Society News Archive

4 February 2014
EPA Requests Comments on Updating Nuclear Power Environmental Standards

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking that requests public comment and information on potential approaches to updating the EPA's "Environmental Radiation Protection Standards for Nuclear Power Operations" (40 CFR Part 190).

These standards were originally issued in 1977. They limit radiation releases and doses to the public from normal operation of nuclear power plants and other uranium fuel cycle facilities—that is, facilities involved in the milling, conversion, fabrication, use, and reprocessing of uranium fuel for generating commercial electrical power. These standards were the earliest radiation rules developed by EPA and are based on nuclear power technology and the understanding of radiation biology current at that time. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is responsible for implementing and enforcing these standards.

Comments must be received on or before 4 June 2014.

Health Physics Society (HPS) President Darrell Fisher has convened a task force to develop comments based on factual information and approved HPS positions, but HPS members are strongly encouraged to review the document and provide their own comments directly to the EPA.