WASHINGTON, May 20 -- The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has issued a notice, published in the Federal Register on May 19, 2023, entitled "Southern Nuclear Operating Company Inc.; Vogtle Electric Generating Plant, Unit 4."
The notice was issued by Cayetano G. Santos, acting director in the Vogtle Project Office in the Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
COMMENT DEADLINE: June 20, 2023
* * *
The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering issuance of an amendment to Combined License (COL) NPF-92, issued to Southern Nuclear Operating Company, Inc. (SNC), and Georgia Power Company, Oglethorpe Power Corporation, MEAG Power SPVM, LLC, MEAG Power SPVJ, LLC, MEAG Power SPVP, LLC, Authority of Georgia, and the City of Dalton, Georgia (collectively, SNC), for construction and operation of the Vogtle Electric Generating Plant (VEGP), Unit 4, located in Burke County, Georgia.
Submit comments by June 20, 2023. Comments received after this date will be considered if it is practical to do so, but the Commission is able to ensure consideration only for comments received before this date. A request for a hearing or petition for leave to intervene must be filed by July 18, 2023.
You may submit comments by any of the following methods; however, the NRC encourages electronic comment submission through the Federal rulemaking website:
* Federal rulemaking website: Go to https://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2008-0252. Address questions about Docket IDs in Regulations.gov to Stacy Schumann; telephone: 301-415-0624; email: Stacy.Schumann@nrc.gov. For technical questions, contact the individual listed in the For Further Information Contact section of this document.
* Mail comments to: Office of Administration, Mail Stop: TWFN-7-A60M, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, ATTN: Program Management, Announcements and Editing Staff.
For additional direction on obtaining information and submitting comments, see "Obtaining Information and Submitting Comments" in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
William "Billy" Gleaves, Vogtle Project Office, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001; telephone: 301-415-5848; email: Bill.Gleaves@nrc.gov.
I. Obtaining Information and Submitting Comments
A. Obtaining Information
Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2008-0252 when contacting the NRC about the availability of information for this action. You may obtain publicly available information related to this action by any of the following methods:
* Federal Rulemaking website: Go to https://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2008-0252.
* NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS): You may obtain publicly available documents online in the ADAMS Public Documents collection at https://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. To begin the search, select "Begin Web-based ADAMS Search." For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC's Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-4737, or by email to PDR.Resource@nrc.gov. The application for amendment, dated April 17, 2023, is available in ADAMS under Accession No. ML23107A278.
* NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public documents, by appointment, at the NRC's PDR, Room P1 B35, One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852. To make an appointment to visit the PDR, please send an email to PDR.Resource@nrc.gov or call 1-800-397-4209 or 301-415-4737, between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. eastern time (ET), Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
B. Submitting Comments
The NRC encourages electronic comment submission through the Federal Rulemaking website ( https://www.regulations.gov). Please include Docket ID NRC-2008-0252 in your comment submission.
The NRC cautions you not to include identifying or contact information that you do not want to be publicly disclosed in your comment submission. The NRC will post all comment submissions at https://www.regulations.gov as well as enter the comment submissions into ADAMS. The NRC does not routinely edit comment submissions to remove identifying or contact information.
If you are requesting or aggregating comments from other persons for submission to the NRC, then you should inform those persons not to include identifying or contact information that they do not want to be publicly disclosed in their comment submission. Your request should state that the NRC does not routinely edit comment submissions to remove such information before making the comment submissions available to the public or entering the comment submissions into ADAMS.
The NRC is considering issuance of an amendment to Facility Operating License No. NPF-92, issued to SNC for construction and operation of the VEGP Unit 4, located in Burke County, Georgia.
The proposed changes would revise the COL to modify the current Unit 4 COL Condition 2.D(9), Technical Specifications (TS), to limit the scope of COL Appendix A TS that become effective upon a Commission finding in accordance with section 52.103 paragraph (g) of tile of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR). The proposed revision to the COL Condition would provide temporary exceptions prior to initial criticality of the reactor core for certain TS while operating in Modes 4, 5, and 6. The COL Appendix A TS are proposed to be permanently effective at Unit 4 initial criticality of the reactor core. The proposed change also includes revision to COL Appendix A TS Limiting Condition for Operation 3.0.7 to coordinate with the TS compliance provisions proposed in the COL Condition.
Before any issuance of the proposed license amendment, the NRC will need to make the findings required by the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended (the Act), and NRC's regulations.
The NRC has made a proposed determination that the license amendment request involves no significant hazards consideration. Under the NRC's regulations in 10 CFR 50.92, this means that operation of the facility in accordance with the proposed amendment would not (1) involve a significant increase in the probability or consequences of an accident previously evaluated; or (2) create the possibility of a new or different kind of accident from any accident previously evaluated; or (3) involve a significant reduction in a margin of safety. As required by 10 CFR 50.91(a), the licensee has provided its analysis of the issue of no significant hazards consideration, which is presented below:
1. Does the proposed amendment involve a significant increase in the probability or consequences of an accident previously evaluated?
The proposed changes do not adversely affect the operation of any structures, systems, or components (SSCs) associated with an accident initiator or initiating sequence of events. The proposed changes do not affect the design of Engineered Safety Systems (ESF), or the associated Protection and Safety Monitoring System (PMS) and Diverse Actuation System (DAS) instrumentation and controls. The proposed amendment does not affect accident initiators or precursors nor adversely alter the design assumptions, conditions, and configuration of the facility. The proposed amendment does not alter any plant equipment or operating practices with respect to such initiators or precursors in a manner that the probability of an accident is increased. The proposed amendment will not alter assumptions relative to the mitigation of an accident or transient event, as these assumptions are based upon irradiated fuel for the associated accident or transient. The proposed amendment does not increase the likelihood of the malfunction of a system, subsystem, or component (SSC) or impact analyzed accidents.
Therefore, the proposed change does not involve a significant increase in the probability or consequences of an accident previously evaluated.
2. Does the proposed amendment create the possibility of a new or different kind of accident from any accident previously evaluated?
The proposed amendment does not introduce any new or unanalyzed modes of operation. The proposed changes do not involve a physical alteration to the plant ( i.e., no new or different type of equipment will be installed) or a change to the methods governing normal plant operation. The changes do not alter the assumptions made in the safety analysis, as these assumptions are based upon irradiated fuel for the associated accident or transient.
Therefore, the proposed change does not create the possibility of a new or different kind of accident from any accident previously evaluated.
3. Does the proposed amendment involve a significant reduction in a margin of safety?
The margin of safety is related to maintaining safety analysis and design basis acceptance criteria, including the ability of the fission product barriers to perform their design functions during and following an accident. No safety analysis or design basis acceptance criterion is challenged or exceeded by the proposed changes. Since the changes apply only prior to the reactor core being initially critical there are no fissions products, and therefore, there is no potential for a reduction in a margin of safety associated with fission product barriers.
Therefore, the proposed change does not involve a significant reduction in a margin of safety.
The NRC staff has reviewed the licensee's analysis and, based on this review, it appears that the three standards of 10 CFR 50.92(c) are satisfied. Therefore, the NRC staff proposes to determine that the license amendment request involves no significant hazards consideration.
The NRC is seeking public comments on this proposed determination that the license amendment request involves no significant hazards consideration. Any comments received within 30 days after the date of publication of this notice will be considered in making any final determination.
Normally, the Commission will not issue the amendment until the expiration of 60 days after the date of publication of this notice. The Commission may issue the license amendment before expiration of the 60-day notice period if the Commission concludes the amendment involves no significant hazards consideration. In addition, the Commission may issue the amendment prior to the expiration of the 30-day comment period should circumstances change during the 30-day comment period such that failure to act in a timely way would result, for example, in derating or shutdown of the facility. Should the Commission take action prior to the expiration of either the comment period or the notice period, the Commission will publish a notice of issuance in the Federal Register . Should the Commission make a final no significant hazards consideration determination, any hearing will take place after issuance. The Commission expects that the need to take this action will occur very infrequently.
III. Opportunity To Request a Hearing and Petition for Leave To Intervene
Within 60 days after the date of publication of this notice, any persons (petitioner) whose interest may be affected by this action may file a request for a hearing and a petition to intervene (petition) with respect to the action. Petitions shall be filed in accordance with the Commission's "Agency Rules of Practice and Procedure" in 10 CFR part 2. Interested persons should consult a current copy of 10 CFR 2.309. The NRC's regulations are accessible electronically from the NRC Library on the NRC's public website at https://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/cfr. If a petition is filed, the Commission or a presiding officer will rule on the petition and, if appropriate, a notice of a hearing will be issued.
As required by 10 CFR 2.309(d) the petition should specifically explain the reasons why intervention should be permitted with particular reference to the following general requirements for standing: (1) the name, address, and telephone number of the petitioner; (2) the nature of the petitioner's right to be made a party to the proceeding; (3) the nature and extent of the petitioner's property, financial, or other interest in the proceeding; and (4) the possible effect of any decision or order which may be entered in the proceeding on the petitioner's interest.
In accordance with 10 CFR 2.309(f), the petition must also set forth the specific contentions which the petitioner seeks to have litigated in the proceeding. Each contention must consist of a specific statement of the issue of law or fact to be raised or controverted. In addition, the petitioner must provide a brief explanation of the bases for the contention and a concise statement of the alleged facts or expert opinion which support the contention and on which the petitioner intends to rely in proving the contention at the hearing. The petitioner must also provide references to the specific sources and documents on which the petitioner intends to rely to support its position on the issue. The petition must include sufficient information to show that a genuine dispute exists with the applicant or licensee on a material issue of law or fact. Contentions must be limited to matters within the scope of the proceeding. The contention must be one which, if proven, would entitle the petitioner to relief. A petitioner who fails to satisfy the requirements at 10 CFR 2.309(f) with respect to at least one contention will not be permitted to participate as a party.
Those permitted to intervene become parties to the proceeding, subject to any limitations in the order granting leave to intervene, and have the opportunity to participate fully in the conduct of the hearing with respect to resolution of that person's admitted contentions consistent with the NRC's regulations, policies, and procedures.
Petitions must be filed no later than 60 days from the date of publication of this notice. Petitions and motions for leave to file new or amended contentions that are filed after the deadline will not be entertained absent a determination by the presiding officer that the filing demonstrates good cause by satisfying the three factors in 10 CFR 2.309(c)(1)(i) through (iii). The petition must be filed in accordance with the filing instructions in the "Electronic Submissions (E-Filing)" section of this document.
If a hearing is requested, and the Commission has not made a final determination on the issue of no significant hazards consideration, the Commission will make a final determination on the issue of no significant hazards consideration. The final determination will serve to decide when the hearing is held. If the final determination is that the amendment request involves no significant hazards consideration, the Commission may issue the amendment and make it immediately effective, notwithstanding the request for a hearing. Any hearing held would take place after issuance of the amendment. If the final determination is that the amendment request involves a significant hazards consideration, then any hearing held would take place before the issuance of any amendment unless the Commission finds an imminent danger to the health or safety of the public, in which case it will issue an appropriate order or rule under 10 CFR part 2.
A State, local governmental body, Federally-recognized Indian Tribe, or agency thereof, may submit a petition to the Commission to participate as a party under 10 CFR 2.309(h)(1). The petition should state the nature and extent of the petitioner's interest in the proceeding. The petition should be submitted to the Commission no later than 60 days from the date of publication of this notice. The petition must be filed in accordance with the filing instructions in the "Electronic Submissions (E-Filing)" section of this document, and should meet the requirements for petitions set forth in this section, except that under 10 CFR 2.309(h)(2) a State, local governmental body, or Federally-recognized Indian Tribe, or agency thereof does not need to address the standing requirements in 10 CFR 2.309(d) if the facility is located within its boundaries. Alternatively, a State, local governmental body, Federally-recognized Indian Tribe, or agency thereof may participate as a non-party under 10 CFR 2.315(c).
If a hearing is granted, any person who is not a party to the proceeding and is not affiliated with or represented by a party may, at the discretion of the presiding officer, be permitted to make a limited appearance pursuant to the provisions of 10 CFR 2.315(a). A person making a limited appearance may make an oral or written statement of his or her position on the issues but may not otherwise participate in the proceeding. A limited appearance may be made at any session of the hearing or at any prehearing conference, subject to the limits and conditions as may be imposed by the presiding officer. Details regarding the opportunity to make a limited appearance will be provided by the presiding officer if such sessions are scheduled.
IV. Electronic Submissions (E-Filing)
All documents filed in NRC adjudicatory proceedings, including documents filed by an interested State, local governmental body, Federally recognized Indian Tribe, or designated agency thereof that requests to participate under 10 CFR 2.315(c), must be filed in accordance with 10 CFR 2.302. The E-Filing process requires participants to submit and serve all adjudicatory documents over the internet, or in some cases, to mail copies on electronic storage media, unless an exemption permitting an alternative filing method, as further discussed, is granted. Detailed guidance on electronic submissions is located in the "Guidance for Electronic Submissions to the NRC" (ADAMS Accession No. ML13031A056) and on the NRC's public website at https://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals.html.
To comply with the procedural requirements of E-Filing, at least 10 days prior to the filing deadline, the participant should contact the Office of the Secretary by email at Hearing.Docket@nrc.gov, or by telephone at 301-415-1677, to (1) request a digital identification (ID) certificate, which allows the participant (or its counsel or representative) to digitally sign submissions and access the E-Filing system for any proceeding in which it is participating; and (2) advise the Secretary that the participant will be submitting a petition or other adjudicatory document (even in instances in which the participant, or its counsel or representative, already holds an NRC-issued digital ID certificate). Based upon this information, the Secretary will establish an electronic docket for the proceeding if the Secretary has not already established an electronic docket.
Information about applying for a digital ID certificate is available on the NRC's public website at https://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals/getting-started.html. After a digital ID certificate is obtained and a docket created, the participant must submit adjudicatory documents in Portable Document Format. Guidance on submissions is available on the NRC's public website at https://www.nrc.gov/site-help/electronic-sub-ref-mat.html. A filing is considered complete at the time the document is submitted through the NRC's E-Filing system. To be timely, an electronic filing must be submitted to the E-Filing system no later than 11:59 p.m. ET on the due date. Upon receipt of a transmission, the E-Filing system time-stamps the document and sends the submitter an email confirming receipt of the document. The E-Filing system also distributes an email that provides access to the document to the NRC's Office of the General Counsel and any others who have advised the Office of the Secretary that they wish to participate in the proceeding, so that the filer need not serve the document on those participants separately. Therefore, applicants and other participants (or their counsel or representative) must apply for and receive a digital ID certificate before adjudicatory documents are filed to obtain access to the documents via the E-Filing system.
A person filing electronically using the NRC's adjudicatory E-Filing system may seek assistance by contacting the NRC's Electronic Filing Help Desk through the "Contact Us" link located on the NRC's public website at https://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals.html, by email to MSHD.Resource@nrc.gov, or by a toll-free call at 1-866-672-7640. The NRC Electronic Filing Help Desk is available between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m., ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
Participants who believe that they have good cause for not submitting documents electronically must file an exemption request, in accordance with 10 CFR 2.302(g), with their initial paper filing stating why there is good cause for not filing electronically and requesting authorization to continue to submit documents in paper format. Such filings must be submitted in accordance with 10 CFR 2.302(b)-(d). Participants filing adjudicatory documents in this manner are responsible for serving their documents on all other participants. Participants granted an exemption under 10 CFR 2.302(g)(2) must still meet the electronic formatting requirement in 10 CFR 2.302(g)(1), unless the participant also seeks and is granted an exemption from 10 CFR 2.302(g)(1).
Documents submitted in adjudicatory proceedings will appear in the NRC's electronic hearing docket, which is publicly available at https://adams.nrc.gov/ehd, unless excluded pursuant to an order of the presiding officer. If you do not have an NRC-issued digital ID certificate as previously described, click "cancel" when the link requests certificates and you will be automatically directed to the NRC's electronic hearing dockets where you will be able to access any publicly available documents in a particular hearing docket. Participants are requested not to include personal privacy information such as social security numbers, home addresses, or personal phone numbers in their filings unless an NRC regulation or other law requires submission of such information. With respect to copyrighted works, except for limited excerpts that serve the purpose of the adjudicatory filings and would constitute a Fair Use application, participants should not include copyrighted materials in their submission.
For further details with respect to this action, see the application for license amendment dated April 17, 2023.
Attorney for licensee: Mr. M. Stanford Blanton, Balch & Bingham LLP, 1710 Sixth Avenue North, Birmingham, AL 35203-2015.
NRC Director: Cayetano G. Santos.
Dated: May 16, 2023.
For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Cayetano G. Santos,
Acting Director, Vogtle Project Office, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
[FR Doc. 2023-10724 Filed 5-18-23; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 7590-01-P
* * *
The document was published in the Federal Register: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/05/19/2023-10724/southern-nuclear-operating-company-inc-vogtle-electric-generating-plant-unit-4
TARGETED NEWS SERVICE (founded 2004) features non-partisan 'edited journalism' news briefs and information for news organizations, public policy groups and individuals; as well as 'gathered' public policy information, including news releases, reports, speeches. For more information contact MYRON STRUCK, editor, email@example.com, Springfield, Virginia; 703/304-1897; https://targetednews.com