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Uranium Enrichment and Fuel Fabrication - Regulatory Issues

(last updated 3 Nov 2020)

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INTERNATIONAL  

IAEA invites member states' comments on draft safety guides for conversion, enrichment, and fuel manufacturing facilities (DS 517)

Proposed Action: Revision by amendment of 3 Specific Safety Guides on Nuclear Fuel Cycle Facilities as a set of publications: The deadline for comments by Member States on this draft is 28 February 2021.
> View: Draft standards posted for official comment by Member States (IAEA)
> Download: Draft Standards DS517 (1.7MB ZIP file containing 3 PDF files)
> Download: Document Preparation Profile (DPP) (156k PDF)

 

IAEA invites member states' comments on draft safety guide 'Criticality Safety in the Handling of Fissile Material' (DS 516)

The deadline for comments by Member States on this draft is 22 May 2020.
> View: Draft standards posted for official comment by Member States (IAEA)
> Download: Criticality Safety in the Handling of Fissile Material (Revision of SSG-27) , Draft Specific Safety Guide DS 516, 6 Jan 2020 (802kB PDF)
> Download: Document Preparation Profile (DPP) (76kB PDF)

 

IAEA invites member states' comments on draft safety guide 'External Events Excluding Earthquakes in the Design of Nuclear Installations' (DS 498)

Any comments should be sent through the established official channels to the responsible IAEA officer by 30 April 2019.
> Download: Note Verbale (English) , Dec. 20, 2018 (212kB PDF)
> Download: External Events Excluding Earthquakes in the Design of Nuclear Installations , Draft Safety Guide No. DS 498, Dec. 18, 2018 (1.1MB PDF)
> Download: Document Preparation Profile (DPP) , May 4, 2017 (225kB PDF)

 

IAEA invites member states' comments on draft safety guide 'Seismic Hazards in Site Evaluation for Nuclear Installations' (DS 507)

Any comments should be sent through the established official channels to the responsible IAEA officer by 30 April 2019.
> Download: Note Verbale (English) , Dec. 13, 2018 (224kB PDF)
> Download: Seismic Hazards in Site Evaluation for Nuclear Installations , Draft Safety Guide No. DS 507, Nov. 27, 2018 (1.6MB PDF)
> Download: Document Preparation Profile (DPP) , June 1, 2017 (46kB PDF)

 

IAEA invites member states' comments on draft safety guide 'Preparedness and Response for an Emergency during the Transport of Radioactive Material (DS469)'

> View here

 

IAEA issues Draft General Safety Guide on Functions and Processes of the Regulatory Body for Safety

Any comments should be sent through the established official channels to the responsible IAEA officer by 4 December 2015.
> Download: Note Verbale (English) (242k PDF)
> Download: Functions and Processes of the Regulatory Body for Safety , Draft General Safety Guide, DS473, July 2015 (983k PDF)
> Download Document Preparation Profile (DPP) (213k PDF)

 

IAEA issues Draft General Safety Guide on Organization, Management and Staffing of a Regulatory Body for Safety

Any comments should be sent through the established official channels to the responsible IAEA officer by 4 December 2015.
> Download: Note Verbale (English) (240k PDF)
> Download: Organization, Management and Staffing of a Regulatory Body for Safety , Draft General Safety Guide, DS472, July 2015 (558k PDF)
> Download Document Preparation Profile (DPP) (215k PDF)

 

IAEA issues revised Draft Safety Guide on Safety of Nuclear Fuel Cycle Facilities

Revision of Safety Requirements NS-R-5: Safety of Nuclear Fuel Cycle Facilities (2008)
Any comments should be sent through the established official channels to the responsible IAEA officer by 23 November 2015.
> Download: Note Verbale (English) (238k PDF)
> Download: Safety of Nuclear Fuel Cycle Facilities, DRAFT SPECIFIC SAFETY REQUIREMENTS, DS478 , July 2015 (910k PDF)
> Download: Document Preparation Profile (DPP) (146k PDF)

 

IAEA issues revised Draft Safety Guide on decommmissioning of nuclear facilities

This Safety Guide supersedes Safety Standard Series No. WS-G-2.1 (1999) and WS-G-2.1 (2001).
Deadline for Member States' review and comments: 30 April 2015.
> Download Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Plants, Research Reactors and other Nuclear Fuel Cycle Facilities, Draft Safety Guide DS452 , December 3, 2014 (769k PDF)
> Download Document Preparation Profile DS452 (26k PDF)

 

IAEA issues Draft Safety Guide on Predisposal Management of Radioactive Waste from Nuclear Fuel Cycle Facilities

> Download Note Verbale Aug. 13, 2013 (191k PDF)
> Download Predisposal Management of Radioactive Waste from Nuclear Fuel Cycle Facilities, Draft Safety Guide DS447, July 2013 (742k PDF)
> Download Document Preparation Profile (118k PDF)
Deadline for official comments from IAEA member states is December 31, 2013.

 

IAEA panel report urges internationalizing nuclear industry to stop proliferation

Making nuclear fuel should be taken out of the hands of individual nations and put into multilateral groups in order to keep countries from secretly developing atomic weapons, a UN report said.
The report by a panel of experts to Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), comes ahead of a meeting in New York in May 2005 to review the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), which gives the IAEA a mandate to verify that atomic programs in over 180 signatory nations are peaceful.
ElBaradei has warned that the NPT, in effect since 1970, has serious flaws at a time when the international community is worried about atomic programs in Iran and North Korea. The world cannot continue allowing countries to develop the ability to make nuclear fuel that can also be used to make atomic bombs, ElBaradei told AFP in an interview in January. "We just cannot continue business as usual that every country can build its own factories for separating plutonium or enriching uranium. Then we are really talking about 30, 40 countries sitting on the fence with a nuclear weapons capability that could be converted into a nuclear weapon in a matter of months," ElBaradei said. (AFP Feb. 23, 2005)

> View IAEA press briefing Feb. 22, 2005
> Download Report of the Expert Group: Multilateral Approaches to the Nuclear Fuel Cycle, INFCIRC/640 - 22 February 2005 (748k PDF)

 

IAEA chief proposes global freeze on nuclear fuel cycle facilities

UN atomic energy chief Mohamed ElBaradei has proposed that all countries lead by example by committing not to build facilities for uranium enrichment and nuclear reprocessing for five years.
ElBaradei told the Asahi Shimbun in its Jan. 7, 2005, edition that a global freeze on construction for uranium enrichment and nuclear reprocessing would be discussed at a May conference in New York on the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
Such a moratorium would have value as it would place "some limitation on the right of every country to develop a full (nuclear) fuel cycle," he said. He said a global freeze could last for five years or "until we have completed our work on how we can have an international arrangement for the fuel cycle." "We have enough capacity in the world for enrichment or reprocessing," said ElBaradei who heads the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). (AFP Jan 7, 2005)

 


NORTH AMERICA

Canada · USA

Canada   flag

CNSC invites comment on draft REGDOC-2.4.4, Safety Analysis for Class IB Nuclear Facilities

REGDOC-2.4.4, Safety Analysis for Class IB Nuclear Facilities sets out requirements and guidance for applicants and licensees to demonstrate the safety of a Class IB nuclear facility.
This document applies to plants for the processing, reprocessing or separation of an isotope of uranium, thorium or plutonium, and plants for the manufacture of a product from uranium, thorium or plutonium, among others.
Submit comments by November 27, 2020.
> View: REGDOC-2.4.4 consultation page (CNSC)

CNSC invites comment on draft REGDOC-2.11.2, Decommissioning

> View here

Bill C-69: Impact Assessment Act

> View here

CNSC Regulatory Document 'Nuclear Criticality Safety'

Submit comments by September 14, 2017.
> View CNSC release July 11, 2017
> View Document history of REGDOC-2.4.3, Nuclear Criticality Safety

> Download: REGDOC-2.4.3, Nuclear Criticality Safety (778KB PDF), Feb. 20, 2019

CNSC invites comment on draft Regulatory Document 'Safeguards and Nuclear Material Accountancy'

> View here

CNSC asks licensees to improve reporting of unplanned events

> View here

CNSC invites comment on draft standard "Establishing and implementing action levels to control releases to the environment from nuclear facilities"

> View here

Groups want governments to better track radioactive substances in Great Lakes

Hundred groups such as Greenpeace, Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, the Council of Canadians and Sierra Club have signed an open letter send to the US and Canadian governments for better tracking of radioactive substances in Great Lakes.
The groups claim in the open letter that the radioactive substances should be labelled as 'chemicals of mutual concern' - a recognition that will mean that the radionuclides are potentially harmful to human health or the environment. The classification of these materials as 'chemicals of mutual concern' will therefore require the governments to develop, design and implement strategy for dealing with them with a view to keeping them out of the Great Lakes. (Dispatch-Tribunal March 4, 2016)

CNSC invites comment on 2012 Report on Uranium Fuel Cycle and Processing Facilities - if you manage to get hold of it

CNSC invites public comment on the CNSC Staff Report on the Performance of Canadian Uranium Fuel Cycle and Processing Facilities: 2012. You have until November 15, 2013, to do so. The Commission will hold a public meeting on December 10-11, 2013, to discuss the report's findings.
If you thought that such an inivitation implies that the report in question is available online, then you are wrong. Conforming to CNSC's sophisticated public outreach policy, the report is rather held back, while only last year's report is available.
> View Report on the Performance of Canadian Uranium Fuel Cycle and Processing Facilities

Canada amends list of activities that warrant preparation of environmental assessments

> View here

CNSC invites comment on proposal to amend Canada's Radiation Protection Regulations

> View here

CNSC introduces 24 month timeline to "streamline" review process for nuclear facility and uranium mine and mill applications

> View here

CNSC invites comment on Discussion Paper DIS-12-04, Regulated Timelines: Proposed Amendments to the Class I Nuclear Facilities Regulations and the Uranium Mines and Mills Regulations

The comment period ends on August 10, 2012.
> View here

CNSC publishes regulatory document and guidance on nuclear criticality safety

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) has published regulatory document RD-327, Nuclear Criticality Safety , and guidance document GD-327, Guidance for Nuclear Criticality Safety .
> View CNSC release Dec. 20, 2010

A second consultation period is now open for stakeholders to provide feedback on the comments received about draft RD-327 and draft GD-327.
The comment period ends on May 19, 2010.
> View CNSC release Apr. 19, 2010

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) has released for public consultation, draft regulatory document RD-327 Nuclear Criticality Safety and draft guidance document GD-327 Guidance for Nuclear Criticality Safety. These draft documents are the first to be released for consultation under the CNSC's updated regulatory framework.
The comment period ends on March 23, 2010.
> View CNSC release Dec. 23, 2009

Majority against upgrading of uranium in Saskatchewan

"The majority of participants in the consultation process who spoke to the upgrading of uranium are largely opposed to any upgrading, including enrichment, fuel fabrication, and all forms of upgrading. Their responses emphasized that their opposition was due to concerns surrounding environmental consequences, the potential for nuclear proliferation, and economic challenges associated with upgrading."

> Download report Future of Uranium, Public Consultation Process, Aug. 31, 2009 (6MB PDF)

Saskatchewan creates nuclear advisory group

A new, 12-person group has been created to advise the provincial government on the development of the nuclear industry in Saskatchewan. The Uranium Development Partnership includes leaders of companies with vested interests in Saskatchewan's uranium, including Jerry Grandey, the president and CEO of Cameco Corp.; Armand Laferrere, president and CEO of Areva Canada; and Duncan Hawthorne, president and CEO of Bruce Power Inc. which is currently conducting its own feasibility study into building a nuclear power plant in the province. The group also includes representatives from the First Nations community and urban and rural municipalities as well as nuclear physicists and environmentally-minded nuclear researchers *). The Uranium Development Partnership will receive up to $3 million in funding from the Crown Investments Corporation. The team will provide a final report to the government, including recommendations on value-added opportunities best suited to the development of Saskatchewan's uranium industry, by March 31, 2009. (Saskatoon Star Phoenix 20 Oct 2008)
*) Note: the only group member meant to fit in this latter category is pro-nuclear activist Dr Patrick Moore.


Air transport of plutonium in MOX fuel from Russia to Canada

Air transport of MOX approved

On Sep 21, 2000, Transport Canada approved the air transport of MOX fuel samples from Russia to Canada.
> view Transport Canada website

Emergency response assistance plan (ERAP) open for public comment

Transport Canada has received, from the Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) , an application for approval of an emergency response assistance plan (ERAP) covering the importation into Canada by air from Russia of approximately 15 kg of MOX fuel containing 528 grams of weapons-derived plutonium dioxide.
AECL is planning to transport the Russian fuel to Canada by chartered aircraft from Russia, transiting via a military airport in either Trenton Ontario or Bagotville Quebec en-route to the Chalk River Laboratories site in Chalk River, Ontario. The MOX fuel is planned to be transported from the military airport directly to Chalk River by helicopter.
Transport Canada will accept comments on the proposed emergency response assistance plan until August 25, 2000.
The ERAP is available for download at the Transport Canada website

 


USA   flag

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SOUTH AMERICA

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AFRICA

South Africa

South Africa   flag


General

South Africa releases draft Nuclear Energy Policy and Strategy for public comment

On August 13, 2007, the Department of Minerals and Energy released its draft Nuclear Energy Policy and Strategy for public comment.
"Government, through Necsa, shall undertake and lead the development of uranium conversion capabilities as part of the beneficiation of uranium. Private sector participation in the conversion process will be promoted."

"Government, through Necsa, shall investigate the viability of developing its own uranium enrichment capabilities and will simultaneously actively seek to acquire established uranium enrichment technologies to ensure security of supply."

"Government, through Necsa shall design a strategy to develop nuclear fuel fabrication capabilities and will in the intervening period actively seek to obtain established fuel fabrication technologies to ensure security of supply."

> Download Nuclear Energy Policy and Strategy for the Republic of South Africa, Draft for Public Comment, July 2007 (231k PDF)

 


EUROPE

European Union

European Union   flag

EU plans to exempt nuclear fuel processing from carbon dioxide emissions trading scheme

Processing of nuclear fuel has been granted an exemption from European Union (EU) plans to auction carbon dioxide emissions allowances from 2013, although the exemption list will be reviewed before 2010. Brussels unveiled on 18 September a draft list of industrial and business sectors it fears could relocate outside Europe to jurisdictions with weaker climate change rules in future. Among these was the 'processing of nuclear fuel', which will be given carbon emission allowances under the EU's emissions trading scheme from 2013 to 2020.
Most nuclear activities, including the generation of nuclear power, waste management and the reprocessing and recycling of used nuclear fuel will still have to purchase allowances, including uranium and thorium ore mining. (WNN Sep. 24, 2009)
> View European Commission press release Sep. 18, 2009
> View European Commission: Carbon leakage
> View European Commission: Emission Trading System (EU ETS)

 

Euratom Supply Agency concerned about enrichment capacities available for EU utilities from 2010

"The period from 2010 to 2013 could be very sensitive regarding the balance between enrichment services demand and offer, due to the transition between the shut down of gazeous diffusion plants and their replacement by new gazeous centrifugation capacities. Some concerns may appear during this period.
The Agency is concerned about the situation from 2013 onwards, even if European enricher companies said they will not be facing major capacity problems in meeting the requirements from European utilities."

Survey of enrichment requirements and capacity and their contractual coverage , Euratom Supply Agency, European Commission, 8 April 2008 (PDF)

 

European Commission considers revision of legislation for transport of radioactive materials

Launching by the European Commission of an Impact Assessment (IA) for the evaluation of a potential legislative measure in the area of Transport of Radioactive Materials (TRAM)
> View details

The closing date for the submission of opinions is 28 January 2008.

 

European Court of Justice denies Euratom jurisdiction over foreign uranium subject to contract enrichment

> View: C-123/04, Judgment of 12/09/2006, Industrias Nucleares do Brasil and Siemens (European Court of Justice)


ASIA

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AUSTRALIA   flag

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