Title: Current Practices for Risk Zoning Around Nuclear Power Plants in Comparison to Other Industry Sectors
Authors: KIRCHSTEIGER Christian
Citation: JOURNAL OF HAZARDOUS MATERIALS vol. A136 p. 392-397
Publication Year: 2006
JRC N°: JRC33231
URI: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/JRC33231
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: This paper analyses the background and current status of the information basis leading to the definition of risk and emergency zones around nuclear power plants (NPPs) in different countries in Europe and beyond. Although dependable plant-specific probabilistic safety assessment (PSA) of level 2 and/or level 3 could in principle provide sufficiently detailed input to define the geographical dimension of a NPP s risk and emergency zones, the analysis of the status in some European and other countries shows that other, deterministic approaches using a reference accident are actually used in practice. Regarding use of level 2 PSA for emergency planning, the approach so far has been to use the level 2 PSA information retrospectively to provide the justification for the choice of reference accident(s) used to define the emergency plans and emergency planning zones (EPZs). There are significant differences in the EPZs that are defined in different countries, ranging from a few up to 80 km. There is a striking contrast in the extent of using probabilistic information to define emergency zones between the nuclear and other high risk industry sectors, such as the chemical process industry, and the reasons for these differences are not entirely clear, since the risk of chemical industry is similar as that of the nuclear sector. The differences seem to be more related to risk perception than to the actual risk potential. Therefore, there is a strong need to be able to communicate risk information to the Public both before and following an accident. In addition, there is a need to educate the Public so that they can understand risk information in a comparative sense. Finally, based on the consensus discussions at a recent JRC/OECD International Seminar on Risk And Emergency Zoning around NPPs, a set of recommendations is given in the areas of a more comprehensive use of the available risk information for risk zoning purposes, risk communication; comparative (energy) risk assessment.
JRC Directorate:Energy, Transport and Climate

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