IAEA Starts Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review Mission in Ghana

Opening of INIR Mission in Accra, Ghana (Photo: IAEA)

An IAEA team of experts has started an Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review (INIR) mission in Ghana. The mission will last eight days and it will evaluate the status of major infrastructure issues against the Agency’s Milestones Approach for the introduction of nuclear power. These issues include legal and regulatory frameworks, nuclear safety and security, radioactive waste management, human resource development, stakeholder involvement, the capacity of the electrical grid and several others. The evaluation of its infrastructure status will help Ghana in making a knowledgeable decision for its nuclear power programme.

“The INIR mission is one of the main IAEA services to assist the ‘newcomers’, that are considering or have decided to include nuclear power in their energy mix”, said Dohee Hahn, Director of the IAEA’s Division of Nuclear Power, during the opening of the mission. “It is part of the Agency’s comprehensive assistance package to the countries considering or taking steps to embark upon or expand a nuclear energy programme.”

Reliable and adequate electricity supply is the major precondition for Ghana’s economic growth. Based on feasibility report prepared by a presidential committee, the Government of Ghana decided to investigate the inclusion of nuclear energy into its future energy mix and requested an INIR mission to analyse all issues that would be involved in developing a nuclear power programme. Before the INIR mission, Ghana submitted a self-evaluation report on the status of national nuclear infrastructure development to the IAEA based on the methodology established in the IAEA publication “Evaluation of the Status of National Nuclear Infrastructure Development” (NG-T-3.2 (Rev.1)).

The IAEA does not influence countries’ decisions as to whether to introduce nuclear power. However, if they do decide to embark on a nuclear power programme, the IAEA helps them do it in a safe, secure and sustainable manner.

The mission in Ghana is the 22nd IAEA INIR mission since their launch in 2009, following 17 full and 4 follow-up missions conducted in 15 countries.

Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review

Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review missions enable IAEA Member State representatives to have in-depth discussions with international experts about experiences and best practices in developing nuclear power infrastructure. In developing its recommendations, the INIR Mission Team takes into account the comments made by the relevant national organizations. Implementation of any of the team’s recommendations is at the discretion of the Member State requesting the mission. The results of the INIR mission are expected to help the Member State to develop an action plan to fill any gaps, which in turn will help complete the development of the national nuclear infrastructure.

Milestones Approach     

INIR missions are based upon the IAEA’s Milestones Approach to introducing nuclear power, which was developed to assist countries that are considering or planning their first nuclear power plant. The Milestones Approach is documented in Milestones in the Development of a National Infrastructure for Nuclear Power (NG-G-3.1 (Rev.1)).

Source: IAEA