Abu Dhabi Police on Wednesday announce to organise the UAE Barakah Exercise 2023 that will take place during October 2023 Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: Abu Dhabi Police, in collaboration with various strategic partners, has announced to organise the UAE Barakah Exercise 2023 that will take place during October 2023.

Planned as a biennial event, the UAE Barakah Exercise will last for 36 hours continuously under the supervision of the National Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Management Authority. The exercise aims to ensure the readiness of the UAE’s nuclear and radiological emergency response ecosystem.

The exercise has been designed in compliance with the Regulation for Emergency and Preparedness for Nuclear Facilities (FANR-REG-12), issued by the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR). The regulation sets out that the operator must have a comprehensive nuclear and radiological emergency response ecosystem, in collaboration with relevant stakeholders.

Real time scenarios

The UAE Barakah Exercise 2023 was designed in accordance with the best international practices in the domains of response evaluation to nuclear and radiological emergency. The exercise includes real time scenarios for various emergency cases at the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant and its adjacent areas to continue enhancing the readiness of rapid responses to emergency cases, in accordance with the best global safety, security and transparency standards.

Abu Dhabi Police’s participating strategic partners include the Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Health and Prevention, Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA), Abu Dhabi Civil Defence Authority (ADCDA), Abu Dhabi Crisis and Disaster Management Centre (ADCMC), Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC), Nawah Energy Company and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC).

Collective effort

Staff Major General Pilot Faris Khalaf Al Mazrouei, Commander-in-Chief of Abu Dhabi Police and Exercise Manager, said: “The coordination and collaboration between the federal and the local entities in Abu Dhabi to conduct the UAE Barakah Exercise emphasises the UAE’s prowess in the domains of business continuity and response to emergency. This collective effort further enhances our preparedness to rapidly address risks and reinforce our capacity to respond promptly.”

Hamad Al Kaabi, Director of the Hazardous Materials Incidents Department at NCEMA and Head of Control and Evaluation Committee said that the organisation of the UAE Barakah Exercise 2023 aligns with continued successful endeavours to elevate the level of preparedness and proactive responses to address nuclear incidents.

Al Kaabi said: “After conducting the IAEA ConvEx-3 successfully, we are looking forward to work and collaborate with strategic partners in the emergency and crisis management community during this significant and special exercise to showcase UAE experts’ capabilities to the entire world in responding to various emergency scenarios.”

Field exercises

Brigadier General Hamdan Saif Al Mansoori, Director of Al Dhafra Police Directorate and the Event Commander in the Barakah ecosystem, said: “The UAE Barakah Exercise 2023 comes after conducting a series of field exercises to enhance rapid response capabilities, in collaboration with strategic partners in command, control and media in various activities such as fire extinguishing, rescue and follow up at the Reception, Quartering and Medical Response Centre, in accordance with the most advanced global practices.”

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Ecosystem preparedness

Christer Viktorsson, Director General of the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), said: “The UAE has succeeded in emphasising its ecosystem preparedness to respond to nuclear and radiological emergency at the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant by hosting the IAEA ConvEx-3 in 2021 under the name ConvEx-3 UAE Barakah, in addition to other exercises hosted in collaboration with national and international partners, highlighting that safety and security come as its top priority. The UAE Barakah Exercise 2023 will play a pivotal role in the efforts aiming at pursuing success, through enhancing cooperation with various partners to ensure community and environment protection.”

Global model

Mohamed Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation’s (ENEC) Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, emphasised that the UAE’s peaceful nuclear programme has become a global model due its commitment to highest global standards and best practices in the nuclear energy sector, including an advanced emergency response ecosystem, and UAE National experts in the nuclear energy domain ensuring the enhanced role of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant to support energy security and achieving net zero emissions by 2050.

The primary objective of the UAE Barakah Exercise 2023 is to accentuate dedicated endeavours aimed at reinforcing safety, establishing credibility, and ensuring transparency at Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant facilities in Abu Dhabi. The plant plays a pivotal role in the diversification of energy sources, providing sustainable electricity to homes, businesses, and public facilities, while curbing carbon emissions in the UAE.