It is an important part of FANR's regulatory role to ensure that licensees using nuclear facilities and radioactive material properly manage any radioactive waste produced from their regulated activities.
Good radioactive waste management starts with minimising the amount of radioactive waste that is generated. The radioactive waste should be treated to reduce its volume and then put into forms where it can be readily stored for disposal.
Nuclear power plants produce both low-level and high-level waste, the latter needing increased attention to ensure that the waste is managed safely. However, facilities such as irradiation installations and the radioactive waste produced from the use of radioactive sources in medicine and industry is usually low-level waste that does not represent a major hazard if managed properly. Low-level waste can be stored in simple stores pending disposal. In time, much of this waste could be disposed of with other non-radioactive waste because of the process of radioactive decay.
In particular, spent nuclear fuel after being used in a nuclear power reactor is first stored in a pool of water, which allows it to cool and protects workers from its radiation hazard. Later, it will be stored in specially built and shielded containers that ensure that nobody can be exposed to the radioactivity in the spent fuel.