International Symposium EU-NORM II (Prague 17.-19.06.2014)
It is a pleasure to introduce this book of abstracts to be presented during the EU NORM-2 Symposium in Prague. The radioactivity naturally contained in industrial residues along with leaching aspects, water contamination or site remediation issues have raised radiation protection concerns that EU Member States have currently tried to solve but with few or poor regulatory means so far.
Many building materials contain naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM) as well and some of them may present radiation issues whether from natural origin such as granitoides, porphyries, tuff, pozzolana, lava, alum-shale or from those in which NORM residues have been incorporated. This topic along with NORM residue management may become new challenges for European regulatory bodies, industries and even retailers for the marketing of construction products.
Since 1996, the European Commission, along with the IAEA, has drafted several principles, guidance and specific recommendations dealing with NORM. The European Commission decided to harmonize, promote and consolidate these principles and recommendations, introducing them into a new EU directive laying down basic safety standards for the protection against the danger arising from exposure to ionising radiation (EU-BSS). This directive was published in January 2014 and Member States have four years to transpose it into national regulation.
In this context, this Symposium is a great opportunity for EU Member States and for the European Commission to start taking stock of experience feedback and difficulties in this new European regulatory framework. A questionnaire about the implementation of this new EU regulatory framework regarding NORM issues was filled in by participants and will help obtain a good overview of the main issues and challenges that the European Commission will have to be dealing with in the forthcoming years. The symposium is a substantial opportunity to share interesting facts, results and approaches about building materials, radioecology, NORM sites, risk assessment and site remediation, water treatment, activity measurements and regulatory issues.