Introduction to the NNR
The National Nuclear Regulator (NNR) is a public entity which is established and governed in terms of Section 3 of the National Nuclear Regulator Act, (Act No 47 of 1999) to provide for the protection of persons, property and the environment against nuclear damage through the establishment of safety standards and regulatory practices.
It is responsible for granting nuclear authorisations and exercising regulatory control related to safety over the siting, design, construction, operation, manufacture of component parts, and the decontamination, decommissioning and closure of nuclear installations; and vessels propelled by nuclear power or having radioactive material on board which is capable of causing nuclear damage.
The facilities and actions regulated by the NNR are diverse and includes the operation of nuclear power reactors, research reactors, nuclear technology applications, radioactive waste management, mining and processing of radioactive ores, users of small quantities of radioactive material, transport of radioactive materials, vessels propelled by nuclear power or having radioactive material on board and to any other actions capable of causing nuclear damage to which the National Nuclear Regulator Act applies.
The National Nuclear Regulator Act gives the NNR powers to grant, amend and revoke authorisations, and to impose such conditions upon authorisation holders as it deems necessary. It establishes the basis for regulatory control by alluding to acceptable risk as the determinant. The legislation specifies that a holder of authorisation for any facility or activity that gives rise to radiation risks has the prime responsibility for safety and is liable for any nuclear damage caused by their facility or activities.