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Building technical capacity on the United Nations Framework Classification in Africa

Interest in the United Nations Framework Classification for Fossil Energy and Mineral Reserves and Resources 2009 (UNFC) as a tool for natural resource management continues to grow worldwide. The attention turns to Africa next week. Government representatives from Algeria, Chad, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ghana, Malawi, Mali, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Sudan, Tunisia and Uganda will convene in Johannesburg from 10-14 November for a Regional Technical Workshop on UNFC with a focus on uranium resources.

Organized jointly by UNECE, the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Geoscience Council of South Africa, the Workshop has been designed to build capacity on how to apply UNFC in practice to nuclear fuel resources, as well as to solid minerals more broadly. Applications of UNFC in reporting and managing unconventional uranium resources and comprehensive extraction will be presented, as will the benefits of the system in formulating an integrated exploration strategy for undiscovered resources of uranium, hydrocarbons and coal in ‘energy basins’. Sustainable development depends on having a social licence for any mining and processing project. Being awarded a social licence demands a contemporary resource classification system that allows the efficient management and effective, transparent comparison of all energy commodities, from nuclear fuels to petroleum to renewable sources. UNFC as a medium for social licensing and stakeholder communications will be explained and debated. Importantly, the workshop will offer an invaluable opportunity for experts in resource identification and classification from Africa to share experiences in using UNFC and other systems for the estimation of energy resources, in particular uranium and thorium.

For more information on UNFC and/or the Expert Group on Resource Classification, please visit: http://www.unece.org/energy/se/reserves.html

or contact Charlotte Griffiths at: reserves.energy@unece.org