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Office of Nuclear Safety and Environmental Assessments

MISSION

The Office of Nuclear Safety and Environmental Assessments conducts assessments to provide critical feedback and objective information on programs and performance in protecting our workers, the public and environment from radiological hazards with a focus on hazardous nuclear facilities and operations.  This information provides assurance to our stakeholders and identifies areas for improvement to our leadership to support the safe performance of the Department’s mission.  

FUNCTONS

  • Manages a team of senior engineers and subject matter experts who serve as “site leads” to monitor site operations, assessments, issues, and plans to gather information to inform selection, optimize scheduling and support prioritization of assessment activities and provide an overall assessment of performance. 
  • Works closely with other IEA offices and DOE line organizations to schedule and undertake assessments.
  • Conducts assessments that examine implementation of safety management programs during phases of the life cycle of a nuclear facility including operation, deactivation, decontamination, decommissioning and environmental restoration.
  • Conduct assessments of changes to operations, safety basis and modifications. 
  • Conducts assessments to evaluate the adequacy of radiological protection programs and their performance in minimizing worker, public, and environmental radiological exposures to as low as reasonably achievable. 
  • Undertakes assessments to evaluate the design, safety basis, quality assurance, construction quality, start-up, and commissioning of major new facilities.
  • Performs special studies to evaluate issues, adverse safety performance, or trends.
  • Evaluates the effectiveness of line management oversight during assessments.
  • On a prioritized basis, conducts assessments to evaluate employee concerns raised to EA by employees, IG, labor organizations, and external stakeholders. 
  • Validates assessment and analysis results with DOE and contractor line management and staff.
  • Conducts briefings to apprise senior DOE and contractor managers and stakeholders (including the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board, citizen advisory boards, and Congress) on assessment results and on nuclear safety and environmental performance.
  • Reviews corrective action plans developed in response to assessments for adequacy, monitors implementation progress,
  • and conducts follow-up evaluations to determine the status and effectiveness of corrective actions.
  • Coordinates with the Office of Enforcement when appraisal activities identify potential noncompliances with the DOE
  • nuclear safety and worker safety and health requirements enforceable under 10 CFR 851 and 10 CFR 820.
  • Maintains a broad internal and external perspective on trends by providing representation in national and international
  • professional organizations addressing nuclear safety and environmental protection topics.
  • Develops materials for an annual report for the Secretary on the overall status of DOE/NNSA nuclear safety and
  • environmental protection performance, identifying strengths, best practices, common weaknesses and opportunities for risk reduction.