Switzerland has submitted its 7th National Report to the Convention on Nuclear Safety (CNS) at the International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA in Vienna. Amongst other aspects, the report indicates to what extent the principles from the Vienna declaration on nuclear safety have been implemented.
Switzerland is one of some 80 signatory states to the Convention on Nuclear Safety (CNS) of the International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA. The Convention specifies binding international safety standards.
The signatory states have undertaken to submit a specific national report on the status of implementation of the Convention to the IAEA every three years. Switzerland signed the Convention on 31 October 1995, ratified it on 12 September 1996 and brought it into force on 11 December 1996. As such Switzerland is amongst the founding states of this convention.
Since the first CNS conferences in 1999 it has participated in the Review Conferences in Vienna every three years. This year Switzerland is submitting its seventh National Report. Within it, Switzerland must, just like the other signatory states, provide information about the following main issues:
- Safety of operational nuclear installations
- The work of the national inspection authorities
- Subjects relating to Radiation and emergency protection
For the first time, countries must also report on their implementation of the international agreement “Vienna Declaration on Nuclear Safety” from the Diplomatic Conference to the CNS of February 2015 in Vienna. The specifications agreed there have been newly incorporated in the CNS review process.
The Diplomatic Conference was instigated by Switzerland, which submitted an application at the sixth Review Conference in April 2014 to revise the convention text. The aim of the Swiss application was to strengthen the requirements for the design and construction of nuclear power plants subsequent to the 2011 accident in Fukushima.
Consequently, this years’ National Reports must also include information about the implementation of these specifications. Essentially, these include the following elements: New nuclear power plants must be designed and constructed according to the latest safety standards and using the latest technologies.
The objective is to prevent accidents. If nevertheless an accident should occur, the effects must be mitigated and early large radioactive releases prevented. The safety of existing nuclear power plants should be periodically and systematically checked and evaluated. Reasonably practicable or achievable safety improvements should be implemented in a timely manner.
Seventh conference in March 2017
After the submission of the National Reports by the signatory states, states are able to ask questions about the other submitted reports. These must be answered by the authors of the reports in the following months. The National Report Review Conference takes place from 27 March to 07 April 2017 in Vienna. ENSI Deputy Director Georg Schwarz has the role of Vice President at this conference.
By submitting its seventh National Report, Switzerland fulfils the requirement of Article 5 of the agreement. With the publication of its report, Switzerland is moreover supporting the international recommendation to voluntarily make the CNS National Report publicly accessible. All existing Swiss National Reports to the CNS are available on the ENSI website.