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Last Updated: Thursday, 11 August 2005, 15:26 GMT 16:26 UK
Nuclear closure 'to cost 1.2bn'
Dungeness Power Station
Dungeness Power Station is close to the Kent-Sussex border
It will cost 1.2bn to decommission Kent's Dungeness A nuclear power station, new plans have revealed.

Under the timetable released by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, it will take 25 years to close the site and return it to a shingle foreland.

The work will start in December 2006 when both reactors will stop generating electricity, before defuelling begins.

Dungeness A is one of 11 sites around the UK being taken out of service at a cost of about 56bn.

'Brownfield site'

The NDA's regional director Peter Brazier said the original plan was to complete the demolition by 2111, but that was based on an historic idea which allowed the radioactive material to decay.

"We've been able to demonstrate that other reactors have been taken down more promptly," he added.

Under the proposals, the generators will be turned off next year, the fuel will then be taken out of the reactors and transferred to Sellafield for processing, before the non-reactive facilities are demolished in 2010.

The site itself will then be considered as brown field landscape and turned back into a shingle foreland.

Mr Brazier insisted that residents in Dungeness were being kept informed of changes.

"The site manager there has been pro-active in discussing his decommissioning plans with the local community.

"They are well aware of the plans and how that will happen."

As part of the process an environmental assessment has been carried out to look at the impact on local people and the surrounding area.

The consultation plans will be open until November, with a proposal finalised in December.


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