Nuclear emergency planning is about preparing for rapid action in order to protect life, health, the environment and other important social interests, in the event of a nuclear accident or incident.
Since 1993 and 1994, Norway has had agreements on early warning of nuclear accidents and the exchange of information about nuclear facilities with Russia and Ukraine, respectively. Well-established routines and common procedures for early warning are an important part of the total work of emergency planning.
By means of contact with Russian authorities and organisations, Norway has gained a better understanding of Russian decision support systems, forecasting tools and emergency response organisation. The collaboration has provided the Norwegian authorities with good information about the Russian installations and the risks associated with them. New warning procedures were signed in 2015, and these have been tested in joint emergency response exercises.
It is important to hold emergency response exercises regularly, so as to test out the warning procedures in practice. There will be a continuing focus on this in the future, with both the Russian and the Ukrainian authorities. The regular exchange of information and measurement data also helps to increase both collaboration and knowledge.
Norway and Russia have collaborated in organising exercises, including through the Barents collaboration and the Barents Rescue exercise of 2009, which this picture is taken from. Photo: Norwegian Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority.