Aurora News

Government’s Guidance on Shipping Radioactive Sources between the EU and UK after Brexit

The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has provided information in order to help those responsible for the transport of radioactives prepare for Brexit.

4 November 2019

Do The Shipments of Radioactive Substances (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 affect me?

A “Brexit Deal” has been agreed between the UK and EU governments, but there is still the potential of the UK leaving the EU in a “no deal” scenario should a Withdrawal Agreement not be made and approved. Regulations relating to the transport of radioactive substances between the EU and UK have been produced that will apply in the event the UK leaves without other arrangements in place (a “no deal Brexit”).

Those involved in the transport of radioactive substances between the EU and UK may need to prepare for the event of a no deal Brexit, which is when these regulations will take effect. This will include the transport of radioactive sources, nuclear materials and radioactive waste.

The transport links between the UK and outside of the EU will not be affected, and should the Withdrawal Agreement by ratified, the existing legislation will be in effect throughout the implementation period.

Importing and Exporting between the UK and EU

Changes are considered tot be administrative, such that UK regulators can ensure importers are complying with the requirements. The regulations do not introduce new regulatory procedures. Thee changes are dependent on the nature of the radioactive substance being transported.

Radioactive Sources

Prior written declarations for imports of sealed radioactive sources will still be required before a shipment can take place. More than one shipment can be covered by the declaration for a period of up to three years. Any prior written declarations that have been made before the UK leaves the EU will remain valid afterwards until the expiry specified on the declaration. A relevant competent authority is required for new prior written declarations. A form for shipments of radioactive sources can be found using the link below.

Exporting will no longer require prior written declaration, but the European Commission and EU Countries’ individual requirements must be met.

Radioactive Waste

The UK’s policy is not changing with regards to the import and export of radioactive waste. However, those involved in the transport of radioactive waste between the EU and UK may need to adjust their procedures.

Relevant Competent Authorities will need to be contacted for new authorisations prior to the UK leaving the EU, as shipments with or via the EU will cease to be valid after a “no deal Brexit.” A number of new procedures exist following the UK leaving the EU for which the government has provided guidance.

Nuclear Materials

A licence from the Office for Nuclear Regulation is required to import nuclear materials. The application process can take a month, so businesses are able to apply in advance.

Changes are different for the exportation of Dual Use or Trigger List items. Government guidance details the procedure for the applications of the relevant licenses.

More Information

If you have any questions about The Shipping of Radioactive Substances (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 and how they will impact on your operations, please don’t hesitate to contact our expert team of Radiation Safety Consultants. Alternatively, read more below about how Aurora helps our clients stay compliant with regulatory requirements, including the safe disposal of radioactive waste.