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Background

The European nuclear industry recognises that the liberalisation of the European energy market has led to the deregulation of electricity generation and supply and that diversity of national regulations could seriously distort competition. Undoubtedly, harmonizing regulations is the best way of ensuring that the industry can evolve within a stable legal framework. Consequently, nuclear license holders strongly support WENRA's (Western European Nuclear Regulators Association) work on the harmonization of European safety standards for nuclear plants, as well as for waste and decommissioning. This support led to the creation, within FORATOM, of the ENISS initiative, in May 2005, in Brussels .

Mission

The principal mission of ENISS is to bring together decision-makers, operators and specialists from the nuclear industry with regulators on an European level in order to identify and possibly agree upon the scope and substance of harmonized safety standards.

ENISS provides the nuclear industry with the platform that it needs to exchange information on new national and European regulatory activities, to express its views and provide expert input on all aspects related to harmonization of safety standards. An important task is to establish a common industry position with regards to the safety reference levels that WENRA has proposed. By engaging in constructive debate with WENRA and playing a dynamic role in the process, ENISS also defends the industry's interests in a proactive way.

Another task of ENISS is to strengthen the industry influence in the revision work of the IAEA Safety Standards. At the European level, ENISS is also cooperating with the European Commission on regulatory issues in the area of nuclear safety, waste management and decommissioning.

ENISS is fully committed to helping make the process work: the ENISS Steering Committee defines the policy and is in charge of making major decisions. It is composed of representatives from important European nuclear utilities, each bringing special national expertise and experience to the process. The Reactor Safety and Waste & Decommissioning Safety Groups coordinate and drive the work programme. It is supported by Expert Groups dealing with reactor safety and waste storage and decommissioning. The Secretariat is in charge of managing all aspects of the ENISS Initiative.

ENISS currently represents the nuclear utilities and operating companies from 16 European countries with nuclear power programme.