Nuclear energy bill passed
A bill seeking to create a legal framework for the regulation of nuclear technology was passed in the House of Representatives yesterday.
The bill titled, The Nuclear Safety and Radiation Act, was piloted by Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Anthony Hylton.
He noted that all activities relating to radioactive material, nuclear material and ionising radiation apparatus should be made subject to standards of safety and security.
He said this is necessary because exposure to high levels of ionising radiation can have deleterious effects on people, property and the environment.
Hylton said the objectives of the bill are in keeping with this goal of protecting people and the environment.
Hylton also stated that the bill makes provision for the establishment of a national regulatory body referred to as the Hazardous Substances Regulatory Authority.
That body will, among other things, grant authorisations, establish operational standards, regulate and monitor activities, practices and facilities utilising ionising radiation and nuclear technology.
In addition, the bill makes provision for the establishment of a Board of Directors for the Authority, which will be responsible for the recommendation of policy and general administration of the affairs of the Authority.
The legislation also prohibits the building, importing, exporting, and operating of a research reactor and the acquisition or development of nuclear explosives.
The bill is to be sent to the Senate for debate and approval.