Statehouse leadership wants Yankee pipes rebuilt above ground

From the Rutland Herald:

The Democratic leaders of the state House and Senate called on the owners of the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant to replace its entire underground piping system after the discovery of yet another radioactive leak.

Senate President Peter Shumlin and House Speaker Shap Smith told reporters at a Burlington news conference Wednesday that Entergy, the plant's owner, needs to take drastic steps to stop the ongoing leaks.

Vermont Yankee officials announced over last weekend that another pipe had leaked radioactive substances, including tritium, chromium-51, manganese-54, cobalt-58, cobalt-60, zinc-65, zinc-69, niobium-95, rhodium-105, xenon-131, cesium-137, barium-140 and lanthanum-140.

"We can't continue having a leak of the week," said Shumlin, a resident of Windham County, where the nuclear plant is located. "This is Vermont's biggest environmental disaster in its history. This is our BP disaster."

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Susquehanna: Discrimination Resolution

PPL Susquehanna Station: Letter to Licensee reference the closeout of NRC Resolution of an Allegation of Discrimination

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Atomic Waste Gets 'Temporary' Home

From the Wall Street Journal:

Three months after the U.S. cancelled a plan to build a vast nuclear-waste repository in Nevada, the country's ad hoc atomic-storage policy is becoming clear in places like Wiscasset, Maine.

Wiscasset doesn't even have a nuclear-energy plant anymore. The Maine Yankee facility was shuttered back in 1996 after developing problems too costly to fix, and the reactor was dismantled early this decade. What's left is a bare field of 167 acres cleared and ready for development—except for one thing.

Left behind are 64 enormous steel-and-concrete casks that hold 542 metric tons of radioactive waste. Seventeen feet tall and 150 tons apiece, the casks are protected by razor wire, cameras and a security force.

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Former Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Elected to Pinnacle West Board of Director

From Penwell:

The board of directors of Pinnacle West Capital Corp. said Dale E. Klein has been elected to the Pinnacle West Board of Directors. He also has joined the Board of Pinnacle West’s principal subsidiary, Arizona Public Service Co.

Klein, 62, served as chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission from July 2006 to May 2009, and thereafter as a commissioner until March 30, 2010.

Prior to his service on the NRC, Dr. Klein was assistant to the Secretary of Defense for nuclear, chemical and biological defense programs from November 2001 to July 2006.

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Gov't audits NRC, Yankee

From the Brattleboro Reformer:

Tuesday, June 1 2010 BRATTLEBORO - Following the discovery of a radioactive leak coming from an underground pipe at Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant on Jan. 6, both the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and Yankee are being audited.

The U.S. Government Accountability Office is planning a review of the NRC's requirements for and oversight of buried pipes at nuclear power plants.

Yankee is being audited by the NRC to determine if its license renewal application completely and accurately represents the nature and extent of buried piping at the plant in Vernon.

While the GAO's review has not yet begun, the NRC was in Vernon the week of May 24 to conduct its audit. The NRC has 90 days to issue its report.

The NRC's visit to Yankee was scheduled, "In light of the recent developments related to tritium leaks found on the site and potential misinformation given to the state of Vermont by Entergy ..."

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TMI Unit 1 Back On-Line after Maintenance

Exelon Press Release

LONDONDERRY TWP. Pa. (May 31, 2010) – Three Mile Island Unit 1 (TMI-1) began producing carbon-free electricity today at 7:18 a.m. ET when operators connected the plant to the regional power grid. TMI-1 generates 852 megawatts of electricity, enough power for more than 800,000 homes.

The unit was taken offline on May 28 at 11 p.m. ET to perform maintenance on a reactor coolant pump. The maintenance work has been completed.

While the plant was offline, plant personnel took advantage of the opportunity to do additional maintenance to ensure a reliable summer operating run.

Post Corrosion on DCU Batteries

C&D Technologies, Inc. (C&D) received a report from a non-domestic customer who is not a U.S. licensee concerning cracks in positive post seals in C&D 3DCU-9 batteries. As a precautionary measure, C&D has chosen to treat this customer's report in the same manner as if the report involved a defect claim by parties regarding matters subject to 10 CFR Part 21. This defect is believed to affect DCU product line batteries 3DCU-7, 2DCU-9, and 3DCU-9, manufactured in the period January 1993 through May 2008. These batteries are used in class 1E applications.

The facilities affected by this are DC Cook, Nine Mile Point, Grand Gulf, Susquehanna, Columbia, and Sequoyah.

Event Number: 45961

TMI-2 Inspection Report

Inspection No. 05000320/2010008

Docket No. 05000320

Facility: Three Mile Island Station, Unit 2

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New PA water rules

The Pennsylvania Environmental Quality Board (EQB) approved two important water protection rules that will shield both drinking water and the state's rivers and streams. One rule sets a protective limit on total dissolved solid (TDS) pollution and requires Marcellus Shale drillers to treat wastewater that they discharge to rivers and streams to drinking water standards. The second rule requires new developments to create or protect a 150 foot natural filter planted with trees and other plants along our best waterways.

Susquehanna: Cyber Security Plan Amendment Request


ADAMS Accession No. ML092740791

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