Over the past 20 years, the NEA Forum on Stakeholder Confidence (FSC) has been committed to developing shared confidence, informed consent and acceptance of radioactive waste management, decommissioning and legacy management. The FSC pursued these aims through the enhancement of meaningful stakeholder dialogues.
Historically, the FSC has focused its work on stakeholder engagement in the context of radioactive waste management, particularly with respect to long-term projects such as deep geological repositories. While stakeholder engagement in radioactive waste management is similar in practice to stakeholder engagement in decommissioning and legacy management, there are contextual differences that are worth noting and exploring. As such, the FSC agreed at its annual meeting in October 2020 to launch a new task group dedicated to decommissioning and legacy management.
The planning committee for the new FSC Task Group on Stakeholder Involvement in Decommissioning and Legacy Management held a kick-off meeting on 2 February 2021. This new group will explore societal challenges related to decommissioning and legacy management, in particular for closure sites. It will support the work of the NEA Committee on Decommissioning of Nuclear Installations and Legacy Management (CDLM) in assessing the impacts on society of decommissioning activities, as well as in exploring opportunities and challenges related to stakeholder involvement.
This month the FSC has also released The Forum on Stakeholder Confidence Report on Dialogue in the Long-Term Management of Radioactive Waste. As an update to the 2010 report Partnering for Long-Term Management of Radioactive Waste: Evolution and Current Practice in Thirteen Countries, this new report catalogues the various approaches FSC members have taken in order to establish effective dialogues with their local, regional and national stakeholders. This report focuses on “effective dialogue” as an approach to enhance public participation in the decision-making process and foster mutual learning.