ASN Report 2018

4 —  Monitoring the impact of nuclear activities and radioactivity in the environment 3. A micro-pollutant can be defined as being an undesirable substance that can be detected in the environment in very small concentrations (microgram per litre or even nanogram per litre). Its presence is due, at least in part, to human activity (Industrial processes, agricultural practices or day to day activities) and it may, at these very small concentrations, create negative effects on living organisms owing to its toxicity, its persistence and its bioaccumulation. 4.1  ̶  Monitoring discharges and the environmental and health impact of nuclear activities 4.1.1  –  Monitoring of discharges The BNI Order of 7 February 2012 and ASN resolution 2013-DC-0360 of 16 July 2013, amended, set the general requirements applicable to any BNI with regard to their water intake and discharges. In addition to these provisions, in its resolution 2017-DC-0588 of 6 April 2017, ASN defined the conditions for water intake and consumption, effluent discharge and environmental monitoring applicable more specifically to pressurised water nuclear reactors. This resolution was approved by the Minister for Ecological and Solidarity-based Transition in an Order of 14 June 2017. Apart from the above-mentioned general provisions, ASN resolutions set specific requirements for each facility, more particularly the water intake and discharge limits. • Monitoring discharges from BNIs The monitoring of discharges from an installation is essentially the responsibility of the licensee. The requirements regulating discharges stipulate the minimum checks that the licensee is required to carry out. The monitoring focuses on the liquid and gaseous effluents (monitoring of the activity of discharges, characterisation of certain effluents prior to discharge, etc.) and on the environment around the facility (checks during discharge, samples of air, water, milk, grass, etc.). The results of this monitoring are recorded in registers transmitted to ASN every month. The BNI licensees also regularly transmit a certain number of discharge samples to an independent laboratory for additional analysis. The results of these “cross-checks” are sent to ASN. This programme of cross-checks defined by ASN is a way of ensuring that the accuracy of the laboratory measurements is maintained over time. • The inspections carried out by ASN Through dedicated inspections, ASN ensures that the licensees actually comply with the regulations binding on them with regard to the management of discharges and the environmental and health impact of their facilities. Every year, it carries out about 90 inspections of this type, split into three topics: ∙ ∙ prevention of pollution and management of detrimental effects; ∙ ∙ water intake and effluent discharge, monitoring of discharges and the environment; ∙ ∙ waste management. Each of these topics covers both radiological and non- radiological aspects. Every year, ASN carries out 10 to 20 inspections with sampling and measurement. They are generally unannounced and are run with the support of specialist, independent laboratories appointed by ASN. Effluent and environmental samples are taken for radiological and chemical analyses. Finally, every year, ASN carries out several reinforced inspections which aim to check the organisation put into place by the licensee to protect the environment; the scope of the inspection is then broadened to cover all of the above-mentioned topics. Within this context, simulations such as exercises to test the organisation implemented for pollution management can be carried out. • 2016-2021 Micro-pollutants Plan The 2016-2021 (3) Micro-pollutant Plan designed to preserve the quality of water and biodiversity, presented by the Minister for Ecology in September 2016, aims to protect surface waters, groundwaters, biota, sediments and waters intended for human consumption from all molecules liable to pollute the water resources, more particularly those previously identified during campaigns to Search for Hazardous Substances in Water (RSDE). This plan aims to meet the good water quality objectives set by the framework directive on water and contributes to those of the framework strategy directive for the marine environment, by limiting the input of pollutants into the marine environment from water courses. For NPPs, the RSDE campaigns reached the conclusion that copper and zinc discharges in particular needed to be monitored. Under the Micro-pollutants Plan, the ASN actions initiated in 2017 comprise three parts: ∙ ∙ monitor the effective implementation of the action plan proposed by EDF to reduce discharges of copper and zinc (gradual replacement of the brass condenser tubes with stainless steel or titanium tubes); ∙ ∙ monitor the discharge trends for these substances; ∙ ∙ if necessary revise the individual requirements applicable to NPPs, setting emission limits for these molecules. In 2018, ASN began work to revise the resolutions regulating effluent discharges and water intake for the Dampierre-en- Burly and Belleville-sur-Loire NPPs. This modification includes a revision of the copper and zinc emission limit values. EDF thus sent ASN an update of the impact assessments for these NPPs and a study presenting the combined impact of the four Belleville-sur-Loire, Dampierre-en-Burly, Saint-Laurent-des- Eaux and Chinon NPPs on the Loire Valley as a whole. These studies are currently being examined by ASN and will be the subject of a public consultation in 2019. • Accounting of BNI discharges The rules for accounting of discharges, both radioactive and chemical, are set in the general regulations by amended ASN resolution 2013-DC-0360 of 16 July 2016 relative to control of the detrimental effects and the impact of Basic Nuclear Installations on health and the environment. These rules were set so as to guarantee that the discharge values accounted by the licensees, notably those taken into account in the impact calculations, will in no case be under-estimated. For discharges of radioactive substances, accounting is not based on overall measurements, but on an analysis per radionuclide, introducing the notion of a “reference spectrum”, listing the radionuclides specific to the type of discharge in question. ASN report on the state of nuclear safety and radiation protection in France in 2018  145 03 – REGULATION OF NUCLEAR ACTIVITIES AND EXPOSURE TO IONISING RADIATION 03