RAW from fuel cycle front end (uranium and thorium mining and milling)

A huge amount of low level RAW from uranium and thorium ore mining and milling can be found in many locations worldwide. The mines and mill tailings are often abandoned and RAW, generated by mining companies, is often left on the abandoned site. Tailings and tailing ponds and their closure, stabilization and isolation from underground water are the main challenges of this category of waste management. Tailings contain only naturally occur­ring radionuclides and besides their extremely large volume, the main prob­lems are caused by radiochemical (content of long-lived radionuclides, alpha emitters) and chemical composition (e. g., high acidity), which varies from site to site, depending on the mining process applied at a given site. Categorization of this type of RAW and the basic approach and strategy for their management can be found in Ref. [7].

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