Volume 40, May 2005ECORAD 2004
|Page(s)||S905 - S911|
|Published online||17 June 2005|
Regulation and decision-making in environmental radiation protection
Swedish Radiation Protection Authority, 171 16 Stockholm, Sweden
The EC-funded project FASSET (Framework for ASSessment of Environmental impacT), which completed in 2003/2004, has developed an assessment framework for evaluating the environmental impact of ionising radiation on biota in natural ecosystems. The framework provides practical and scientific support to the international development of recommendations for radiological protection of the environment through the International Commission on Radiological Protection . However, on the basis of experiences from FASSET and other recent developments, it can be concluded that there are challenges remaining before environmental radiological protection can be seen as a natural component of general environmental protection. The major future challenge is the development of an integrated approach where decision-making can be guided by sound scientific judgements. This requires, inter alia, filling basic knowledge gaps relevant to assessment and protection, through targeted experimental, theoretical (including expert judgements) and real case studies; development of risk characterisation methodologies, based on both theoretical and experimental studies; development of screening standards, where appropriate; development of user-friendly assessment tools; and stakeholder involvement, supported by targeted communication strategies. A new EC-funded project, ERICA (Environmental Risk from Ionising Contaminants: Assessment and management), has recently started aimed at some of these issues. The project has four operational work packages, being devoted to the development of practical assessment tools (WP1), risk characterisation (WP2), decision-making involving stakeholder dialogue (WP3) and cases studies (WP4). The implications of the FASSET project and its contribution to prioritisation within ERICA are discussed.
© EDP Sciences, 2005
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