A GDF must be built deep underground, in solid rock. The rock along with several other engineered barriers plays an important part in keeping people and the environment safe while the waste naturally becomes less radioactive.
The Theddlethorpe GDF Working Group has identified a Search Area that will be investigated further as part of the Community Partnership.
This Search Area includes the electoral wards of Withern & Theddlethorpe and Mablethorpe and is shown on the map below.
The Working Group recommended that the investigation initially focuses on the former Theddlethorpe gas terminal site and the deep geology within the inshore area up to 22km beyond the coast. This area will now be investigated further by Nuclear Waste Services (NWS) as the GDF developer, to determine the potential to host a GDF in this identified Search Area.
As part of the process to identify a suitable site for a GDF within a willing community, NWS undertook initial discussions with interested parties on the proposed area of interest – the former gas terminal site in Theddlethorpe.
Initial evaluations were carried out for the area proposed and following the Search Area being identified by the Working Group, NWS as the GDF developer has completed further evaluations for the Search Area, to determine if it has potential.
This area has now been recommended to be taken forward by the Working Group.
Further work will be required to establish if a GDF could be safely constructed and operated within the Search Area. A period of detailed investigations will be required to narrow down the possibilities within this area and confirm suitability.
How will you choose a suitable site?
The GDF developer has set out how it will evaluate potential areas and sites to ensure they are suitable for a GDF. There are six siting factors, which cover:
Safety and security – safety and security must be assured and endorsed by independent regulators. A GDF will only be built once the GDF developer, and they, are satisfied it is safe.
Community – communities are at the heart of the process. The developer will consider social and economic opportunities, community wellbeing, and how a GDF can align with the host community’s vision.
Environment – a GDF is a major environmental protection endeavour. Construction and operation will need to meet stringent independent regulatory requirements.
Engineering feasibility – The developer will need to ensure there is scope for sustainable design and the ability to construct and operate a GDF at a location within the Search Area.
Transport – the safe and secure transport of people, waste and construction materials.
Value for money – The developer has a duty to ensure that value for money is delivered.
Theddlethorpe is covered by Eastern England Subregion 2 in the National Geological Screening for a GDF study.