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Gronau: License issued for further Urenco capacity increase

Nuclear Monitor Issue: 

(December 4, 1997) The German/Anglo/Dutch enrichment consortium Urenco is increasing licensed capacities at its various facilities. At the end of October the Gronau plant was licensed to increase capacity by 80%, although the capacity allowed under a 1994 license has not yet been reached. Plants in the UK and the Netherlands are also enlarging production.

(482.4782) WISE Amsterdam -On November 28, the Higher Administrative Court of Muenster (in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany) turned down a case filed by a Green Party member of the City Council of Gronau against the plant's 1994 license. The license allows a capacity increase at Urenco's Gronau enrichment facility. Capacity is to be doubled, going from its current level of 530 to 1000 ton/year (1 ton = 1000kg) uranium separation work (SWU). The 1000 t/year capacity will only be attained in early 1998.

In the meantime, approval for the next capacity increase has already been given: on Oct. 31, 1997, the Gronau facility, the only uranium enrichment plant in Germany, received a license to increase its capacity by 80%: from 1000 to 1800 t/year SWU. In September 1997, the Higher Administrative Court of Münster had turned down an application filed by a citizen group to conduct a referendum on the plan.

Capacity is also being increased in Urenco's other plants: at the end of 1997, the first modules of a new plant at Capenhurst (UK) will go into operation; and a further plant is under construction in Almelo (The Netherlands) which will increase the possible capacity of the Almelo plant from 1500 to 2500 t/year SWU. Urenco's overall existing plant capacity will be increased from 3550 t/year SWU to 4000 t/year at the turn of the century.


  • Die Tageszeitung, 29 November 1997
  • e-mail Peter Diehl, 13 November 1997
  • Nuclear Fuel, 6 October 1997

Contact: AKU Gronau, Siedlerweg 7, 48599 Gronau, Germany