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News Updates

  • Dominion Resources, Inc. has informed the NRC that Dominion Virginia Power will amend its COL application (COLA) to reflect the ESBWR technology by the end of 2013. In 2009 Dominion dropped the ESBWR from its COLA after failing to reach a commercial agreement with General Electric-Hitachi (GEH). A COL is expected no earlier than late 2015. Dominion Virginia Power has not yet committed to building a new nuclear unit at North Anna.
  • NRC has determined that the latest revision to the South Texas Project COLA does not alleviate foreign interest concerns; the staff found that despite having only a 10% ownership stake in Nuclear Innovation North America LLC (NINA), Toshiba American Nuclear Energy Corporation’s financing of all project costs effectively resulted in control and domination of NINA. The COL review remains active while NINA considers its options to move forward.
  • Duke Energy Progress Inc. has requested suspension of the Shearon Harris COLA review; the projected commercial operation dates of the proposed units no longer fall within the 15 year planning window used to forecast need for power by the public utilities commissions of North and South Carolina.
  • NRC has published a new estimate for completing the review of Duke Energy’s COL application for two AP1000 units at the William States Lee generating station in South Carolina. A July 22 letter to the company outlines a new schedule with a 3 year delay in the target date for holding the Commission’s mandatory hearing on the staff’s review. NRC budgetary limitations and the company’s decision late last year to relocate the nuclear island were cited as reasons for the delay.
  • The schedule for design certification of Areva’s US-EPR is under review following NRC’s finding of lack of sufficient evidence of independence between safety related and non-safety related instrumentation and control systems. NRC staff has indicated that the complexity of the design has so far prevented successful demonstration of required levels of independence and diversity.

Regulatory Status

  • Eighteen Combined Construction and Operating License (COL) applications have been docketed, nine of which (totaling 14 nuclear reactors) remain under active NRC review.  NRC reviews of six applications were suspended due to utility economic considerations.  Review of the Fermi and South Texas Project applications could continue after submittal of additional technical information; in addition, the South Texas Project and Calvert Cliffs applications face foreign ownership issues.  The Reference COL (R-COL) application has been submitted for five reactor designs; subsequent COLs (S-COLs) will incorporate the corresponding R-COL application by reference, noting any site-specific departures. Southern Nuclear’s Vogtle Units 3 and 4 and SCE&G’s VC Summer Units 2 and 3 have received COLs.

Reactor Design Certification (DC)

  • Two reactor designs that are being considered for future builds are certified and two renewal applications are under NRC review.
  • AREVA US-EPR – Submitted December 12, 2007, and docketed February 25, 2008; certification schedule is under review.
  • GE-Hitachi ESBWR – Final Design Approval in March 2011; rulemaking expected 2013.
  • Mitsubishi Heavy Industries US-APWR – Submitted December 31, 2007, and docketed February 29, 2008; rulemaking expected in 2016.
  • KEPCO APR1400 – Pre-application interactions began in January 2012. Design certification application anticipated in 2013.
  • GE-Hitachi ABWR – Certified in 1997. Toshiba and GEH have also separately submitted Design Certification renewal applications that are currently under review.
  • Westinghouse AP1000 – Amended design certified on December 30, 2011.

Early Site Permits (ESP)
Four ESPs issued; one under review:

  • PSEG submitted an ESP application for its nuclear plant site in Salem County, New Jersey, on May 25, 2010. The final SER and EIS are expected in mid to late 2014.
  • The following ESPs have been issued:  Exelon – Clinton (IL), 3/15/07; Entergy – Grand Gulf (MS), 4/5/07; Dominion – North Anna (VA), 11/27/07; Southern – Vogtle site (GA), 08/26/09.

New Plant Construction Progress
Full nuclear construction has begun for V.C. Summer Unit 2 and Vogtle Unit 3. TVA is proceeding with the completion of Watts Bar 2.

Expected Operation Dates

  • TVA expects Watts Bar 2 to be completed by late 2015.
  • Southern Nuclear’s Vogtle Units 3 and 4 are expected to come online in 2017 and 2018, respectively.
  • SCE&G’s VC Summer Units 2 and 3 are expected to come online in 2017 and 2018, respectively.
  • Florida Power and Light’s Turkey Point expects Unit 6 to come online by 2022 and Unit 7 by 2023.