The International Physical Protection Advisory Service (IPPAS) of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is an essential part of IAEA’s efforts to assist Member States to establish and maintain an effective nuclear security regime. Upon the request of the Government of People’s Republic of China, IAEA conducted the IPPAS mission in China from 28 August to 8 September 2017. During this mission, the IPPAS experts team reviewed China’s national nuclear security regime for nuclear material and nuclear facilities, and assessed the physical protection technical measures and management procedures at Fangjiashan-1 Nuclear Power Plant, Qinshan Nuclear Power Base. Through the IPPAS mission, a number of recommendations, suggestions and good practices were identified, which covered the aspects of legislation, regulatory, human resource development, nuclear security culture cultivation, performance evaluation, etc.
Following the recommendations and suggestions given by IPPAS experts team, China Atomic Energy Authority (CAEA) as the competent authority of nuclear industry management, has taken a series of follow-up actions to furtherly strengthen the nuclear security regime. The progress of legislation regarding nuclear security was accelerated significantly. A lot of departmental rules and technical guidance more aligned to CPPNME were developed and went into effect. The investment in nuclear security capacity building was increased continuously. The nuclear security culture and awareness were obviously improved both on managemental and operational levels through a set of systematic and large-scale trainings. The technical measures protecting nuclear materials and facilities against various of emerging nuclear security were constantly upgraded and enhanced.
With the lessons learned from IPPAS mission, China is engaged in developing a comprehensive mechanism of performance testing and evaluation for nuclear security systems, measures and staffs. For example, conducting performance testing for nuclear security system and equipment in their design, installation and operation phases; performing peer reviews on physical protection system effectiveness and nuclear security culture sustainability, normalizing the force-on-force exercises on nuclear security events response at nuclear facilities, etc.
This article will give a brief introduction to the follow-up actions taken by CAEA for the IPPAS mission. The archived progress and results of these actions will be evaluated, and their effects on the sustainable development of nuclear security in China. We believe the practices and experiences learned by China should also be benefitted for other member states to recognize the importance of IPPAS mission in improving their nuclear security capabilities and maintaining a more effective nuclear security regime.