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LAW OF THE REPUBLIC OF MOLDOVA

of April 13, 2017 No. 68

About approval of National strategy for management of radioactive waste for 2017-2026 and the Action plan on its realization

(as amended on 09-06-2022)

The parliament adopts this ordinary law.

Art. 1. – Approve:

National strategy for management of radioactive waste for 2017-2026 according to appendix 1;

The action plan on realization of National strategy for management of radioactive waste for 2017-2026 according to appendix 2.

Art. 2. – To the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Ministry of the environment to perform monitoring of process of application of National strategy for management of radioactive waste for 2017-2026 and to annually submit to the Government the report on accomplishment of the Action plan on its realization.

Chairman of the parliament

Andrian Kandu

Appendix 1

National strategy for management of radioactive waste for 2017-2026

1. National Strategy for management of radioactive waste for 2017-2026 (further – Strategy) is the document determining the main directions of implementation of radiological and nuclear activities in the field of management of radioactive waste. Besides, this Strategy establishes methods and mechanisms of the organization of measures which should be accepted for the purpose of responsible and safe handling of radioactive waste.

According to the obligations undertaken at the international level by the Republic of Moldova as the member of International Atomic Energy Agency, the policy of management of radioactive waste is based on the following principles:

1) health protection of the person: the treatment of radioactive waste is performed so that to provide the acceptable level of protection of health of the person;

2) environment protection: the treatment of radioactive waste is performed so that to provide the acceptable level of environment protection, including natural resources;

3) protection outside the Republic of Moldova: the treatment of radioactive waste is performed so that possible effects for health of the person and the environment outside national borders were considered;

4) protection of future generations: the treatment of radioactive waste is performed so that effects for health of future generations did not exceed the appropriate levels of impact accepted now;

5) burden exception for future generations: the treatment of radioactive waste is performed so that to exclude excessive burden on future generations;

6) national legal base: the treatment of radioactive waste is performed within the corresponding national legal base providing accurate distribution of responsibility and powers for independent regulation of these activities;

7) control of formation of radioactive waste: formation of radioactive waste shall keep at minimum possible level;

8) nuclear and radiation safety, physical safety of objects with radioactive waste: nuclear and radiation safety, physical safety of installations according to the treatment of radioactive waste shall be ensured properly at each stage of lifecycle of installation;

9) ensuring informing society: informing and participation of the public in decision making process, directed to implementation of the Action plan on realization of this Strategy.

Safe management of the radioactive waste which is formed in the Republic of Moldova is the national political task important in respect of maintenance of sustainable development of national economy, environmental protection, health care, agricultural industry, scientific research and homeland security in general. At the same time safe management of radioactive waste at all stages – before final burial – demands availability of the national legal base which would guarantee accomplishment of political commitments in the field, effective regulation and transparent distribution of responsibility, and also providing with financial resources and maintenance of scientific and technical potential for ensuring successful realization of this Strategy from education.

Besides, especially sensitive nature of subject dictates need of ensuring informing and participation of the public in decision making process and implementation of the Action plan on realization of this Strategy.

Delay in strategy implementation, and also implementation of the Action plan providing final burial of radioactive waste would mean unjustified assignment of burden and responsibility on future generations.

2. Strategy includes method of accomplishment of the obligations undertaken by the Republic of Moldova at the international level and is based on provisions of the international treaties following from the Integrated convention on safe handling of the fulfilled fuel and on safe handling of radioactive waste (ratified by the Law No. 111/2009), declaration Rio-de-Zhaneyrskoy on the environment and development of 1992, resolutions of general conferences of International Atomic Energy Agency of 1997-2012 and also on provisions of the Law No. 132/2012 on safe implementation of nuclear and radiological activities.

I. Situation in the field

3. In the Republic of Moldova there is no strategic basis determining the directions of development of management of radioactive waste. For this reason it is possible to state that the treatment of radioactive waste is performed without radiological properties of radioactive waste, like the radiation and half-life period of the prevailing radionuclides and methods of final burial of medium-active and highly active radioactive waste with half-life period of radionuclides are not determined more than five years. Besides, the radioactive waste which is already stored in near-surface storages in the territory of special purpose entity "Special objects No. 5101 and 5102" (further – Spetsobjekta) which does not provide the corresponding radiological protection of the population and the environment is not taken into consideration.

Other problem is that some waste contains the alpha radiating radionuclides with big half-life period (more than one thousand, millions and billions of years – Ra-226, Pu-238 and Pu-239, natural uranium and uranium with different extent of enrichment by uranium-235, and also Th-232, etc.). The alpha radiating radionuclides are characterized by extreme radio toxicity and constitute serious danger to the environment and health of the population. Radioactive waste of this type, according to international standards on ensuring radiological safety in case of the treatment of radioactive waste, shall be isolated from the environment and is buried finally in geological structures that will allow to avoid their accumulating in Items of storage or temporary storage and to prevent their theft or emergency distribution in the environment.

As a result of radiological accident on September 21, 2015 in municipium of Chisinau about 120 CBM of the soil contaminated by caesium-137 were formed. The treatment of such medium-active and low-active radioactive waste remains pressing problem.

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