NRC likely to grant second license renewals

April 16, 2020, 2:14PMNuclear News

Surry Power Station. Photo: Dominion Energy.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission issued its final supplemental environmental impact statement (EIS) on April 6 for Dominion Energy’s subsequent license renewal (SLR) application for Surry-1 and -2, concluding that the potential environmental impacts from continued operation of the units are not substantial enough to prevent the agency from considering issuance of the SLRs. The NRC had issued its final safety evaluation report on the Surry SLR application on March 9, with a similarly positive conclusion.

Why it matters: The SLR process determines whether the license for an operating reactor can be extended for an additional 20 years. Initial license renewals add 20 years to a reactor’s original 40-year license. Dominion submitted its SLR application for the Surry reactors in October 2018.

Details: Located in Surry, Va., Units 1 and 2 are both 874-MWe pressurized water reactors that began operation in May 1972 and January 1973, respectively. The initial license renewals for the units, approved in March 2003, expire in 2032 and 2033. Subsequent license renewals would potentially allow the plant to operate through 2053.

What’s more: Dominion is also seeking SLRs for its two North Anna reactors, located in Mineral, Va. North Anna-1 and -2, twin 973-MWe PWRs, entered commercial operation in June 1978 and December 1980, respectively. Dominion submitted a letter of intent to apply for the SLRs in November 2017 and is expected to submit its official SLR application sometime between October and December of this year.

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