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B.3 Development of reference regulations for decommissioning

The IAEA from June 2013 to June 2017 conducted a project that aimed to develop reference regulations for decommissioning to be used by the Member States in establishing or appraising regulatory frameworks for preparation and implementation of decommissioning of facilities containing radioactive materials. Such frameworks are a key to States’ work to handle radioactive waste in a manner that protects individuals, society and the environment now and in the future without imposing undue burdens on future generations.

The project resulted in an IAEA Technical Document (TECDOC) titled Model Regulations for Decommissioning of Facilities, which in particular supports States with shutdown or ageing facilities but insufficient regulatory frameworks for decommissioning and waste management.

The TECDOC is applicable to the broad range of regulatory systems that exist in Member States and covers all types of facilities, at all stages of their life cycle, including existing ones that need to be decommissioned, considering the graded approach principle.

Its example articles are applicable to:

  •  Nuclear power plants, research reactors and other nuclear installations;
  • Facilities involving Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM) including the mining and processing of radioactive ore;
  •  Medical, industrial and research facilities in which radioactive materials and sources are produced, received, used and stored;
  •  Facilities for predisposal management of radioactive waste such as treatment, conditioning and storage facilities;
  •  Other supporting facilities associated with radioactive waste management.

The TECDOC forms part of the IAEA’s work to provide guidance, services and training to assist Member States in establishing or strengthening the decommissioning and waste management infrastructure needed for safe preparation and implementation of decommissioning activities.


  • Enhanced capabilities of Member States in the development of national decommissioning regulations.
  • IAEA reference regulations that can be used by Member States as a starting point in developing national decommissioning regulations.

Beneficiary Countries: All Member States

The project was conducted by the IAEA with supplementary funding from the European Union.

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