Morning Briefing - April 08, 2019
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April 08, 2019

NRC Schedules Meeting on Crystal River Land Release

By ExchangeMonitor

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has scheduled a meeting for April 25 in Florida to take public comment on Duke Energy’s request for the release of much of the property for its retired Crystal River nuclear power plant.

In January, Duke filed the request for release of 3,854 acres of the 4,738-acre property from the plant’s NRC license under Part 50 of the Code of Federal Regulations. If approved, the land would be available for unrestricted use.

Approval would not cover the plot of land that encompasses the reactor building, spent fuel storage pad, and other core infrastructure, NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan said Friday.

“The NRC will carefully review the request,” Sheehan said by email. “Among other things, the company needs to demonstrate that any land proposed for unrestricted release would not expose a member of the public to more than 25 millirems of radiation (from past plant operations) in any year. For perspective, the average American is exposed to about 620 millirems of radiation on an annual basis from natural and manmade sources.”

In its filing, Duke said it had previously conducted surveys to ensure that radioactivity levels within the area intended for release are within allowable levels, Sheehan said. The NRC will determine whether further radiological surveys are needed, he added.

Duke closed the Citrus County plant in 2013 and placed the pressurized-water reactor into SAFSTOR mode in 2015, under which it would have up to six decades to complete active decommissioning. Under that schedule, the power company would wrap up work in 2074. However, in the January filing, Duke said it is considering moving into active decommissioning.

The NRC meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Eastern time at the Holiday Inn Express Crystal River in Crystal River. Participants will include officials from the Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards for NRC Region 1.