The role of regions in siting procedures

Over the past 20 years, the NEA Forum on Stakeholder Confidence (FSC) has worked extensively on the involvement of local stakeholders in decision-making processes concerning high-level radioactive waste disposal facilities located in their area. This work has mainly focused on the direct impact of the disposal facilities on the hosting municipalities and their immediate vicinity. However, the social and economic effects of these facilities affect wider territorial areas that also have a say in the decisions made on their development. Because of this, the FSC has taken an interest in the role of regions in site selection procedures for deep geological repositories (DGRs).

To investigate this topic, an exploratory questionnaire was circulated among all FSC members in 2022.The objective was to frame the issue and to identify various regional involvement practices, possible challenges and ways to deal with these challenges. Eleven countries responded: Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States. This document describes the survey’s findings. It includes an introduction presenting the situation in different countries and three national examples offered by Japan, Switzerland and the United States.