Representatives from 21 African countries attended a conference organised by Uganda’s Atomic Energy Council (AEC) in collaboration with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), to discuss safe management of radioactive waste. Many of the countries which attended do not have a nuclear energy sector, but radioactive waste comes from a range of medical and industrial activities, and the conference was an opportunity to share knowledge and experience. Reported by several media outlets (28 August).
Diplomatic sector media reported on China and Russia’s strategic ambitions in Africa, mentioning fears that their respective nuclear activities are not benign and that Africa may become a “nuclear waste dumping ground”. (4 August)
New Scientist was one of several leading scientific journals which reported how research of an ancient subterranean “natural nuclear reactor” is helping advance understanding of how to store radioactive waste for millennia. Scientists are using information on the decay of radioactive elements from a 2-billion year old naturally-formed ‘nuclear reactor’ underneath modern-day Gabon in Africa to inform how best to manage disposal of higher activity radioactive wastes. (13 August)
South Africa needs to develop its skills and experience in radioactive waste management because waste comes from a range of medical and industrial processes which South African public expect and demand. These skills needed regardless of whether there is a nuclear power sector. (26 August)
Uganda’s Atomic Energy Council (AEC) has started training police, army and transport sector workers in the safe handling and transportation of radioactive waste. (2 August)
Newspaper claims success in its campaign to reveal corruption and to force authorities to re-start work at the Centre which houses Nigeria’s radioactive waste management facility. (13 August)
In his speech opening the new Parliamentary session, Zimbabwe’s new President includes ratification of Zimbabwe’s Accession to the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management as one of the main tasks of the new Parliament. (19 September)