Nuclear safety and security goes well beyond the world of nuclear power plants, with increasingly global dimensions. In February 2006, the IAEA kicks off its annual meetings with an international conference in Moscow for senior nuclear regulators that examines the expanding regulatory framework.
"There is an emerging need for an international forum to address global issues and approaches to combat the challenges faced by regulators responsible for nuclear and radiation safety and nuclear security," Conference organizers say. Sessions serve as a platform for enhanced international cooperation among regulators to improve the regime for safety and security.
Three topical issues shape the agenda:
- Independence and regulatory effectiveness - the session notes that regulatory independence, including the necessary authority and resources, are key prerequisites to performing regulatory functions, as stated in the IAEA safety standards.
- Regulatory challenges, including advanced technologies and technical progress - the session addresses how regulators should approach technological progress, innovative designs, and new nuclear security threats and risks.
- Enhanced regulatory cooperation - this session examines established practices of international regulatory cooperation with respect to such challenges as licensing facilities, risk assessment, and human resource issues.