NEWMDB - The IAEA Nuclear Waste Management Database IAEA - International Atomic Energy Agency

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Does the information in the database for 'All waste in storage (m3)' include waste forms other than solid waste?

Yes, the data includes non-solid waste as well. Member States are able to report either differentiated or undifferentiated. Most choose not to report by "form", but the totals include all waste. They may also report whether waste is "processed" or "unprocessed" which (depending on Member State) generally refers to conditioning (i.e., preparation for disposal).

I know about a Site or Facility in a particular country, but I cannot find it in the Report. Why is that? Is it a mistake?

The information in the NEWMDB is based 100% on voluntary contributions from the IAEA Member States, and unfortunately, not all of them currently report. However, we are working to increase the completeness of the information. In addition, a Member State may not list all sites or facilities in their submission. This may be for historical reasons, or because the actual status of a particular site/facility is unclear, or in the view of the Member State, it is not licensed to be a radioactive waste management facility. Examples might include, former research centers, legacy disposal or storage facilities, or areas where radioactive waste was buried improperly, and must now be remediated. In some Member States' reguilatory frameworks, these types of facilities are not reportable, or do not represent a legitimate "facility", although they may certainly be managed in some way.

I'm looking for a country and cannot find it. Why is that?

Many countries are not found in the lists on the Reports, Profiles, or Data Centre tabs. There are two possibilities for this. The first is that not all countries are Member States of the IAEA. Non-Member States are not listed. The second possibility is that a particular country simply has not started to report their data to the IAEA. You can check which Member States have nominated a point of contact (Country Coordinator) and which ones have made submissions for a particular year (or all years) by checking the first two queries under Data Centre - Lists

What is the meaning of "include Estimates" in the NEWMDB Data Centre?

The information in the NEWMDB is based on voluntary contributions from the IAEA Member States. Some of them do not report annually and therefore leaving gaps in the data for those years lacking an official report. This would result in scattered graphs over time and information on waste volume jumping up and down from year to year. NEWMDB tries to level this out by assuming the data would have been the same as in the last official report. This estimation applies forward as well as backward in time. E.g. if a country reported once in 2008 the data back to 2004 and up until now would be estimated to be the same as in 2008. Any other computed assumption (like a steady increase of disposed waste) would be just as right (or wrong) as there are many factors that cannot be anticipated by a machine. E.g. a country could decide to phase out of Nuclear Energy production, or could have had an accident or an election which caused the legal framework to change drastically. The same assumptions apply for the Future Outlook resulting in the data center graphs’ trend line. If no future outlook is provided by a reporting country it is assumed that the data does not change over time until 2030 and 2100.

Quoting NEWMDB Data and Reports

Are you using NEWMDB data or reports in published reports or papers and would like to know how to properly cite the database? The following format is based on the Chicago Manual of Style for bibliographical references. You can simply copy and paste the reference and fill in the necessary details, such as the access date:

Simple Data Quotation

International Atomic Energy Agency. Net-Enabled Waste Management Database (NEWMDB). Version 3. (February 6, 2002),

Report Quotation

International Atomic Energy Agency. "Country Waste Profile for Argentina - 2006." The Net-Enabled Waste Management Database (NEWMDB). Version 3. (February 6, 2002),