Waste Technology Section

Contact Expert Group

The accumulated Cold War nuclear legacy, consisting of spent nuclear fuel and radioactive waste from the Russian Navy as well as over 200 nuclear powered submarines and surface ships, poses a significant threat to the environment in the North-West and the Far-East of Russia. There are also security concerns over spent nuclear fuel and radioactive thermo-electrical generators.

The magnitude of the problem prompted a number of states to start assisting Russia in elimination of the Cold War legacy. In order to speed up the process and to promote international cooperation in this field, the Contact Expert Group for International Nuclear Legacy Initiatives in the Russian Federation (CEG) was established under the auspices of the IAEA in 1996.

In addition, the Global Partnership Programme against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction launched at the G-8 Summit in 2002 (which was later joined by 14 other nations) has given a new impetus to nuclear assistance programmes in the Russian Federation. Since then, a bulk of CEG members’ activities has been carried out in the framework of the Global Partnership Programme.

Goals of the CEG

  • to promote co-operation between all countries and international organizations interested in contributing to projects aimed at enhancing the safety of spent fuel and radioactive waste management in the Russian Federation;
  • to provide a forum (workshops and plenary meetings) for discussion and exchange of information with the view of identifying main priorities and presenting recommendations on specific projects for further cooperation;
  • to avoid redundancy and duplication in project work in the Russian Federation and assure that priorities are properly addressed and made known to the international community;
  • to provide points of contact to facilitate co-operation.

Activities of CEG Members

  • Safe and secure management of the legacy spent nuclear fuel from nuclear powered submarines and surface ships, and its removal from former navy bases for reprocessing.
  • Safe management of radioactive waste resulted from operation of the Russian navy, including storage of radioactive waste and its disposal.
  • Defuelling and dismantlement of decommissioned nuclear powered submarines, surface ships and technical support ships, including their safe transportation and storage of reactor compartments.
  • Retrieval of all radioactive thermo-electrical generators from the Russian coast, removal of radioactive heat sources and their storage.
  • Remediation of contaminated areas and facilities of the former navy bases.
Read more on the activities of the CEG in the newsletters
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