The 4th CEG meeting took place in St. Petersburg on 9-11 June 1997 and was attended by 50 participants from 9 countries, 2 international organisations and the EC.
The meeting considered two major topical issues, namely:
Status of co-operation and obstacles
The presentations on and discussions of the status of co-operation and obstacles were concentrated on the four most important topical areas in the North-West region of Russian Federation:
spent nuclear fuel (SNF) management (including infrastructure for transporting SNF);
the management of radioactive wastes, which arise during the operation and dismantling of nuclear powered ships;
the management at the special enterprise "RADON" of radioactive wastes, which are produced by science, medicine and industry;
creation of a system of local radioactive waste and SNF storage facilities and repositories.
After detailed discussions based on the comprehensive information presented by Russia, other countries and international organisations represented in the CEG and a Group of co-operating industrial companies with due account of "The Highlights of the Concept of Radioactive Waste Management in North-West Region of the Russian Federation", the CEG noted that the present situation is rather serious due to the well known economical difficulties and accordingly reduced level of state financing of the Russian Waste Management programme and that under these circumstances it is getting of utmost importance to specify a comprehensive strategy for solving the most urgent problems of waste management in the Russian Federation in general and in its North-West region in particular by:
most efficient utilisation of available resources;
clarifying the taxation, insurance and liability issues in Russia;
informing and sensitising international financial institutions.
The CEG strongly supported concentrating, at this stage, the efforts on the co-operation in the field of management of radioactive waste and of the spent nuclear fuel in the North-West region of the Russian Federation.
The CEG stressed the importance of early conclusion of negotiations now under way, further increase of financing of these projects and further expansion of the list of CEG members/observers financially supporting the projects.
The CEG also believes that it is important to seek financial support from such financial organisations as the World Bank, the EBRD and similar financing institutions.
The CEG appointed a drafting group, which on the basis of presentations and discussions at the meeting will prepare a paper to bring to the attention of the IAEA Board of Governors the serious difficulties in the most important and urgent radioactive waste management areas of highest priority in the North-West region of Russian Federation.
The CEG agreed on the procedure and schedule of the preparation of the document (by the end of August 1997).
approved the outline structure of the document;
agreed that the approved final text should be forwarded to the IAEA Director General with request to propose it for consideration by the soonest (perhaps, December) IAEA Board of Governors;
asked the CEG Secretariat to explore and utilise all available in the IAEA possibilities of regular (semi-annual) informing the public on the CEG activities.
Organisational and financial matters
The CEG approved the presented by the CEG Secretariat Financial Report.
The CEG decided
to continue the CEG’s and its Secretariat’s activities for another two years under the same organisational and financial conditions and
to ask the IAEA DG to continue the IAEA support of the CEG activities in 1998-1999 under the existing organisational and financial conditions and accordingly extend the CEG Executive Secretary’s contract.
The CEG accepted with gratitude the invitation made by the USA representative to host the next CEG meeting and agreed to hold it during a week from 11 to 14 November 1997 (to be specified and confirmed).