International reference texts

The international reference texts are the international conventions and treaties to which France is a contracting party and those reference texts and recommendations concerning nuclear safety and radiation protection that are not formally binding.

Convention on Early Notification of a Nuclear Accident

Each contracting party to this Convention, which entered into force on 27th October 1986, undertakes to inform the international community as rapidly as possible of any event occurring on its territory that could lead or has led to uncontrolled dispersal into the environment of radioactive substances that could have cross-border consequences. It has been ratified by 117 Contracting Parties on December 31, 2013.

France also undertook to apply the Euratom decision of 14th December 1987 concerning the conditions for the early exchange of information between European Union member states in the event of a radiological emergency.

The conditions of application of this IAEA Convention and of the Euratom decision in France are detailed in the Interministerial Directive of 30 May 2005 which mandates ASN as the competent national authority.

ASN is thus responsible for notifying the international institutions (IAEA and the European Union) of any nuclear event and for circulating to the appropriate French ministries all the information concerning events occurring abroad. These information exchanges are designed to help mitigate the radiological consequences and to enable all the countries to take measures to protect their populations where necessary.

To fulfil this notification duty, ASN uses the tools provided by the IAEA (USIE - Unified System for Information Exchange in Incidents and Emergencies) and by the European Commission (ECURIE - European Community Urgent Radiological Information Exchange system). ASN participated in the development of these tools and uses them in the national and international emergency response exercises that are organised regularly between the contracting parties.

In addition to these international agreements, ASN has established bilateral protocols with the neighbouring countries on the exchange of information in the event of radiological emergencies.


Date of last update : 03/02/2021