Contract for planning Norway's decommissioning programme 

30 June 2022

A joint venture between Jacobs UK Limited and Multiconsult Norge AS has been selected by Norwegian Nuclear Decommissioning (NND) to plan the decommissioning of Norway's nuclear facilities. The joint venture was ranked highest in competitive bidding and will have first option to carry out work.

The JEEP-II research reactor at Kjeller, which shut down in April 2019 (Image: IFE)

Established as an agency under the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries in February 2018, NND is responsible for decommissioning research reactors and other related nuclear infrastructure, as well as the safe handling, storage and disposal of radioactive waste.

Norway's two research reactors - the nuclear fuel and materials testing reactor at Halden and the JEEP-II neutron scattering facility at Kjeller - were declared permanently shut down in June 2018 and April 2019, respectively. Their ownership and responsibility for them will move to NND from the Institute for Energy Technology.

The contract with the Jacobs/Multiconsult joint venture is a framework agreement and includes a wide range of disciplines in the line of work required during the decommissioning phase. The initial focus will be on Halden and JEEP-II. The scope includes engineering concept design and planning of new facilities, upgrading of existing nuclear and non-nuclear facilities and supporting NND with technical documentation, as well as preparing safety cases to meet ownership and operating licence requirements.

The work is expected to start immediately and to last for a period of six years.

The total value of the six-year multi-award framework is estimated to be NOK750 million (USD75 million), and maximum NOK900 million, in addition to an option estimated to be worth NOK100 million.

"This important contract expands our footprint in the European nuclear decommissioning market, which is estimated at USD63 billion by 2025," said Jacobs Energy, Security and Technology Senior Vice President Karen Wiemelt. "Laying the foundations for a safe and effective cleanup will protect people and the environment and enable these two sites to be used for other purposes for decades to come."

"The strong team of Jacobs and Multiconsult look forward to working with Norwegian Nuclear Decommissioning and all parties involved," added Multiconsult CEO Grethe Bergly. "Together, we will work towards restoring the sites and prepare them for future sustainable redevelopment."

"The decommissioning of the nuclear facilities in Norway is a complicated assignment, and NND is pleased to see that there is a big interest from both international and local/national suppliers to assist NND in this task," said NND Chief Technology Officer Nils Bøhmer. "NND welcomes the international decommissioning experience that Jacobs brings onboard and acknowledge that it will be of valuable help for NND. At the same time, we also greatly appreciate the Norwegian experience that Multiconsult Norge AS has, which means that the two companies will be a strong partner for NND in the coming years."

In addition to the research reactors, there are several other nuclear facilities that will be decommissioned and a wide range of nuclear waste that must be handled and disposed of in a safe way. The overall programme for used fuel treatment and decommissioning of the Halden and Kjeller reactors is expected to cost about NOK20 billion and take 20-25 years.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News