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Past Project: Sustainability Assessment of Open Cycle Thorium-Fuelled Nuclear Energy (EPSRC)

Dr Dick Fenner was part of a team of engineers who  working to establish the more holistic notions of economic, social and environmental sustainability for open cycle thorium reactors beyond the conventional considerations of fuel resource depletion . The  research  assessed and validated metric frameworks for sustainability,   which will benefit energy generation policy decisions.  The work  examined the pathways that allow for thorium to be considered as an avenue for realising sustainable energy networks across the world and ratifying and improving sustainable development methodologies for handling the environmental and health risks posed by utilising radioactive material for commodities and services. A particular challenge for the thorium fuel cycle is in the selection of  appropriate scope boundaries, given the absence of previous studies. The work took  full consideration of the impacts of thorium use from mineral extraction, through processing and reactor construction and  use to the disposal of all associated waste materials.

Rainwater Harvesting in Kenya

Credit: SuSanA Secretariat via Flickr