The nuclear expertise and leadership skills of our Chief Nuclear Inspector (CNI), Mark Foy, have recently been applied in a global context, as Mark was nominated by the European Nuclear Safety Regulators Group (ENSREG) to lead a team of experts in the peer review of the Belarus stress test, recently culminating in the presentation of the findings to the public in Brussels.
The peer review report was endorsed by ENSREG during its plenary meeting and the recommendations of the peer review team were subsequently presented to a public meeting on Tuesday 3rd July. Many environmental organisations attended the event, asking a series of challenging questions, both on the peer review process and the recommendations of the team.
After Fukushima, the European Council requested that the safety of nuclear power plants should be reviewed through a targeted reassessment of the safety margins to extreme events such as earthquakes and floods and ENSREG produced a specification and a plan for this review – commonly referred to as ‘stress tests’.
The peer review of the results of the Belarusian nuclear power plant stress test began in October last year, with Mark leading a team of 17 experts, from both nuclear and non-nuclear power countries, including an intensive mission to Belarus in March 2018.
Mark said: “It was a privilege to be asked to lead the team of experts on this important work by ENSREG. Being able to contribute to and influence improvements in nuclear safety internationally is important, particularly when supporting emerging nations such as Belarus beginning a nuclear power programme.
“Heading up such a distinguished team of European experts over the last nine months has been challenging but mutually rewarding.”