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BAT & BPM Assessments

Demonstrating optimisation of technology selection in line with the ALARP principle

Producers of radioactive waste and those responsible for liquid and aerial discharges from nuclear facilities are required to demonstrate that the techniques and technologies involved are appropriate and proportional such that solid waste, discharges and dose are minimised as far as is practicable.

What is BAT or BPM?

"Best Available Techniques" (BAT) is applied to the environmental permitting regime in England and Wales. It refers to the latest stage of development of processes, facilities or methods of operation which are practicable and considered suitable to limit waste arisings and disposals.

“Best Practicable Means” (BPM) is applied to the environmental permitting regime in Scotland and Northern Ireland and is consistent with the definitions of BAT.

Why is BAT or BPM Important?

To satisfy UK Nuclear Site Permit Conditions; specifically, those defined under the environmental permitting regimes, a principal requirement for radioactive waste disposal is to demonstrate optimisation of technology selection and ensure radioactive dose to workers and the public is As Low As Reasonably Practicable (ALARP) and As Low As Reasonably Achievable (ALARA) or optimised in the case of BPM.

Optimisation can be ensured through the application of BAT or BPM assessments depending on the environmental permitting regime. Optimisation must be considered early in any process and be continually reviewed and implemented, at appropriate intervals, throughout the lifetime of any radioactive waste producing facility.

A thorough understanding of BAT or BPM; its principles, identification and application, will not only ensure you satisfy legal requirements and promote positive engagement with your regulator but also enable you to confidently apply measures which minimise environmental impacts within a cost/time effort proportionate to the challenge and associated benefit.

TÜV SÜD's Services

TÜV SÜD’s Environment and Waste Management team are experienced with the principles of BAT and BPM and can offer a wide range related consultancy services:

  • Production of BAT and BPM assessments – including scope definition, identifying BAT/BPM and producing concise documentation of the decision-making process for regulatory submission.
  • Information gathering, Option identification and screening – including technology research, identification of an appropriate range of options and qualitative/quantitative screening for final option selection.
  • Stakeholder engagement – including direct engagement with the regulator and facilitation of stakeholder workshops.
  • Uncertainty and knowledge gap analysis – including the identification, recording and resolution of gaps to ensure BAT/BPM arguments and evidence are suitably robust and defensible.
  • Project constraint and assumption identification – including the identification and recording of any project constraints/assumptions and any future resolution activities.

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