Annual report published: spotlight on learning and improving in 2023

Even though the ANVS carries out the same statutory duties each year, the work is never the same. Each year has its own focus, influenced by new technologies, events in the Netherlands and on the global stage, and plans that give rise to public debate. 2023 was a year in which evaluating and learning played a major role at the ANVS.

Enlarge image Inspector making a call while visiting one of the Netherlands' nucleair sites.
Image: ©ANVS

Nuclear safety and radiation protection in good order

In the 2023 ANVS annual report (in Dutch), we account for and consider the events that occurred during the previous year. Learning and developing is a recurrent theme in this respect, for instance, in our ‘missions’. International experts come by during these missions. They critically examine the system of nuclear safety and radiation protection in the Netherlands. Three of these missions visited in 2023. Their findings were positive: things are properly organised in the Netherlands. We were also given recommendations that will help us to improve the way we work.

Ready for the future

It is significant for the ANVS’s work that the government plans to build new nuclear power plants, in addition to the fact that they wish to keep the Borssele nuclear power plant open for longer. We have to assess whether that is safe. This calls for manpower, knowledge of the latest nuclear developments and clarity when it comes to processes and communications. That is why we launched an internal project, the New Nuclear Initiatives project. This project will bring all the necessary disciplines together so that we can prepare. We will also be delving further in new technology based on various collaborations. Together with supervisory authorities from other countries, we will be assessing designs for new kinds of nuclear reactors.

Do what we have to do

Apart from that, 2023 simply involved doing the work we do in the course of performing our statutory duties. For instance, we supervised the sector, granted licences and gave advice concerning laws and regulations. Additionally, we renewed the composition and processes of the Crisis Expert Team for radiation and nuclear matters. We also engaged with stakeholders across the entire country. As an example, we spoke to the general public and experts in the sector on how to improve the website, and organised information meetings for those living in the vicinity. We also visited the safety regions.

Continuous improvement

‘We will get to work based on the lessons we learnt in 2023’, Annemiek van Bolhuis and Marco Brugmans, members of the ANVS board, tell us. This is essential for our mission: protecting and promoting nuclear safety and radiation protection. This approach is also an important part of the course that ANVS is taking. We pick up signals and use them to take action where necessary as an independent authority.