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Safety and security of radioactive sources

International conference on the safety and security of radioactive sources: maintaining the continuous global control of sources throughout their life cycle


27 to 31 October 2013, Abu Dhabi, UAE



Summary

This Conference, held in Abu Dhabi from 27 to 31 October 2013, was hosted by the Government of the United Arab Emirates through the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation and in cooperation with the International Criminal Police Organization, the International Commission on Radiological Protection, the International Source Suppliers and Producers Association and the World Institute for Nuclear Safety. Its purpose was to review current success and challenges in ensuring the safety and security of radioactive sources and to identify means to maintain the highest level of safety and security throughout their life cycle, from manufacture to disposal.

The timing of the Conference coincided with the tenth anniversary of the endorsement of the Code of Conduct on the Safety and Security of Radioactive Sources (Code of Conduct) by the IAEA General Conference. To celebrate this anniversary, the first session of the Conference provided a review of the history of events which led to the development of the Code of Conduct, while the second session discussed the current status of its implementation. Opening addresses were given by the President of the Conference and Resident Representative of the United Arab Emirates to the United Nations and the International Organizations in Vienna, by the Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Nuclear Safety and Security of the IAEA, and representatives of the cooperating organizations.

In Session 1, two keynote addresses were given on the progress made, remaining and new challenges in the safety and security of radioactive sources. Session 2 was devoted to the history of the Code of Conduct and to the review States’ experiences in implementing the provisions of the Code of Conduct and the supplementary Guidance on the Import and Export of Radioactive Sources. In Session 3, sustainable approaches to strengthen the safety and security of radioactive sources in the light of successful initiatives were presented. Session 4 included presentations which discussed ways of better controlling the movement of radioactive sources throughout the world, including import and export controls and the return and repatriation of disused sources. Session 5 addressed global industry practices and trends with regards to the design, use, recycling and disposal of radioactive sources, the development of new and alternative technologies, and associated safety and security challenges. Session 6 discussed the long term safe and secure management of, and funding for, disused sources, including legacy sources. Session 7 was dedicated to management of emergencies and safety and security relevant events involving radioactive sources. Session 8 addressed important aspects of the integration of safety and security for the effective control and protection of radioactive sources in different facilities and activities. Finally, Session 9 introduced strategies and use of new information technologies for communicating with the public on issues related to the safety and security of radioactive sources. The Conference also included two poster sessions and one workshop on IAEA activities related to the safety and security of radioactive sources.

All speakers were invited by the Programme Committee. The presentations were followed by open discussions with broad participation from the floor. The Conference generated an exchange of information on key issues related to the safety and security of radioactive sources and the implementation of the Code of Conduct. It highlighted the main achievements since the approval of the Code of Conduct in 2003 and noted that a number of important challenges remain to be addressed. The Conference resulted in a number of recommendations, addressing mainly the legal status of the Code of Conduct, the long term management of disused sources, the interrelationship between safety and security of radioactive sources, and the implementation of the Code of Conduct information exchange process.

The most important conclusions, as well as recommendations, were presented by the President of the Conference at the Closing Session and are included in the Findings of the President of the Conference. The Proceedings of the Conference contain the opening addresses, the invited and contributed papers presented during the sessions, and summaries of the discussions. The findings of the President of the Conference and the IAEA closing remarks are also included.

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| Last update: Wednesday, 15 April, 2015.