National Nuclear Laboratory


Thursday 2 March 2023

Taking a Team UK approach to the largest radioactive waste conference in the world

As the UK’s national lab for nuclear fission we are working with UK partners to drive a step change in environmental restoration. Not just here, but across the world.

National Nuclear Laboratory collaborated with key industry and government partners to tell the UK’s environmental restoration story at 2023 Waste Management Symposia (WMS) in Phoenix, Arizona. This is the largest radioactive waste management conference held globally, attracting more than 2,000 participants from over 30 countries each year.

Highlights included meeting representatives from the US Department of Energy Office of Environmental Management to discuss ongoing projects and new opportunities for collaborative working. This was followed by more focused meetings with US Government officials and representatives from various US National Labs throughout the week.

We also joined forces with the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, Department for International Trade and the Nuclear Industry Association to showcase the UK story in a branded booth in the exhibit hall, maintaining momentum from WMS2022, where UK was the “Featured Country”.

NNL’s Waste Management and Decommissioning Chief Technologist Anthony Banford chaired a panel involving representatives from nuclear national labs from across the globe, where NNL was represented by Chief Science & Technology Officer Fiona Rayment.  Fiona spoke about the role national labs play in achieving nuclear missions, alongside senior leaders from other labs such as Savannah River National Lab, Idaho National Lab and Canadian Nuclear Laboratories.  With France being the “Featured Country” at WMS 2023, the CEA was also invited to take part in this panel.

As the conference drew to a close, Anthony also Chaired a panel looking at the impact of European Waste Management Research and Development programmes, such as PREDIS, where the focus was on both progress made in recent programmes and how non-EU countries can benefit from engagement in such collaborations.