The Nuclear Regulatory Authority (NRA) is an effectively independent Regulatory Authority that was established by an Act of Parliament in August 2015 (Act 895, 2015). The mandate of the NRA is to ensure the peaceful application of IONIZING and NON-IONIZING radiation sources and devices in a safe and secure manner without limiting the benefits to mankind. Before the NRA was established, the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) was responsible for carrying out this Regulatory function through the Radiation Protection Board.
The NRA is mainly to focus on the Regulatory Control of the use of ionizing and non-ionizing radiation by putting in place all the necessary regulations and guidance to help users of radiation and members of the public meet the regulatory requirements and to enforce these regulations. The object of these controls is to ensure that in the use of ionizing and non-ionizing radiation, humans (workers, the general public and patients) and the environment are not unduly affected.
The main functions of the NRA and its regulatory control programmes include but not limited to:
* Review and evaluation of the notification by applicants of their intention to undertake activities involving radiation
* Authorization of practices involving ionizing and non-ionizing radiation sources and devices
* Inspection of nuclear installations, premises where radiological sources and devices are used, against their records keeping, safety, safeguards and security measures
* Enforcement on non-compliance issues.
* Review of applications for authorization, emergency and safety analysis reports
* Development of regulations and guidance documents
* Authorization of sites selected for construction and installation of nuclear and radiological facilities and devices
* Authorization of design, re-design and modification of nuclear installation or a part of a nuclear installation
* Ensure decommissioning of nuclear facilities and devices at the end of their licensed life time or whenever required.
* Ensure occupational radiation workers are provided with the requisite training
* Support the coordination of all radiological and nuclear emergencies in Ghana in collaboration with stakeholders including other state Agencies
* Authorize the import and export and ensure the control of radiation emitting devices and items
* Organize search and secure of materials out of regulatory control to bring such under regulatory control.
* Reporting to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Safeguards and non-proliferation issues as well as any other international legal instrument reporting obligation of Ghana
* Ensure protection of the occupational workers and the public from undue radiation exposure
* Collaborate with stakeholders to develop national policies and regulations for the management of radiation related activities and practices
* Authorize institutions that conduct training for personnel of nuclear installations.
* Authorize the mining and processing of radioactive materials and processing of materials containing radioactive substances.
* Inform and educate the public on radiation and nuclear matters
FACILITIES THAT FALL UNDER REGULATORY CONTROL ARE:
* X-ray Diagnostic facilities.
* Nuclear Medicine facilities
* Radiotherapy Centers
* Linear Accelerators
* Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
* Nuclear gauges used in mines
* Nuclear gauges used in the oil and gas industries
* Nuclear gauges used in industrial radiography
* Nuclear gauges used in road construction
* Sources used for research and teaching
* Sources used for agricultural purposes
* Siting of a nuclear or radiological facility
* Construction and operation of Nuclear Installations
* Operating a Radioactive waste management facility
* Decommissioning of a radiological or nuclear facility
* Extraction, mining and processing of radioactive materials
* Non-ionizing radiation emitting devices and facilities
*Gamma Irradiators used for perseveration and sterilization purposes
*Destination scanning facilities
Certification and Authorization of Technical Support Services
There are organizations which may be authorized by NRA to carry out any of the following technical services after satisfying a set of requirements issued by NRA. The services include but not limited to:
* Personnel monitoring
* Calibration of radiation survey meters
* Training of occupationally exposed workers
* Training of personnel for nuclear installations
* Safety assessment of facilities and devices
* Transport of radioactive sources and materials
* Import and sale of radiation emitting devices and sources
* Repair and maintenance of radiation emitting devices