RULING AND RULEMAKING ON “CONTINUED STORAGE OF SPENT FUEL BEYOND THE LICENSED LIFE FOR OPERATION OF A REACTOR” (A.K.A. WASTE CONFIDENCE)
On August 26, 2014, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission met in an affirmation session and approved publication of the final rule and its associated generic environmental impact statement on the continued storage of spent fuel beyond the licensed life for operation of reactors, formerly called “WASTE CONFIDENCE.” At the same affirmation, the Commission approved issuance of a Memorandum and Order lifting the suspension on final licensing decisions that the Commission imposed in CLI-12-16 and provided direction to ASLBs related to the treatment of “continued storage” contentions that were held in abeyance in twenty-one adjudicatory proceedings pending in the agency.
— The SRM for the Final Rule – Continued Storage of Spent Fuel (SECY-14-0072) and the Memorandum and Order Lifting Suspension (SECY-14-0075) can be found at www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/commission/srm/2014/2014-0072srm.pdf
— The Memorandum and Order Lifting Suspensions (CLI-14-08) can be found at…
— The Commission’s voting record with each Commissioner’s vote and comments can be found at www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/commission/cvr/2014
Following the Commission’s Order lifting suspensions, a number of parties in pending proceedings filed petitions to suspend final licensing and motions to admit new contentions on the “Continued Storage Rule” and the rule’s supporting Generic Environmental Impact Statement. In CLI-14-09 (October 7, 2014), the Commission exercised its inherent supervisory authority and took review of the petitions and motions in the pending proceedings. The Commission directed that responses to the petition and motions be filed no later than October 31, 2014, with replies to responses due by November 7, 2014
On October 27, 2014, the Continued Storage Rule and the supporting GEIS were challenged in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. See Petition for Judicial Review of Administrative Agency Action, Prairie Island Indian Community v. NRC, No. 14-1212 (D.C. Cir. Oct. 27, 2014)