The fourth workshop of the OECD/NEA Forum on Stakeholder Confidence (FSC) was hosted by ONDRAF/NIRAS, the Belgian Agency for Radioactive Waste Management and enriched fissile materials. The central theme of the workshop was "Dealing with interests, values and knowledge in managing risk" within the Belgian context of local partnerships for the long term management of lowlevel, short-lived radioactive waste.
The members of Belgian local partnerships invited the delegates of the international community to participate as partners in the discussions and showed great openness in sharing their problems, achievements, and concerns. Similarly to the Finnish and Canadian workshops, the meeting in Belgium represented a highly instructive experience for the FSC community. The FSC workshop broadened mutual learning around the Belgian local partnerships to an international level.
General Introduction to the Belgian Context
Until the international moratorium of 1983, Belgium relied on sea disposal for its low-level waste. Since then, ONDRAF/NIRAS, the Belgian radioactive waste management agency, has launched studies to look for land-based solutions. These studies, which are still going on, have gone through various phases. The sometimes harsh reactions in public opinion and the recommendations of...
Opening of the Workshop
For those of you who participated in the visits to the local partnerships, welcome back to Brussels. For those who join us today, welcome to the Belgian FSC Workshop 2003. I am very pleased that so many of you are interested in learning about the Belgian partnership methodology.
Session 1: Dealing with Interests and Values in Managing Risk
What the local partnership deals with is not the unavoidable conflicts between interests and values, but the way and the processes by which a new reality (waste disposal) can come into existence. This perspective is in line with other contemporary problems of "coming into existence" of technical objects (GMO, cellular antennas, windmills, new drugs) that are alleged to induce dramatic social impacts. The local partnership methodology has three specific characteristics...
Session 2: Dealing with Knowledge in Managing Risk
Most modern natural and technological sciences are laboratory sciences. If at all possible, they will pursue what they are after in laboratories, those closed-off and special places where experiments can be conducted "free" from environmental influence and disturbance. Laboratories are the site of knowledge production, the fact factories of science. They are a specific version of the sort of structure...
Session 3: Building a Relationship to a Concrete Waste Management Project Based on Interests, Values and Knowledge
I am an artist and I am a professor, a teacher. I am not a scientist; I am not an architect, and if there are some mistakes with regard to some terms, words that I am going to use, please don’t hold it against me: you are the experts. My vision is a bit different from yours; this is why we are here today: we are here to meet together, because we are faced with a very interesting issue. So I will try and show some pictures to you. I’ll start with a question that is put to me here: "How can an issue like a...
One of the conditions for citizens to actively participate in the search for a final repository for radioactive waste is public involvement and the preparation of perspectives for a long-term development of those regions that are geologically eligible for a nuclear waste disposal site. Regional development is an integral part of public participation and ranking second, after safety factors, as the...
First of all, I would like to thank you for being here the last few days. I hope it has been an interesting experience, both for FSC delegates and for the Belgian stakeholders. From what I heard, you have been working very hard. So, I try not to be too long, because you all deserve time off to digest and reflect on the information you received during this workshop.
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