CSA Group Releases First Canadian Nuclear Emergency Management Program Standard

CSA Group, a leading standards development, testing and certification organization, has released Canada’s first national standard on nuclear emergency management programs that addresses all components of emergency management, with a specific focus on preparedness, response, and recovery.  This new standard is particularly unique in its requirement for the development of recovery plans for both the community and the nuclear power plant. CSA N1600-14, General Requirements for Nuclear Emergency Management Programs was drafted and published in only 17 months and made available to the public on May 26, 2014.

One of the key drivers behind the development of the new standard was a recommendation made by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s (CNSC) Fukushima Task Force to further enhance the safety of nuclear power plants (NPPs) in Canada by developing a dedicated document on emergency management.  This resulted in an opportunity for all stakeholders and levels of government to work collaboratively on a new CSA Standard by building upon existing applicable standards and regulation.  CSA N1600 establishes criteria for the emergency management programs to address nuclear emergencies at Canadian nuclear power plants. The standard covers both on-site and off-site organizations and provides criteria on how to develop, implement, evaluate, maintain and continuously improve a nuclear emergency management program.

“CSA Group’s new nuclear standard is a first of its kind in Canada,” said Bonnie Rose, President Standards, CSA Group. “This standard was the result of input from all levels of government, owners and operators of nuclear power plants, first responders, emergency management professionals, and not-for-profit organizations. It was truly a cooperative effort, and CSA Group is proud to be leading the development of new, cutting-edge standards that will make Canadians safer.”

In order to complete the new standard in the short timeframe, the committee members met for the equivalent of 20 days, covered more than 230 action items, considered over 290 public comments and created a total of seven working drafts prior to the publication of the final document. The committee ended up completing the standard one month earlier than their target of 18 months. Like all CSA Group standards, CSA N1600 is a living document and continuously undergoes revisions. The committee will begin meeting again in September 2014, to begin a new edition to the standard, which will further enhance the existing content and capture new lessons learned from international events and exercises.

For many years, Canada has been at the forefront of nuclear research and energy. Approximately 15 per cent of Canada’s power comes from nuclear energy with a total of 19 reactors, mostly in Ontario.  In response to the expansion of Canada’s nuclear program, CSA Group led the development of standards for the nuclear industry and now maintains over 40 nuclear-related standards. The standards address topics such as nuclear reactor control systems, safety systems and instrumentation, integrated management systems, decommissioning of nuclear facilities and reactor safety.

About CSA Group

CSA Group is an independent, not-for-profit member-based association dedicated to advancing safety, sustainability and social good. We are an internationally-accredited standards development and testing & certification organization. We also provide consumer product evaluation and education & training services. Our broad range of knowledge and expertise includes: industrial equipment, plumbing & construction, electro-medical & healthcare, appliances & gas, alternative energy, lighting and sustainability. The CSA mark appears on billions of products around the world.


Allison Hawkins
Manager, Corporate Affairs
CSA Group
[email protected]


June 17, 2014