NuLeAF contributes to a number of International Projects either through attending meetings or submitting written contributions. Below are outlines of the projects in which we are involved.
The European Joint Programme on Radioactive Waste Management (Eurad) is implementing a joint Strategic Programme of research and knowledge management activities at the European level, bringing together and complementing EU Member State programmes. The aim is to develop cutting-edge knowledge creation and preservation to inform delivery of safe, sustainable and publicly acceptable solutions for the management of radioactive waste across Europe now and in the future.
NuLeAF is a member of its ‘Interaction with Civil Society’ group made up of NGOs, community partnerships and other national and local community representative organisations.
Eurad states: “Interacting with Civil Society is important in this perspective and therefore one objective of EURAD is to allow interactions between WMOs, TSOs, REs and Civil Society Organisations. These interactions will facilitate the translation of scientific/technical results and create the conditions for Civil Society Organisations to express their expectations and views. Such interactions shall improve the mutual understanding on RD&D performed to support the development of safe solutions of processing and disposal of radioactive waste. It shall also contribute to developing ideas, propositions and methodologies on how to interact with Civil Society on scientific and technical results uncertainties (inherently linked to the long timeframes and numerous processes considered for geological disposal), and on how to interact with Civil Society stakeholders in order to promote mutual benefit of the available knowledge, based on cooperation and sharing.”
FSC is an ongoing forum set up by the Nuclear Energy Agency, itself an agency of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) which aims to facilitate the sharing of experience in the societal aspects of radioactive waste management. It has produced a series of workshop reports and flyers on a range of topics which can be downloaded from its website.
The Group of European Municipalities with Nuclear Facilities (GMF) is a not for profit association of municipalities and associations of municipalities with nuclear facilities across Europe. It states its objective as:
- To represent the views of its members at European level.
- To seek to influence nuclear energy policy and strategy in Europe
- To ensure that safety, transparency and effective engagement in decision making on nuclear matters is respected.
- To facilitate the exchange of information and experience among members regarding different aspects of living with nuclear energy.
GMF encompasses both legacy, operational and new nuclear, though of course, NuLeAF’s interest in the group is in the decommissioning and radioactive waste management aspects of its work. NuLeAF’s Executive Director is currently a Vice-President of the organisation.
The International Atomic Energy Agency is an international body based in Vienna. It reports to both the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council. Its objective is to “… seek to accelerate and enlarge the contribution of atomic energy to peace, health and prosperity throughout the world. It shall ensure, so far as it is able, that assistance provided by it or at its request or under its supervision or control is not used in such a way as to further any military purpose.”
NuLeAF was invited to act as the UK representative at a technical meeting ‘Learning from Experience of Local Involvement in Radioactive Waste Management’ and this was followed up by a further meeting in 2018 with two NuLeAF member authorities giving presentations. The outline of the project is given as: “As Member States develop their Radioactive Waste Management (RWM) programmes, engagement at the local level is a key component in enabling sustainable progress of RWM programmes. There is growing recognition that local communities have an essential role to play both in decision making processes related to RWM programmes and in programme implementation. While various benefits and the necessity of stakeholder involvement at the local level are widely recognized, implementation can still be enhanced and expanded. Currently, the majority of reports on communication and stakeholder involvement reflect the perspective of national level stakeholders — typically, national RWM implementers, policy makers and national authorities. But there is also merit in gathering perspectives from the local level stakeholders.”
Subsequently NuLeAF’s Executive Director has been involved in producing the report on this workstream which is currently in the process of being signed off by member states. It is anticipated that the IAEA will undertake further engagement with NuLeAF and other organisations representing the local level over coming years.