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Sites targeted for nuclear waste storage

Six sites in Switzerland have been shortlisted as new repositories for nuclear waste, all of them geologically and technically sound, Swiss nuclear authorities say.

The Federal Nuclear Safety Inspectorate confirmed on Friday a list of sites proposed in 2008 and analysed by the National Cooperative for the Disposal of Radioactive Waste (Nagra).

They include areas in cantons Schaffhausen, Zurich, Aargau, Thurgau, Solothurn and Nidwalden.

The federal government will make a final decision on where nuclear waste should be stored in 2011.

However, it is likely to take about ten years to secure the necessary permits to build such a site. The federal authorities will first solicit input from the cantons, neighbouring countries and political parties.

The goal is to have at least two sites available for each type of nuclear waste based on radioactivity levels - high, medium and low.

Nuclear power is Switzerland’s second-largest source of electricity with five plants producing almost 40 per cent of the country’s needs. Radioactive waste is currently stored at an interim facility in canton Aargau.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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