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Loss of the Ultimate Heat Sink

Hi, I am Arnie Gundersen from Fairewinds.

This is the second December since the Fukushima Daiichi accident. I thought I would use this video to talk about things that were painfully obvious to Fairewinds viewers back in 2011, that really have not been internalized by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission even since then. So we are going to use this video as a training video for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, so that they can better understand what Fairewinds viewers have known for the last 2 years.

The problems that I want to talk about today are twofold. One is the containment integrity and the other is what happens when you do not cool a nuclear power plant, something that we call the loss of the ultimate heat sink. Well let's get right to it. The first topic is the containment integrity. Tokyo Electric released a report in September of this year, and they gave it to the IAEA, the International Atomic Energy Agency. The report is a more thorough analysis of the explosions at Fukushima Daiichi. And it discusses things that they have learned in 2012 that they did not incorporate in their analysis back in 2011. Well, if you have been watching the Fairewinds site, we knew exactly the problems that Tokyo Electric is now identifying in 2012. 

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Peach Bottom Supplemental Information Needed for Acceptance of Requested Licensing Action

PEACH BOTTOM ATOMIC POWER STATION, UNITS 2 AND 3, SUPPLEMENTAL INFORMATION NEEDED FOR ACCEPTANCE OF REQUESTED LICENSING ACTION RE: EXTENDED POWER UPRATE (TAC NOS. ME9631 AND ME9632)

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Peach Bottom: NRC Security Baseline Inspection Report

PEACH BOTTOM ATOMIC POWER STATION, UNITS 2 AND 3:  NRC SECURITY BASELINE INSPECTION REPORT 05000277/2012404, 05000278/2012404, AND 07200029/2012401

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Wyden say NWF should be used for dry casks at BWRss

DECEMBER 18, 2012, 7:26 AM

Come January, Another Try on Nuclear Waste

By MATTHEW L. WALD

The incoming chairman of the Senate Energy Committee suggests that the Energy Department should stop billing utilities more in waste disposal fees than the department is actually spending on addressing nuclear wastes. And he wants the department to pay for moving some of the wastes out of spent fuel pools at the nation's highest-risk reactors and into dry casks.

Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat, will take over as the committee's chairman when Congress begins its new session next month. In an interview on Monday, he pointed out that the department collects about $750 million a year in waste disposal fees at the rate of one-tenth of a cent per kilowatt-hour generated by the reactors that feed those utilities. Yet the government is spending nearly nothing, he noted.

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Emergency Preparedness & Response News - Vol 4 Issue 4

Attached is NSIR/DPR's Emergency Preparedness & Response News, Volume 4 Issue 4, a quarterly newsletter that is published by NSIR/DPR to highlight recent and upcoming events of interest to the radiological emergency preparedness community.  Feel free to pass it on to others. Please contact me at 301-415-0705 or carolyn.kahler@nrc.gov with any questions. Thank you.

 

Sincerely,

 

Carolyn

Carolyn J. Kahler
Communications and Outreach
Office of Nuclear Security and Incident Response
US Nuclear Regulatory Commission

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Incident Chronology at TMI from NRC: 1979-2012

Incident Chronology at TMI from NRC: 1979-2012

March 28, 1979, 4:00 a.m. - Beginning of the Three Mile Island (TMI) Unit-2 loss-of-coolant, core melt accident. The plant came within 30 minutes of a full meltdown. The reactor vessel was destroyed, and large amounts of unmonitored radiation was released directly into the community.

March 28, 1979, 4:30 p.m. - Press conference of Lt. Governor William Scranton:
This is an update on the incident at Three-Mile Island Nuclear Power Plant today. This situation is more complex than the company first led us to believe. We are taking more tests. And at this point, we believe there is still no danger to public health. Metropolitan Edison has given you and us conflicting information. We just concluded a meeting with company officials and hope this briefing will clear up most of your questions. There has been a release of radioactivity into the environment. The magnitude of this release is still being determined, but there is no evidence yet that it has resulted in the presence of dangerous levels. The company has informed us that from about 11 a.m. until about 1:30 p.m., Three-Mile Island discharged into the air, steam that contained detectable amounts of radiation.

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Incident Chronology at Susquehanna Steam Electric Station in Berwick: 2010- 2011

CHRONOLOGY of  PROBLEMS at the  SUSQUEHANNA STEAM ELECTRIC STATION
 
This chronology does not include the cost to the rate payer
to build Susquehanna-1 and -2. PP&L asked the Public Utility
Commission (PUC) for $315 million to recover the cost of
building Unit-1. The PUC granted $203 million on August 22,
1983, or a 16% increase to the customer. The company asked for
$330 million for Unit-2 but was allowed $121 million in April,
1985; an 8% increase to rate payers. In addition, PP&L
consumers have “contributed”  approximately $4.6 million
annually (since 1985) to the decommissioning fund.
 
(Also,  refer  to  May  15  and  August  13,  1998,  for  information
on  “stranded  costs” passed on to  “hostage” PP&L  rate payers.)
 
Moreover, in the Winter 1999/2000, PPL unilaterally
devaluated the combined PURTA and Real Estate tax
assessments for the SSES. Prior to the Negotiated Settlement,
the nuclear power generating stations were assessed by PP&L at
approximately $1 billion. PPL is now claiming that the the SSES
is only worth $74 million or the same amount as the valuation of
the Columbia Hospital. If PPL prevails, the Berwick School
District and Luzerne County will experience revenue shock. PPL
is not paying or escrowing any moneys they owe to Luzerne
County and the Berwick School District.

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Incident Chronology at Peach Bottom Atomic Power Plant: 1974- 2012

Philadelphia Electric's (PECO) applied for a license to operate the
Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station in late-July, 1960. The application
was approved by the Atomic Energy Commission. Peach Bottom was a 40
megawatt, High Temperature Graphite Moderated reactor that operated
from 1966-1974.

Peach Bottom 2 & 3 , are 1,065 megawatt Boiling Water Reactor designed
by General Electric and engineered by Bechtel. Both reactors began
operation in July, 1974, but had their licensees extended by the Nuclear
Regulatory Commission (NRC) and are expected to operate though 2034.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the Institute for
Nuclear Power Operations (INPO) have clearly demonstrated that
Philadelphia Electric's (PECO), renamed Exelon in 2000, performance has
historically been lackadaisical and sub-par. In order to put Peach Bottom's
operating history into perspective, it is necessary to review PECO's plant
legacy.

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ALERT FILTERED VENT - ANY OTHER COMMUNITIES GETTING LETTERS IN FROM INDIVIDUALS AND THEIR ELECTED OFFICIALS - TIME IS RUNNING OUT - LET'S MAKE 2013 A SAFER YEAR!

Duxbury Reporter - Duxbury selectmen to send letter to NRC

Letter to papers below

To Filter or Not to Filter That is the Question

Pilgrim, like other GE Mark I reactors in the U.S., is the same design as the failed Fukushima reactors.  Almost forty years ago, the NRC identified a serious design flaw in these reactors - in certain accident scenarios where hydrogen and or steam pressure builds up the containment would fail because the suppression chamber (enclosed area around the reactor core) is too small. Fukushima proved NRC’s earlier prediction correct, Units 1, 2 and 3 exploded and released unfiltered toxic radiation.

A supposed “fix” - a direct torus vent (DTV) to relieve excess pressure - was recommended and put into place at Pilgrim and other reactors, including Fukushima’s.  But three major problems remained. First, the vents were not filtered. Not having to pay for filters saved the industry money, but left the public’s health and property at risk because a release through the vent would be highly radioactive.   The second problem is whether plant operators will open the vent when appropriate to do so  At Fukushima the fear of what an unfiltered release would do to those in the area surrounding the plants resulted in the operators delaying opening the vents, and increased the risk of catastrophic explosions and the widespread uncontrolled release of radioactivity. Finally, and another lesson learned from Fukushima, when the operators finally tried to open the vents, they failed.  The vents did not have a rupture disc - relatively thin sheets of steel that break and allow venting automatically when the pressure reaches a specified level, without the need for human intervention or moving parts.

Following Fukushima, the NRC asked its technical staff to advise the Commission whether to require filters. After months of study, the staff recommended that Pilgrim and all operators of GE Mark I and Mark II reactors in the United States be ordered to install high capacity radiation filters on containment vents.  Such filters are already deployed throughout Europe, and having learned its lesson the hard way, they are soon to be installed in Japan.  Not surprisingly, the nuclear industry is adamantly opposed to spending the money to install filters.  The Commission will begin its deliberation process and is expected to vote in early 2013 whether to accept their staff’s recommendation.

The Commission decision should be a no-brainer. Reactors like Pilgrim are already required to filter the releases that occur daily in the course of normal operation.  There is no satisfactory explanation for the fact that nuclear power plants such as Pilgrim are not required to filter releases in the case of a severe accident when the amount of radiation and threat to workers and the public is by far the greatest. Direct Torus Vent filters are readily available. They have been tested for over 3 decades of use in Sweden, and are in use today throughout Europe.

Whether or not to require filters has a simple answer when you think about it. We are required to filter our car’s tail pipe emissions but Pilgrim is not required to filter its dangerous radioactive emissions in a severe accident. It makes no “sense” but a lot of “cents” to the industry.

How the NRC Commissioners vote early in January depends on whether they listen to industry or you. Consider emailing the Commissioners at NRCExecSec@nrc.gov reminding them that the Commission was formed to protect public health and safety not industry’s pocketbooks.

TMI Request for Additional Information Regarding Relief Request

THREE MILE ISLAND NUCLEAR STATION, UNIT 1 - REQUEST FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION REGARDING RELIEF REQUEST RR-12-02, RELIEF REQUEST CONCERNING FULL STRUCTURAL WELD OVERLAY OF DISSIMILAR METAL WELDS ON THE LOWER COLD LEG LETDOWN NOZZLE AND SAFE-END (TAC NO. ME9818)

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