I hope this will be the last article I will write on Lynas issue. I am hoping that both sides able to sit together and get this matter over with as soon as possible.
As mentioned earlier, please find below a reply from Professor Ismail on the exit plan in the event Lynas run, cannot comply with rules and has to be closed down.
If you are technically equipped, please do comment on the exit plan.
To address plant closure, Lynas has developed the Conceptual Decommissioning Plan that aims at placing a facility or site into such a condition that the decommissioned facility poses no unacceptable environmental radiological hazard to the public, the workers and the environment
Prior to decommissioning, a set of criteria will be established to ensure that the decommissioning of the plant and its operations; and disposal of the radioactive residue are carried out in an acceptable manner without unacceptable risk to workers and the general public.
The criteria will be established by Lynas and submitted to the AELB and relevant technical agencies for approval. In developing the criteria, input data will be obtained from the facility characterization and site characterization studies, the safety assessment and the environmental assessment of the decommissioning operation.
The key criteria will consist of, but not limited, to the following:
Compliance with applicable laws, regulations and guidelines, in particular LEM/TEK/56 Guideline (or the superseded document at the time of decommissioning) which aims to ensure the site is restored to the condition approved by AELB upon completion of the validation and prior to its release;
Clean-up criteria for the site;
Release criteria for restricted and unrestricted use of the site;
Release criteria for restricted and unrestricted release of the building materials, facility‟s equipment and components, soils and rocks; and
Disposal of radioactive and non-radioactive wastes.
The following activities will be considered as part of the decommissioning plan:
Dismantling and decontamination of plant equipment;
Decommissioning of associated facilities and utilities;
Closure of the RSF;
Removal of any radioactive residue remaining in the RSF;
Off-site transportation and disposal of the residue at an approved permanent disposal site;
Consideration of exposure pathways for employees, public and the environment;
Rehabilitation and re-vegetation of site and adjacent land;and
Post-closure monitoring to demonstrate the adequacy of decommissioning procedures.
Any radioactive residue remaining at the time of decommissioning will be disposed at a dedicated permanent storage site to be determined by Lynas and approved by the AELB and the Pahang State Government.
The following principles will be applied in the decommissioning of the RSF:
At closure, all contaminated residue will be removed from RSF to an off-site permanent disposal site approved by the AELB (and other relevant technical agencies).
A layout using cellular design maintaining separation of the three residue streams and capped at the end of the project has been proposed. This will satisfy the condition of accessibility to the stored residue materials in the event that sale of the materials becomes economically viable in the future.
Appropriate engineering controls will be provided so that residual radioactive material at the site will not diffuse into the environment creating long-term contamination.
Facilities and procedures need to be in place for the monitoring and control of groundwater contamination and release of radioactive dust and radon into the atmosphere.
Surface profiling should be such as to avoid undesirable hydro-geological effects such as erosion.
It is desirable that any vegetation planted at the LAMP site post-closure does not have deep root systems that penetrate through the topsoil and reach the residue. This may potentially result in the uptake of radionuclides that will be unacceptable from a radiation protection point of view due to the possible consumption of these plants by fauna
Ismail’s iPad2Nuclear Science ProgramUniversiti Kebangsaan MalaysiaMalaysia
This e-mail was sent on 20th October 2011, a few days after a session of questions and answers with Lynas.
Frankly, I am no expert in this area, but what I do know, there are a lot of ways radiation can be caused, even from our handphone and television.
My approach for this issue is to ask both sides and see how they responded. I am fortunate that Lynas is not hostile and able to cooperate.
Yes, to some, perhaps they are trying to get support they can get, but so do those against Lynas. Both are trying to gain support for their effort and cause. However, this is not a war of barbarians with no brainer. This is an issue consist of professionals who have knowledge and expertise.
I may look like incline to Lynas because they are cooperative enough. From what I can see, they get the right approach and approval. IAEA and radiation is not a small matter. Any miscalculation or disastrous events will be a catastrophic not just to local community, but to the whole nation.
I do hope someone can make a very good argument (with good manners) on these logic:
- If Lynas is subjected to Basel Convention under United Nations and approval from authorities including IAEA (and they got it), can this shows that the radiation level is acceptable and not as disastrous as described by those against Lynas?
- YB Fuziah said Malaysia is FORCED to accept IAEA standards. So what standard is better than IAEA?
- What about other chemical companies that have not being blasted? Surely they have radiation and mechanism on how to handle them.. in which, I believe Lynas also has.
This blog is open for comments, but do it in a healthy way. So far, as readers may see, there are some who is not able to rationalize arguments and harsh in giving thoughts.
Question on the street: Have you ever thought the radiation level surrounding you right now, even though you are not at a plant?