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Public participation eliminated, as Nuclear Regulatory Commission ‘streamlines’ nuclear licensing

David Lochbaum, director of the Union of Concerned Scientis’s  said “The old Soviet system was efficient, too,”  arguing that the streamlining sets up a system that approves an entire plan’s construction and operation upfront, a step that happens entirely based on blueprints and that offers fewer opportunities to contest a new project.

“It’s a paper battle – you’re looking at things that are done in cyberspace, and there’s no real evidence to point at,” Lochbaum said. “It has the effect of eliminating public participation.”

Streamlining Nuclear Regs, Energy Biz 28 June 12, AGENCY SEEKS TO
REMOVE IMPEDIMENTS  FOR MORE THAN 20 YEARS, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has been in the process of implementing new, streamlined licensing procedures, and this spring the first new nuclear projects in decades were approved – two new reactors at the SCANA-owned V.C. Summer Plant, and two others at the Southern Company-owned Plant Vogtle.

In an interview with EnergyBiz, the NRC’s Mike Johnson, who took over
as director for the agency’s reactor and preparedness programs in May,
said these new projects demonstrate how well the streamlining has
worked. Licensing is not holding up new development anymore, he and
other stakeholders said……
Both of the new reactor projects are using the AP1000 reactor design,
certified for use by the NRC in December, and with the approval of the
two projects, newer projects can piggyback on their success, Johnson
said….
Russ Bell, director of new plant licensing for the Nuclear Energy
Institute, the industry’s trade group, agreed with Johnson’s assessment that for what- ever other factors may
be putting a damper on a nuclear power renaissance – like the cost –
the two new projects show that the licensing procedure won’t be the
limiting factor. The agency put the applicants to the test before
construction and although it still watches closely, it essentially is
stepping out of the way to allow the companies to follow through, he
said…..
David Lochbaum, director of the Union of Concerned Scientis’s  said “The old Soviet system was efficient, too,”  arguing that the streamlining sets up a system that approves an entire plan’s construction and operation upfront, a step that happens entirely based on blueprints and that offers fewer opportunities to contest a new project.

“It’s a paper battle – you’re looking at things that are done in cyberspace, and there’s no real evidence to point at,” Lochbaum said. “It has the effect of eliminating public participation.”
http://www.energybiz.com/magazine/article/273687/streamlining-nuclear-regs

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June 29, 2012 - Posted by | Legal, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA

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