201. Because of differences in States' perceived threats, culture, legal
systems and history, there will be reasonable and necessary variations
in physical protection practices between different countries. The time
taken for State response forces to arrive on the scene and their degree
of responsibility for dealing with an attack against a nuclear facility
or nuclear material in transport will also have great impact on physical
protection practices in different countries. Therefore, there will be differences
in the implementation of international guidance contained in The Physical
Protection of Nuclear Material (INFCIRC/225/Rev.3), obligations required
in the Convention on Physical Protection of Nuclear Material and commitments
made by States under the Nuclear Suppliers Group guidelines (INFCIRC/254/Rev
202. For these reasons, and because each Member State is ultimately
responsible for the physical protection of nuclear materials and facilities
on its own territory [184.108.40.206], it is neither realistic nor proper to expect
regulatory organizations to require the identical implementation of the
provisions of INFCIRC/225/Rev.3 as in other States.
203. However, it is in the interest of all States to require the implementation
of physical protection systems that are as compatible as possible with
the recommendations of INFCIRC/225/Rev.3, which should be considered as
a baseline for any physical protection system. This chapter provides supplementary
guidance to aid in a better understanding of the provisions of INFCIRC/225/Rev.3
with respect to the following activities of State authorities:
||Governmental Organization and Nuclear Physical Protection
||Role and Responsibility of the Competent Authority
||Regulations and Guides
||Integration and Participation of Other Organizations
||Assessment of the Threat
||Review and Assessment
||Inspection and Enforcement
||Development of Emergency Plans
204. The IAEA has no responsibility for the supervision, control or
implementation of a State's physical protection system and assistance will
be provided only when so requested by a State [2.2]. Assistance in the
form of the International Physical Protection Advisory Service (IPPAS)
is available to States on request to the Agency. The role of IPPAS missions
is to provide advice and assistance to Member States to help strengthen
and enhance the effectiveness of the State physical protection system through
interpreting and applying INFCIRC/225/Rev.3 recommendations to the needs
of requesting States. Further details of this service are contained in
a separate IAEA TECDOC.
Governmental Organization and Nuclear Physical Protection Legislation
205. The physical protection of nuclear material and facilities within
the Member State rests on the fundamental basis of government organisation
and legislation. Governments need to discharge their responsibilities to
regulate the physical protection of nuclear activities in order to protect
nuclear material from theft and public health and safety from undue radiological
risk as a result of sabotage. The Member State therefore needs to have
an adequate and supportive governmental organization and statutory legislation.
The legislation should provide for a competent authority [220.127.116.11], which
needs to have sufficient staff, funding and legal powers to perform its
duties and the freedom to do so without undue interference. The government
should also encourage international exchanges aimed at improving physical
protection and seek to minimize any impediments to such exchanges.
206. The government or state legislature of the Member State should
establish a system for the physical protection of nuclear material and
facilities within which the physical protection competent authority can
exist and operate effectively, has adequate legal powers and sufficient
funds for its activities, and can pursue its regulatory task without undue
207. The government should ensure an adequate hierarchy of authority
and responsibility to enable the nuclear competent authority to fulfil
its physical protection functions. In particular, the competent authority
should be separated in the governmental organization and be independent
from the bodies responsible for developing, promoting or operating nuclear
Role and Responsibility of the Competent Authority
208. The primary objectives of the physical protection competent authority
are to ensure that nuclear material is protected from theft and public
health and safety is protected from possible adverse effects arising from
the unauthorized removal of nuclear material or the consequences arising
from acts of sabotage of nuclear material or a nuclear facility, including
nuclear material in transit. To fulfil this objective the competent authority
To establish a system to define and maintain acceptable levels of physical
protection to counter the defined threat; to monitor the licensees to ensure
that they fulfil their physical protection responsibilities; to evaluate
the implemented physical protection systems and to ensure that the licensees
provide appropriate levels of physical protection;
To have a clearly defined legal status and independence from the applicant(s)/licensee(s)
and to have the legal authority to enable it to perform its responsibilities
and functions effectively;
To establish clear regulatory objectives, and to understand how these are
achieved and how they compare with international standards and good practices.
The competent authority will also need to establish a system for effective
interaction, liaison and cooperation with other nuclear regulatory bodies
and with international bodies and organizations.
209. All staff of the competent authority should clearly understand
the legal authority which provides the basis for their activities, and
how this governs their activities in regulatory development, assessment,
licensing, inspection, enforcement, planning, etc.
210. In exercising their authority in matters of physical protection,
all staff of the competent authority should understand their organization's
regulatory role and objectives, how these are achieved and how they compare
with international standards and practices.
211. The competent authority should establish any necessary arrangements
for coordination with other regulatory organizations and those responsible
for national security, for the provision of external (off-site) response
forces and for other affiliated agencies to ensure an integrated approach
to physical protection.
Regulations and Guides
212. The competent authority needs to establish a clear framework of
requirements for those nuclear activities permitted by the State. The requirements
with which applicant(s)/licensee(s) should comply should be consistent
with INFCIRC/225/Rev.3 and provide guidance amplifying how regulatory obligations
may be fulfilled [18.104.22.168/22.214.171.124/126.96.36.199]. Comprehensive regulations and
guides are not obligatory for all situations. The competent authority may
consider it appropriate to develop them in step with the development of
the national nuclear programme.
213. The competent authority should endeavour to ensure that regulations,
codes, guides etc. explicitly address the possibilities for unauthorized
removal of nuclear material or for sabotage of nuclear material or facilities
as the main reason for their production.
214. The competent authority should establish a clear policy regarding
the approach taken to developing and producing regulations and guides.
This policy should be developed to suit both the licensing system and the
system of government in the Member State.
215. The competent authority should ensure that an applicant/licensee
is made aware of and held accountable to regulations and guides that are
216. While responsibility for physical protection rests with each applicant/licensee,
control over physical protection by the competent authority, at all stages
of the life of nuclear installations and during transportation, is exercised
primarily through governmental licence(s) [188.8.131.52]. Hence, a primary task
of the competent authority is to consider whether to approve (or not) applications
for new licences and renewals or amendments to existing licences. The licence
itself should be an official document authorizing an activity or activities
and approving the licensee's physical protection plan describing how it
will implement its physical protection programme.
217. Licensing needs to be kept as a live issue throughout all stages
of the life of a nuclear facility. The licence may be changed or modified
as circumstances dictate but always by and under the control of the competent
218. The competent authority should ensure that any licence issued is:
In compliance with the relevant national legislation;
Accurately specifies the activity or activities to be licensed; and
Clearly identifies any constraints regarding the activities, i.e. requirements,
conditions or time limits.
219. The competent authority should ensure that it has received and assessed
adequate documentary evidence from each applicant/licensee regarding the
physical protection plan for activity or activities to be licensed before
the licence is issued. Assessment may be supported by a review of physical
protection measures employed on the ground.
220. Any change to a licence should be controlled by the competent authority
to ensure that the change receives appropriate levels of consideration
and assessment before being implemented.
Integration and Participation of Other Organizations
221. The State System of Physical Protection will encompass not only physical
protection regulations and the associated competent authorities but also
the participation of other State organizations, agencies and official bodies.
Their participation in the system will be essential to ensure that:
The threat is assessed, kept up to date and communicated to those regulatory
bodies and authorities responsible for the arrangements for the physical
protection of nuclear materials and facilities;
Response forces with the necessary legal and constitutional authority are
made available to respond to incidents which could threaten nuclear material
at facilities or in transit and that these response forces have prepared
the necessary contingency plans and are exercised in their role; and
That the responsibility for criminal investigation and recovery of nuclear
materials is clear.
222. The State should establish a clear policy and procedures to ensure
that State bodies, agencies and other official organizations provide the
necessary support to protect nuclear materials from theft and to counter
sabotage of nuclear materials and facilities.
Assessment of the Threat
223. The competent authority should define the basis for the level of
physical protection which will be required to protect against theft of
nuclear material and sabotage at nuclear facilities under its responsibility
and during nuclear material transportation. This is accomplished by making
an assessment of the intentions and capabilities of criminal/terrorist
groups known to pose a threat to national security or a serious threat
to law and order in the country [3.1.2]. Measures to counter the assessed
capabilities should then be incorporated into physical protection standards
and regulatory requirements, due consideration being given to a conceivable
aggravation of the threat situation in the future.
224. This assessment should take into account the possibility of these
groups being assisted by or formed of individual(s) who have authorised
access to the facilities, the tactics employed by these groups, their technical
competence, size and the equipment available to them for use in any attack.
The assessment should be reviewed on a regular basis and the implications
of any change taken into account in reviewing the adequacy of existing
physical protection standards and regulatory requirements.
225. A national authority should clearly define and review on a regular
basis the potential threat(s) to nuclear facilities and nuclear material
in transit in sufficient detail to allow regulators, physical protection
system designers and nuclear facility licensees to develop adequate systems
for protecting nuclear materials from theft and sabotage, both when in
use and storage at facilities and when in transit.
Review and Assessment
226. It is the responsibility of the competent authority to confirm
that the physical protection arrangements at any proposed nuclear facility,
at all stages of its life, and during the transport of nuclear material
meets the standards contained in national regulations. To fulfil this requirement
the competent authority needs to acquire a complete understanding of the
physical protection approach, design and quality assurance program of the
facilities, and the proposed operating principles of the applicant(s)/licensee(s).
The competent authority will also need to perform a thorough review of
these issues to ensure that they comply with the competent authority's
own physical protection objectives [3.5.1]. Consistent application of regulations
at similar nuclear facilities is important so that one facility is not
viewed as being more vulnerable than another.
227. Following suitable review, the competent authority may require
modifications to be implemented in physical protection programmes where
228. The competent authority should establish a system for reviewing,
at the appropriate level, all of its licensing decisions.
229. The competent authority should establish a regime to ensure that
review and assessment decisions are followed up by subsequent supervisory,
inspection and evaluation activities to ensure that the decisions are appropriate
and implemented effectively.
Inspection and Enforcement
230. An inspection and enforcement regime should be established by the
competent authority that complements its review and assessment activities
[3.5.1/5.2.21/5.3.15/5.4.6]. This regime should be able to satisfy the
competent authority that each licensee complies with national legislation
and maintains the nuclear facility(s), throughout all stages of its life,
and/or carries out the transport of nuclear material in conformity with
the physical protection system approved by the competent authority and
that the licensee is fulfilling the conditions set out in the licence.
The competent authority will require correction of any situation where
there is not proper compliance with the licence through the application
of appropriate enforcement action(s) [184.108.40.206].
231. The competent authority should establish a structured inspection
and enforcement system for evaluating and systematically following up all
inspection findings and an enforcement system to ensure that all aspects
of legislation, including the licence, are fully complied with by each
licensee, that this compliance is verifiable and that experience gained
is fed back to the licensee.
232. The competent authority should ensure that the responsible persons
in an licensee's organizations are qualified to discharge their physical
protection functions at a licensed nuclear facility and for transports
of nuclear material.
233. The competent authority should ensure that the required quality
and performance are achieved by each licensee at all times.
Development of Emergency Plans
234. An emergency plan should be established at all facilities and activities
where physical protection measures are required by the competent authority.
This plan should provide guidance to licensee personnel for accomplishing
specific defined objectives in the event of threats, thefts or sabotage
relating to licensed activities involving nuclear material or nuclear facilities
235. The goals of the emergency plan for responding to threats, thefts
and sabotage are:
To identify a range of credible emergency situations that may occur;
To organize the response effort at the licensee/operator level;
To identify predetermined, structured responses by the licensee/operator
to an emergency situation;
To ensure the integration of the licensee/operator response with other
To achieve a measurable performance in response capability.
236. Licensee/operator emergency planning should result in organizing the
licensee/operator's resources in such a way that possible emergency events
will be identified with preplanned responses, the various emergency responders
will be identified, their responsibilities specified and the responses
coordinated in a timely manner. Planning should take account of the need
for prompt and controlled access to facilities by off-site emergency responders.
It is also important to note that the licensee/operator emergency plan
is intended to be complimentary to other emergency plans in place for responding
to other safety-related radiological incidents or accidents. Periodic response
exercises should be conducted with emergency responders to demonstrate
effectiveness and to provide familiarisation and training.
237. The competent authority should require each licensee/operator of
a facility where physical protection measures are required to develop and
implement an emergency plan which should, as a minimum, contain:
The criteria for initiation and termination of responses to security emergencies
together with the specific decisions, actions and supporting information
needed to bring about such responses;
An identification of the data, criteria, procedures and mechanisms affecting
emergency planning that are specific to the facility or means of transportation
involved and are necessary to efficiently implement the emergency plan;
A designation of the individual, group or organization responsible for
each decision and action associated with specific responses to security
238. The competent authority should require that response exercises for
the nuclear activity are conducted with the off-site emergency responders
frequently enough to ensure facility familiarisation and appropriate integration
with licensee/operator response.