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International Conference on Geological Repositories (ICGR): Advancing Geological Repositories from Concept to Operation

4th April 2022 to 8th April 2022

Sirkus Hall, Paasitorni, Helsinki, Finland

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The Sixth International Conference on Geological Repositories (ICGR) will take place in Helsinki, Finland from 4-8 April 2022.  The conference itself will take place on 4-7 April, and a site visit to a low- and intermediate-level waste repository with an exhibition on the underground rock characterisation facility (ONKALO) at Olkiluoto, Finland will take place on 8 April.  The conference will bring together senior‑level decision makers from countries advancing programmes for deep geological repositories.


The objectives of the conference are:

  • To take stock of progress since 2016 in developing and implementing geological repositories for long-lived radioactive waste, and to advance mutual learning through the international forum for the exchange of perspectives and experiences.
  • To examine the latest issues and challenges encountered by various stakeholders in different developmental stages by sharing experiences among countries developing geological repositories.
  • To enhance international co-operation for transforming research results into practical and reliable technologies for the long-term implementation of disposal facilities.
  • To identify opportunities to strengthen co-operation for building and maintaining confidence in the geological repository life cycle.
  • To improve involvement of the younger generation in the development and research of geological disposal.


Worldwide consensus exists within the international community that geological repositories provide the necessary long-term safety and security to isolate long-lived waste from the human environment over extended timescales. It is also feasible to construct these repositories using current technologies. However, providing the technical merits and safety of repositories, challenges remain in many countries, including building and maintaining public confidence, availability of skilled staff as well as transfer of information and expertise. The involvement of the younger generation is also often challenging, but crucial for the sustainable development of geological disposal.

Building upon the success of previous conferences held in Denver (1999), Stockholm (2003), Berne (2007), Toronto (2012) and Paris (2016), the sixth ICGR brings together high-level decision makers from responsible government ministries, regulatory bodies, waste management organisations, research institutes and local stakeholders, as well as young professionals and students to review current perspectives of geological repository development. The sixth ICGR on advancing geological repositories from concept to operation is designed to show the significant progress in developing geological repositories over the last two decades by:

  • Promoting the sharing of information and experience;
  • Discussing various best practices in demonstrating technical reliability;
  • Sharing approaches in building human capacity and building stakeholders’ confidence in the safe construction and operation of long-term geological repositories.

Target Audience

The target audience is composed of all stakeholders related to geological repositories, including engineers and scientists in radioactive waste management, implementers, research organisations, regulators, decision makers, responsible government ministries, environmental organisations and the public. International organisations are also invited. University students (Bachelor, Master and PhD students) and young professionals with 0-5 years’ work experience or under 30 years old are encouraged to register for the Younger Generation Session and participate in discussions in other sessions.

Further Information

For further information and to register, please visit the dedicated NEA website.  A provisional agenda is available here.

Key dates:

  • 31 January 2022 – Issue of final programme
  • 28 February 2022 – End of submission of presentations
  • 6 March 2022 – End of registration
  • 4 – 8 April 2022 – Conference