Dear BNS Member,
The Belgian Nuclear Society has a successful history of organising multiple events that give an overview of the current status of a large variety of subjects related to peaceful nuclear applications. Our former Chairman, Eric van Walle, has to a large extent promoted this activity. Thank you Eric !
ESTABLISH MORE CONFIDENCE
Nuclear energy is one of those nuclear applications. With the occurrence of the Fukushima accident on March 11, 2011, nuclear electricity generation has met a serious drawback and it is up to the nuclear community to demonstrate the safety of its installations. The stress tests imposed by the Belgian and European Authorities should therefore be looked at as an opportunity to demonstrate the safety aspects of our nuclear infrastructure. A demonstration that should be able to establish more confidence in nuclear technology and its offsprings.
A FUTURE FOR THE NUCLEAR TECHNOLOGY
We should not forget that Europe is the world leader in nuclear technology and that Belgium has contributed a lot to earn this recognition. Many studies demonstrate that an electricity mix with maximised renewable systems still needs nuclear generated electricity to withstand the present and future needs for society in a reliable way and taking into account the climate requirements. Nuclear energy technology should be considered as a trump card for Europe, not a joker where risks are taken to lose the built-up experience that can disappear, but still be highly needed, in a short time. Renewable energy systems should be developed to full extent, but not independently from securing a future for the nuclear technology.
EXPERTISE, EDUCATION AND TRAINING
Moreover, the development of nuclear applications has always been an engine for nuclear science and R&D. Clearly, nuclear energy has created a legacy mainly pointing towards high level nuclear waste issues. Surely, it is upon nuclear developments to solve this problem, but we can only do this when we can guarantee the education and training of experts that need to understand the fundamentals of nuclear physics. We do not only need engineers, physicists and many other disciplines to tackle problems, we also need them to run the broad portfolio of different nuclear installations that we possess. A major issue is also the need to have experts to regulate and evaluate these nuclear systems: they also need on the spot training within the installations in order to have enough experience and to make the right decisions to underpin their theoretical knowledge. We need innovation in order to attract and keep those people in the field.
Nuclear applications save lives. Today the medical world would stand still if no nuclear techniques where around. Do we want these developments to stagnate while we are just on the verge of many breakthroughs that would allow major steps forward to diagnose, cure and alleviate patients from their painful diseases?
The Belgian Nuclear Society has an important role to play today: from expressing thoughts to writing papers and organising lectures and conferences . The dynamism of the BNS-YG, avid contributors to this website, is one of our engines, so be part of it. You will notice that BNS brings together experienced people of all nuclear disciplines in Belgium to listen and to discuss: they want to contribute to a multi-disciplinary field with critical, self-conscious and constructive views on a society that looks in an open justified manner towards its long term future. You are invited!
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Histoire du nucléaire en Belgique, 1990-2005
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