Decommissioning in Italy, the ISIN Technical Guide no. 31

Friday 20 May 2022

Decommissioning in Italy, the ISIN Technical Guide no. 31

The document was the subject of a public consultation in 2021

The Technical Guide n. 31, prepared by the Inspectorate, establishes the objectives and general safety and radiation protection criteria that operators are required to follow for the decommissioning of national nuclear installations.

The text, drawn up on the basis of the experience gained in recent years with the investigations conducted for the authorization of the decommissioning operations of nuclear installations, takes into account the most up-to-date international standards on the subject. In particular, it incorporates the recommendations of the IAEA, the International Atomic Energy Agency and the safety requirements developed by WENRA, the European Association of Nuclear Safety Authorities, on the decommissioning of nuclear installations.

In Italy, the decommissioning activities of nuclear installations are underway which, in the past, were used for the production of electricity, for the production of nuclear fuel, and for research and development in the nuclear field. Four research reactors are still in operation in our country which, when they reach the end of their operational life, will have to be dismantled.

The criteria contained in the Technical Guide establish that the decommissioning operations of nuclear installations must be designed, planned and conducted according to criteria that ensure the safety and radiation protection of individuals as well as the protection of the environment surrounding the installation.

The document defines the specific requirements to be considered for the decommissioning operations of a nuclear installation from the earliest stages of its design, in order to allow easier disposal at the end of its operational life.

Finally, although at the international level the practice of decommissioning nuclear installations provides for the possibility of releasing the site on which the installation is located, with radiological restrictions, national legislation does not allow for such a solution. The only option considered in the Technical Guide no. 31 for the conclusion of the decommissioning activities is, therefore, that of releasing the site free from radiological constraints.

The Technical Guide n. 31 is available at the link:

Last update: Friday 20 May 2022