Society News Archive

11 August 2015
NRC Seeks Public Comment on Petitions to End Use of LNT Model in 10 CFR 20

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering petitions to amend its radiation protection regulations that are based on the linear no-threshold (LNT) model.

Specifically, three petitioners (Carol Marcus, MD, PhD; Mark L. Miller, CHP; and Mohan Doss, PhD) have requested that "NRC greatly simplify and change 10 CFR 20 to take into account the 'vast literature demonstrating no effects or protective effects at relatively low doses of radiation.'"

The recommended changes include:

  • Keeping worker dose limits at present levels, with allowance of up to 100 mSv y-1 from chronic doses.
  • Removing the as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) approach from the regulations, which is irrelevant if low doses are indeed hermetic.
  • Setting public dose limits to be the same as worker dose limits.

Comments on the petitions will be accepted until 8 September 2015.

The changes may be viewed and comments submitted on the federal government's rulemaking website using Docket ID NRC-2015-0057.