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Norwegian Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority

Nuclear waste

Norwegian nuclear waste originates from the Institute for Energy Technology’s activities.

Last updated: 17. mars 2021 09:38


There is a national waste repository in Himdalen (Viken) for the final storage of low- and medium-level radioactive waste.

Compared with nuclear power nations, the quantity of spent nuclear waste generated by the research reactors in Norway is very limited.

Is there nuclear waste in Norway?  

Yes, Norwegian nuclear waste originates from the operations of the Institute for Energy Technology (IFE). This includes approximately 17 tonnes of spent nuclear fuel. This is a small quantity compared to countries which use nuclear power to generate electricity. Sweden, for example, has more than 7,000 tonnes of spent fuel from its nuclear power plants.

What is nuclear waste?

  • Spent nuclear fuel
    This is material, normally uranium, which has been used as fuel to power a nuclear reactor. This waste is very radioactive. 
  • Radioactive waste
    Examples: clothing, components or equipment which have become contaminated by radioactivity. This type of waste often contains far lower levels of radioactivity than spent fuel.

Where is Norwegian nuclear waste stored? 

Norwegian nuclear waste is stored at two locations.

  • KLDRA Himdalen, Viken
    Most of the waste at KLDRA Himdalen comprises radioactive waste from the industry, the research institute, hospitals, Norwegian Defence and certain consumable items, such as ionic smoke detectors. The facility is also used to store radioactive waste from operation of the research reactors at Kjeller and Halden. 

  • Temporary storage facilities at Kjeller and Halden
    Spent fuel from the nuclear reactors in Norway is stored at Kjeller and Halden. The final storage site for spent fuel from the Norwegian research reactors has not yet been determined.

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