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Nuclear safety related issues presented in public meetings

In September-October 2019, State Nuclear Power safety Inspectorate (VATESI) and Radiation Protection Centre (RSC) organized three public meetings with the residents of Ignalina, Zarasai and Visaginas municipalities, where nuclear and radiation safety related information regarding activities in nuclear facilities and possible impact on the public and environment were presented.

The impact of nuclear facilities being operated in Lithuania on the environment and local population is insignificant. VATESI and RSC specialists, who spoke during the meetings, presented the provisions that are applied to ensure that the radiological impact of nuclear facilities on the population of Lithuania and the environment is minimized and do not exceed the approved limits.

VATESI Deputy Head for Radiation Safety Darius Lukauskas introduced the principles of radioactive waste management, nuclear facilities in Lithuania, the decommissioning process of the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant (Ignalina NPP), the regulatory process of evaluation of safety of the nuclear facilities and the possible exposure of Ignalina NPP workers and residents.

Rima Ladygiene, Head of the Public Exposure Monitoring Division of the RSC, explained where the radiological contamination originated in the world and in Lithuania, presented annual data on occupational exposure monitoring and exposure of population from various sources of ionizing radiation, discussed about the radiological monitoring of the environment.

During the meetings, VATESI and RSC representatives answered questions of the public.

Participants of the meeting in Ignalina were interested in occupational exposure, where and how many radiological monitoring stations are located in Ignalina and where their data can be found.

Residents of Zarasai asked questions about medical exposure, as well as detailed aspects of radioactive waste management – what is the difference between storage facilities and repositories, or whether the radioactive waste will be placed in the geological repository in the same packaging as stored in the storage facility.

Visaginas residents were interested in how the radiation monitoring is being carried out, what is planned to be done with the unused (fresh) fuel remaining at the Ignalina NPP, what is the final status of the site according to  the final decommissioning plan of Ignalina NPP and what is the progress and potential impacts of Ignalina NPP decommissioning projects.

In 2018, two public meetings were organized in Ignalina and Visaginas municipalities.

The main purpose of these meetings were to inform the public in the vicinity of the Lithuanian nuclear facilities about the radiation risks associated with facilities, the requirements for protection of people and the environment and what measures are taken to ensure that the radiological impact on residents and the environment is minimized and within the approved limits.