“Risky” lack of nuclear governance in the Asia Pacific

North Korea’s pursuit of nuclear weapons and the credible means to hit enemies as far away as the US, is the biggest nuclear security and safety risk in the Asia Pacific region, if not the world. But it isn’t the only one.

Across much of the region, the governance arrangements that are supposed to keep nuclear power plants safe and prevent nuclear material falling into the wrong hands often give the appearance of “window-dressing” while the true details are kept confidential, a University of Melbourne nuclear governance expert is warning.

“Nuclear governance in large parts of the Asia Pacific is partly decorative,” warns Dr Trevor Findlay, who has just carried out a survey of the nuclear governance framework in the Asia Pacific and is an Associate at the Harvard-based Managing the Atom project.

“The countries say they follow the guidelines of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), they say they train their staff and follow the right procedures, but because there is little transparency we don’t really know. When it comes to releasing information they aren’t transparent.”

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Source: University of Melbourne