Thursday, August 29, 2013

Vermont Yankee - Safe, Clean, Reliable???

Vermont Yankee to close. It has been a long, hard battle and our thanks go out to all of those that worked so hard and refused to give up.
"In a huge victory for the grass-roots movement for a green-powered earth, Entergy has announced it will shut its Vermont Yankee reactor by the end of next year." -  Harvey Wasserman

Read the full story here Vermont Yankee joins the tsunami of US reactor shut downs

Currently the NRC reports the following power reactor sites undergoing decommissioning:

Dresden – Unit 1Dresden, IL
Fermi – Unit 1Newport, MI
Humboldt BayEureka, CA
Indian Point – Unit 1Buchanan, NY
LaCrosse Boiling Water ReactorGenoa, WI
Millstone – Unit 1Waterford, CT
Nuclear Ship SavannahBaltimore, MD
Peach Bottom – Unit 1Delta, PA
San Onofre – Unit 1San Clemente, CA
Three Mile Island – Unit 2Middletown, PA
Vallecitos Boiling Water Reactor (VBWR)Sunol, CA
Zion – Units 1 & 2Zion, IL

Power Reactors in the Decommissioning Process

Current updates of all power reactor sites undergoing decommissioning are available at:

Crystal River - Unit 3

Crystal River 3, in Crystal River, Fla., entered an extended shutdown in 2009 when cracks were discovered in the wall of its containment structure. In February 2013, Duke Energy decided not to attempt costly repairs and certified to the NRC that the plant had permanently ceased operations and that the fuel had been permanently removed from the reactor.

Dresden - Unit 1

The plant, near Morris, Ill., shut down in October 1978 and is currently in SAFSTOR. The decommissioning plan (DP) was approved in September 1993. No significant dismantlement activities are underway. Isolation of Unit 1 from Units 2 and 3 is complete. All spent fuel from Unit 1 that was previously stored in the Unit 1 spent fuel pool (SFP), the Unit 1 fuel transfer pool, and the Unit 2 SFP has now been transferred to the on-site independent spent fuel storage installation (ISFSI). Currently, 108 spent fuel assemblies and one fuel rod basket from Unit 1 are stored in the Dresden Unit 3 SFP. The licensee plans to have decontamination and dismantlement of Unit 1 take place from 2029 through 2031 when Units 2 and 3 are nearing the end of their life. Following decontamination and dismantlement of Units 2 and 3, site restoration will be conducted in 2035 and 2036, with final site surveys to be performed in late 2036.

Fermi - Unit 1

The plant, in Monroe County, Mich., was shut down in September 1972 and is currently in SAFSTOR. The spent fuel, reactor vessel, piping, bulk sodium and liquid waste tanks have been removed from the site. The licensee is performing occupational safety enhancement activities, concentrating in non-radioactive areas, such as asbestos removal. The PSDAR public meeting was held on April 22, 1998.

GE- VBWR (Vallecitos Boiling Water Reactor)

The plant, in Alameda County, Calif., was shut down in December 1963 and issued a possession-only license in 1965. The plant is in SAFSTOR and plans to remain in SAFSTOR until ongoing nuclear activities at the site are terminated and the entire site can be decommissioned. All nuclear fuel has been removed from the site.

Humboldt Bay - Unit 3

The plant, near Eureka, Calif., was shut down in July 1976. A Decommissioning Plan (DP) was approved in July 1988 – currently called a Defueled Safety Analysis Report, it is updated every two years. A post-shutdown activities report (PSDAR) was issued by the licensee in February 1998. The transfer of spent fuel from the fuel storage pool to the ISFSI was completed in December 2008 and limited decontamination and dismantlement of HBPP Unit 3 decommissioning commenced. In 2010, the construction of a new fossil-fueled generation station on site was completed. The licensee has completed demolition of the non-nuclear Unit 1 and Unit 2. A license termination plan was submitted in May 2013.

Indian Point - Unit 1

The plant, in Buchanan, N.Y., was shut down in October 1974. Currently, there is no significant dismantlement underway. The owner plans to decommission Unit 1 concurrently with Unit 2, which remains in operation. The PSDAR public meeting was held on Jan. 20, 1999.

La Crosse

The plant, in La Crosse, Wis., was shut down on April 30, 1987. The SAFSTOR DP was approved Aug. 7, 1991. The DP is considered the PSDAR. The PSDAR public meeting was held on May 13, 1998. The licensee has been conducting limited dismantlement and decommissioning activities and completed transferring spent fuel to an ISFSI in September 2012.

Millstone - Unit 1

Unit 1, near Waterford, Conn., was shut down Nov. 4, 1995, and transfer of the spent fuel to the SFP was completed Nov. 19, 1995. On July 21, 1998, the licensee certified to the NRC that, as of July 17, 1998, Millstone Unit 1 had permanently ceased operations and that fuel had been permanently removed from the reactor vessel. The owner’s current plan is to leave the plant in SAFSTOR until the Unit 2 license expires, which is currently scheduled for July 31, 2015. The owner submitted its required PSDAR on June 14, 1999, and has chosen a combination of the DECON and SAFSTOR options.
Safety-related structures, systems, and components (SSCs) remaining at Millstone Unit 1 are associated with the SFP “island” where the Millstone Unit 1 spent fuel is stored. Other than non-essential systems supporting the balance of plant facilities, the remaining plant equipment has been disabled and abandoned in place or removed from the unit and can no longer be used for power generation.

NS Savannah

The ship was removed from service in 1970 and its fuel removed in October 1971. The reactor is currently in SAFSTOR. The Nuclear Ship (NS) Savannah was removed from the Maritime Administration Reserve Fleet in the James River, Va. In May 2008, the NS Savannah was relocated from the Hampton Roads area of Virginia to Baltimore, Md. The Department of Transportation plans to complete decommissioning and terminate the license by 2031.

Peach Bottom - Unit 1

The plant, in York County, Pa., was shut down in October 1974 and is in SAFSTOR with no significant dismantlement underway. Active decommissioning of Unit 1 is not expected until 2034, when Units 2 and 3 are scheduled to shut down. The PSDAR public meeting was held on June 29, 1998. The spent fuel has been removed from the site and is stored at the Idaho National Laboratory.

San Onofre - Unit 1

Southern California Edison (SCE) shut down the reactor, located near San Clemente, in November 1992 and placed it in SAFSTOR until the planned shutdown of Units 2 and 3 in 2022. In 1998, following a change in NRC decommissioning regulations, SCE submitted a PSDAR for San Onofre Unit 1 to commence DECON in 2000. Since that time, the fuel has been placed in an ISFSI. SCE has removed all structures down to the -8’ building level. In late 2008, the licensee completed Phase 2 of the planned ISFSI expansion by locating it on the former containment building site. In 2010, NRC approved SCE’s request for a partial site release of the off-shore cooling pipes. The Part 50 license remaining is for the reactor pressure vessel in storage and the ISFSI.

Three Mile Island - Unit 2

The operating accident at this reactor, near Middletown, Pa., occurred in March 1979. Plant de-fueling was completed in April 1990. Post de-fueling monitored storage was approved in 1993. There is no significant dismantlement underway. The plant shares equipment with the other operating unit, which was sold to Amergen (now Exelon) in 1999. GPU Nuclear, which is owned by FirstEnergy, retains the license for Three Mile Island Unit 2 and contracts to Exelon for maintenance and surveillance activities. Both units are currently expected to be decommissioned together when Unit 1 ceases operation. The U.S. Department of Energy has taken title and possession of the spent fuel (except for some debris in the primary systems), which is currently in storage at the Idaho National Laboratory.

Zion - Units 1 And 2

Zion Units 1 and 2, near Zion, Ill., were permanently shut down on Feb.13, 1998. The fuel was transferred to the spent fuel pool, and the owner submitted the certification of fuel transfer on March 9, 1998. The licensee is maintaining the turbine-generators as synchronous condensers to support grid stability and has isolated the spent fuel pool within a fuel building “nuclear island.” The owner submitted the PSDAR, site-specific cost estimate, and fuel management plan on Feb. 14, 2000. On Sept. 1, 2010, the facility license was transferred from Exelon to ZionSolutions for the express purpose of expediting decommissioning. ZionSolutions intends to use a “rip and ship” process that will reduce the labor-intensive separation of contaminated materials and transport the materials in bulk to the EnergySolutions disposal site in Utah. Completion of the spent fuel transfer to the ISFSI is scheduled for 2014. Submittal of the LTP is scheduled for 2015 and license termination in 2020.
May 2013
Page Last Reviewed/Updated Wednesday, July 10, 2013
It is good to remember and think about the fact that while a nuclear facility may be shut down the process of permanent storage of spent fuel is just beginning. Read the details of the above sites, then watch the documentary Into Eternity and then take a very deep breath and think!

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