The area of recovery management has been of interest within the NEA community for some time - in particular since the 2011 accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. An aspect of recovery management that has been identified as needing further practical guidance is preparations for post‑accident recovery actions.
For this reason, the NEA and the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) of Japan co‑organised the Workshop on Preparedness for Post‑Accident Recovery Process: Lessons from Experience at the University of Tokyo in Japan on 18‑19 February 2020, with the support of Nuclear Safety Research Association (NSRA). Participants included national and local governmental representatives, people from the Fukushima prefecture, and researchers.
The workshop provided an opportunity to discuss the major elements of a nuclear or radiological post‑accident recovery management framework. It also served as a platform where participants were able to exchange their experiences in the recovery process. Workshop conclusions and a summary will be published in the coming months in order to assist NEA members in planning and improving their preparedness for recovery.
Following the workshop, the NEA Expert Group on Recovery Management (EGRM) held its third meeting on 21‑22 February 2020 in Iwaki, Japan. The group is advancing the preparation of a comprehensive and operational generic framework of recovery management, easily adaptable by any member country in the case of a nuclear accident. The meeting focused on insights gained at the Tokyo workshop. The participating experts discussed the lessons learnt from the Japanese experiences for reconstruction gained over nearly 10 years, and how to put these lessons into the perspective of preparedness for recovery. To enhance the practical aspects of the deliverable under construction, the group had the opportunity to visit the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant site and its interim storage facility, as well as a waste incinerator the day before the EGRM meeting. Both the workshop and the technical tour captured the complexity of the reality of the recovery process after a nuclear accident.