The European Commission initiated in 1997 the European Study on Occupational Radiation Exposure (ESOREX) which objectives were:
- to provide the European Commission and the national competent radiation protection authorities with reliable information on how personal radiation monitoring, reporting and recording of dosimetric results is structured in European countries;
- to collect reliable and directly comparable data on individual (levels of individual personal radiation doses to workers) and collective exposure in all occupational sectors where classified workers are employed (nuclear fuel cycle, medical sector, industry in general, research and education, and natural sources), and the trends and developments of these doses over a period of several years.
The last ESOREX symposium, involving representatives from organizations responsible, in all European Union Member States, Associated States and Candidate States, for the collection of dosimetric data and information on occupational radiation monitoring and exposure, took place in Prague (Czech Republic) in 2010.
As a result, it was proposed to establish a European Platform for Occupational Radiation Exposures for EU countries, associated countries and voluntary countries in which representatives from national dose registries and from dosimetry services can discuss emerging issues, assess dose trends and exchange experience.
The European Commission has entrusted the Institute of Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety (IRSN) with the development of the ESOREX Platform within a 3-year period.
The main objectives of the ESOREX Platform are:
- to allow easy information and experience exchange between experts in occupational radiation exposure, and in particular representatives from national dose registries and from dosimetry services;
- to assist in the implementation of requirements on occupational radiation protection in the current and the revised Euratom Basic Safety Standards Directive;
- to establish and maintain an overview on national arrangements for occupational radiation exposure in Europe. Such an overview will be helpful for development of arrangements in the different states and then for the harmonization of practices among them;
- to provide the basis for the evaluation and assessment of occupational radiation exposure data with a view to allow for benchmarking exercises and to identify potential for dose reductions (database on occupational radiation exposure). This database shall include data from all participating countries covering all occupational sectors where classified workers are employed (nuclear fuel cycle, medical sector, general industry, research and education and workplaces with natural radiation sources). Such a database on occupational radiation exposure for different sectors will, among others:
- allow to identify sectors of interest for all the countries in which optimization arrangements should be further looked for;
- allow to identify sectors to focus on for each country in order to reduce doses compared to other countries;
- allow to prepare the data necessary for more global surveys, as those undertaken by the UNSCEAR.
- to promote the harmonization of data and information reporting formats within Europe and beyond;
- to establish working relationships with other relevant international organizations and bodies, by taking into account the expectations of these organizations and bodies, in terms of data concerning the occupational exposure of workers in Europe, that could be directly available in the ESOREX Platform.