International Conference on Geological Repositories (ICGR)
ICGR 2016, Paris, France


The International Conference on Geological Repositories (ICGR) brings together high-level decision-makers from regulatory and local government bodies, waste management organisations and public stakeholder communities to review current perspectives of geological repository development. Conferences are held every 4-5 years.


The objectives of the ICGR are:

  • to take stock of progress every 4 years in developing and implementing geological repositories; 
  • to advance mutual learning, exchange perspectives and experiences; 
  • to examine the status and trends in radioactive waste management, current issues and challenges in different developmental stages and document state-of-the-art information; 
  • to consider the social, political, scientific and economic aspects of geological repositories; 
  • to showcase the national program and progress made in the host country.


Global consensus exists within the international community that geological repositories provide the necessary long-term safety and security to isolate long-lived waste from the human environment over extended timescales. It is also feasible to construct these repositories using current technologies. However, challenges remain in many countries as regards the technical merits and safety of repositories, including building and maintaining public confidence, availability of skilled staff as well as transfer of information and expertise. The involvement of the younger generation is also often challenging, but crucial for the sustainable development of geological disposals.

Previous conferences have been held in Denver (1999), Stockholm (2003), Berne (2007), Toronto (2012) and Paris (2016). The sixth ICGR, with its theme Advancing Geological Repositories from Concept to Operation, is planned to be held on 4-8 April 2022 in Helsinki, Finland. It has been designed to show the significant progress in developing geological repositories over the last two decades by:

  • promoting the sharing of information and experience;
  • discussing various best practices in demonstrating technical reliability;
  • sharing approaches in building human capacity and building stakeholder confidence in the safe construction and operation of long-term geological repositories.
Publications and reports

Conference locations and themes

Along with the NEA, the ICGR conferences are jointly organised by the European Commission (EC), the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the International Association for Environmentally Safe Disposal of Radioactive Materials (EDRAM).

ICGR 1999 (Denver, USA)

  • Theme: Geological Repositories: Facing Common Challenges
  • Host: United States Department of Energy (US DOE)

ICGR 2003 (Stockholm, Sweden)

  • Theme: Geological Repositories: Political and Technical Progress
  • Host: Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Co (SKB)

ICGR 2007 (Bern, Switzerland)

  • Theme: A Common Objective, A Variety of Paths
  • Host: Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE)

ICGR 2012 (Toronto, Canada)

  • Theme: National Commitment, Local and Regional Involvement
  • Host: Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO)

ICGR 2016 (Paris, France)

ICGR 2022 (Helsinki, Finland)

  • Theme: Advancing Geological Repositories from Concept to Operation
  • Host: FinNuclear

ICGR 2024 (Busan, Korea)