NORM / TENORM

The treatment and disposal of natural radioactive waste from the oil and natural gas industry – potentials and limitations, part 2

Summary: As a result of in some cases unclear waste-law classification, the majority of ­industrial countries suffer from a deficit in suitable preparation technologies and technically acceptable disposal methods for natural radioactive waste yielded in the oil and natural gas industries (NORM/TENORM). In AT INTERNATIONAL 9/2012 (pp. 58–71) the author presented an overview of general practice in the industrial states of North America as ­compared to Germany, the United Kingdom and, to some extent, Australia, as well as the current status of treatment processes and technologies for waste from the oil and ­natural gas industry, and also their potential and/or already tested application to NORM/TENORM. The technically acceptable disposal methods are in the focus of the following second part of the article.

1 Stabilisation/solidification and landfill dumping of NORM/TENORM waste

1.1 Stabilisation and solidification

Ex-situ stabilisation, solidification and encapsulation procedures pursue the aim of producing a stable, landfill-disposable product with the lowest possible level of leaching. There are at present no standardised legal provisions applicable throughout the Federal Republic of Germany, either for non-hazardous or hazardous (chemotoxic) waste. A corresponding directive [1] has up to now been instituted only in Saxony-Anhalt. Here, the terms “solidification” and “stabilisation” are used....

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