Two decades of WANO

19 May 2009

The World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO) has celebrated 20 years of activity. It was formed to help plant managers learn from one another in the aftermath of the Chernobyl accident.


  "The key to WANO's
  strength has been 
  the focus on safety
  through international
  cooperation. Our single
  aim, 'to maximise the
  safety and reliability of
  nuclear power plant
  operation', remains as
  relevant today as it was
  20 years ago."

   Laurent Stricker
   WANO chair

"We remain keenly
  conscious that WANO's
  ongoing work, while
  largely unpublicized,
  represents nothing less
  than a foundation stone
  on which our entire
  industry stands."

   John Ritch
   World Nuclear Association
   director general, writing in a
   letter to WANO


The organisation has regional centres in Atlanta, Paris, Moscow and Tokyo and a co-ordinating centre in London. Many WANO programs were modelled after the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO) in the USA. Both organisations were industry responses to serious accidents - INPO after Three Mile Island in 1979 and WANO after Chernobyl in 1986 - and were formed with the determination that such preventable accidents should never happen again. WANO was formally established in Moscow on 15 May 1989.


WANO has members in over 30 countries, which together operate 447 nuclear plants involved in power generation as well as other aspects of the nuclear fuel cycle. The members share operational experience using an online database and contribute experts towards peer reviews of one another's plants. Technical courses and workshops are held each year and WANO conducts support missions to solve specific issues at its members facilities. All of these programs take place under a strict code of confidentiality that WANO considers essential to the open and honest information exchange it requires.