DAtF: Survey on Decommissioning Illustrates Huge Need for Information in Population – Exporting Expertise Has Widespread Support

Berlin, 09.11.2016

A recent representative survey conducted by forsa on behalf of the DAtF shows that there is a huge need for information about the decommissioning and dismantling of nuclear power plants and that the population is interested in the subject. There is also broad approval for exporting German expertise in the domain of decommissioning.

Some 79 percent of respondents said that they would support the Federal Government in supporting the export of technology and knowledge in this field, not least in order to maintain competency and jobs in Germany.

Dr. Ralf Güldner, President of the German Atomic Forum, said: “The widespread support among the population is gratifying for our industry when, with skills and experience in decommissioning, it opens up opportunities in global markets and also receives political backing for this.”

When asked about the level of information on the subject of decommissioning and dismantling, 71 percent of respondents said they were less well informed or were not informed at all. At the same time, 54 percent commented that they would be quite or highly interested in the subject. The need for detailed information is illustrated by the question asking people to estimate the proportion of waste materials arising from decommissioning and dismantling which would have to be placed in a final repository for low and medium level radioactive waste: only 2 percent of all respondents knew that the correct low figure was less than two percent of the total volume of material.

When asked what is important during decommissioning and dismantling, safety came out top. This was followed immediately by comprehensive and regular updates on the current situation. This strong desire for transparency may be a key which operators and authorities can use to both gain and increase confidence within the population.

The report on the survey results (German) can be accessed at kernenergie.de.

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