The Nigerian Nuclear Radiation Agency has examined the future role and effects of radiation in Nigeria, in light of current rates of global industrialisation
The Nigerian Nuclear Radiation Agency has examined the future role and effects of radiation in Nigeria, in light of current rates of global industrialisation.
General Manager of Radiological Safety Timothy Akpa spoke on behalf of NNRA’s Director General, Lawrence Dim, at the Second National Technical Meeting on Personal Dosimetry for Dosimetry Service Providers and Radiation Safety Advisers, in Abuja on November 7, 2017.
The NNRA predicted that companies could start producing cars fuelled by nuclear or other radioactive materials in the near future.
He pointed to the recent use of radioactive materials in producing electricity and heat in many countries to suggest that, with a growing awareness of radiation safety, vehicles could be similarly fuelled.
The most important use of radiation, he said, continues to be in health and medicine, such as for interventional radiology and radiotherapy.
This use, as with other industries, requires a system of dosimetry to ensure it conforms to internationally recognised dose limits and people working in the industry are not over-exposed.
With Nigeria’s increasing industrialisation and development, he stated that Nigerians are being exposed to radioactivity in all areas of economic life, especially in the oil, gas and mining industries and also in the consumption of beverages and imported goods.
Despite the country not having a nuclear power plant, ionising radiation does exist in many essential economic and industrial activities, which could cause serious harm if not properly regulated.
Representing Dim, Akpa assured attendees of the meeting that the NNRA was working to eliminate the threat of use and exposure to radioactive materials through the implementation of strict industry and importation standards.
Nigeria has its own national standards, which conform to international standards calibrated by the United Nations.
Nuclear Safety Consultants CEO Modupe Oresegun endorsed the NNRA’s efforts in regulating radiation, saying that partnerships with international bodies and the prohibition of radiation sources into the country had proved effective.
Emphasising the need to maintain and increase efforts to protect Nigerians from excessive levels of radiation, Akpa said: “Whether we have nuclear power plants or not, the use of ionizing radiation, the use of imported products, produced elsewhere, from those plants that are using these radioactive materials, [it] means we are also exposed to such radiation.
“[There] are very few industries, starting from industries that produce beverages, like Coca-Cola, they use radiation to make sure that the quality of their products is sound.
“In bigger industries, like in the oil industry, there is no well-logging without radiation.”
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