Radioactive Pollution and Control

Document Type

Contribution to Books

Publication Date


Publication Title

Handbook of Environment and Waste Management: Volume 2: Land and Groundwater Pollution Control


© 2014 by World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd. All rights reserved. In this chapter, a brief introduction is presented to radioactive pollution and its management. Both natural and artificial sources of radiation are discussed with special attention to the relative importance of each source. In addition, radioactive isotope applications in tracing, radiography, insect control, food preservation, medical diagnoses, therapy, sterilization, and power generation are briefly described. Sources of radioactive pollution are identified including nuclear weapon tests, nuclear accidents, routine effluent release into the environment, and radioactive waste. Radioactive pollution prevention measures are presented including: treaties, regulations and standards, and technical methods to control pollution. The risk-informed regulatory process is briefly described, along with the technical methods to control radioactive wastes via site selection criteria, design of radioactive waste disposal facilities, and performance assessment.