The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said Friday that a team of experts has completed a nuclear security advisory mission in Germany. The team, which was deployed at the request of the German Federal Government, said that nuclear security in the country "is well established and incorporates the fundamental principles of the amended Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material."
The two-week mission, called a International Physical Protection Advisory Service (IPPAS) mission, involved a review of Germany's legislative and regulatory framework involving physical and legal securities for nuclear materials. It also involved investigations into the country's physical protection of nuclear material, associated facilities and computer networks. The IPPAS team went onsite at the Emsland Nuclear Power Plant (KKE) and visited the Interim Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Facility near the town of Lingen, which is in northwest Germany.
Inspectors, who made recommendations for strengthening nuclear security in Germany, reviewed the county's adherence to the 2005 Amendment to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM), which Germany ratified in 2010. Inspectors also noted "a number of good practices were identified that can serve as examples to other IAEA Member States to help strengthen their nuclear security activities," the IAEA said on its website.
The team was headed by Joseph Sandoval, Distinguished Member of Technical Staff at Sandia National Laboratories in the United States, and included seven other experts from five countries and the IAEA.
The team's itinerary included a visit to Bonn to meet with officials from the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB), the Federal Office for the Safety of Nuclear Waste Management (BfE), the Federal Ministry of the Interior (BMI), the Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) and the Ministry for Environment, Energy and Climate Protection of Lower Saxony (NMU), the Committee on Security and Protection of Nuclear Installations (KoSikern), KKE and the Gesellschaft für Anlagen- und Reaktorsicherheit gGmbH (GRS).
The mission was the 78th IPPAS mission conducted by the IAEA since the program began in 1995, the IAEA noted.
Germany is working towards a phase-out of nuclear power based on a political push towards a no-nuclear generation mix prompted by the March 2011 triple meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Generating Station in northeastern Japan. Currently, Germany derives 14 percent of its electricity generation capacity from eight reactors, according to the World Nuclear Association, although eight reactors were shut down shortly after the 2011 moratorium policy was enacted. The country's primary domestic production of electricity is derived from coal fired plants.
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