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Security: New IAEA Spent Fuel and Radioactive Waste Database Facilitates National Data Reporting and Sharing

Source: 
ForeignAffairs.co.nz

Source: International Atomic Energy Agency – IAEA

Radioactive waste is the byproduct of millions of medical procedures each year, as well as of industrial and agricultural applications that use radiation, and nuclear reactors that generate around 10% of the world’s electricity. Safely and carefully managing it is key to the sustainable use of nuclear technologies.

The IAEA fosters the application of good practices and the sharing of experience in spent fuel and radioactive waste management. The Agency provides information and guidance to countries,  encouraging them to become signatories of the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management to enhance their capabilities to plan, develop and implement safe, environmentally viable and efficient spent fuel and radioactive waste management strategies. There are 83 state parties of the convention.

“The real value of SRIS is not only that it is straightforward and allows us to quickly input data,” said Myriam Lavalle, Section Head of the National Inventory of Radioactive Waste from the National Atomic Energy Commission of Argentina (CNEA). “More importantly, it will help organizations like CNEA to benchmark and make well-informed decisions in the future.”

To ensure that governments, regulatory bodies and owner/operators establish adequate and reliable spent fuel management policies, the IAEA encourages and fosters the sharing of perspectives and information on various ways to address spent fuel and radioactive waste management, providing country-specific examples and case studies.  

“There are great benefits, both for each country and for the wider world, in contributing to the new SRIS system,” said Christophe Xerri, Director of the Division of Nuclear Fuel Cycle and Waste Technology at the IAEA. “Much can be gained from sharing knowledge, experiences, lessons learned and best practices.”

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