For 60 years now, the General Conference of the 168 Member States of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna, with reports from the members, from IAEA programs and bodies and numerous specialist events, has been the most important platform for international exchanges on nuclear energy policy, state research and development programs as well as for standardisation, especially in the field of security. The first IAEA General Conference was opend 60 years ago on 1 October.
Regardless of the political decision to end the use of nuclear energy for power generation, Germany remains an active member of the IAEA and participates in the executive body, the Board of Governors, as well as in a large number of specialist committees which deal with nuclear safety, waste management issues, radiological protection, transport safety and security.
International standards for the safety of nuclear transports and radiological protection are set within this tried and tested framework and recommendations are made for plant safety and waste management. The active shaping of these standards and recommendations, international research cooperation and collaboration on the control of nuclear material in the IAEA and EURATOM remain important tasks for the Federal Government in the long term.
Germany is also deeply involved in the system of mutual audits with exchange of information of the IAEA. An IPPAS mission concerning the security of nuclear facilities is currently underway. An IRRS mission to review the system of nuclear supervision in Germany and a review of the waste management system within the framework of the ARTEMIS program are planned for the future. This exchange of information, the support programs and the peer review missions of the IAEA provide Germany with the opportunity to keep up with the development of science and technology in the nuclear sector, to continue developing its skills and to guarantee the next generation of specialists even after the end of power generation.
On the background: The first General Conference of the IAEA took place in Vienna 60 years ago from 1 – 23 October 1957. Germany also took part in the conference as one of the 26 founding members of the IAEA. In the process, the foundations were laid for the organisation’s many varied activities dedicated to the promotion of nuclear technology and non-proliferation. Germany has been a member of the Board of Governors continuously since 1972.