The NEA supports its member countries in their efforts to improve their nuclear or radiological emergency planning, preparedness and response management, as well as their operational radiological protection capabilities. The work of the Agency in this area is co-ordinated through the Committee on Radiation Protection and Public Health (CRPPH) and its Working Party on Nuclear Emergency Matters (WPNEM), which held a series of meetings in July to review and discuss part of its ongoing work:
1. Expert Group on the Use of Real-Time Platforms (EGRT)
Nuclear or radiological emergencies can transcend borders and thereby require international co-operation for information exchange and co-ordination of protective actions. The Expert Group on the Use of Real-Time Platforms (EGRT) was established recently with the objective to review existing real-time platforms used in emergency preparedness and response, and to facilitate cross-border collaboration in this context.
The group met on 5 July 2021 to continue discussions on its objectives, methods of work and interactions with other international initiatives in the field. The participants examined the legal and technical aspects of platforms used in NEA member countries for real-time information exchange on nuclear or radiological incidents.
2. Expert Group on Comparison and Understanding of Dose Prognosis (EGDP)
The Expert Group on Comparison and Understanding of Dose Prognosis (EGDP) similarly aims to facilitate collaboration among member countries in improving cross‑border co‑ordination. The group’s work focuses on the effective use and understanding of dose prognosis codes in the preparedness and response to nuclear and radiological emergencies. This work is conducted through a series of exercises in which member countries run their own dose prognosis codes on the same agreed-upon source term for a given accident site and then compare their results.
During a meeting held on 6 July 2021, representatives from 12 member countries presented their preliminary results from the first set of exercises. The participants examined comparisons of these results with respect to maps, statistics and geographic information system (GIS) technologies. They also gave feedback on their practical experience with the exercise methodology.
3. Task Group on Update of Member Country Protective Measures Handbook (TGPMH)
The recently established Task Group on Protective Measures Handbook (TGPMH) also met during the same week. The group is working on a questionnaire on current practices in short-term protective actions in case of a nuclear or radiological emergency. The results of this questionnaire will enable the NEA to overview the existing approaches and to facilitate a comparison of national practices with the objective to update the protective measures handbooks published in 1994, 2003 and 2012.