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AWE today (7 July 2016) welcomes publication by the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) of its Chief Nuclear Inspector's (CNI) Annual Safety Statement 2015/16.
In response to the CNI report, Paul Rees, Head of Environment, Safety and Health, said: "The report recognises that, while it continues to rely on ageing facilities, AWE is undertaking periodic reviews of safety and engaging in a large and complex capital projects programme.
"The ONR has acknowledged that work to address legacy issues at one of our ageing manufacturing facilities is now 'well advanced' and will improve the safety of this facility. Activities carried out in this facility remain subject to close scrutiny and regulation by ONR and cannot be carried out without their permission.
"We aim to continuously improve on all aspects of our operations and processes as well as the quality of safety justifications and the timeliness of their delivery.
"Delivering safe and secure operations remains the core priority for AWE as is continuous improvement in environmental performance. This includes an enduring commitment to manage our waste in a safe and compliant manner."
AWE is making good progress towards a long-term strategy to manage its Higher Activity Waste (HAW).
The identification and implementation of appropriate treatment and storage options for HAW is an involved task and AWE has been focusing on a long-term solution since 2011.
We will continue to work with the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) and other Nuclear Site Licence Companies on opportunities to find national solutions for this waste.
AWE will also continue to collaborate with the ONR and other regulators to strengthen dialogue and understanding and to ensure we deliver on our regulatory responsibilities.