11 DECEMBER – PUBLIC SESSIONS – TOPIC 21

Day 33 review

The Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission today investigated its final topic, with a focus on Topic 21 – Regulatory Oversight.

The first witness was Donald Hoffman, CEO of Excel Services Corporation, USA, which provides specialist advice and support services to nuclear facilities in the US and internationally with respect to operations, engineering, safety, licensing and regulatory issues.

Mr Hoffman provides presentations on the benefits of nuclear science and technology to the US Congress and is chairing a committee to support all the US Governors on implementing the US Clean Energy Act and addressing the Climate Control Acts. His evidence covered:

  • Essential characteristics of a credible nuclear regulator
  • Overview of nuclear regulatory regimes operating in other countries
  • Pathways to establishing a regulatory regime in a country with limited experience in commercial nuclear activities.

Second witness Dr John Loy is the recently retired Deputy Director General of Operations Division, at the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR) in the United Arab Emirates. In this role he led the Operations Division in preparing regulations, safety assessments, managing the licensing program, inspection and enforcement, and in cooperating with and advising other governmental agencies on relevant matters. He also managed the technical capacity-building and training of Emiratis employed in the division. He joined FANR in December 2008. A physicist by training, Dr Loy had been the founding CEO of the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) for over 10 years, during which he licensed the construction and operation of the OPAL research reactor. He has contributed extensively to international work in radiation protection and nuclear safety. He addressed:

  • Key steps taken and lessons learned during the development of nuclear regulatory agencies in Australia and the UAE
  • Practical pathways to developing a credible regulatory regime if South Australia were to embark on further activities within the nuclear fuel cycle.

Mr John Carlson AM, former Director-General, Australian Safeguards and Non-proliferation Office was the final witness for Topic 21.

Mr Carlson was the Director-General of the Australian Safeguards and Non-proliferation Office (ASNO) from 1989 until 2010. From 2001 until 2006, he was Chair of the IAEA’s Standing Advisory Group on Safeguards Implementation. He was a member of the Advisory Board of the International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament, and from 2009 to 2012 was Founding Chair of the Asia-Pacific Safeguards Network. Mr Carlson is currently a Fellow of the Institute of Nuclear Materials Management and a recipient of the Institute’s Distinguished Service Award. He is also currently Counselor to the Washington- based Nuclear Threat Initiative. In 2012, John Carlson was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia. Mr Carlson is a member of the Expert Advisory Committee to the South Australian Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission. His evidence covered:

  • Overview of existing Australian and international regulatory frameworks applying to nuclear activities
  • Practical pathways to developing a credible regulatory regime were South Australia to embark on further activities within the nuclear fuel cycle.

Video and transcripts of each session will be uploaded into the Public Sessions archive.