ISTC Completes an Online Course on Radioactive Material Transport Safety for Participants from 17 African States

Friday September 24th, 2021

From 6 through 16 September ISTC held in conjunction with the AFCONE and FNRBA a two-week Training Course on the Implementation of the International Atomic Energy Agency Regulations for the Safe Transport of Radioactive Material. The Course constituted a major activity in the framework of the EU Project MC 5.01 15B Support to the Southern African States in Nuclear Safety and Safeguards. The objectives of the course were successfully achieved - to enrich the knowledge and understanding of the participants on the implementation of the IAEA Transport Regulations, and to provide guidance on the carrying out of transport-related inspections.   The positive results were the result of the work of the lecturers who conducted the course and who are leading experts in this field, namely: Paul Hinrichsen, expert at the RSA National Nuclear Regulator, Coordinator, FNRBA Thematic Working Group Five: Upgrading Safety in the Transport of Radioactive Material; Christel Fasten, a former official of the German Federal Radiation Protection Office; and, Zineb El Faicali, Head of Division Regulation and Authorization at the Moroccan Agency for Nuclear and Radiological Safety and Security, FNRBA Thematic Working Group Leader. The 34 participants in the online course came from 17 African countries, SADC and…
ISTC Supports the Third African Youth Nuclear Summit

Wednesday September 15th, 2021

In line with its outreach strategy in Africa, ISTC is proud of its partnership with the African Young Generation in Nuclear (AYGN), the diverse non-profit organization that is committed to ensuring the youth engagement and support within the nuclear industry, and able to capitalize on numerous professional opportunities for careers, networking and development. AYGN has proven itself as a reliable partner to ISTC in the implementation of the EU funded Projects MC 5.01 15B Support to the Southern African States in Nuclear Safety and Safeguards (www.sadcprojec.istc.int) and P-60 Support to the EU CBRN CoE in East and Central Africa in Nuclear Security (www.coe-project60.istc.int) and in the dissemination of the projects’ interim results. ISTC supported many AYGN activities, including the upcoming the 3rd African Youth Nuclear Summit (AYNS) in Accra, Ghana on 25–29 October 2021, dubbed, “The impact of nuclear science and technology applications on economic recovery in Africa post COVID-19 pandemic”. The motto for this summit is “Defining Africa’s Agenda 2063”. AYNS2021 will bring together young people and professionals across the continent, from the academia; nuclear research institutions, nuclear service providers, prospective and current operators as well as regulators to share, exchange ideas and network on issues related to nuclear…
SADC Project helps Zambia’s nuclear regulator engage stakeholders in radiation safety

Friday July 16th, 2021

On 23 and 24 June 2021 the Radiation Protection Authority (RPA) of Zambia organized workshops with  relevant national stakeholders to register their opinion on draft normative documents design to improve the governance of the nuclear sector and in particular to increase the level of safety during transportation of UOC and radioactive materials The subject matter on the discussion was the national country specific report on the state of affairs, elaborated by RPA experts under the EU Project MC 5.01 15B Support to Southern African Stated in Nuclear Safety and Safeguards. Through this EU funded project, the ISTC supports capacity building activities for safe uranium mining and transport, and facilitates the exchanges with and within sub-Saharan Africa. ISTC assists the 16 member states of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) to increase their levels of nuclear safety and security. Authors of the eight country-specific reports on uranium transport matters presented their findings at a series of ISTC monthly webinars. On 21 April 2021 during the third webinar. Ms Melody Mwewa, Manager, Nuclear and Radiation Safety Department, RPA, presented the Country Specific Report- the Legal Framework for Zambia in relation to Nuclear Safety, Security and Safeguards and transportation of Uranium Ore Concentrates.…
Project 60 Appreciated by African Partners at the 9th Steering Committee Meeting

Wednesday July 14th, 2021

On 9 July 2021, the Project 60 Steering Committee held online its ninth meeting. Both the external circumstances of pandemic restrictions and the internal dynamics of Project 60, entering decisive phase of implementation, motivated the Project’s governing body to take stock of the accomplishments and to refocus and rearrange the roadmap for the next year and a half. The deliberations covered a broad agenda, ranging from an upcoming regulatory review workshop and arrangements for information sharing on mobile radioactive sources, through training exercises for nuclear security inspectors and trainings for regulators, operators, customs and border guards, to courses on safe uranium transportation and Project 60 presentation at side events of international conferences. The overall observation about the Project’s implementation was that the main specific objectives are successfully pursued and in many aspects already achieved for the first phase of the project. The second stage implies enhanced regional cooperation to prevent illicit trafficking of radioactive materials through border monitoring, and the creation and training of mobile teams for coordinated inspections. Safe and secure transportation of nuclear and other radioactive materials is a regional concern for Eastern and Central Africa and not a one-country issue. In his remarks Joseph Maina, Head of…
ISTC-led Projects P-60 and MC 5.01 15 B Presented at the AFCONE event Nuclear Security Systems in Africa

Friday June 25th, 2021

On 24 June 2021 the African Commission on Nuclear Energy (AFCONE) convened an online conference entitled Nuclear Security Systems in Africa: From Culture to NSSCs Development and Managing Response to Events. It was dedicated to the programs of the European Union implemented through the EU Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence (CoE) Initiative, some of which are carried out by the International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) AFCONE Executive Secretary Messaoud Baaliouamer welcomed the seventy plus participants, and pointed out the important role attributed to the EU as an external partner in the entire African Peace and security architecture, and in capacity building for nuclear security, in particular. The opening remarks on behalf of the European Union were made by Natalie Pauwels, Head of Unit, Stability and Peace, Global and Transregional Threats, Service for Foreign Policy Instruments. She presented the EU CBRN Centers of Excellence, three of which operate in Africa comprising 27 African states. She commended the support they get from the EC Joint Research Center and ISTC. Ms Pouwels represents the EU on the ISTC Governing Board. The main theme on the presentation of the IAEA representative Elena Buglova, IAEA Nuclear Security Division Director, who…
Kenyan Partners Take Interest in ISTC Project Proposal Elaboration

Friday February 19th, 2021

As Kenya is on the eve of becoming the first African State Party to ISTC, the International Science and Technology Center, jointly with its proven and reliable partners - the National Commission for Science, Technology, and Innovation (NACOSTI) and the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) - organized on 17 January 2021 a webinar for potentially interested scientists and research organizations. The purpose of the event was to acquaint potential applicants for cooperation with ISTC with the process of elaboration and assessment of ISTC project proposals, applications for mobility and conference support, as well as with relevant documentation from the ISTC Rules and Procedures. Special attention was attributed to the major tool for project generation – the ISTC Forum, presented by its architect - Dr Burkhard Endrullat, ISTC Senior Programme Manager. Approximately 90 people attended the webinar, co-hosted by Dr Henry Rotich, KEBS Director of Metrology and Testing, and Dr David Otwoma, NACOSTI Chief Analyst. This audience comprised scientists and experts who have already cooperated with the ISTC during the last three years through the implementation of the EU CBRN CoE Project 60 on Nuclear Security. Others, like the leaders of African Young Generation in Nuclear, had experience acquired through another…
A Webex Meeting with Kenyan Experts Concludes the Round of Regulatory Reviews

Monday February 15th, 2021

On 9 February 2021, ISTC took part in a videoconference with the Kenya Nuclear Regulatory Authority, led by its Director, Joseph Maina, the Head of the EU CBRN Regional Secretariat in Central and East Africa. The session completed the round of discussions with each country participating in Project 60 on the topic of their national legal and regulatory frameworks of nuclear activities and security. The ENCO Expert team presented specially elaborated analytical tools for evaluation, namely Tables of compliance for law and for regulations. Their application allows to examine Kenya’s legislation against international nuclear security recommendations and best practices. The basic document assessed with the tools was the Nuclear Regulatory Act No.29 of 2019. It was implemented throughout the last year. The Project Expert team noted that the Act represents a very good piece of legislation. The expert recommendations focused on definitions, graded approach in regulating nuclear activities and Defence-in-depth approach, verification of compliance, enforcement, RN emergency response plan and contingency plan. An additional advantage of the Act is that it allows for extensive regulatory activities, including adoption of complementary secondary legislation. On behalf of the Kenyan experts, the National Focal Point Ali Gakweli expressed appreciation for the ENCO recommendations,…
Project 60: Progress Achieved and Perspectives in Zambia

Wednesday February 10th, 2021

On 3 February 2021, ISTC took part in a video discussion among the Project 60 (P60) Team of experts and representatives of the Zambia Radiation Protection Authority (RPA), dedicated to the remaining actions for completion of the first stage of P60, and the problems of nuclear security of radioactive sources, including mobile sources, measures to prevent illicit trafficking, and other objectives of the Project’s second phase. The ENCO legal experts reviewed the 2011 Ionizing Radiation Protection Act, and other regulatory documents, presented by the Zambian side, and provided recommendations from security point of view. They also assessed the existing national capabilities for the safe and secure management, control and storage of radioactive sources and provided guidelines and templates on standard operational procedures and RN emergency response plan. Due to its geographical position Zambia has a central role to play with respect to the prevention and control of movements of the mobile radioactive sources across borders. On the national scale, RPA has concluded agreements with the Customs, the Road Transport Safety Agency and some training institutions, respectively, on exchange of information and joint approaches to prevent illicit movement of radioactive sources. Zambia is predisposed to favor regional arrangements on information sharing,…
African Partners Determined to Further Improve Their Nuclear Security

Monday January 11th, 2021

In 2020, despite the turbulent and uncertain global situation, the African countries participating in the EU CBRN ECA CoE Project 60 continued their long-term risk mitigation work that is at the heart of the Project’s objectives. During its first stage (2017-2020), the Project provided technical assistance to improve regulatory and institutional frameworks in line with international standards, to increase the capacities for safe and secure management of radioactive sources and control over orphan sources, and to prepare national RN emergency response plans and lists of assessed equipment needs. The second stage of Project 60 is focused on enhanced regional cooperation to prevent illicit trafficking of radioactive materials through border monitoring, and the creation of mobile teams for coordinated inspection of radioactive sources at border crossings. The Team of experts provided advice through remote communication.[i] A Table for comparative analysis of existing laws and regulations in the Project participating countries was created using as benchmarks relevant international instruments. The resulting recommendations were based on the principles of prime responsibility, graded approach, defence in depth and risk-informed approach. The challenges become even greater in transboundary transport or in trade in sources. IAEA safety and security requirements need to be observed universally. To…
Project – 60 Steering Committee Reviews Progress in Implementation

Wednesday October 14th, 2020

On 14 October 2020 the Steering Committee of the EU CBRN CoE Project 60 convened its 8th meeting to review the remaining elements for the completion of the initial objectives and to consider the conduct of some activities, that can be performed remotely, under the enduring pandemic conditions. Silvia Bottone, EC DEVCO Program Manager, welcomed the resilience of the CoE network that allowed Project 60 to make progress despite the challenging pandemic conditions and travel restrictions. She emphasized that countering the illicit trafficking of radioactive material - which is the core objective of the Project’s second stage - requires further improvement of the regional collaboration among the participating countries. ISTC ED David Cleave noted that the Project continues to be the flagship of EU activities on nuclear security in Africa. It accumulated experiences that deserve sharing and multiplying. The upcoming Review Conference of the amended Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material offers an opportunity for that. Bojan TOMIC, Principal Consultant, ENCO, echoed that notion. He reminded that the initial P-60 Work plan comprised a workshop dedicated to the achieved regulatory improvements. Under the prevailing circumstances an online workshop could be organized to be followed by other online events…