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EU CBRN Action Plan

The main goal of the Action Plan on ‘Strengthening Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Security in the European Union’ (the EU CBRN Action Plan) is to minimise the likelihood of CBRN incidents occurring.

In February 2008, the European Commission set up a CBRN Task Force to work on CBRN policy. Its final report of January 2009 provides the basis for the EU CBRN action plan. The main goal of CBRN policy is to minimise the threat and damage to the public from CBRN incidents. Some of the core measures to achieve these goals are:
• use of a risk-based approach to security;
• effective protection of CBRN materials;
• improved exchange of security-related information between Member States;
• further development of detection systems in the EU;
• provision of the necessary tools to manage CBRN incidents.

The CBRN Action Plan identifies three main fields of work:
• prevention, which as the focal point of activity should first involve the use of risk-assessment to prioritise high-risk CBRN materials, and then focus on the security and control of these materials and the related facilities;
• detection, which is seen as an essential supplement to prevention, as well as necessary for response. Consequently, detection systems should be set up within Member States and at the external borders of the Union. At EU level, minimum CBRN detection standards will be developed, testing and certification schemes will be established, and the exchanges of good practices will be enhanced;
• preparedness and response, for which the existing measures should be further developed, with particular attention given to emergency planning, information flows, modelling tools, and countermeasures.