Protection of the environment


Copplestone D, Hirth GA, Cresswell T & Johansen MP (2020) Protection of the environment. Annals of the ICRP.

The International Commission on Radiological Protection’s (ICRP) system to protect the living components of the environment is designed to provide a broad and practical framework across different exposure situations. The framework recognises the need to be able to demonstrate an adequate level of protection in relation to planned exposure situations, whilst also providing an ability to manage existing and emergency situations in an appropriate way. In all three exposure situations, the release of radionuclides into the natural environment leads to exposures of non-human biota (wildlife), as well as having the potential for exposures of the public. How the key principles of the ICRP system of radiological protection apply in each of these exposure situations will be discussed. Using examples, we will demonstrate how the overall approach provides a mechanism for industry to assess and demonstrate compliance with the environmental protection objectives of relevant (national) legislation, and to meet stakeholder expectations that radiological protection of the environment is taken into consideration in accordance with international best practice. However, several challenges remain, and these will be discussed in the context of the need for additional guidance on the protection of the environment.

Environmental protection; Habitats; Non-human biota; Radiological protection; Exposure situations

Output Status: Forthcoming/Available Online

Annals of the ICRP

StatusIn Press
Publication date online31/08/2020
Date accepted by journal22/06/2020