Inter-Agency Committee on Radiological and Nuclear Emergencies - IACRNE
The Convention on Early Notification of a Nuclear Accident and the Convention on Assistance in the Case of a Nuclear Accident or Radiological Emergency are prime legal instruments that establish an international framework to facilitate the exchange of information and the prompt provision of assistance in the specific event of a nuclear or radiological emergency. Although the Conventions assign specific response functions and responsibilities to the IAEA and the Parties, various international organizations have — by virtue of their statutory functions or of related legal instruments — functions and responsibilities that encompass aspects of preparedness and response in this context.
The Inter-Agency Committee on Radiological and Nuclear Emergencies, formerly the Inter-Agency Committee for the Co-ordinated Planning and Implementation of Response to Accidental Releases of Radioactive Substances, which was established following a meeting of representatives of FAO, UNEP, ILO, UNSCEAR, WMO, WHO and IAEA at the Special Session of the IAEA General Conference in September 1986, is the co-ordination mechanism between relevant international intergovernmental organizations to ensure that coordinated and consistent arrangements and capabilities for preparedness and response to nuclear and radiological incidents and emergencies are developed and maintained.
The Committee has two working groups: the Working Group on Coordinated International Exercises (WG-CIE) and the ad-hoc Working Group on Air and Maritime Transportation (WG-AMT). The Working Group on Coordinated International Exercises (1) coordinates plans for each organization’s exercises, (2) reviews and coordinates preparation and evaluation of the ConvEx-3 exercise, and (3) coordinates sharing of exercise evaluation, exercise findings and lessons identified. The IAEA’s Incident and Emergency Centre (IEC) coordinates the work of the WG-CIE and provides support. The ad-hoc Working Group on Air and Maritime Transportation facilitates coordinated and consistent preparedness and response amongst concerned international organizations and international trade associations in the event of a nuclear or radiological incident or emergency that is having or that is perceived to have an impact on the international air and/or maritime navigation. The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) provides the Secretariat for the ad-hoc WG-AMT.
It has been recognized that good preparedness in advance of an emergency can substantially improve the response. With this in mind, international organizations that are members of the IACRNE develop, maintain and co-sponsor “Joint Radiation Emergency Management Plan of the International Organizations” (the Joint Plan). The IAEA provides the Secretariat for the IACRNE and is the main co-ordinating body for the development and maintenance of the Joint Plan.
- Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO)
- Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Centre (EADRCC)
- European Commission (EC)
- European Police Office (EUROPOL)
- Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
- International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
- International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)
- International Maritime Organization (IMO)
- International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL)
- Nuclear Energy Agency of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD/NEA)
- Pan American Health Organization (PAHO)
- United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
- United Nations Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN/OCHA)
- United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UN/OOSA)
- United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR)
- World Health Organization (WHO)
- World Meteorological Organization (WMO)
The Joint Emergency Management Plan of the International Organizations (the Joint Plan) describes the interagency framework for preparedness for and response to an actual, potential or perceived radiation incident or emergency, independent of whether it arises from an accident, natural disaster, negligence, a nuclear security event or any other cause.
The objectives of the Joint Plan are to:
- Provide a common understanding of the emergency preparedness and response roles and responsibilities, objectives, authorities, capabilities and arrangements of each participating international organization, and any relevant interagency arrangements
- Provide an overall concept of operations between the international organizations based on the emergency response objectives, responsibilities, authorities, capabilities and arrangements of each participating international organization, and any existing interagency arrangements, in order to facilitate a timely, effective and coordinated response
- Facilitate development of agreements among the participating international organizations on operational emergency preparedness and response issues, if appropriate
- Provide a common understanding of the process for improving and changing the interagency response arrangements
- Provide a common understanding of roles and responsibilities of the participating international organizations with respect to international standards; supporting national capabilities through provision of guidance and training; relevant research; emergency exercises and other preparedness considerations
- Guide the managers in each participating organization who need to ensure that all appropriate arrangements are given the necessary support within their organization
- Facilitate the well founded development and maintenance of plans and procedures for each organization and the training of individuals in their use
- Draw the attention of personnel in States and international organizations to these arrangements and to facilitate the development of compatible arrangements, if appropriate
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