NRC ISSUANCE OF ORDER TO MODIFY LICENSES – BEYOND-DESIGN-BASIS EXTERNAL EVENTS

UNITED STATES

NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20555·0001
March 12,2012
EA-12-049
All Power Reactor Licensees and
Holders of Construction Permits in
Active or Deferred Status
SUBJECT: ISSUANCE OF ORDER TO MODIFY LICENSES WITH REGARD TO
REQUIREMENTS FOR MITIGATION STRATEGIES FOR
BEYOND-DESIGN-BASIS EXTERNAL EVENTS
The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has issued the enclosed Order that modifies the
current license for your facility. The Order requires provisions for mitigation strategies for
beyond-design-basis external events, and applies to all addressees listed in Attachment 1 to the
enclosed Order. …

During the events in Fukushima, the challenges faced by the operators were beyond any
faced previously at a commercial nuclear reactor. It was determined that additional
requirements must be imposed to mitigate beyond-design-basis external events. These
additional requirements impose guidance and strategies to be available if the loss of power,
motive force and normal access to the ultimate heat sink to prevent fuel damage in the reactor
and spent fuel pool affected all units at a site simultaneously.
The NRC staff has determined that continued operation does not pose an imminent risk to public
health and safety; however, the additional requirements outlined in this Order are necessary in
light of insights gained from the events at Fukushima Dai-ichi.

Pursuant to Section 223 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, any person who willfully
violates, attempts to violate, or conspires to violate, any provision of this Order shall be subject to
criminal prosecution as set forth in that section. Violation of this order may also subject the
person to civil monetary penalty.
The enclosed Order requires responses and actions within specified timeframes. Please contact
your Licensing Project Manager or Mr. Steven Bloom, Mitigation Strategies Order Project
Manager (301-415-2431), regarding any issues related to compliance with the requirements in
the enclosed Order, or if you have other questions.

ORDER TO MODIFYING LICENSES WITH REGARD TO REQUIREMENTS FOR MITIGATION

STRATEGIES FOR BEYOND-DESIGN-BASIS EXTERNAL EVENTS

EA-12-049

This Order requires a three-phase approach for mitigating beyond-design-basis external events. The initial phase requires the use of installed equipment and resources to maintain or restore core cooling, containment and spent fuel pool (SFP) cooling capabilities. The transition phase requires providing sufficient, portable, onsite equipment and consumables to maintain or restore these functions until they can be accomplished with resources brought from off site. The final phase requires obtaining sufficient offsite resources to sustain those functions indefinitely.
(1)
Licensees or construction permit (CP) holders shall develop, implement, and maintain guidance and strategies to maintain or restore core cooling, containment and SFP cooling capabilities following a beyond-design-basis external event.
(2)
These strategies must be capable of mitigating a simultaneous loss of all alternating current (ac) power and loss of normal access to the ultimate heat sink and have adequate capacity to address challenges to core cooling, containment, and SFP cooling capabilities at all units on a site subject to this Order.
(3)
Licensees or CP holders must provide reasonable protection for the associated equipment from external events. Such protection must demonstrate that there is adequate capacity to address challenges to core cooling, containment, and SFP cooling capabilities at all units on a site subject to this Order.
(4)
Licensees or CP holders must be capable of implementing the strategies in all modes.
(5)
Full compliance shall include procedures, guidance, training, and acquisition, staging, or installing of equipment needed for the strategies.
Attachment 2

end quote.

So, the assurance that the Emergency Core Cooling System would prevent containment failure first enunciated in 1967 and continually repeated by regulators and industry since that time, and particularly following reassurance in the period 1971 – 1975 have been based on an inadequate institutional and industry understanding of what threats were credible, and loss of local on site power is the crux of the BEYOND-DESIGN-BASIS EXTERNAL EVENT.

A power black out is beyond design basis external event.

Since 1967 the nuclear industry has discounted grid power failure as a threat.

So the batteries went flat in March 2011.

I suppose I should just shut up and quietly eat my cesium.

The last line of defense against containment breach from loss of cooling function at nuclear power plants is now:

The portable diesel generator.

They have had since 1967 to dream this up.

2 Responses to “NRC ISSUANCE OF ORDER TO MODIFY LICENSES – BEYOND-DESIGN-BASIS EXTERNAL EVENTS”

  1. CaptD Says:

    This is the CYA for the NRC so if something bad happens, they can say that the pan was not “robust” enough or some such thing and then start yet another round of finger pointing and ISSUANCE OF “ADDITIONAL” ORDERS TO MODIFY LICENSES WITH REGARD TO REQUIREMENTS FOR MITIGATION STRATEGIES FOR
    BEYOND-DESIGN-BASIS EXTERNAL EVENTS…

    Guess what, Nature and or bad luck don’t care about regulations!

  2. Esteban Says:

    Your style is unique in comparison to other folks I’ve read stuff from. Thank you for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I’ll
    just bookmark this blog.

Comments are closed.


%d bloggers like this: