feedback from the bilateral cooperation between the United States and Russian Federation would be especially useful in this regard.
Taniguchi described the IAEA’s plan of activities for protecting against nuclear terrorism, which takes a comprehensive approach to nuclear security in response to the threats of terrorism. The plan builds on, accelerates, and expands a number of ongoing agency activities under a single coordinator in the Department of Nuclear Safety and Security. It also introduces a number of new initiatives intended to improve nuclear security in a comprehensive, coordinated fashion. These include
physical protection of nuclear material and facilities
detecting malicious activities involving nuclear and other radioactive materials
strengthening state systems for nuclear material accountancy and control
improving the security of radioactive material other than nuclear material
assessing safety and security vulnerabilities of nuclear facilities
responding to malicious acts or threats thereof
supporting adherence to and implementation of international agreements, guidelines and recommendations
coordinating nuclear security and information management
Taniguchi then discussed the IAEA’s efforts to strengthen state systems for nuclear material accountancy and control, the third activity area (listed above) in the agency’s “Comprehensive Nuclear Security Approach.” He pointed out that the plan underscores the multiple purposes of nuclear material accountancy. Effective accounting is required for states to fulfill their international nuclear nonproliferation obligations. It is also the “first and last step of physical protection,” i.e. the protection of known inventories and the detection of theft if protection measures fail.
The agency has begun updating earlier guidelines for State Systems for Accounting and Control (SSAC), with the intention of guiding states in meeting their reporting requirements under safeguards agreements and providing useful information for nuclear facility operators. The guidelines will take into account the multipurpose character of nuclear material accountancy systems as well as safeguards reporting needs, safety and reactor control issues, challenges in the timely detection of thefts, and the need to obtain export and transport licenses.
Other IAEA activities to strengthen SSACs include assessing current nuclear material accounting and control systems and providing assistance to upgrade those systems. The agency is also broadening the range of training that it already provides to states on SSACs to include a new course on nuclear material accounting and control at the facility level. Taniguchi suggested that the discussion at the workshop would be important for helping the agency in its work in several of the activity areas outlined above, particularly in strengthening SSACs. He also pointed out that, in general, the accounting of nuclear materials remains inadequate.