2. UK Regulators for radioactive substances and waste
Published: Feb 19, 2022
Source: Ionactive Resources
As noted in the previous guidance article, the devolved nations of the UK have their own specific environmental protection legislation for radioactive substance and waste regulation. It is true that England and Wales still share EPR2016 as the principle regulation. In this section we will summarise the UK regulators and provide appropriate links for more information.
The appropriate regulator for England is the Environment Agency (EA). The EA site 'as was' no longer exists, and instead all EA services / information are covered under the .gov.uk site. This site is huge, including the sections devoted to radioactive substances and waste in the nuclear and non-nuclear sector. The following links provide a good entry point (the nuclear link is included for completeness although most of this guidance assumes the reader is from the non-nuclear sector).
A good starting point for non-nuclear, follow the link: Non-nuclear RSR: environmental permits (EA)
A good starting point for nuclear, follow the link : Nuclear sites RSR: environmental permits (EA)
If you wish to visit the home page of the EA, follow the link: Environment Agency (EA)
The appropriate regulator for Wales is Natural Resources Wales (NRW).
A good starting point for non-nuclear, follow the link: Non-nuclear radioactive substance sites (NRW)
A good starting point for nuclear, follow the link: Our role in nuclear regulation (NRW)
The application forms (for example) are Natural Resources Wales branded, but they are essentially exactly the same as those provided by the Environment Agency in England. This extends to much of the guidance linked from the site, which is then either UK wide (more about this later), or from the .gov.uk website. This is not surprising given that England and Wales are both regulating under EPR2016 (as amended).
The appropriate regulator in Scotland is the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA).
A good starting point for nuclear and non-nuclear, follow the link: Radioactive Substances (SEPA)
Although some of the guidance and forms are found directly on the SEPA website (from the link above), other useful documents are found on the gov.scot website. We will provide linked to these later in this guidance.
The appropriate regulator in Northern Ireland is the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA). However, from a practical regulation perspective it is the Industrial Pollution and Radiochemical Inspectorate (IPRI) which regulates the keeping and use of radioactive material and the disposal of radioactive waste.
A good starting point for nuclear and non-nuclear, follow the link: Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA)
The above link takes you to the NIEA radiation overview page.