This rather mundane looking letter from 2000 talks about a number of concerns going on with the IAEA at that time. One concern was the Bushehr nuclear plant in Iran.
“Indications that Russia’s efforts to complete the Bushehr reactor in Iran are plagued with severe safety considerations as witnessed by periodic visits by IAEA experts. ”
Recently a whistleblower told that the Bushehr plant was a safety disaster and that it was hobbled together with disparate parts by second string engineers.
The US had concerns about the lack of safety assistance at the Mayak nuclear site in Russia. This is similar to the Hanford nuclear site in the US and houses large amounts of volatile nuclear waste. Mayak was the site of an INES level 6 disaster in 1957 that sent a plume of highly radioactive cesium 137 and stronium 90 over a populated area nearby. This disaster happened due to loss of cooling on a waste tank.
The letter also talked about the financial constraint of needing to spend $3 million dollars to do mandated oversight at the Rokkasho Mura nuclear waste facility in Japan.
It also spoke of a severe budget crisis by 2001 as countries were not putting more funding into the IAEA as the demands on the agency were increasing.
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