Waste Technology Section

International Radioactive Waste Technical Committee (WATEC)



The International Radioactive Waste Technical Committee (WATEC) is a group of experts to provide advice to the IAEA and support programme implementation, reflecting a global network of excellence and expertise in the area of radioactive waste management and decommissioning.


The International Radioactive Waste Technical Committee (WATEC) is a working group of senior international experts in radioactive waste management and decommissioning, with particular emphasis on strategies, implementation, technologies and methodologies. WATEC advises the IAEA’s Secretariat on programme activities and directions related to radioactive waste management and decommissioning strategies and implementation of solutions for radioactive waste from all past and present sources and activities (safety standards and requirements related to waste and nuclear materials and management are not included).


The functions of WATEC are:

a) To provide advice and guidance, and to marshal support in their countries for implementation of the Agency’s programmatic activities in the area of radioactive waste management and decommissioning;
b) To provide a forum for information and knowledge sharing on national and international programme developments in this area;
c) To provide advice on preparatory actions in Member States and the Agency’s activities in planning and implementing coordinated research projects, collaborative assessments and other activities as well as the review of the results within the scope of WATEC;
e) To develop and/or review selected documents from the Nuclear Energy Series, assess existing gaps and advise on preparation of new ones, within the scope of WATEC;
f) To identify important topics for discussion at SAGNE and contribute to status reports, technical meetings and topical conferences in the field of radioactive waste management and decommissioning;
g) To encourage participation of young professionals, as appropriate, in Agency activities;
h) To provide advice on preparatory action by Member States for planning and implementing radioactive waste management and decommissioning activities.


Members of WATEC shall be appointed by the Deputy Director General for Nuclear Energy following consultation with the respective national authorities or organizations.
Members of WATEC:

• Shall be recognized experts in various fields of radioactive waste management and decommissioning or have broad responsibilities for programmes in these fields and have extensive links with national technical communities;
• Are to serve for a standard length of four years;
• Shall participate in the Group in their personal capacity and shall provide as appropriate views on national policies and strategies in the technical field;
• May as appropriate bring experts to provide additional information and share experience in the meetings of WATEC.

The total membership of WATEC shall not exceed 20 members.

The Deputy Director General of the Department of Nuclear Energy may from time to time also co-opt additional members and/or invite observers from other Member States and international or regional organizations on an ad-hoc or continuing basis.


The Chairman of WATEC shall be selected from the members of WATEC by the Deputy Director General for Nuclear Energy.


Within available resources, the Deputy Director General will provide for administrative and secretariat services required by WATEC, including meeting facilities, maintenance of records and distribution of documents. The IAEA shall provide the services of a scientific secretary. Support, when required, will be provided by managers/staff from NE, or other relevant department.


Except as otherwise herein stated, WATEC will determine its own methods of work, including preparation of its Agenda, establishment of special groups, keeping of records and other procedures, and report on its findings to SAGNE.

The activity of WATEC between periodic meetings shall be coordinated by the Scientific Secretary taking into due consideration the relevant recommendations of WATEC and SAGNE.

Following each meeting WATEC shall provide the Deputy Director General with a report on its achievements and recommendations. The report shall be also published on the IAEA’s internet pages in a format and content agreeable to all members.

The Chairman of WATEC shall communicate to SAGNE recommendations for strategic development or other important topics to be discussed at SAGNE meetings.


WATEC will meet at regular intervals but no more than once in a year with each meeting lasting up to four workings days. Extraordinary meetings may be called when required.

Meetings will be conducted in English only.


The IAEA is not in a position to bear the travel and other costs of members to WATEC meetings. All costs involved in the participation of each member, including travel and per diem expenses, shall in general be supported by the nominating Member State/organization. However, the IAEA may contribute to the cost of attendance of members from developing countries, if sufficient funds are available and if a significant contribution can be made to the meeting by the respective members.

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