Volume 72, Number 2

May 1997

The Practice of Peer Review in the International Nuclear Safety Regime

Monica J. Washington

Before the first artificial fissioning of a uranium atom, it was apparent to the scientific community that harnessing the atom’s vast reservoir of energy, even for peaceful purposes, was not without its risks. Today, five decades after splitting the atom and just over one decade since the April 1986 Chernobyl accident sent radioactive fallout across Eastern and Western Europe, an increasing number of states have come to recognize the tremendous transboundary risks that are inherent in the development of nuclear power. Accompanying this trend has been the search for appropriate and effective means to improve the safety of nuclear power plants worldwide.