UAE starts emergency exercise at Barakah nuclear plant

Barakah will meet about 25 per cent of country's energy needs when fully operational

The UAE started a two-day international emergency exercise at Barakah nuclear power plant on Tuesday.

Known as ConvEx-3 Barakah UAE, the complex exercise was organised by the International Atomic Energy Agency and is being run under the supervision of the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority.

ConvEx-3 Barakah UAE will involve more than 75 countries and 12 international organisations.

ConvEx-3 exercises are designed to test response capabilities and early notification protocols in cases of nuclear or radiological emergencies, in line with international emergency conventions.

Hamad Saif Al Kaabi, director of the Hazardous Material Incidents Department at the authority, said ConvEx-3 Barakah UAE was an opportunity to demonstrate the preparedness and capabilities of the emergency and crisis system of the UAE's nuclear sector.

“We also aim to highlight the readiness of participating teams of our local and international partners in cases of radiological and nuclear emergencies,” he said.

Preparations for the exercise started last month, with robust rehearsals and drills simulating nuclear emergency scenarios carried out over the course of 36 hours.

Barakah is the region’s first operational multi-unit nuclear plant.

Its power generation will significantly reduce the country's use of gas-fired power stations to generate electricity.

The UAE started up the second unit at Barakah nuclear power plant in August this year, four months after commercial operations began using the first reactor.

Once up and running, the four reactors will meet about 25 per cent of the country's energy needs.

Updated: October 26th 2021, 6:29 PM