our needs and saddle us with additional obligations significantly exceeding those which are in keeping with our domestic laws and the international norms. The practice of political “linkage” also belongs in this category. The issue of funding for the Russian weapons-grade plutonium disposition program has not yet been resolved.
The “internal” obstacles include
The need to adopt legislation implementing Russian ratification of the 1963 Vienna Convention on Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage;
The need to complete legal formalities associated with Russia’s ascension to the Joint Convention on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management, the format and objectives of which are related to those of the Convention on Nuclear Safety;
The need to finalize the issues of granting access to secure facilities to foreign nationals;
Taxation issues; and
Civil liability for damage (nuclear and otherwise).
The regulatory and legal aspects of multifaceted disposition and environmental rehabilitation may be affected by the following large-scale reforms currently under way in Russia:
Changes in the delineation of authority within the federal government of the Russian Federation, constituent regional entities, and local authorities are being made. In May 2004, the Russian government sent a draft of a federal legislation on the subject to the floor of the State Duma.
The federal law “On Technical Regulation” entered into force on July 1, 2003. By 2010, a transition from the currently functioning system of federal and industry-specific norms and rules to safety regulation through a combination of technical protocols that set mandatory requirements, on the one hand, with voluntarily adopted standards, on the other, must be completed.
Administrative reform of the federal executive branch triggered by Presidential Edict No. 314 of March 9, 2004 (“On System and Structure of the Federal Executive Branch”) may have an impact on the logistical side of the strategic master plan, including relevant coordination and approval.
However, current regulatory and legal documents are quite precise in their definitions of the roles and responsibilities of various federal and executive branch entities in the realm of the disposition and environmental rehabilitation of