The Sterile Insect Technique is a type of pest control that uses radiation to sterilise male insects. Further development work is needed and field trials will help study the effectiveness of the technique in the species of mosquitoes that spread the Zika Virus. Steve Thachet spoke to the Director of the Division for Latin America and the Caribbean in the IAEA's Department of Technical Cooperation, Luis Carlos Longoria.
The decommissioning of old nuclear facilities and cleaning contaminated sites are important issues worldwide as nuclear power plants shut down. Steve Thachet spoke to the IAEA’s Decommissioning Specialist Patrick O’Sullivan on why Nuclear Power Plants should be decommissioned.
The Agency is mandated to promote the peaceful application of nuclear science around the world. Countries in Latin America and the Caribbean are benefiting from funding and projects organised by the IAEA to look into obesity, undernourishment and maternal health.
On 8th May, a key nuclear security agreement, the Amendment to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM), enters into force. To mark the milestone, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano, addressed Member States and media at IAEA’s Headquarters in Vienna.
The early detection of the Zika virus is paramount to deal with the current outbreak. The IAEA is training medical experts in a detection technique that provides a precise and quick diagnosis.
The IAEA works with its Member States to ensure that nuclear and other radioactive material does not fall into the wrong hands. The IAEA has developed a web based tool that will enable States to assess their own nuclear security practices and measures.
The Agency marked the World Cancer Day on 4th February. This is the day to raise awareness and discuss the various aspects of cancer. The IAEA collaborates with partners, trains doctors and provides equipment essential for cancer diagnosis and treatment in middle and low income countries. Nelly Enwerem-Bromson, Director of the Programme of Action for Cancer Therapy (PACT), spoke to Steve Thachet on the importance of recognizing this day.
The method to sterilising male insects with radiation could be adopted in preventing the spread of the mosquito-borne Zika virus. The Sterile Insect Technique has been used in the eradication of the tsetse fly in Zanzibar and to control the fruit fly in Croatia. Steve Thachet spoke to the Deputy Director General and the Head of the Department of Nuclear Science and Application, Aldo Malavasi on how the technique works.
The agency works with countries around the world to introduce and operate equipment used in nuclear medicine. However, in many countries there is a lack of proper training opportunities. Sri Lanka and other countries have benefited from IAEA fellowships to train the staff of nuclear medicine facilities around the world.
Without healthy soil there will be no forest, insufficient food or agriculture to feed the world. However, with growing deforestation, soil erosion and pollution, the land that was once healthy is degrading at an unprecedented rate. To raise awareness of the importance of soil conservation the declaration to protect and preserve soil was adopted in Vienna.