Improving nuclear safety and radiation protection

FR | EN

About ASN

The Nuclear Safety Authority (ASN), an independent administrative authority set up by law 2006-686 of 13 June 2006 concerning nuclear transparency and safety (known as the “TSN law”) is tasked, on behalf of the State, with regulating nuclear safety and radiation protection in order to protect workers, patients, the public and the environment from the risks involved in nuclear activities. It also contributes to informing the citizens.

The ASN headquarter is located at
15, rue Louis Lejeune 
92120 Montrouge

You can reach us:

Phone. : +33 1 46 16 40 00
Email :  info@asn.fr

Mailing address :

Autorité de sûreté nucléaire
15, rue Louis Lejeune
CS 70013
92541 Montrouge cedex
France

The ASN headquarters is located at 15 rue Louis Lejeune 92120 Montrouge

The ASN headquarters is located at 15 rue Louis Lejeune 92120 Montrouge

TSN law improves and clarifies the status of ASN with regard to nuclear safety and radiation protection. ASN thus increases its independence and its legitimacy with respect to those in charge of promoting, developing and carrying out nuclear activities. It enjoys a new legal foundation and a status comparable to that of its counterparts in other industrialised nations. It also has enhanced powers enabling it to penalise violations and take all necessary urgent measures.

The new status consolidates ASN's goal, which is to provide nuclear supervision that is efficient, impartial, legitimate and credible, that is recognised by the citizens and that constitutes an international benchmark for good practice.

Its core duty

Regulations

ASN contributes to drafting of regulations, by giving the Government its opinion on draft decrees and ministerial orders, or by issuing technical regulatory decisions. ASN also makes the individual decisions stipulated in the Public Health Code.

Inspection

ASN checks compliance with the rules and specifications applicable to the installations and activities within its field of competence. Inspection is one of the primary means of verification available to ASN, which also has appropriate powers of enforcement and punishment.

Information

In particular through its website www.asn.fr and its Contrôle magazine, ASN informs the public and other stakeholders (local information committees, environmental protection associations, etc), about its activities and the state of nuclear safety and radiation protection in France.
In the event of an emergency, ASN assists the Government.
It in particular sends the competent authorities its recommendations regarding the civil protection measures to be taken.

Regulation of a diversity of activities and installations

ASN regulation covers a wide variety of activities and installations, including nuclear power plants, radioactive waste management, nuclear fuel transport, radioactive material packages, medical installations, research laboratories, industrial activities, and in particular:

  • 58 nuclear reactors producing most of the electricity consumed in France, as well as the EPR reactor currently under construction;
  • all French installations involved in the fuel cycle, from enrichment to reprocessing;
  • several thousand installations and activities using sources of ionising radiation for medical, industrial or research purposes;
  • several hundred thousand consignments of radioactive materials shipped nationwide, every year.

A few key figures

  • More than 480 staff, with close to half of them in the 11 regional divisions.
  • 268 inspectors distributed among the regional divisions and the departments
  • 75% management level.
  • A total budget of 80,11 million euros, and 85 million euros budget
    devoted to IRSN appraisal work.
  • More than 1 880 inspections on nuclear installations, radioactive material transport and in the medical, industrial and research sectors in 2015.
  • 16 694 inspection follow-up letters published on the website www.asn.fr

Expert assistance

In making certain decisions, ASN calls on the expertise of technical support organisations.
The Institute for Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety (IRSN) is its main support organisation.
ASN also asks for opinions and recommendations from the scientific and technical advisory committees of experts.
ASN's aim is to provide efficient, impartial, legitimate and credible nuclear regulation, recognised by the citizens and regarded internationally as a benchmark for good practice.

Activities monitored by ASN

The activities monitored by ASN are: the nuclear facilities for electricity productions, the civil research installations, the waste and decommissioned facilities, the transport of radiactive materials and the medical centre using radioactive sources.

The ASN strategy

An ASN multi-year strategic plan gives formal form to the strategic priorities defined by the commission. The ASN strategic plan is made public.

The ASN organisation

The ASN regional divisions conduct their activities under the authority of the regional representatives appointed by the ASN Chairman. They represent the ASN Chairman's in the regions and contribute to ASN's public information role. The divisions perform most of the direct inspections of BNIs, of radioactive material transport and of small-scale nuclear activities. In emergency situations, the divisions assist the préfet (in a département, representative of the State appointed by the President) of the département (Administrative region headed by a Préfet), who is responsible for protecting the populations, and supervise the on-site operations to make the installation safe, if it is accessible or does not constitute a hazard.

The ASN commission

The Commission defines ASN's general nuclear safety and radiation protection policy.

The ASN doctrine

General policies and position statements, supplemented by the work and opinions of the Advisory Committees as it gave missions on a number of technical issues, help build the doctrine of ASN.