Friday, August 14, 2015

NRC Approves Changes to Petition-for-Rulemaking Process

NRC Approves Changes to Petition-for-Rulemaking Process

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission today approved a final rule that will streamline and clarify its process for addressing petitions for rulemaking. The new rule will be published shortly in the Federal Register.

Any member of the public can petition the NRC to issue a new regulation or amend an existing one. The final rule marks the first comprehensive update to the NRC’s process for considering rulemaking petitions since the process was established in 1979. The NRC published proposed changes for comment in May 2013, and considered the comments received in finalizing the rule.

The revisions will clarify the NRC’s policies and practices at each stage of the petition-for- rulemaking process, including how the staff evaluates petitions and how it communicates information about both the status of petitions and rulemaking activities that address them. It also improves the process for resolving a rulemaking petition and for closing the petition docket, which would occur after the NRC denies a petition or initiates a rulemaking to address a petitioner’s concerns. The changes are intended to enhance the consistency, timeliness and transparency of the process and improve its efficiency.

More information about the petition-for-rulemaking process can be found on the NRC’s website.

Download PDF

Pilgrim facility cuts its power

It was the fourth time in the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station’s 43-year history that seawater flowing through its intake pipes exceeded the 75-degree federal limit.

Sea water flowing into Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station from Cape Cod Bay over the weekend reached an excessive temperature that forced the Plymouth plant to cut power and prepare for a rare shutdown, Pilgrim officials said Tuesday.

The operators of the station, which is about 35 miles south of Boston, cut power by 10 percent around 4 p.m. on Sunday to cool sea water pulled into the plant.

The plant resumed full power about 3½ hours later, and Lauren Burm, a spokeswoman for Entergy Corp., the plant’s owner, said, “the plant remained in stable condition the whole time, and there was never a threat to the public or the plant.”

Plant officials suggested that the elevated temperature — 75.09 degrees — was the result of a combination of tides and wind mixing water discharged from the plant with the water being drawn into its intake pipes.

Read Article