Convention on Nuclear Safety - National Reports
Updated August 21, 2013
The Convention on Nuclear Safety (the Convention) commits signatory states that operate nuclear power plants to maintain a high level of safety.
Canada was one of the first signatories – known as Contracting Parties – of the Convention, and has been one of the staunchest promoters and supporters of its objectives.
- NEW: Sixth Report
- Convention on Nuclear Safety
- National Reports to Review Meetings of the Convention
- National Reports to Extraordinary Meetings of the Convention
- Contributors to Canada's reports
Fifth Review Meeting of the Convention of Nuclear Safety in Vienna, Austria
Convention on Nuclear Safety
The Convention on Nuclear Safety (the Convention) was adopted in Vienna in June 1994.
The document was put together through a series of expert-level meetings and work by governments, national nuclear safety authorities and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
Its provisions cover several areas, including siting, design, construction, operation, the availability of adequate financial and human resources, the assessment and verification of safety, quality assurance, and emergency preparedness.
The Convention is not designed for controls and sanctions, but is based on the participating states' common interest to achieve higher levels of safety, as developed and promoted through regular meetings, called review meetings.
The Convention asks each participating state to submit national reports on the implementation of its obligations for peer review, during these review meetings held in Vienna every three years.
The reports presented at the triennial regular meetings and at extraordinary (special) meetings demonstrate our country's firm commitment to nuclear safety through the Convention's three main objectives:
- to achieve and maintain a high level of nuclear safety through enhancing national measures and technical cooperation
- to establish and maintain effective defences against radiological hazards in nuclear installations, in order to protect people and the environment
- to prevent nuclear accidents and limit their consequences
These convention reports describe the systematic monitoring of safety-related programs and their implementation in Canada.
National Reports to Review Meetings of the Convention
Canada's national reports are published together with responses to questions from their peer reviews no later than six months before the review meetings. The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC), Canada's nuclear regulator, submits the reports on behalf of Canada.
NEW: Sixth Report
The Sixth Review Meeting for the Convention will be held from March 24, 2014, to April 4, 2014, at the IAEA Headquarters in Vienna, Austria.
- Canadian National Report for the Convention on Nuclear Safety: Sixth Report, August 2013 (PDF, source IAEA Web site)
- Canada continues to take legislative, regulatory and operational measures to implement CNS obligations and improve safety.
- Challenges identified for Canada at the 5th Review Meeting have been addressed, including:
- implementation of periodic safety reviews
- addressing of the potential human resource shortage across industry in anticipation of new-build projects and refurbishment activity
- completion of severe accident management guidelines and validation, and their incorporation into emergency preparedness programs
- Effectiveness of Canada's response to Fukushima and Canada's safety improvements was confirmed through international benchmarking.
The Fifth Review Meeting for the Convention was held in April 2011.
- Canadian National Report for the Convention on Nuclear Safety: Fifth Report, September 2010 (PDF)
- Responses to questions raised from peer review of Canada's Fifth National Report for the Convention on Nuclear Safety (PDF)
The Fourth Review Meeting for the Convention was held in April 2008.
- Canadian National Report for the Convention on Nuclear Safety: Fourth Report, September 2007 (PDF)
- Responses to questions raised from peer review of Canada's Fourth National Report for the Convention on Nuclear Safety (PDF)
The Third Review Meeting for the Convention was held in April 2005.
- Canadian National Report for the Convention on Nuclear Safety: Third Report, September 2004 (PDF)
- Responses to Questions presented to Canada, April 2005 (PDF)
The First Anniversary Report comprises a status of actions on Canada and was published one year after the Third Review Meeting.
The Second Review Meeting of the Convention was held in April 2002.
Updated July 10, 2012
Dr. Agnes Bishop, President of the Atomic Energy Control Board (the predecessor of the CNSC), shown with a member of the IAEA, signed the Convention on Canada's behalf in 1994. Canada was one of the first signatories of the Convention on Nuclear Safety, which came into force on October 24, 1996.
As a result of Canada's obligation as a signatory of the Convention, the first report was produced by the Atomic Energy Control Board (the CNSC's predecessor) on behalf of Canada. The first review meeting was held in April 1999.
National Reports to Extraordinary Meetings of the Convention
Besides holding review meetings, the Convention provides for the organization of extraordinary meetings at the request of contracting parties to discuss specific matters related to the conduct of the review meetings or to discuss important issues that may arise, such as lessons learned from the nuclear accident in Japan.
Second Extraordinary Meeting
The Second Extraordinary Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Convention on Nuclear Safety will be held in August 2012. The purpose of this meeting is to enhance nuclear safety through sharing and reviewing lessons learned and actions taken by national authorities and operators of nuclear power plants in response to the nuclear accidents at the TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi nuclear generating stations.
- Canada's National Report for the Second Extraordinary Meeting of the Convention on Nuclear Safety (PDF)
First Extraordinary Meeting
The First Extraordinary Meeting was held in September 2009, in conjunction with the Fifth Organizational Meeting of the Convention, to discuss and agree on the changes to Guidelines Regarding National Reports.
No national report was produced for this meeting.
Contributors to Canada's Convention Reports
As the federal authority legislated to regulate the production of nuclear energy in Canada, the CNSC is responsible for coordinating Canada's participation at the review meetings and for preparing the national report.
However, the national reports represent a collective work, involving the cooperation of various federal departments and provincial emergency management authorities, as well as input from licensees.
The following organizations are among those that contribute to writing and reviewing these documents.
Federal departments and agencies
- Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission
- Natural Resources Canada
- Health Canada
- Public Safety Canada
Provincial emergency management authorities
- Emergency Management Ontario
- Organisation de sécurité civile du Québec
- New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization
- Bruce Power Inc., a private corporation
- Hydro-Québec, a Crown corporation of the Province of Quebec
- NB Power, a Crown corporation of the Province of New Brunswick
- Ontario Power Generation Inc., a private company wholly owned by the Province of Ontario
- Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL)
- CANDU Energy Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of a public corporation
- CANDU Owners' Group (COG)