at its uranium enrichment plant which makes fuel for nuclear power stations. It should have been ready back in 2015 for an estimated £400m but the project has experienced construction delays and cost pressures. The June 7 opening ceremony will be attended by senior representatives from Government, industry and the local community. Urenco’s core business is enriching uranium for use in nuclear reactors around the world. The TMF will manage a byproduct from the process – depleted uranium hexafluoride – also known as ‘tails’. Subsidiary company Urenco ChemPlants will operate the plant that will convert the tails into uranium oxide, which is stable and allows long-term storage prior to either further enrichment or safe disposal of the residual uranium. However, it has not been plain sailing. In 2015, 20 illegal workers were arrested after being found working on the TMF. Urenco says it took these matters ‘extremely seriously’ and immediately launched a thorough investigation to ensure no repetition.
Cheshire Live 25th May 2019 read more »