June 23, Colombo: Sri Lanka is planning to amend its Atomic Energy Act of 1969 to include a provision to establish an Atomic Energy Regulatory Council.
The Sri Lankan cabinet has approved a proposal submitted by the Minister of Power and Energy Patali Champika Ranawaka to instruct the Legal Draftsman to prepare a Bill to establish the proposed Atomic Energy Regulatory Council.
According to the government, the current act enacted in 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.
The government last September approved the Atomic Energy Authority to conduct a pre-feasibility study of using nuclear energy as a viable option for power generation beyond 2020 with technical corporation of the Agency.
The government says with the close proximity of the country to the nuclear 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).
Minister Ranawaka told the 54th General Conference of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) held in Vienna last year that the government is upgrading the Atomic Energy Authority Act No. 19 to meet the present and future requirements in the field of nuclear power generation, nuclear terrorism, environmental protection and nuclear safety and security.