Brussels, 17 July 2009
Commission welcomes the recommendations presented in the first activity report of the EU Nuclear Safety Regulators Group (ENSREG)
European Commissioner for Energy, Mr Piebalgs welcomed the first activity report of the European Nuclear Safety Regulators Group (ENSREG), presented today by the group's chairman, Mr Stritar. The broader objective of the Group's work is to contribute to maintaining and further improving the safety of nuclear installations and the safe management of spent fuel and radioactive waste. The report presents Group's discussions and recommendations covering nuclear safety, waste management and transparency aspects. It acknowledges the positive and important contribution of the ENSREG's framework over the last two years to improving the communication and information-sharing between European nuclear safety regulators.
"I am pleased to note the progress achieved by the regulators in the framework of ENSREG and I call for continuous shared efforts towards developing an advanced EU framework addressing the vital issues of the safety of nuclear installations and the safe management of radioactive waste. A major step forward was marked by the recent adoption of the Nuclear Safety Directive, to which the ENSREG has actively contributed with its high-level expertise. I am also pleased to note ENSREG's conclusion about the importance of developing national radioactive waste management programmes ", said the Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs.
Andrej Stritar, chairman of the ENSREG added: ''Besides conclusions and future steps identified by the Group in relation to nuclear safety, waste management and transparency, the ENSREG framework significantly boosted communication, coordination and cooperation between national regulatory authorities as well as enhanced dialogue with the Commission. This helps to assure high level of nuclear safety and contributes to it’s continuous improvement in all EU Member States.''
Among future actions, the ENSREG identifies several directions where improvements can be envisaged. It recommends making full use of the international peer review systems and of the results of the existing international safety conventions. The creation and implementation of national radioactive waste and spent fuel management programmes should be promoted. It also emphasizes the importance of constantly supporting the exchange of operating experiences and the communication between the regulators. In order to increase transparency and openness for effective regulation, a good practice guidance for regulators is being prepared. Moreover, a comprehensive nuclear safety related home page on EU level should become available to the general public by the end of this year.
Following the endorsement at political level, the High Level Group on Nuclear Safety and Waste Management (later renamed as ENSREG - European Nuclear Safety regulators Group) was created by the European Commission in July 2007 in order to develop common understanding and reinforce common approaches in the fields of nuclear safety and waste management 1 . It is composed of the heads of the national regulatory or nuclear safety authorities. After a period of 2 years, the Group has to submit a report on its activities to the Commission which shall transmit it to the European Parliament and to the Council, where appropriate with comments. This transmission by the Commission will take place in September 2009.
Commission Decision C(2007)3393 final of 17 July 2007