UAE nuclear plans to be examined

A more effective nuclear emergency management plan is being put in place by the UAE, according to a team of international safety experts that completed an 11-day review of the UAE’s planning efforts on Tuesday.

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ABU DHABI // A more effective nuclear emergency management plan is being put in place by the UAE, according to a team of international safety experts that completed an 11-day review of the UAE’s planning efforts on Tuesday.

The plan will build on the country’s already existing emergency response system by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which assembled an Emergency Preparedness Review Service including seven international and IAEA experts.

They will examine the UAE’s progress in preparing the necessary response measures to be applied in the event of a nuclear emergency at the Barakah power plant in Abu Dhabi’s Western Region.

“This is a unique feature of the UAE nuclear emergency management framework and can greatly enhance the effectiveness of the cooperation between the operator and the offsite emergency management authorities – a key to the success of any emergency response,” according to the agency.

The agency found that the UAE plans included important aspects, such as a facility it is building in Al Ruwais, 50km from Barakah, to act as an emergency operation centre responsible for managing emergencies at both the nuclear power plant site and in the surrounding area.

“The UAE is committed to a nuclear energy programme that protects the nation’s people and environment to the highest possible standards,” said Hamad Alkaabi, the UAE Permanent Representative to the IAEA. “This IAEA mission constructively boosts our efforts to ensure that we meet those standards.”

cmalek@thenational.ae