The foundations of a successful nuclear decommissioning project are set decades in advance, with the establishment of funds to meet the liabilities which will arise at the end of a nuclear plant’s operating life. If the future costs of decommissioning a plant and managing its spent nuclear fuel are to be met in full, it is crucial that a prudent contribution schedule and fund investment program be established at the outset of the plant’s life.

When it comes to actual decommissioning, given the demographics of the global nuclear fleet it is likely that over the next decades there will be an increasing number of nuclear plants decommissioned.  The nuclear plant decommissioning process involves the planning, the characterization of radiological and contaminated materials at the plant site, dismantling, site decontamination and the removal, processing and disposal of contaminated materials and spent nuclear fuel.  Given the impending growth rates in this nuclear decommissioning market, the number of nuclear decommissioning companies active in this market has risen and is increasingly competitive.

The global market hotspots for nuclear decommissioning are in North America, Europe and in Russia where several hundred nuclear plants are expected to be decommissioned over the next decades.   Competition amongst a number of the large players in the decommissioning business appears to be driving that market toward a "turnkey approach" where the decommissioning contractor will agree to a fixed price up-front and take-over all elements of decommissioning. 

DCS advisors can assist power plant operators or utilities, decommissioning contractors, regulators or governments with all nuclear decommissioning programs.  Specific to nuclear decommissioning we offer the following services:

  • Development or updating of decommissioning studies and plans.  As a project/program manager, we can lead a multi-disciplinary team of DCS and third-party technical, financial, economic, commercial, legal and regulatory experts in developing or updating all studies and plans needed to underpin the decommissioning process.  

  • Development or updating of decommissioning funding plans.  DCS offers comprehensive nuclear decommissioning funding plan services.  In many cases, nuclear decommissioning funding plans are initially developed prior to the plant commissioning date. These plans generally require the plant operator to make contributions (collected from tariffs) into a decommissioning reserve fund over the life of the plant.  DCS assists clients in the development, review and update of any such decommissioning plans.  We can also help our client revise and update funding plans during periodic revisions, arriving at prudent funding plans for the residual life of the plant.

  • Decommissioning contractor market soundingDCS provides market soundings for potential decommissioning service contractors, in order to inform an assessment whether to competitively tender for decommissioning services contractors or enter directly into a negotiated contract with a preferred vendor or consortium.

  • Management of decommissioning fund hedging and investmentsDCS provides comprehensive decommissioning fund hedging and investment strategy formulation, evaluation, execution and management strategies.  As nuclear decommissioning liabilities are extremely long-duration "back end" liabilities, it is essential that the decommissioning funding plan adequately addresses risk mitigation of inflation of costs related to the decommissioning services and that the decommissioning funds are optimally and appropriately invested over the time horizon evolution of the plant life.

  • Competitive tender structuring and management DCS provides expert competitive tender structuring and management services for competitive tenders for decommissioning service contractors.  In this regard, we can assist our clients by designing specific tailored bid invitation and evaluation processes to determine the best value ‘turnkey’ decommissioning service providers. 

  • Decommissioning contract drafting and negotiation.  DCS offers comprehensive decommissioning contract drafting and negotiation services within the context of what is becoming known as the ‘license stewardship’ approach.  Our multidisciplinary team of legal, regulatory, commercial and technical experts will allow our clients to most favorably negotiate the terms of the decommissioning works contracts.  Within this approach we will also evaluate the risk allocation amongst the contract parties and recommend an optimal decommissioning risk management plan.

  • Decommissioning project capital fundraising DCS provides comprehensive debt and equity capital fundraising services.  In the case where there may be a decommissioning project special purpose vehicle (SPV) established, which requires initial capitalization, DCS can assist in most efficiently raising all required debt and equity funding of the SPV.

Within the nuclear power subsector, DCS experts maintain relationships with numerous related project consultants and participants including: both international and local legal advisors; technical, engineering and environmental/social advisors, economic/market consultants; contractors, vendors and technology providers; strategic and financial equity sponsors; lenders (including commercial lendersExport Credit Agencies and Export-Import Banks (ECA/Ex-IMs), institutional lenders, bond funds and investment banks) and credit rating agencies (if necessary).  We are always prepared and highly experienced in taking on a lead transaction advisory or project/program management role where we coordinate and manage (in some cases, procure and retain via subcontract) various technical, legal and other consultants required for the project.  On behalf of our clients we are prepared and accustomed to leading and concluding negotiations with governmental/public sector or equity sponsors, contractors and venders, lenders, rating agencies and regulators, on behalf of our clients, as may be relevant for a given client project.

Please click on the below links to learn more about the specific services related to the nuclear power generation segment that DCS experts can offer:​

DCS focuses on providing the above services in the nuclear power generation segment to the following categories of clients:


SECTORS covered

energy & utilities: nuclear power generation

nuclear plant decommissioning FOCUS

dcs advisory Experts team

nuclear decommissioning

Daniel Dean

Vienna, Austria

Paul Murphy

Washington DC, USA

Paul Warren
Vancouver, Canada

Meet Our Nuclear Decommissioning Experts Team!