2009 Year in Review

Published Date: 30 December 2010

Nuclear-related events and developments in 2009 reflected global trends dealing with global security, environmental, and economic issues. For the IAEA, in particular, dominant stories highlighted developments leading to the appointment and election of a new Director General, as well as pressing issues in nuclear safety and security, safeguards and non-proliferation. Following are images of the more noteworthy events, selected on the basis of their popularity, and chosen by IAEA.org editors. US Ambassador Gregory Schulte hands over to IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei the communication of the US ratification of its Additional Protocol with the IAEA. (Photo: P. Pavlicek/IAEA) The governments of Japan and South Africa submit candidates for IAEA Director General to the Agency's Board. Japan nominated  Ambassador Yukiya Amano and South Africa nominated Ambassador Abdul Samad  Minty. (Photos: D. Calma/IAEA) Nuclear safety assessment experts report on their progress during the latest EMRAS meeting at IAEA Headquarters. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) The IAEA publishes a report - the third of a series - confirming the safe performance of the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant  during and after the earthquake that hit Japan's Niigata and Nagano prefectures on 16 July 2007 (Photo: IAEA) In Monaco, scientists at the IAEA Marine Environment  Laboratories (IAEA-MEL) joined more than 150 experts from 26 countries calling  for urgent actions to halt rising levels of acidity in the world's oceans. (Photo: J. Ford/IAEA) On 20 February, IAEA Director General Mohamed  ElBaradei circulated his latest report on nuclear safeguards in Iran to the  Agency's Board of Governors. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei and Ambassador Saurabh Kumar of India sign the India Safeguards agreement, Vienna, Austria, 2 February 2009. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) A busy Board of Governors meeting began 2 March in  Vienna, Austria, by focusing on issues of nuclear safety and security, nuclear  power, nuclear applications, verification of nuclear non-proliferation as well as the Agency's programme and budget. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) A proposed multinational fuel bank under IAEA control reached a milestone when Kuwait pledged a financial contribution of US$ 10 million. The pledge was announced at the IAEA Board of Governors meeting in Vienna (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) A team of scientists prepare to lower a core sediment sampling equipment just off the coast of San Pedro Sula in Honduras. The field sampling mission is part of an IAEA-supported regional project to use nuclear techniques for managing coastal pollution in the Caribbean. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) IAEA Member States were advised that five candidates have been nominated for Director General of the Agency. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) The IAEA's Department of Technical Cooperation is investing Euro 350 000 over three years in the International Chernobyl Research and Information Network (ICRIN) as the international community observes 23 years since the Chernobyl nuclear accident. (Photo: P. Pavlicek/IAEA) The IAEA Board of Governors held an informal meeting during which each of the five candidates for the post of Director General of the IAEA made a presentation of their candidature to the Agency's Members. Here, the five candidates for the post of Director General pose with the IAEA Board of Governors Chairperson. From left: Mr. Yukiya Amano; Mr. Luis Echávarri; Mr. Abdul Samad Minty; Ms. Taous Feroukhi; Mr. Ernest Petrič; and Mr. Jean-Pol Poncelet. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) An IAEA-led international conference on environmental remediation was held in Astana, Kazakhstan that addressed issues dealing with safety and safety regulations. Environmental remediation is a global phenomenon. This picture is of a site being remediated with the help of IAEA in Central Asia. (Photo: Peter Waggit) The Agency's Board held an informal straw poll on 9 June in the process for selection of the IAEA Director General. Shown are Ms. Taous Feroukhi, IAEA Board Chairperson, and Mr. Kwaku Aning, Secretary of Policy-making Organs. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) A top United Nations official said that increased cooperation and vigilance on the part of both international and national health systems can help curb the continued threat of a major new influenza A (H1N1) pandemic - popularly known as "swine flu". The advice came at the opening ceremony of a symposium on animal health organized jointly by the IAEA and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in June. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) After six years of work by more than 300 researchers from 25 countries and $53 million in funding, scientists were finally able to reveal the genome of the cow - the first mapping of the genetic composition of a mammalian livestock animal ever completed, providing crucial information about the evolution and biology of cattle. Researchers at the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Applications in Food and Agriculture participated in this important study. (Photo: Wikipedia) International cancer control experts met with participants from 19 countries at the IAEA from 29 June to 1 July to discuss strategies for fighting cancer in the Asia and Pacific region. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA)  At its meeting at IAEA headquarters in Vienna on 2 July, the 35-member IAEA Board of Governors elected Ambassador Yukiya Amano of Japan as IAEA Director General. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA)  Ambassador Yukiya Amano of Japan is congratulated following his appointment on 3 July 2009 as the next IAEA Director General. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) In July 2009, IAEA Director General ElBaradei visited Vinča, site of the Agency's largest-ever Technical Cooperation project. At a meeting of the Board of Governors in August, the IAEA circulated its latest report on nuclear safeguards in Iran and Syria to Member States. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) At the opening of the IAEA Board of Governors meeting in early September, Director General Mohamed ElBaradei reported on nuclear power, nuclear applications, security and safety as well as non-proliferation issues. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) The IAEA's 53rd General Conference concluded 18 September in Vienna, with over 1 400 delegates from IAEA Member States attending the week-long event. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) The role of the IAEA in nuclear non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament was the theme of an address given by IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei at a historic UN Security Council meeting. (Photo: E. Debebe/UN) IAEA Director General Mohammed ElBaradei met Iranian authorities in Tehran, Iran, on Sunday, 4 October 2009, and discussed arrangements for the Agency's access to a newly disclosed uranium enrichment facility, under construction in Qom, Iran. (Photo: IAEA) On 19 October, the IAEA hosted a meeting of representatives from France, Iran, Russia and the United States at the Agency's Headquarters in Vienna on supplying nuclear fuel for an Iranian research reactor. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei circulated his latest reports on nuclear safeguards in Iran and Syria to the Agency's Board of Governors, the 35-member policymaking body, in advance of their November meeting. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) In a brief assembly held during his final working day as IAEA Director General, Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei, summarised his distinguished career, spanning a quarter-century at the Agency, in a short address to staff. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA) A week after assuming his duties, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano held a reception, his first, informal meeting with Member State delegations. He provided an overview of the areas that will receive his special attention in the mid-term. (Photo: P. Pavlicek/IAEA) Fast reactors and associated fuel cycles are expected to reduce nuclear waste. In the photo, methods and technologies for the disposal of radioactive waste are tested at Germany's former Asse Salt Mine. (Photo: Gesellschaft fur Strahlen und Umweltforschung mbH, München) IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano is welcomed by the personal assistant to Nigeria's First Lady at the International Cancer Centre, Abuja. (Photo: Afolabi Sotunde) Some of the high-ranking participants to the International Conference on Effective Nuclear Regulatory Systems, being held in Cape Town, South Africa from 14 to 18 December 2009. (Photo: Thiagan Pather/NNR) On the occasion of the 15th United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, the IAEA produced a focus page that highlights ways in which nuclear technology is used to better understand the causes and effects of climate change. (Photo: Veronika Schohl/IAEA)