" "AS JAPAN SUFFERS THE ADDITIONALTRAUMA OF ENERGY SHORTAGES, WEARE REMINDEDTHAT IT IS NOT A SIMPLE ANSWER OF JUST SWITCHINGOFF THE NUCLEARPOWER SUPPLYhese are times of great uncertainty andemotion for nuclear energy. Whilstacknowledging the magnitude of thecurrent situation, we should not jump toconclusions with regards to the future of nuclear power. The world is holding its breath, watching for the latestnews from Japan, and hoping that somehow there willbe a "happy ending" to what has become thenightmare of an entire nation. Japan is struggling witha triple tragedy: the earthquake, the tsunami and thenuclear accidents. We recognise their sacrifice, as wellas the courage and dignity of the victims. We areconfident that Japan, as a great nation, willundoubtedly recover from this ordeal, but we want toexpress our full support and sympathy to its people andgovernment during these difficult times.We in the wider energy community also share in theanguish and admire the courage of the experts,engineers, men and women who are relentlesslyfighting against the catastrophe at Fukushima. Bravepeople are putting their lives in danger to avert agreater tragedy. With the incident at Fukushima nowbeing given the level 7 rating, there will be much tolearn from their experiences during these most testingof circumstances.This event dramatically reminds us that the worldneeds a range of energy sources to sustain our globaleconomic development. Energy demand is expected todouble by 2050 and we will need to half our emissionsin the same time window. It is only with a balance of supply that we will be ableto enhance national wellbeing, fight poverty, addressclimate change and meet this target. As Japan suffersthe additional trauma of energy shortages, we areINTERNATIONAL GOVERNANCE OF NUCLEAR SAFETY: THE WAY TO RESTORE CONFIDENCE IN NUCLEARPOWER AND ENSURE THESECTOR'S SURVIVAL078NUCLEAR ENERGYPIERRE GADONNEIX, CHAIRMAN, WORLD ENERGY COUNCIL (WEC)Treminded that it is not a simple answer of justswitching off the nuclear power supply.One year after the accident at the oil platform in theGulf of Mexico, we recognise that all sources of energycome with a certain level of inherent risk. Be it coalmining, oil drilling, unconventional gas extraction, ordams, our efforts must now be combined to enhancesafety and the protection of our environment. We needto further improve the way we exploit our existingsources of energy and increase our drive to find anddevelop new, safe and clean sources. As we move forward we must look deeply and franklyinto the question of safety systems and how nuclearpower is organised worldwide.The current situation where national bodies look toadminister internationally proscribed safety guidelinesallows for too much variance between countries. Weneed to foster stronger national bodies which areindependent, transparent, and competent safetyauthorities staffed with highly skilled experts who havethe trust of the public. These authorities should also beentrusted with real power to investigate, control andultimately halt the operation of a unit, a whole plant oreven development of a future plant. In the short term, this will require regular and effectiveco-ordination between the national authorities, tomake safety not an issue for competition but rather anissue for co-operation. In the longer term, we need to promote a trulyinternational level of governance with a unique agencyor authority given the power to arbitrate. We alreadyhave the means to make great steps forward toenhance and improve safety on a continuous basis.
NUCLEAR ENERGY079the knowledge base of our nuclear experts. At the same time we have an opportunity to benchmarkcompetences, technical understanding and processes. New safety requirements may encourage bettertechnological and design selection. Site selection andengineering design will obviously come under renewedscrutiny with a revised view of the effect of bothearthquake and now tsunami. In the nuclear sector, safety cannot be used to providea competitive advantage. The cost of all energy is set toincrease to accommodate the enhanced safetystandards rightly required by society. This will putconsiderable strain on the global economy and delaysin meeting demand have the potential to stifle growth. The new world governance on nuclear safety will haveto create the conditions of this new harmony ofapproach and shared practices. I believe this is possible: in aeronautics, the safety ofthe aircraft is no longer a competitive advantage wherelevels of safety could be compromised in the rush ofcompetition between aircraft manufacturers. Allairplanes currently in development around the worldrespect the same safety norms in their conception, andthe conditions of utilisation are strictly controlled bythe national authorities.With nuclear energy, any accident, no matter where inthe world, has the potential to affect the whole planet.It is vital for the security of everyone that safetyconditions are respected equally around the world. This new co-operation, and eventually new governanceon nuclear safety, is the way forward that will allow thenuclear world to move on from this current cataclysmand overcome the swift erosion of its acceptability. Thenuclear sector has to regain the confidence of thepublic in order to survive.The World Energy Council will use its uniquelyrepresentative and impartial position to support thecreation of this new global governance by fosteringdialogue, providing a neutral forum to shareexperiences and practices among its stakeholders. Ouranalysis of best practice and the development ofindustry leading scenarios can be utilised by allgovernments as we establish better ways to cooperate,build and give legitimacy to this new governance. nABOUT THE AUTHORPierre Gadonneix is Chairman of the World EnergyCouncil and Honorary Chairman of ELECTRICITE DEFRANCE (EDF).Mr Gadonneix was appointed WEC Chair in2007 and re-elected in September 2009 for a further three-year term (2010-2013)Indeed, global institutions like the InternationalAtomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and, at the operationallevel, the World Association of Nuclear Operators(WANO), are committed to improving safety worldwide.It is time to reinforce and enrich these existinginstitutions, while adapting them to the realities andnew challenges of our world. This implies a reviewedlegitimacy and power, revisited objectives, missionsand resources. This approach would engender systematic sharing ofexperience and would enable the bar to be set basedon the very best business practices. In this respect theneed to understand the Fukushima accidents andshare the experience will be of great help to all nuclearoperators and safety authorities around the world. We are at a key stage in the growth of nuclear energytechnology. As we develop the innovations andtechniques that will be used to guide the nextgenerations of reactors we will need to enhance