1980 Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material—Snapshot
1980 Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material—Snapshot

The following Energy practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • 1980 Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material—Snapshot
  • Purpose of the CPPNM
  • Nuclear material covered
  • Requirements for storage and transport
  • Criminal offences
  • The 2005 Amendment
  • Extended scope
  • Protection against theft and sabotage
  • New fundamental principles
  • New offences
  • More...

TitleConvention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM)
Parties156 parties
Revisions2005 Amendment (entered into force 8 May 2015)
LocationVienna, Austria
Adopted26 October 1979
Came into force8 February 1987
SubjectNuclear safety and transport

Purpose of the CPPNM

The CPPNM aims to ensure the safe storage and transport of nuclear materials. It establishes measures to prevent, detect, and punish offences relating to nuclear material.

The CPPNM is the only internationally legally binding undertaking relating to the physical protection of nuclear material used for peaceful purposes.

Nuclear material covered

The CPPNM applies to nuclear materials:

  1. used for peaceful purposes while in international nuclear transport, and

  2. to a limited extent (excluding arts 3 and 4) to domestic use, storage and transport of nuclear materials for peaceful purposes

'Nuclear material' is fully defined in Article 1(a) of CPPNM. Essentially, it covers plutonium and uranium.

'International nuclear transport' means the carriage of a consignment of nuclear material by any means of transportation intended to go beyond the territory of the state where the shipment originates:

  1. beginning with the departure from a facility of the shipper in that state, and

  2. ending with the arrival at a facility of the receiver within the state of ultimate destination

Requirements for storage and transport

The CPPNM requires state parties to ensure that, during international nuclear transport, nuclear material within its territory, or on a ship or aircraft under its

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