National Progress Report: The Netherlands

1.    Support for the CPPNM (as Amended) and ICSANT

The Netherlands has ratified both the 2005 Amendment to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) and the International Convention on the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism (ICSANT). Although the 2005 Amendment to the CPPNM has not yet entered into force, legislation, regulations and policies of the Netherlands have been developed in accordance with the treaty as amended.

In addition, the Netherlands has cooperated with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in organising outreach activities aimed at promoting the Amendment’s entry into force. The Netherlands has also submitted a report on its laws and regulations giving effect to the treaty in accordance with article 14.1 of the CPPNM.

2.    Strengthened National System for Security of Nuclear and other Radioactive Material
Current national rules and regulations are based on the IAEA Nuclear Security Series documents, in particular the Nuclear Security Recommendations on Physical Protection of Nuclear Material and Nuclear Facilities (INFCIRC/225/Rev.4 and parts of Rev.5).

The Netherlands has hosted International Physical Protection Advisory Service (IPPAS) missions on four occasions (2005, 2008, 2009 and 2012), covering all of its nuclear installations. The general conclusion of the last mission in 2012 was that a firmly grounded physical protection regime exists in the Netherlands, and that appropriate physical protection measures are in place at nuclear facilities. Two recommendations for further improvement were made: (1) incorporate all applicable parts of INFCIRC/225/Rev.5 into the domestic regime, and (2) develop a Design Basis Threat (DBT) for cyber security.

With respect to the first recommendation, the Netherlands took steps to strengthen its domestic rules on physical protection requirements by means of the Executive Order on the Security of Nuclear Facilities and Fissionable Materials, which came into force on 1 January 2011. An updated order incorporating all applicable parts of INFCIRC/225/Rev.5 will come into effect in 2016.

A national DBT relating to the longer-term physical threats to the nuclear sector was introduced in 2008 and adopted in 2011. By 2012, all of the nuclear facilities had implemented the measures as required. This DBT was updated in 2015, the implementation of which will take place in the course of 2016. In line with the second recommendation deriving from the series of IPPAS missions, a DBT specifically concerning cyber security for the Dutch nuclear sector was introduced in 2013 and had been fully implemented by 31 March 2014. The nuclear operators were actively involved in the discussions regarding the design and the implications of both the DBT relating to physical protection and the DBT relating to cyber security. In the second half of 2016, integration of the two DBTs will be discussed, and the DBT for cyber security will be updated. Further, legislation to set up mandatory reporting of cyber incidents in the nuclear sector is currently being discussed in parliament. It is expected that related regulations will come into force in 2017.

The start of a comprehensive review of the Executive Order on the Security of Nuclear Facilities and Fissionable Materials is anticipated for 2016. The aim of this comprehensive review is to achieve an integrated (safety, security and crisis management) performance-based approach with respect to the protection of nuclear facilities rather than a security-only performance-based approach. Among other things, the review will entail an exchange of views and experiences among public and private stakeholders.

In order to assess the effectiveness of the physical protection systems at nuclear sites as well as to test the interfaces between the contingency planning of the operators and the State, several force-on-force exercises have been conducted in the Netherlands, involving all nuclear sites and all relevant state organisations.

With respect to radioactive sources, the 2012 Executive Order on the Security of Radioactive Materials further strengthened relevant security requirements. The Netherlands follows European directives and regulations and, where applicable, has reflected the IAEA Code of Conduct on the Safety and Security of Radioactive Sources and the supplementary Guidance on Export and Import of Radioactive Sources in the national legal framework. The Executive Order on the Security of Radioactive Materials will be evaluated in 2016.

Finally, in recent years security and awareness has been enhanced at organisations that work with high risk CBRN-material through the national CBRN/E programme. The Netherlands remains committed to continuing to improve nuclear security architectures through these practical actions.

3.    Contribution to the IAEA’s Nuclear Security-Related Activities

The Netherlands actively contributes to the development of the IAEA’s Nuclear Security Series, most recently by chairing the Nuclear Security Guidance Committee (NSGC) for the term that began in June 2015.

The Netherlands has contributed financially to the IAEA Nuclear Security Fund every year since 2002. Its contribution for 2014-2017 is €1 million. The Netherlands continues to advocate for an increase in the IAEA’s budget for nuclear security.

 The Netherlands also contributes expertise in forensics and other areas to the IAEA in order to support the global nuclear security framework and nuclear security services. It has hosted three regional training courses and a train-the-trainers course on physical protection, as well as courses on security culture, DBTs, protection against sabotage and identification of vital areas. Another regional training course on physical protection is planned for May 2016.

4.    Support for Nuclear Security-Related International Initiatives

Together with the other Summit hosts, the US and South Korea, the Netherlands introduced the “Strengthening Nuclear Security Implementation” initiative at the 2014 Summit in The Hague. The Netherlands is part of a large group of NSS-participating States that has thus far subscribed to the initiative’s Join Statement.

In addition, the Netherlands participates in the Global Initiative to Counter Nuclear Terrorism (GICNT), as well as in the Global Partnership against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction (GP). It currently chairs the GICNT Implementation and Assessment Group (IAG) and will host the GICNT 10th Anniversary Meeting in June 2016. The Netherlands also provides financial support to the Global Threat Reduction Initiative and cooperates with the 1540 Committee.

In 2012, the Netherlands hosted the international table-top exercise @tomic 2012, focusing on preventing (the threat of) nuclear/radiological terrorism. The exercise included cyber security and forensics components. In February 2014, the Netherlands hosted a follow-up exercise: @tomic 2014. This latter exercise was organised by the National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism (NCTV) and the Ministry of Foreign A­ffairs, in cooperation with the Netherlands Forensic Institute (NFI), the Ministry of Economic Affairs, INTERPOL, the IAEA, the European Commission, UNICRI, the EU CBRN Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence and Europol.

The Netherlands also supports the following NSS 2016 gift baskets: the Canadian initiative on certified training for nuclear security management; the Italian initiative on Nuclear Security Training and Support Centres and Centres of Excellence; the Jordanian initiative on countering nuclear smuggling, the Australian initiative on forensics in nuclear security; the British initiative on cyber security; the Norwegian initiative on minimizing use of HEU; the American initiative on insider threats; the French initiative on security of radioactive sources; the Canadian, South Korean and Spanish initiative on Security Council Resolution 1540; and the initiative on sustaining action to strengthen global nuclear security.

For the 2016 Summit, the Netherlands initiated a gift basket on Sustainability in Reporting and Information Sharing with an accompanying template for a Consolidated National Nuclear Security Report. This gift basket aims to improve and streamline the process of reporting and information sharing on national nuclear security efforts.

5.    Contribution to Minimisation of HEU

The Netherlands has converted all of its nuclear research reactors to use LEU fuel. Dutch industry intends to use only LEU targets for the production of medical radioisotopes, as soon as technically feasible. Almost all HEU has been removed and disposed of.

6.    Establishment of Centres of Excellence

The Netherlands supports the international CoE network coordinated by the IAEA and will contribute to improving cooperation between centres of excellence.

The Reactor Institute Delft at Delft University of Technology (one of the IAEA Collaborating Centres) started a Master’s programme in nuclear security in October 2012, open to qualified students from all IAEA member States. It was developed in collaboration with partner institutions in the UK, Germany, Norway, Austria and Greece, and was aligned with and supported by the IAEA. This programme is currently being evaluated. There are currently plans to establish a centre of excellence (CoE) on nuclear security in Delft.

The Centre for Conflict and Security Law (CCSL), based in Utrecht and Amsterdam, continues to conduct research on strengthening the international legal framework for nuclear and radiological security, as well as corresponding domestic laws and regulations. It collaborates in this area with its extensive academic and research network, in accordance with its ambition to become a CoE on this issue.

7.    Enhanced Efforts to Combat Illicit Trafficking in Nuclear and Radiological Material

The Netherlands contributes to the sharing of international information on illicit trafficking in nuclear material through the IAEA’s Incident and Trafficking Database (ITDB) and nuclear security information portal (NUSEC), through the GICNT IAG, as well as through bilateral cooperation.

Since 2011, the Dutch government and the NFI have established, together with other countries, a comprehensive programme to foster cooperation among nuclear and forensic institutes worldwide. This programme entails the development of a glossary of internationally accepted definitions and rules regarding both nuclear and forensic science; an education and training curriculum; an interactive website providing a platform for discussion and exchange of knowledge; and a survey of best practices with respect to investigating nuclear security events. Furthermore, the NCTV has organised table-top exercises on nuclear forensics, cyber security and incident response. In 2015, the NFI organised an international conference and mock trial on nuclear forensics in the framework of the GICNT. This event, that took place in The Hague, addressed the role of nuclear forensics experts in the investigation and prosecution of nuclear security incidents, the admissibility of nuclear forensics expert evidence into judicial proceedings, and the importance of pre-incident coordination and communication among scientists, law enforcement, and prosecutors.

8.    Strengthened cooperation between government and nuclear industry

Raising security awareness in the nuclear sector is a priority for the Dutch government. To this end, three leading Dutch nuclear operators have each been awarded a €1 million grant to further develop and improve security measures. The IAEA and WINS have both recognized the merits of this concept and have encouraged its application in other countries.

The government consults with plant security managers and information officers when adjustments to national nuclear security policies are needed. By doing so, the government is able to understand their visions and profit from their experience. Nuclear operators are also consulted on policy evaluations in order to gain a better understanding of implementation practices. In these consultations, the different positions of responsibility of the regulator and operators are respected.