IAEA Action Plan on Nuclear Safety

The IAEA Action Plan on Nuclear Safety, endorsed by IAEA Member States in September 2011, defined a programme of work to strengthen the global nuclear safety framework in response to the March 2011 accident at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear power plant. The plan outlined actions to strengthen safety in 12 areas: safety assessment of nuclear power plants; IAEA safety standards and peer reviews; emergency preparedness and response; national regulatory bodies and operating organizations; the international legal framework; Member States planning to embark on a nuclear power programme; capacity building; protection of people and the environment from ionizing radiation; communication and information dissemination; and research and development.

As part of their work under the Action Plan, Member States introduced measures to enhance nuclear safety, including those taken in response to the results of assessments of nuclear power plants’ vulnerability to extreme external events.

The IAEA’s work under the Action Plan included strengthening relevant safety standards and peer review services, and enhancing efforts to assist Member States in building capacity for safety. The Agency also held nine international experts’ meetings that analysed technical aspects of the Fukushima Daiichi accident so that lessons could be learned. In addition, the IAEA conducted 15 international expert missions to Japan and published the reports.

Work to implement the Action Plan forms part of the content of The Fukushima Daiichi Accident Report by the Director General and its five accompanying Technical Volumes. These reports, released at the 2015 IAEA General Conference, address the accident’s causes and consequences and aim to provide a comprehensive understanding of what happened during the accident and why. Five working groups with about 180 experts from 42 Member States and several international bodies collaborated on the report.

By implementing the Action Plan, all parties involved demonstrated their commitment to enhance nuclear safety worldwide. Though work under the Action Plan has concluded and many of its elements have been incorporated in routine work, the focus on the lessons learned from the accident remain. The IAEA continues to support Member States in addressing these lessons, for example through the Knowledge Management Portal on Observations and Lessons from the Fukushima Daiichi Accident, through which users can search among observations and lessons from the accident.

Main references

Action Plan on Nuclear Safety