IAEA director general lays out agency's priorities for 2016

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Yukiya Amano said in a speech to the IAEA Board of Governors this week in Vienna that renovations at IAEA nuclear-applications laboratories, monitoring and verification efforts in Iran, and overall nuclear-plant safety and security will be priorities for the agency this year.

“I am confident that the legacy of Fukushima Daiichi will be a sharper focus on nuclear safety everywhere,” said Amano, highlighting the fifth anniversary of the incident and noting that this April will be the 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl accident. “There is widespread recognition that everything humanly possible must be done to ensure that no such accident ever happens again. This is all the more essential as global use of nuclear power is likely to continue to grow in the coming decades.”

Amano noted that there are 442 nuclear reactors currently in operation throughout the world, with an additional 66 under construction. Amano also asked IAEA member states to contribute to the agency’s efforts to renovate its nuclear-application laboratories and discussed Iran’s new status with the agency, wherein the country can fully participate in the Technical Cooperation program, but is subject to verification.

“The agency has found no indication of the diversion of declared nuclear material from peaceful nuclear activities in Iran," Amano said. "Iran’s Additional Protocol has been provisionally implemented since January 16, 2016.” Amano said.

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