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Liquid discharges from nuclear installations in 2019

Executive Summary

Data are available on ODIMS via:

This report presents the 2019 data for liquid radioactive discharges from nuclear installations along with temporal trends for the period 1989 - 2019. On this basis, an assessment has been made for the discharges from the nuclear sector which comprises the following sub-sectors;

  • nuclear power stations;
  • nuclear fuel reprocessing plants;
  • nuclear fuel fabrication and enrichment plants;
  • research and development facilities;
  • decommissioning facilities and management of legacy radioactive wastes activities.

Full Report

Discharges are reported as total alpha, tritium and total beta (excluding tritium) in terabecquerels per year (TBq/y).

The total discharges of alpha activity from all nuclear installations in 2019 were 0.19 TBq which is similar to the previous year which is 36% lower than in 2016. Annual alpha discharges have fluctuated in the range 0.17 – 0.3 TBq since 2007, and in 2019 were about 6% of the 1989 peak.

Discharges of total beta activity (excluding tritium) from all nuclear installations have decreased markedly and are now only 1.5% of what they were in 1989. In 2019 total beta discharges were about 14 TBq which is 16% lower than the previous year.

The total discharge of tritium in 2019 of about 16,000 TBq is similar to annual discharges made in recent years and about 21% lower than the peak seen in 2004. Discharges of tritium are dominated by those from the reprocessing sector (with 81% of the total from Cap de la Hague) and fluctuate in accordance with spent fuel reprocessing rates.

Location of Nuclear Facilities in OSPAR countries discharging directly or indirectly to the OSPAR maritime area in 2019. Available via