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TOXIC AND RADIOACTIVE

WASTE DISPOSAL
Master Applied Geophysics
Prof.dr.eng. Cristian Marunteanu

COURSE STRUCTURE

1. Classification of waste and waste disposal methods


1.1. Types of waste
1.2. Methods of waste disposal
1.3. Classification and disposal of radioactive waste
2. Zoning of land suitability for surface waste disposal
2.1. Basic principles
2.2. Land suitability maps
3. Site selection and analysis criteria for waste disposal
4. Site characterization
4.1. Program of geological research
4.2. Program of hydrogeological research
4.3. Program of geotechnical research
4.4. Program of geophysical research
5. Evaluation of the geological suitability of a surface waste dispos
6. Impact evaluation of waste disposal

PRACTICAL WORKS
1. Land suitability maps for surface waste disposal
2. Evaluation of the geological suitability of a surface
waste disposal site
3. Impact matrix of a surface waste disposal

SELECTIVE BIBLIOGRAPHY
Marunteanu, C., 1994, Urbanism si protectia mediului
geologic,
Ed. Univ. Buc.
Marunteanu, C., Stanciucu, M., 2001, Ingineria geologica a
depozitelor de deseuri, Ed. Univ. Buc.
Ord. 757/2004
HG 349/2005
Alexander, W. & McKinley, L. (eds), 2007. Deep Geological
Disposal
of Radioactive Waste. ELSEVIER
Testa, S. M. 1993. Geological Aspects of Hazardous Waste
Management. Testa Environmental Corp.,
Mokelumme Hill,
California, USA.

1. CLASSIFICATION OF WASTE
AND DISPOSAL METHODS
1.1. TYPES OF WASTE

After source:
- Industrial waste (including mining)
- Agricultural waste
- Domestic (municipal) waste
Annual rate comparing with the total quantity of waste:
USA: 73% industrial waste (from which 63% from mining activities),
22% agricultural waste, 5% domestic waste (> 250 mil.tones!)
France: 69% agricultural waste, 26% industrial waste, 5% domestic
waste

- Radioactive waste

After the nature of waste :


- hazardous waste (Basel Convention/1989, Bamako
Convention /1991 and the Law 426/2001): explosive, inflammable,
oxidant, poisoning, infectious, corrosive, toxic waste

- non-hazardous waste: domestic waste or vitrified


hazardous waste

- inert waste:

do not suffer significant physical, chemical or

biological transformations

1.2. METHODS OF WASTE DISPOSAL

A. After the nature of the waste


according to HG 349/2005):

(only solid waste

a) disposal of hazardous waste


b) disposal of non-hazardous waste
c) disposal of inert waste
B. After the position against the ground surface:
a) surface disposal
b) underground disposal

1.2.1. Surface disposal

a) Open disposal (inert waste)


b) Sanitary disposal (non-hazardous waste)
c) Ecological disposal (hazardous and non-hazardous
waste)

a) Open disposal filling type

-Permeable
-(watertight

substratum with draining inside a sealed precinct

screen and pumping drillings)

- Impermeable substratum with basal draining

b) Sanitary disposal

(by compaction and covering)

c) Ecological disposa
(completely sealed)

1.2.2. Underground disposal

a) Disposal in deep aquifer formation


b) Disposal in dissolution caverns
c) Disposal in underground excavations

Underground disposal

Disposal in hydrogeological collectors:


Geological conditions:
- The injection zone must have porosity, hydraulic conductivity and
thickness suitable for a safe injection (e.g. sandstones and fissured
limestones);
- The injection zone under the flow level of the underground water and
separated from it by impermeable formations (clay, salt)

Physical-chemical conditions:
- to prevent the adverse reaction with the reservoir rocks (e.g. the
hydrocloric acid increases the hydraulic conductivity of limestones,
while the sulphonic acid decreases the porosity.

Economic and legal conditions (e.g. in the Great Britain is not allowed
this kind of disposal)

Monitoring (by deep and shallow drillings)

1.3. CLASSIFICATION AND DISPOSAL OF THE


RADIOACTIVE WASTE
Classification of the radioactive waste :
a) After the radioactivity level:
- low level radioactive waste
- intermediate level radioactive waste
- high level radioactive waste
b)

After the radioactivity duration :


- short life waste (half period less than 30 years)
- long life waste

IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna) Classification


RADWASS (Safety Standards)

- Exempt Waste

(EW):

disposal by dilution or
dispersion. Very low radioactive level, but some organisms can concentrate the
radioactive elements. For ex. the oysters from Humboldt Bay concentrated Zn-65
from the cooling water 12.000 times more than normal);
(foarte slab radioactive)

- Very short life waste (VSLW):

few years disposal to become ordinary

waste (provided by research or medicine);

- Very low level waste (VLLW): surface disposal with low isolation
(come from contaminated soils);

- Low and Intermediate Level Waste (LILW):


- short life (SL) (become inoffensive in less than 300 years);
- long life (LL);

- High Level Waste (HLW):

biologic active isotopes: Sr-90; Cs-137; Pu239. They have to be isolated from the environment longer than 20 times the half
period. Pu-239, for instance, has the half period of 25.000 years!

FINAL DISPOSAL OPTIONS OF THE RADIOACTIVE


WASTE:

- LILW - SL waste can be disposed in surface repositories


(some countries, e.g. Germany, allow only underground disposal)

- LILW - LL si HLW waste must be disposed in deep geological


formations (separately)

Final disposal of the LILW-SL waste

Final cover

Ditch

Foundation

Compacted Ditch
loess

Disposal Disposal
module cell
Improved land

Galery

Romanian concept DFDSMA Saligny

Location of the DFDSMA Saligny inside the safety area


of the NPP (CNE) Cernavoda

Aerial view with the print of the disposal facilities DFDSMA Saligny

Final disposal of the LILW-SL waste

DFDSMA Saligny site geotechnical and hydrogeological zoning

Site location actual image

Interim disposal of LILW-SL waste inside NPP Cernavoda (DIDR)

The Centre and the disposal cells from lAube France

(opened in 1994)

The surface repository from La Manche (France)


= closed from 1994 (500.000 c.m.)

NDRW (DNDR) Baita Bihor (from 1985) for LILW SL waste


(other from Cernavoda NPP waste)

Transport containers

Entrance in the DNDR Baita Bihor

Disposal gallery in the DNDR

Final disposal of the LILW - LL and HLW waste

The principle of multiple barriers

Projected repository in the salt dome Gorleben (Germany)

Underground testing
laboratories:

Belgium Mol (clays)


Switzerland Grimsel (crystallin
rocks)
France Meuse/Haute Marne (clay)
Germany Asse (salt)
USA WIPP-New Mexico (salt)
YM Nevada (volcanic tuff)
Swedia Stripa i sp (crystallin
rocks)

Experiments in the
Grimsel Test Site
(Switzerland)

Underground repositories in function (a) or approved (b)

) WIPP Repository New Mexico (SUA)

(Waste Isolation Pilot Plant): LLRW(M), TRUW, in salt

laborator

depozit

Transversal geological section

Surface and underground facilities

b)
- Repository project Onkalo - Olkiluoto Isl.
(Finland)
for spent fuel, in crystalline rocks, under the Baltic
Sea
(aproved 2001, started in 2010, operational from
2020)

- Repository project Forsmark


(Sweden)

Interim storage of spent fuel

Interim storage of spent and reprocessed fuel inside the reactors


(the nuclear waste are vitrified in the facilities of Sellafield Great Britain)
6 years disposal in pools

50 years dry disposal

geological final dispos

Pool of spent fuel at the unit 1 NPP Cernavoda


Accident: Hanford (Washington), in 1973, 450.000 l of radioactive waste
leaked from a disposal reservoir 29 years old

Interim storage of spent fuel (DICA) Cernavoda

Loading of spent fuel


in disposal modules

Interim storage modules


(in construction)

Swedish concept on radioactive waste disposal

Spontaneous nuclear reactor in a rich uranium ore deposit in clay


(Oklo Gabon) begun 2 mill. years ago.
It suggests the safety of spent fuel disposal in clay

2. ZONING OF LAND SUITABILITY FOR


SURFACE WASTE DISPOSAL
2.1. Basic principles of land suitability assessment:
- suitable zones
- moderately suitable zones
- unsuitable zones
2.2. Land suitability map (by compiling of three parallel map
sheets):
- 2 documentation maps:
- map of legally protected areas (degree of legal
protection)

- map of geo-factors (risk of groundwater pollution and

presence of hazardous geodynamic phenomena)

- 1 proper land suitability map

Map of legally protected areas


Localities
Forests,
vineyards
Rivers, lakes
Roads

Map of geofactors
Holocene: sands, gravels
Pleistocene: sands, gravels,
red clay, loess

Pannonian, Pliocene: clays,


marls, sands, gravels

Drillings
Towns

Land suitability map


Unsuitable zones

Moderately suitable zones

Suitable zones

3. SITE SELECTION AND ANALYSIS CRITERIA


FOR

WASTE DISPOSAL
3.1. Geological, pedological and hydrogeological

criteria:
a) characteristics and structure of the geological strata;
b) actual land use and fertility class; economical, financial and social
evaluation for the local population;
c) structure (physical-chemical and bacteriologica characteristics), depth
and flow direction of the underground water;
d) distance from rivers, lakes and water supply sources;
e) flooding potential of the area;
f) slope water flow from precipitation.

3.2. Climatic criteria:


a) main wind direction versus human settlements;
b) precipitation regime

3.3. Economical criteria:


a) capacity and duration of the waste deposit;
b) transportation distance of waste from source to disposal;
c) necessity of secondary facilities (access roads, utilities etc.)

3.4. Supplementary criteria for the site:


a) visibility;
b) access;
c) topography

4. SITE CHARACTERIZATION

4.1. Regional geological studies


4.2. Hydrogeological studies
4.3. Geotechnical studies
4.4. Geophysical investigations
- Apparent Resistivity Method
- Electromagnetic Induction Methods (IEM)
- Electromagnetic Reflection Method (ERM) (Georadar)
- Refraction Seismic
- Borehole geophysical logging
- Others

5. Evaluation of the geological suitability


of a surface waste disposal site (P. Bohn)

6. Environmental impact evaluation of waste disp


Main impacts of waste disposal: - pollution with the majority of
pollutants
- large areas of land covered with
landfills
- stability of landfills

Environmental impact matrix = structure of environmental criteria


and impacts
Impact
Criteria
Hydrogeological
conditions
Visual amenity
Distance
Land use

Water
pollution

Aesthetics

Noise and
odour

Regime
modificati
on

x
x
x
x

The matrix has two variables: - importance (ix) (= significance of the imp
- magnitude (mx) (= scale of the impact)

Classification of the importance ix

Classification of the magnitude mx

Impact index (S)

S (ix mx )

The higher is (S), the higher is the impact of the waste disposal and th
environmental acceptance is lower

APPLICATION

(Toxic and Radioactive Waste Disposal Master Applied Geophysics)

I. ZONING OF LAND SUITABILITY FOR SURFACE WASTE DISPOSAL


- Short geological and geomorphological description of the area (max. 1 page)
- Geological map
- Topographic map
- Map of legally protected areas (overlapped on topographic map)
- Map of geo-factors (overlapped on geological map)
- Land suitability map: - suitable zones
- moderately suitable zones
- unsuitable zones
(overlapped on topographic map)
(with title, scale and legend!)
- Choice of three surface waste disposal sites in different zones of suitability.

Location on the land suitability map.

II. EVALUATION OF THE GEOLOGICAL SUITABILITY OF THE THREE


SURFACE WASTE DISPOSAL SITES
For each site: the nine groups of phenomena, points and
justification of the assignment, classification of the site as potential site for
hazardous waste disposal worthy of detailed exploration, comparison
between the three sites.
III. ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT EVALUATION OF THE THREE
SURFACE WASTE DISPOSAL SITES
For each site: environmental impact matrix, justification of the
assignment of the significance of the impact (importance, i), impact index (S),
interpretation and comparison between the three sites.

Theoretical questions:
Classifications of waste
Waste disposal methods: surface and underground
Radioactive waste: - classification
- disposal options for LILW-SL
- disposal options for LILW-LL and HLW
- final disposal
- interim storage
- suitable geological formations for spent fuel
disposal in Romania
Site selection and characterization criteria for waste disposal
Zoning of land suitability for surface waste disposal
Evaluation of the geological suitability of a surface waste disposal site
Environmental impact evaluation of a surface waste disposal