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Nuclear Regulatory Authority urges media to embrace nuclear technology

02 May 2017

Nuclear Regulatory Authority urges media to embrace nuclear technology

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The Acting Director General of the Nuclear Regulatory Authority (NRA), Prof. Geofrey Emi-Reynolds has urged media practitioners to equip themselves with issues of nuclear technology and its resultant benefits to the country.

“I am hopeful that our engagement with the media going forward will get Ghanaians to understand the benefits of nuclear to the country. It is only when people understand their operations that they would appreciate the benefits of nuclear technology to Ghana.”

Prof. Emi-Reynolds said this at a media workshop in Accra organised by NRA and aimed at undertaking journalists through the benefits and risks of radiations, the Nuclear Regulatory Regime in the country, words associated with the nuclear industry and a survey report on newspaper coverage of media issues in Ghana.

Analysts have argued that the country must consider converting its energy requirement to nuclear power and Prof. Emi-Reynolds reckons it would be the best and efficient source of power to go for.

Even though officials highlighted the uses of radiation such as x-ray machines for diagnosis and treatment, they also maintained that some of the hazards in radioactive materials could lead to cancer.

Dr. Abdel Awudu Razak explained that all home used gadgets leaks and it is ideal to use a new microwave for a maximun of five years. “For example, microwaves may bring about some leakages, so it is not good to use it beyond five years.”

The NRA is mainly to focus on the Regulatory Control of the use of ionizing and non-ionizing radiation by putting in place all the necessary regulations and guidance to help users of radiation and members of the public meet the regulatory requirements and to enforce these regulations.

The object of these controls is to ensure that in the use of ionizing and non-ionizing radiation, humans (workers, the general public and patients) and the environment are not unduly affected.

Some of the facilities that fall under the control of NRA on the medical front include; X-ray Diagnostic facilities, nuclear medicine facilities, radiotherapy centers, linear accelerators.

For Industrial; nuclear gauges used in mines, nuclear gauges used in the oil and gas industries, nuclear gauges used in industrial radiography, nuclear gauges used in road construction, sources used for research and teaching, sources used for agricultural purposes, siting of a nuclear or radiological facility, construction and operation of Nuclear Installations, magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI).

The Nuclear Regulatory Authority (NRA) is an effectively independent Regulatory Authority that was established by an Act of Parliament in August 2015 (Act 895, 2015).

The mandate of the NRA is to ensure the peaceful application of ionizing and non-ionizing radiation sources and devices in a safe and secure manner without limiting the benefits to mankind. Before the NRA was established, the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) was responsible for carrying out this Regulatory function through the Radiation Protection Board.

The functions of the NRA and its regulatory control programmes include but not limited to; review and evaluation of the notification by applicants of their intention to undertake activities involving radiation.

Others involve the authorization of practices involving ionizing and non-ionizing radiation sources and devices.

Inspection of nuclear installations, premises where radiological sources and devices are used, against their records keeping, safety, safeguards and security measures.

Source: Business and Financial Times