Colombo: The government is mulling over a
civil nuclear cooperation with the United States to enhance
Sri Lanka`s technical capacity to handle atomic and
radioactive material, a media report has said.
The cabinet has given its approval to form a team to
study a proposal seeking technical assistance from the United
States in handling nuclear and other radioactive material that
are used in civilian applications, said ColomboPage, the Sri
Lankan online daily.
The US Department of Energy (DOE) under its global threat
reduction initiative programme has initiated a collaborative
project with the Atomic Energy Authority (AEA) to provide Sri
Lanka with the necessary technical assistance to facilitate
physical protection instruments where high radioactivity
sources are used, the report quoted the government as saying
in an announcement yesterday.
It aims to enhance public safety and security with
regards to nuclear materials.
The report said the proposal was submitted by the Power
and Energy Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka.
According to an earlier report, Sri Lanka was planning to
set up a nuclear regulatory body to monitor radiation in case
of an emergency due its close proximity to the atomic reactors
in India`s southern states.
The Atomic Energy Act (AEA) of 1969 needs to be amended
to address the introduction of nuclear power generation
technology in the country and also to address the security
concerns over radioactive sources and to deal with radiation
emergencies, according to the government.
The government had said that with the close proximity of
the country to the nuclear power stations in South India, Sri
Lanka needs to establish an independent nuclear regulatory arm
in keeping with advice from the International Atomic Energy
Agency (IAEA), the ColomboPage online reported.
India has nuclear reactors in Kalpakkam and Kudankulam in
Tamil Nadu and Kaiga in Karnataka.