Related Rule
Australia
Practice Relating to Rule 42. Works and Installations Containing Dangerous Forces
Australia’s Defence Force Manual (1994) provides:
933. The works and installations containing dangerous forces are specifically limited to dams, dykes and nuclear electrical generating stations. Even where these objects are military objectives, they shall not be attacked if such attack may cause the release of dangerous forces and consequently severe losses amongst the civilian population. The purpose of this rule against such attacks is to avoid excess damage or loss to the civilian population.
934. Military objectives at or in the vicinity of an installation mentioned in paragraph 933 are also immune from attack if the attack might directly cause the release of dangerous forces from that installation in question and subsequent severe losses upon the civilian population.
935. The release of the dangerous forces must have a consequent severe loss among the civilian population. This is an absolute standard rather than the relative one set by the rule of proportionality. If massive civilian losses are foreseeable, the attack would be prohibited regardless of the anticipated military advantage.
936. Loss of Protection. In the case of a dyke or dam, the protection afforded ceases if three special conditions are evident. These are that:
a.it is used for other than its normal function;
b.it is used in regular, significant and direct support of military operations; and
c.an attack is the only feasible way to terminate such support.
937. In relation to nuclear electrical generating stations and other military objectives located in the vicinity, only the conditions in paragraph 936.b and c. apply. 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, §§ 933–937; see also § 544 (“any such attack would be approved at the highest command level”) and Law of Armed Conflict, Commanders’ Guide, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 Supplement 1 – Interim Edition, 7 March 1994, §§ 408, 631 and 962.
The manual further provides that “launching unlawful attacks against installations containing dangerous forces” constitutes a grave breach or a serious war crime likely to warrant institution of criminal proceedings. 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, § 1315(j); see also Law of Armed Conflict, Commanders’ Guide, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 Supplement 1 – Interim Edition, 7 March 1994, § 1305(j).
Australia’s LOAC Manual (2006) states:
5.49 Dams, dykes and nuclear power stations may not be made the object of an attack if such attack may cause the release of dangerous forces and consequent severe losses amongst the civilian population. This is the position even if such installations are military objectives … In exceptional circumstances, the protection ceases if the installation is used in “regular, significant and direct support of military operations”. In any case, such an attack must be the only feasible way to stop the support, and any such attack would be approved at the highest command level.
9.34 The works or installations containing dangerous forces are specifically limited to dams, dykes and nuclear electrical generating stations. Even where these objects are military objectives, they shall not be attacked if such attack may cause the release of dangerous forces and consequently severe losses amongst the civilian population. The purpose of this rule against such attacks is to avoid excess[ive] damage or loss to the civilian population.
9.35 Military objectives at or in the vicinity of an installation mentioned in paragraph 9.34 are also immune from attack if the attack might directly cause the release of dangerous forces from that installation in question and subsequent severe losses upon the civilian population.
9.36 The release of the dangerous forces may have a consequent severe loss among the civilian population. This is an absolute standard rather than the relative one set by the rule of proportionality. If massive civilian losses are foreseeable, the attack would be prohibited regardless of the anticipated military advantage.
9.37 Loss of protection. In the case of a dyke or dam, the protection afforded ceases if three special conditions are evident. These are that:
• it is used for other than its normal function;
• it is used in regular, significant and direct support of military operations; and
• an attack is the only feasible way to terminate such support.
9.38 In relation to nuclear electrical generating stations and other military objectives located in the vicinity, only the last two conditions in paragraph 9.37 apply.
13.26 [The 1977 Additional Protocol I] extends the definition of grave breaches to include the following … acts when committed wilfully, in violation of the relevant provisions of the protocol, and causing death or serious injury to body or health:
• launching an attack against works or installations containing dangerous forces in the knowledge that such attack will cause excessive loss of life, injury to civilians or damage to civilian objects. 
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, §§ 5.49, 9.34–9.38 and 13.26.
The LOAC Manual (2006) replaces both the Defence Force Manual (1994) and the Commanders’ Guide (1994).
Australia’s Geneva Conventions Act (1957), as amended in 2002, provides that “a person who, in Australia or elsewhere, commits a grave breach … of [the 1977 Additional Protocol I] is guilty of an indictable offence”. 
Australia, Geneva Conventions Act, 1957, as amended in 2002, Section 7(1).
The grave breaches provisions in this Act were removed in 2002 and incorporated into the Criminal Code Act 1995.
Australia’s Non-Proliferation (Safeguards) Act (1987), as amended to 2007, states:
A person commits an offence if:
(a) the person does an act that is directed against a nuclear facility or that interferes with the operation of a nuclear facility; and
(b) the person does so intending that the act will cause, or knowing that the act is likely to cause:
(i) the death of, or serious injury to, any person; or
(ii) substantial damage to property or to the environment;
by exposure to radiation or by the release of radioactive substances.
Penalty: Imprisonment for 20 years. 
Australia, Non-Proliferation (Safeguards) Act, 1987, as amended to 2007, Part III, § 35A, p. 32.
Australia’s Criminal Code Act (1995), as amended to 2007, states with regard to war crimes that are grave breaches of the 1977 Additional Protocol I:
268.97 War crimeattack against works or installations containing dangerous forces resulting in excessive loss of life or injury to civilians
A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:
(a) the perpetrator launches an attack against works or installations containing dangerous forces; and
(b) the attack is such that it will cause loss of life, injury to civilians, or damage to civilian objects, to such an extent as to be excessive in relation to the concrete and direct military advantage anticipated; and
(c) the perpetrator knows that the attack will cause loss of life, injury to civilians, or damage to civilian objects, to such an extent; and
(d) the attack results in death or serious injury to body or health; and
(e) the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an international armed conflict.
Penalty: Imprisonment for life. 
Australia, Criminal Code Act, 1995, as amended to 2007, Chapter 8, § 268.97, pp. 370–371.
Australia’s ICC (Consequential Amendments) Act (2002) incorporates in the list of war crimes in the Criminal Code grave breaches of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, including “attacks against works and installations containing dangerous forces resulting in excessive loss of life or injury to civilians”. 
Australia, ICC (Consequential Amendments) Act, 2002, Schedule 1, § 268.97.
Australia’s Commanders’ Guide (1994) provides:
While parties to a conflict are required to avoid locating military objectives in the vicinity of such protected works and installations, they are nevertheless permitted to erect such emplacements as may be necessary for the defence of the protected installations. These emplacements shall be immune from attack provided they are not used in hostilities except in defence of the protected works and installations. Armament must be limited to weapons capable only of repelling hostile attacks against the protected works or installations in question. 
Australia, Law of Armed Conflict, Commanders’ Guide, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 Supplement 1 – Interim Edition, 7 March 1994, § 963.
Australia’s Defence Force Manual (1994) provides:
Defensive weapons systems may be erected to protect works or installations from attack. These systems may only be used for the limited purpose for which they are intended. The erection of such defence facilities is not without danger and could lead to the work or installation losing its protection. 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict , Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, § 938.
Australia’s LOAC Manual (2006) states:
Defensive weapons systems may be erected to protect works or installations from attack. These systems may only be used for the limited purpose for which they are intended. The erection of such defence facilities is not without danger and could lead to the work or installation losing its protection. 
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, § 9.39.
The LOAC Manual (2006) replaces both the Defence Force Manual (1994) and the Commanders’ Guide (1994).