This publication was prepared jointly with the Radiation Health Committee. The Radiation Health and Safety Advisory Council advised the CEO to adopt the Guide.

12 September 2017

Front Cover of RPS G-2


1. Introduction
   1.1  Citation
   1.2  Background
   1.3  Purpose
   1.4  Scope
   1.5  Interpretation
   1.6  Structure
2.  Radiation protection principles for existing exposure situations
   2.1 Principles for protection
   2.2 Identification of existing exposure situations
   2.3 Protection strategy
3. Framework for managing existing exposure situations
   3.1 General guidance
   3.2 Guidance for public exposure
   3.3 Guidance for occupational exposure
4.  The Australian context: specific guidance on the implementation of radiation protection in existing exposure situations in Australia
Annex A:  Reference levels for existing exposure situations in Australia
Appendix 1:  Derivation of existing exposure guide clauses from GSR Part 3 requirements
Appendix 2:  The ten principles of radiation risk management from the Fundamentals for Protection Against Ionising Radiation (2014)
References and Contributors to drafting and review


The management of risks from ionising radiation requires actions that are based on fundamental principles of radiation protection, safety and security. The Fundamentals for Protection Against Ionising Radiation (2014) (RPS F-1) was published as part of ARPANSA’s Radiation Protection Series (RPS) to provide an understanding of the effects of ionising radiation and associated risks for the health of humans and the environment. RPS F-1 is the top tier document in the Australian national framework to manage risks from ionising radiation and explains how radiation protection, safety and security can work individually and collectively to manage radiation risks. Finally, it presents ten principles and their application in management of radiation risks.

This Guide for Radiation Protection in Existing Exposure Situations (2017) sets out the Australian approach to protection of occupationally exposed persons, the public and the environment in ‘existing exposure situations’, i.e. situations of exposure that already exist when a decision on the need for control is taken. Existing exposure situations include situations of elevated exposure to radiation of natural origin. They also include situations of exposure due to residual radioactive material that derives from past practices that were not subject to regulatory control or that remains after an emergency exposure situation.

ARPANSA, jointly with state and territory regulators in the Radiation Health Committee (RHC), has developed this Guide based on the requirements relating to existing exposure situations described in the Safety Requirements GSR Part 3 of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); Radiation Protection and Safety of Radiation Sources: International Basic Safety Standards (IAEA 2014). Further guidance material will be developed relating to existing exposure situations and made available in the form of case-specific studies.

I wish to thank all contributors to drafting and review, and commend this Guide to users and stakeholders across all Australian jurisdictions.

Carl-Magnus Larsson

12 September 2017

Access to information FOI disclosure log Information public scheme