International Conference on Topic Issues in Nuclear Installation Safety Opened in Beijing
  • Updated:2004-10-20
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Author:Gu Xinping

The International Conference on Topic Issues in Nuclear Installation Safety was opened in Beijing on October 18, 2004. Following the opening speech of Mr. Zhang Huazhu, Chairman of the China Atomic Energy Authority, Mr. T. Taniguqi, Deputy Director General of IAEA, and Mr. R. Meserve, Chairman of the Conference, delivered speeches in the opening session.

In his speech, Mr. Zhang deliberated the international situation of nuclear safety. While making full use of nuclear energy, people are aware of the risks and damages it might bring. Relevant nuclear assurance mechanisms have been established, such as the Convention of Nuclear Safety, the Convention of Early Notification of Nuclear Accidents and Convention on Assistance in Case of a Nuclear Accident or Radiological Emergency. The IAEA issued a series of nuclear safety standards and technological documents to guide the member states in their work concerning nuclear safety. Expansive and in-depth international cooperation in nuclear safety has been carried out through bilateral or multilateral channels and yielded effective results. In the state level, various countries have established nuclear safety supervision system and related regulations and technological standards and carried out personnel training to ensure the safe operation of their nuclear installations. Technological progress and management improvement such as promoting the safety margin and standardizing the safety management in construction, operation and maintenance of nuclear installations help to bring safety of nuclear installations to a higher level. With continuous efforts of all countries and the international community, the issue of nuclear safety has been generally given high attention, the international situation of nuclear safety improved and safety of nuclear installations further promoted. Nuclear power and nuclear technology continue to play an important role in mankind’s social and economic development.

Zhang Huazhu stressed that the Chinese Government always attaches great importance to the issue of nuclear safety. The National Nuclear Safety Agency of China, established in 1984, carries out independent supervision and management on the country’s civil nuclear facilities, and has established corresponding supervision mechanism. The Regulations on supervision and Management of Civil Nuclear Facilities promulgated by the Chinese Government in 1986 provided that the principle of “safety shall be given top priority” shall be implemented from the siting, designing, construction, operation to decommissioning of nuclear power plants, and that adequate measures shall be taken to prevent nuclear accidents. The Chinese Government has formulated other regulations to make clear the responsibilities of governmental departments and utilities. The formulation and implementation of safety standards follow international practices to make amendments promptly. The Chinese Government pays great attention to the international cooperation in nuclear safety and has cooperated with countries with developed nuclear power industry and such international organizations as IAEA. China has acceded to international treaties and conventions on nuclear safety and performed her duties, making positive contribution to promoting the world’s nuclear safety level and the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.

Zhang Huazhu pointed out that in the new century, social development is facing various challenges and nuclear safety is still one of the major challenges facing the sustainable development of peaceful uses of nuclear energy. He called upon the participants to take this international conference as an opportunity to make in-depth discussion on the challenges and development of nuclear installations safety.

The conference will concentrate on the following four topics:Environmental changes – response to diversity and globalization;Operation experience – effective response to changes;Supervision system – adapting to environmental changes; and Long-term operation – ensuring the safety margin while extending the lifetime of nuclear power plants.

A total of 300 government officers and experts from all over the world, including the Chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission of the United States, Director of the Russian Nuclear Regulatory, Chairman of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, Director of French Nuclear Installation Safety Directorate, and Director of Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority.

The conference, sponsored by IAEA and undertaken by CAEA and NNSA, is going to meet for 5 days and be concluded on October 22.