Nuclear Facilities Transparency Resources

Sandia National Laboratories Cooperative Monitoring Center (CMC)
in conjunction with WIPP is providing this Nuclear Facilities Transparency Homepage. 



Identifying stakeholders is the method of targeting specific groups of interested parties in a manner that enhances the communication process. A stakeholder is any individual, or group of individuals, who have an interest in a given process. As related to facilities associated with nuclear energy, stakeholders are commonly grouped according to whether their interests are local, national, or regional/international. These stakeholders generally share common concerns relative to operational and environmental safety, nuclear material diversion, and/or political and economic viability.

Operational and Environmental Safety: Local stakeholders are most generally concerned about those activities that may directly impact their daily activities. They seek assurance that nuclear facility operations are conducted safely, and they expect timely notification of from any unusual conditions. Local populations and their governmental entities, expect nuclear facilities to be operated in accordance with published performance standards. They expect open access to data associated with potential migration pathways for radioactive material leaving these facilities (i.e., air, water, food, etc.).

A second group of stakeholders exists at the national level. While sharing all the concerns of the local stakeholders, these stakeholders are more focused on providing safety oversight and independent compliance evaluations of nuclear facilities located throughout the nation. Their focus is on the consequences of off-normal conditions beyond the local area.

A third set of stakeholders exists at the regional/international level and they are primarily concerned with nuclear facility issues that transcend national borders. It is worth noting here that the number of individuals accessing the web sites increased dramatically, in search of radiation information relative to the Tokai-mura area at the time of the criticality accident. This demonstrates that the general population will utilize available transparency tools when they are looking for information relative to unusual nuclear facility situations.

Nuclear Material Diversion: The same three groups of stakeholders have concerns relative to the security of nuclear materials. They want assurance that materials located within their respective region of interest are adequately accounted for and are only used for legitimate purposes.

At a local level, residents need assurance that nuclear materials used for peaceful purposes are properly accounted for and that they remain within the boundaries of the nuclear facility. They are also concerned that adequate safety and security measures are implemented to ensure that communities are adequately protected from incidents involving these materials during legitimate transportation activities.

The national and regional/international stakeholders are more focused on treaty compliance issues and analyzing diversion pathways in order to adequately protect national, regional and international assets from credible threat scenarios.

Political and Economic Viability: Families who live in areas where these facilities are located often find themselves impacted simply by the presence of a nuclear facility in their community. Their quality of life is often influenced by their ability to trust neighbors who work in these facilities and who are responsible for safe handling of nuclear materials. The economic value of their property, as well as their individual cost of living issues, can be significantly impacted by the presence of a nuclear facility in their community.

Those that live within the community and work at nuclear facilities have legitimate concerns relative to their individual privacy both on and off the job. Inadvertent disclosure of individual worker identities through transparency systems available to the public could result in repercussions from neighbors opposed to nuclear energy. These same individuals could also become targets of the local, national and/or international media in the event of unusual activities at nuclear facilities where they are employed.

National stakeholders must be assured that the owner/operator of nuclear facilities remains financially solvent in order to preclude accidents and incidents resulting from improper operation and maintenance of those systems intended to ensure safe operations. They must also be assured that facilities will be properly decommissioned at the end of their useful life, including proper disposition of all the nuclear materials associated with these facilities.