Jill Hruby meets with peers to discuss nuclear agency’s work, cooperation with other nations
WASHINGTON – Jill Hruby, Administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and U.S. Department of Energy’s Under Secretary for Nuclear Security, attended the 65th annual International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) General Conference (GC) last week in support of U.S. nuclear security and nonproliferation goals.
Administrator Hruby accompanied Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm, who led the delegation to Vienna, Austria.
Held annually, the IAEA GC is where high-ranking officials and representatives from IAEA member states meet to discuss civil nuclear energy, security, safeguards, and nonproliferation issues.
Although the current COVID situation in Austria allowed a larger gathering than 2020, what would normally be a bustling affair with exhibits, side events, and thousands of attendees from around the world, was substantially scaled back in light of the pandemic and many events were held virtually.
“The IAEA has a vital mission of ensuring the safety, security, and peaceful uses of civil nuclear energy,” said Administrator Hruby. “Despite the obvious limitations this year, we made significant progress on strengthening nuclear safeguards and improving nuclear security around the world.”
In addition to having discussions with several officials of the IAEA, Administrator Hruby met with officials from Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, Mexico, Norway, and Saudi Arabia. Among the events that took place in Vienna:
- The Administrator met with Ambassador Kjersti E. Andersen of Norway to discuss a recently signed memorandum of understanding to advance a cooperative project to eliminate all of Norway’s highly enriched uranium by downblending it to low-enriched uranium
- Administrator Hruby participated in a virtual side event at the IAEA GC highlighting the role of women in nuclear and radiological security.
- Administrator Hruby toured the IAEA’s Safeguards Laboratory, the Incident and Emergency Centre, the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization, and the IAEA’s nuclear applications laboratories in Seibersdorf to witness the many ways in which the IAEA utilizes nuclear technology to carry out its mandate and respond to the developmental needs of member states.