Strengthening cooperation in the area of radiation safety technical services
The IAEA Department of Nuclear Safety and Security (NS) and the Institut De Radioprotection Et De Sûreté Nucléaire (IRSN) in Fontenay-aux-Roses, France, agreed upon Practical Arrangements on 27 March 2014. Signatories to the Arrangements were Deputy Director General, NS, Denis Flory, and Director General, IRSN, Jacques Repussard. The Practical Arrangements set forth the framework for cooperation between the IAEA and IRSN in the area of radiation safety technical services. The primary user of the Arrangements will be the Individual Monitoring Services Group in the Radiation Safety Technical Services Unit. The objective is to ensure back-up capabilities are in place, and to ensure routine and emergency monitoring capabilities are continuously available. The activities in which cooperation is to be pursued include the following:
- Individual monitoring for assessing occupational exposure due to external sources of photon, neutron and beta radiation (whole body, extremity and lens of the eye dosimetry)
- Irradiation, calibration and verification services for equipment and dosimeters at IRSN SSDL facilities
- Whole body counter measurements (high energy photons above 100 keV)
- Indirect methods of measurement of alpha, beta and gamma emitters in human excreta (urine, faecal, saliva and nose blow samples)
- Dose assessment for routine and special monitoring (including monitoring when dose limits have been exceeded), if needed
- Design and potential improvements of the Quality Management System.
Justification of Medical Exposure and the Use of Appropriateness Criteria
The IAEA organized a meeting on justification of medical exposure and the role of clinical imaging guidelines (CIG) in strengthening justification of medical diagnostic imaging, from 11-13 March 2014 at the IAEA Headquarters in Vienna. Around 65 health professionals and regulators from 49 Member States and international organizations participated. There are only a few organizations worldwide that have the capacity to develop and maintain these guidelines – mainly some professional organizations in medical radiology. The meeting focussed specifically on the processes of adopting and adapting these few existing CIG in the different diagnostic imaging environments around the world. From preliminary conclusions, it appears that a limited sub-set of guidelines for the most frequent clinical situations faced in a country or region may be the best way forward if there are currently no guidelines in use, and that professionals prefer a range of different formats, from pdf files and booklets to apps and web-based applications. The participants of the meeting, which was organized in co-operation with the World Health Organization, recommended that international organizations should advise and facilitate the process of countries adopting and adapting CIG.
International Working Forum on Regulatory Supervision of Legacy Sites (RSLS) - Fourth Technical Meeting
Regulators and operators from participating Member States met to discuss challenges and solutions to regulating and remediating legacy sites. During the TM, relevant recent Agency documents and initiatives were presented. RSLS working group results were discussed. The three working groups are in the areas of regulatory enhancements, environmental impact, safety assessments and professional development of regulators.
Implementation of the International Basic Safety Standards (BSS) - further regional workshops held in October, 2013
The IAEA organized two further Regional Workshops on the IAEA General Safety Requirements Part 3: Radiation Protection and Safety of Radiation Sources: International Basic Safety Standards (Interim Edition) in October 2013.
The first workshop was hosted by the National Nuclear Regulator of South Africa and was held in Centurion, South Africa from 22 to 25 October 2013 and Member States in the African region were invited to attend. This was the first workshop on the implementation of the BSS to take place in Africa and the purpose of the workshop was to discuss the changes made to the BSS (i.e. Safety Series No. 115) in developing GSR Part 3, as well as the implementation of the revised BSS in Member States. The expert from each country were required to make a 10-minute presentation on a topical area of the revised BSS. Prior to the workshop each expert was advised of the topical area for their presentation and their presentation covered issues relating to the implementation of the BSS on this specific area in their country. The workshop was be held in English and French.
The second regional workshop for Member States in Asia and the Pacific took place in Manila, Philippines from 28 October to 1 November 2013. The workshop was organized in cooperation with the World Health Organization (WHO) and hosted by the Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (PNRI). This workshop addressed, in greater depth, key radiation protection issues, such as: practical application of justification and optimization in medical exposures; implementing the occupational dose limit for the lens of the eye including establishing and applying dose constraints; regulatory control of industries that handle naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM); reducing public exposure due to radon in homes; radiation safety of consumer products; and transition from an emergency exposure situation to an existing exposure situation.
Control of medical exposures was an important component of the workshop and participants should be familiar with the role and responsibilities of the regulatory body in this area. The workshop was highly interactive; specific topics were assigned to working groups for discussion and resolution. Participants were required to work on exercises/scenarios and to report on, and discuss, their findings. The workshop was held in English.
The sixth IEM on Radiation Protection after the Fukushima Daiichi Accident took place at the IAEA Headquarters in Vienna, Austria from 17 to 21 February 2014. The IAEA’s Action Plan on Nuclear Safety was adopted by the IAEA’s Board of Governors and subsequently unanimously endorsed by the IAEA General Conference in September 2011. The ultimate goal of the Action Plan is to strengthen nuclear safety worldwide and as one of the means to reach this goal, the IAEA Secretariat was mandated to organize international experts’ meetings (IEMs) to analyse all relevant technical aspects and learn the lessons from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station accident.
It is with great pleasure that the IAEA announces that Mr Sigurdur Magnusson, Director of the Icelandic Radiation Safety Authority has accepted the IAEA’s invitation to chair this important meeting. Mr Magnusson is a renowned expert in the field of radiation safety and has vast experience on many high-level committees, including ICRP, NEA, HERCA and IRPA. As a former chairman of the Radiation Safety Standards Committee (RASSC) and delegate to the IAEA General Conference, Mr Magnusson has been closely involved in the work of the IAEA over many years. Mr Magnusson’s experience renders him highly qualified to lead the proceedings of the IEM which will address topics such as: Exposures and Exposure Pathways; Management of Exposures; Medical and Societal Aspects; Remediation; Communication and Operational Case Studies.
Regulatory Infrastructure for the Control of Radiation Sources in the Carribean Region - IAEA convenes training course in Mexico
A regional basic training course on regulatory control of radiation sources was held in Mexico City, Mexico from 17 June to 12 July 2013 in collaboration with the Government of Mexico through the National Commission for Nuclear Safety and Safeguards (CNSNS). The CARICOM member states which participated were Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and Saint Vincent and Grenadine. The regional basic training course on regulatory control of radiation sources was held in Mexico City, Mexico from 17 June to 12 July 2013 in collaboration with the Government of Mexico through the National Commission for Nuclear Safety and Safeguards (CNSNS). This Course was designed as a follow-up activity to the Regional Workshop on Regulatory Infrastructure for the Control of Radioactive Sources for the CARICOM member countries that was held in Kingston, Jamaica, in June 2012. The same course was also conducted earlier this year for delegates of Gambia, Rwanda, Togo, Seychelles, Sudan and Bahrain in Khartoum, Sudan from 21 April to 16 May 2013. These two training courses were funded by the EU COUNCIL DECISION 2010/585/CFSP of 27 September 2010 on “support for IAEA activities in the areas of nuclear security and verification and in the framework of the implementation of the EU Strategy against Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction". more
Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM)- Seventh International Symposium, Beijing, China, April 2013
NORM (Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material) Symposia Series is one of the conferences that the IAEA officially supports has been organising every three years in the recent past. This conference series was first hosted in Europe and is now being held in other parts of the world. Its focus is to provide for harmonization of radiation protection in industries and work activities related to naturally occurring radioactive materials. The first symposium in the series was held in Amsterdam in 1997 and then successively Krefeld, Germany (NORM II), Brussels, Belgium (NORM III) in 2001, Szczyrk, Poland (NORM IV), in 2004, Seville, Spain (NORM V), in 2007 and the sixth (NORM VI) in Marrakesh, Morocco in 2010. The NORM symposia reflects the growing interest within regions in the management of exposure to NORM. The close involvement of the IAEA in most of these symposia is demonstrated through it's publication of the Proceedings of the Szczyrk symposium - published as IAEA-TECDOC-1472, while the Seville and Marrakesh symposia were published in the IAEA Proceedings Series. National regulatory bodies, technical and research organizations, industrial organizations from phosphate industry, titanium industry, mining industry (coal, uranium and metal), rare earth industry, metal production industries have been either involved in the past conferences relevant to the topic or possibly be involved in future conferences for coherence and harmonization of radiation protection in the NORM sector. The Seventh International Symposium on NORM will be organised by the China Institute of Atomic Energy with co-organization by the China Atomic Energy Authority, National Nuclear Safety Administration, China Society of Radiation Protection, Tsinghua University, China University of Geosciences and University of South China in cooperation with International Atomic Energy Agency, in Beijing, April 22-26, 2013. more
First Technical Meeting of CGULS - Vienna, IAEA Headquarters June 26-28 2013
The IAEA, its affected Member States, and the international community have been working to foster an environmentally sound, socially responsible, and systematic remediation of uranium production legacy sites. This is to ensure the remediation activities are consistent with international standards, recommendations and good practice and are compliant with national regulatory requirements. In order to accomplish this, the IAEA has formed the Coordination Group for Uranium Legacy Sites (CGULS). The first Technical Meeting of CGULS was held in Vienna at IAEA Headquarters June 26-28 2013. The objectives of the CGULS are to promote co-operation amongst affected IAEA Member States, national and international organizations involved in the management, remediation or regulatory oversight of legacy uranium production facilities by:
- providing a forum for information exchange
- supporting planning and project implementation initiatives focused on addressing safety; and radiation protection
- addressing radioactive waste management issues for uranium production legacy sites
- coordinating the actions of the CGULS members to avoid duplication of efforts. CGULS is supported in part by funds provided by the European Union.