The storage and disposal of all radioactive waste in Ireland is subject to control by licence under the Radiological Protection Act, 1991 (General Control of Fissile Fuels, Radioactive Substances and Irradiating Apparatus) Order, 1993 (S.I. No. 151 of 1993). These licensing controls are operated by the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland.
Radioactive material, in both sealed and unsealed form, is imported for use in industrial, medical and laboratory applications under licence from the institute. At present, all imported sealed radioactive sources must be returned to the original supplier at the end of their useful lives — this is a precondition imposed by the institute prior to the issue of a licence. In relation to unsealed sources and sealed sources imported before the introduction of regulatory controls in 1977, the licencee is obliged to store the waste material safely on his premises until the radioactive content has decayed to levels at which disposal as ordinary domestic waste is permitted.