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2018 has taken Sellafield one step closer to becoming the world leader in nuclear clean-up

Angela Seeney, Transformation Director for Sellafield Ltd | Sellafield Ltd

3 min read Partner content

Transformation Director Angela Seeney writes that in 2018 "the Sellafield nuclear site has had one of the most significant years of change in its 60 year history".

The 11,000 workforce and a vast supply chain are ending the main business of spent nuclear fuel reprocessing to carry out the environmental clean-up of the most complex and hazardous nuclear site in the UK, on the west coast of Cumbria.

A new video has reminded workers how much the company has changed in the last 12 months.

From the way people travel to (and access) the site, the visible changes they are making to the Sellafield skyline by bringing down iconic structures, to safely removing the most hazardous waste from the ageing storage ponds and ending a global 24-year fuel reprocessing mission. 

These changes are helping reinvent the site as an international  centre of expertise for nuclear clean-up. 

The site is going through its biggest change yet, ending nuclear fuel reprocessing to focus solely on environmental remediation. 

With 100 years of work ahead to decommission the site, we are modernising every aspect of the business and developing new supply chain partnerships and innovative solutions. 

We are transforming Sellafield so that it is recognised both as a leading nuclear enterprise and as a national asset, which offers the UK Government value, opportunity and choices in support of the nuclear industry. We need to do different things, and do things differently.

This is no longer aspirational, it is very much in flight. Our world class workforce and supply chain are already reinventing us as an environmental clean-up project. It is important to remind them that every single change they make, every day, goes far beyond the site fences.

Alongside the progress made in cleaning up the highest nuclear risks and hazards – two fuel storage ponds and two waste silos – and driving forward a number of major projects on site, we are also investing in research, skills and training. This investment is necessary for our mission, the nation and the local Sellafield community.

The expertise, experience and current knowledge of our team and that of our supply chain, combined with emerging technologies and new learning, will cement our reputation as global experts in the safe and secure management of nuclear waste. This needs new skills, diverse teams and creative ideas – which is why we are retraining our people for new roles and developing national training schemes and academies for our mission and beyond. This will unlock unparalleled opportunities for the site’s workforce, supply chain, and community.

Alongside the technical expertise, we have the resources, influence and networks to make a real and positive difference to our community, that sticks for generations to come. That’s why we’re investing now in social impact projects like the new Whitehaven Campus and the old bus station, making educational interventions and inspiring entrepreneurialism.

We want to continue our social impact through investment in initiatives such as public health programmes and digital initiatives. This requires partnerships with local authorities, other businesses and regional leaders.

I’m immensely proud of how far we’ve come in the last year, and our workforce has provided unwavering dedication and professionalism throughout a period of unprecedented change.

Our mission is to be a world leader in solving complex nuclear challenges. This year has taken us one step closer.

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