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Progress in the site selection for the Japanese geological disposal facility for High Level Waste

On October 9th, two municipalities announced acceptance for a Literature Survey (LS) on their territory, as a first step of the Japanese Government proposal to re-initiate the siting process for a Deep Geological Repository (DGR) for High Level Waste (HLW), such as vitrified radioactive waste issued from fuel reprocessing, 

If the Literature Survey (LS) plan of the candidatures is approved by the Ministry of Energy, Technology and Industry (METI) the Nuclear Waste Management Organization of Japan (NUMO) will implement the Literature Survey programs at Suttu and at Kamoenai. Both are located in Hokkaido prefecture in the neighborhood of Tomari Nuclear Power Station of Hokkaido Electric Power Company.


Japan siting proces


The programs include an active support of NUMO to the two municipalities and surrounding areas in providing information on the Japanese DGR project and the paramount importance given to the safety, the environmental protection and the sustainable development of the areas.

In parallel, NUMO will steer desk-top studies based on open documents available of the geological environment of both areas.

In approximately two years time, the municipalities and the Governor of Hokkaido prefecture will express their intention to proceed to the next stage of site investigation process. This next step, called “Preliminary Investigation” can include site investigation works as geophysical surveys and boreholes.

Following the publication of the “Nationwide Map of Scientific Features relevant for Geological Disposal” by the Japanese government in July 2017, NUMO together with Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) have been carrying out communication activities across Japan to promote understanding of the geological disposal project and the geological environment in Japan.



Receipt of application for Literature Survey from Suttu town in Hokkaido (NUMO web site):

Acceptance by Kamoenai village of proposal for Literature Survey (NUMO web site):

NUMO press releases