August 23, 2004

CNSC finalizes regulatory policy document on radwaste management

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) has published a new regulatory policy document relating to the management of radioactive wastes. Policy document P-290, issued under the Nuclear Safety and Control Act (NSC Act), sets out the principles that the CNSC will take into account when making regulatory decisions concerning radioactive waste management. In making such decisions, the policy states that the Commission will consider the extent to which owners of these wastes have addressed principles such as: minimization, to the extent practicable, of radioactive waste generation; management of waste commensurate with the level of hazard to the environment, human health and safety, and national security; assessment of future impacts of radioactive waste encompassing the period of time projected for maximum impact; development, funding and implementation of measures to prevent unreasonable risks (present and future); and assurance that transboundary environmental and health impacts from waste management are no greater than those experienced within Canada.

The policy also expresses the CNSC's commitment to consulting and co-operating with other national and international agencies to promote consistent national and international standards for radioactive wastes, and to achieve conformity with measures of control and international obligations to which Canada has agreed with respect to radioactive waste.

A draft version of the policy was released for public comment in April 2003. The comments received have been taken into account during finalization of the document.

Regulatory Policy P-290, Managing Radioactive Wastes, is available in English or French on the CNSC Web site, A paper copy of the document in either official language may be ordered from the CNSC's Communications and Information Management Directorate, PO Box 1046, Station B, 280 Slater St, Ottawa K1P 5S9; 613/995-5894, FAX 613/992-2915, E-mail

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