Inderscience Publishers

Comparing policy, regulations and institutions for geological disposal of radioactive waste and carbon dioxide

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This paper compares the policy, regulatory and institutional (PRI) settings of Radioactive Waste (RW) and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) disposal for selected countries. This comparison is premised on the following arguments: (a) the policy/political acceptance of nuclear power and coal power with Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technology to redress the climate change challenge will be essentially determined by the efficacy of the PRI settings; and (b) the existing discussion on these technologies is largely neglectful of the significance of these settings. The comparison suggests that: (a) while the overall PRI settings for RW and CO2 disposal are generally fuzzy, discordant and fragmented, they are relatively well defined for RW disposal than for CO2 disposal; and (b) PRI settings for RW and CO2 disposal cannot be analysed in isolation from broader settings for nuclear and coal–CCS power, and - more importantly - in isolation from macro–level energy, economic, environmental and socio–political policy settings.

Keywords: geological disposal, radioactive waste, carbon dioxide, carbon capture and storage, CCS, CO2, carbon storage, carbon disposal, policy, regulation, institutions, comparative analyses, policy–regulatory–institutional settings, socio–polity, nuclear waste, waste disposal, nuclear energy, nuclear power

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