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Who is Responsible and for How Long?: Final Disposal of Spent Nuclear Fuel and the Obligation to Prevent Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons—A Swedish Perspective

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Chapter Summary

The regulation for preventing that nuclear technological activities lead to the proliferation of nuclear weapons is relatively complex. It is a multi-level system where the multilateral levels interplay with the regional European and the national Swedish regulatory levels. Sweden's international obligations to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons and unauthorised possession of nuclear materials are directly relevant for the final disposal of Spent Nuclear Fuel (SNF). A repository for the final disposal of SNF constitutes in itself a nuclear operation that requires a licence under national law. The reactor operators in Sweden have together established a commonly owned public company; the Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Company (SKB). Concerning the temporal perspective it should be noted that the final sealing of a repository, and therefore the point of termination of the licensed reactor operators' responsibility, will take place at least fifty years after the last reactor has been decommissioned.

Keywords: licensed reactor operators' responsibility; national law; national Swedish regulatory level; nuclear materials; nuclear technological activities; regional European regulatory level; Spent Nuclear Fuel (SNF)



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