Releasing Part Of A Power Reactor Site Or Facility For Unrestricted Use Before The NRC Approves The License Termination Plan


S. Schneider, J. C. Dehmel


The current regulations in 10 CFR Part 50 do not address the release of part of a reactor facility or site for unrestricted use, or require a licensee to obtain U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) approval when doing so. Furthermore, there is not a specific requirement to meet the release criteria under 10 CFR Part 20, Subpart E, when releasing part of a reactor facility or site. These regulations were based on the NRC's anticipation that reactor licensees would permanently cease operations and then perform the decommissioning and license termination of the entire site as one large project. However, licensees have informed the NRC that they intend to sell parts of their facility and site prior to permanent cessation of operations or post shutdown but before NRC approves their license termination plan (LTP). Consequently, the NRC is proposing to amend its regulations to standardize the process for allowing a power reactor licensee to release part of its facility or site for unrestricted use before NRC approves the LTP. This type of release is termed a "partial site release." The proposed rule identifies the criteria and regulatory framework that a licensee would use to request NRC approval for a partial site release and provides additional assurance that residual radioactivity meets the radiological criteria for license termination under 10 CFR Part 20, Subpart E, even if parts of the site were released before a licensee submits its LTP to the NRC. This paper provides a brief overview of key elements of the proposed rule, as well as the technical guidance on implementation and dose assessment now being developed to supplement NUREG-1727, "ANMSS Decommissioning Standard Review Plan," (NRC 2000).


This abstract was presented at the 35th Annual Midyear Meeting, "Decommissioning and Environmental Restoration", Regulatory Issues Session, 2/17/2002 - 2/20/2002, held in Orlando, FL.

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