New requirements for the decommissioning of nuclear facilities have come into force

On January 15, 2021, the “General Safety Regulations for the Decommissioning of Nuclear Facilities”, developed and approved by the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine in 2020, entered into force. The document contains the main requirements for the preparation and implementation of decommissioning activities, namely: definition of strategy, planning and implementation of works and activities, implementation of the activity management system, safety assessment and reporting on decommissioning of nuclear facilities.

The “General Safety Regulations …” of 2020 replaced the “General Safety Regulations for the Safety of Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Plants and Research Nuclear Reactors”, approved in 1998. In contrast, the new document covers all nuclear installations including spent nuclear fuel storage facilities and the “Neutron Source”, as well as the ChNPP SSE.

“General Safety Regulations …” detail and expand the requirements for preparation for decommissioning of nuclear installations, ceessation of operation, decommissioning of nuclear installations, completion of decommissioning, safety assessment and other requirements,” told Yulia Novikova the Chief of Department of Safety of Radioactive Waste Management of the SNRIU.

This department developed the legislature together with the Department of Safe Decommissioning of the State Scientific and Technical Centre for Nuclear and Radiation Safety within international cooperation with the Norwegian Department of Nuclear and Radiation Safety. According to Yulia Novikova, the “General Safety Regulations” of 2020 take into account the recommendations of the Western European Nuclear Regulators Association (WENRA), of which the Ukrainian Inspectorate has been a member since 2015.

In particular, these are the so-called reference safety levels for decommissioning, which are based on IAEA recommendations. In addition to WENRA requirements, the drafters followed the IAEA recommendations set out in official publications: “Decommissioning of Radioactive Materials”, “Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Plants and Research Reactors” and “Safety Assessment during Decommissioning of Radioactive Materials”.

The full text of the “General Safety Regulations for the Decommissioning of Nuclear Installations” can be found at the link.

According to the SNRIU.