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Nuclear Law Bulletin

Nuclear Energy Agency

Published twice a year, the Nuclear Law Bulletin covers legislative developments in almost 60 countries around the world as well as reporting on relevant jurisprudence and administrative decisions, bilateral and international agreements and regulatory activities of international organisations.

Each issue typically includes the following sections: Articles, Case Law, National Legislative and Regulatory Activities, International Regulatory Activities, Agreements, News Briefs, and a Supplement.

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Uranium mining and production

A legal perspective on regulating an important resource

Nuclear Energy Agency

The importance of uranium can be examined from several perspectives. First, natural uranium is a strategic energy resource because it is a key ingredient for the generation of nuclear power and, therefore, it can affect the energy security of a state. Second, natural uranium is also a raw material in relative abundance throughout the world, which can, through certain steps, be transformed into nuclear explosive devices. Thus, there is both an interest in the trade of uranium resources and a need for their regulatory control. The importance of uranium to the worldwide civilian nuclear industry means that its extraction and processing – the so-called “front end” of the nuclear fuel cycle – is of regulatory interest. Like “ordinary” metal mining, which is generally regulated within a country, uranium mining must also be considered from the more particular perspective of regulation and control, as part of the international nuclear law regime that is applied to the entire nuclear fuel cycle.

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