NEA Mandates and Structures

Working Group on Fuel Cycle Safety (WGFCS)

Chair(s): Mitsuhiro TAKANASHI, Japan
Secretary:  Diego ESCRIG FORANO
Vice-Chair(s): Veronique LHOMME, France
Craig ERLANGER, United States
Member(s):All NEA member countries
Full participant(s): European Commission
Under the NEA Statute
Participant(s): India
Observer(s)(International Organisation): International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
By agreement
Date of creation:31 October 1976
End of mandate:31 December 2020

Mandate (Document reference):

Mandate (Document extract):

Extract from document NEA/CSNI/R(2017)17

The nuclear fuel cycle comprises a number of interrelated activities including uranium mining and milling; uranium refining and conversion to uranium hexafluoride; uranium enrichment; fuel fabrication and storage (including MOX fuel); spent fuel storage; spent fuel reprocessing; decommissioning of nuclear facilities; radioactive waste management and disposal options (including for spent fuel) and the research and demonstration facilities that support these activities.

Reactor operation and long-term management of radioactive waste are widely covered in several other NEA bodies, and therefore, these aspects are not addressed by the WGFCS. Only safety aspects associated with the long and medium-term storing of spent fuel and high-level waste are addressed by the WGFCS. Safety impacts on Fuel Cycle Facilities (FCF) from the transportation of nuclear material are included in the work of the WGFCS. Other spent fuel and high-level waste management issues are co-ordinated by the Radioactive Waste Management Committee (RWMC).

The objective of the Working Group on Fuel Cycle Safety (WGFCS) is to advance the understanding of relevant aspects of nuclear fuel cycle safety, from design to decommissioning in member countries.

In order to accomplish this objective, the Working Group shall:

To achieve this mandate, the WGFSC shall:

  1. Constitute a forum for exchange of information and experiences of activities related to nuclear fuel cycle safety in NEA member countries and assess the lessons learned and good practises of FCFs in order to reach mutual understanding of design philosophy and principles, licensing systems and safety requirements related to FCFs.
  2. Encourage and support WGFCS member countries to report their events in the FINAS database.In case of an event of common interest, to organise a specific forum to share lessons learnt and promote their implementation.
  3. Identify new research and analysis targets, assess their priorities and prepare technical review reports of the different phases of the nuclear fuel cycle. In doing so, avoid duplication of effort or scope with other CSNI Working Groups, or with other international bodies.
  4. With prior approval of the CSNI, collaborate with or assist the other CSNI Working Groups, NEA bodies or other international organisations.