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The Nuclear Safety Account (NSA) was the first multilateral fund set up at the EBRD in 1993 to finance nuclear safety projects in central and eastern Europe. It was established as part of the G-7 initiative of 1992 which was announced at the Munich Summit in order to improve nuclear safety in the region. Until now the NSA has received €320 million from the European Community and 14 countries: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Projects funded from the NSA concern first-generation Soviet-designed nuclear power plants which operate with VVER 440/230 or RBMK types of reactor, and aim to:
In order to increase safety levels of selected first-generation reactors in view of their early closure, the NSA has funded some urgent technical improvements needed to reduce the risk of accidents prior to closure: at Ignalina (RBMK-1500) in Lithuania, and Kozloduy (VVER 440/230) in Bulgaria. In Russia, the NSA has financed the implementation of urgent short-term improvements of 8 first-generation units: at Kola (units 1-2), Leningrad (units 1-4) and Novovoronezh (units 3-4). In Ukraine, safety upgrade projects at Chernobyl (units 1-3) were added to the NSA scope in 1995 on the basis of a political agreement on early closure between the G-7, the European Community and Ukraine ("Memorandum of Understanding").
These safety improvements, with a total cost of €100 million, have already been successfully implemented and licensed.
For the safe decommissioning of units 1, 2 and 3 of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, the NSA funds the construction of a facility for the treatment of liquid radioactive waste as well as a facility for the interim storage of spent nuclear fuel.
The NSA has financed the preparation of independent reviews of the safety analysis reports produced by the operators of two Soviet-designed nuclear power plants. The objectives were to:
The first in-depth independent Safety Assessment Review was carried out at the nuclear power plant in Ignalina (Lithuania) on the basis of a safety analysis report of the plant's two RBMK reactors. The report was reviewed by an independent group of senior international experts, who evaluated its findings and put forward essential recommendations.
In 2003 a western-style Safety Assessment Review of an RBMK reactor was carried out for unit 1 at the nuclear power plant in Kursk (Russia). The review was jointly undertaken by Russian and western experts.
Last updated 28 April 2010