BIOPROTA Annual Meeting May 2017

The BIOPROTA annual meeting was held 8-9 May, 2017, hosted by the Swiss Federal Nuclear Safety Inspectorate (ENSI) in Brugg, Switzerland.  The meeting was organised by the BIOPROTA technical secretariat, provided by Quintessa and RadEcol, and was attended by 26 people representing a range of waste management organisations, regulatory bodies and technical support organisations from 11 countries.

The BIOPROTA forum was set up to address the key uncertainties in long term assessments of contaminant releases into the environment arising from radioactive waste disposal.  Participation is aimed at national authorities and agencies with responsibility for achieving safe and acceptable radioactive waste management, including both regulators and operators. At the outset, it was recognised that there are radioecological and other data and information issues that are common to assessments in different countries.  The forum focuses on key radionuclides and associated key biosphere migration and accumulation mechanisms. Collaborative research facilitated through the forum is intended to make more efficient use of skills and resources, as well as providing a transparent and traceable basis for model and parameter value choices.

The annual meeting provided a forum to share developments in national programmes, present updates regarding collaborative projects facilitated through BIOPROTA, and to discuss other topics and areas of common interest that might lead to future collaborative research.

On-going BIOPROTA projects discussed at this years’ meeting were:

  • the use of ‘real world’ data to build confidence in the modelling of C-14 in terrestrial ecosystems through a series of model-data inter-comparisons;
  • review and enhancement of the BIOMASS methodology, which is being undertaken in conjunction with Working Group 6 of the IAEA MODARIA II programme; and
  • a study of issues affecting the assessment of impacts of disposal of radioactive and hazardous waste.

A report of the annual meeting will be made available to registered users of the BIOPROTA website.