NRC Issues Early Site Permit to Tennessee Valley Authority for SMRs at Clinch River Site

LCG, December 27, 2019--The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) announced on December 17 that the Commission has authorized the issuance of an Early Site Permit (ESP) for Tennessee Valley Authority's (TVA's) Clinch River site near Oak Ridge, Tennessee. The ESP closes several site-related issues, including many environmental impacts, for small modular reactors (SMRs) at the site. The ESP is the first issued by the NRC for SMRs and will be valid for up to 20 years from date of issuance.

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NRC Issues Subsequent License Renewals for First Time to Nuclear Reactors in Florida

LCG, December 11, 2019--The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff recently approved Florida Power & Light's (FPL's) application for an additional 20 years of operation for Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Units 3 and 4. This is the first time the NRC has issued renewed licenses authorizing reactor operation from 60 to 80 years. The subsequent (or second) license renewals (SLRs) for Turkey Point Unit 3 and Unit 4 now expire on July 19, 2052 and April 10, 2053, respectively.

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Industry News

California Capsule: Blackouts Triple on Second Day

LCG, May 9, 2001The California Independent System Operator directed the state's investor-owned electric utilities to cut power to about 300,000 customers beginning at 3:15 p.m. yesterday, three times the number affected on Monday.

Pacific Gas & Electric Co. spokesman Ron Low said about 143,000 customers throughout Central and Northern California were affected, in two waves of blackouts. Laura Farmer of San Diego Gas & Electric Co. said 14,400 of her company's customers lost power, including some in the city of Chula Vista, home of Democrat state Sen. Steve Peace, the chief architect of California's electric restructuring law.

Elsewhere in Southern California, Southern California Edison Co. cut power to 135,700 customers for two-hour periods, according to Tom Boyd, a spokesman for SoCal Ed. Even 4,800 customers of the Sacramento Municipal Utility District lost power, Smud spokesman Gregg Fishman said.

Jim McIntosh, Cal-ISO's director of operations, said there will likely be more of the same this afternoon. "Right now our forecast is for very similar load conditions," he said.

  • Democrats in the California state Assembly congratulated themselves yesterday for passing legislation Monday for the state to issue $13.4 billion in revenue bonds to cover the purchases of power by the state's Water Resources Authority. The vote lacked the two-thirds majority which would have allowed it to become effective immediately and now must wait 90 days to take effect. That's enough to kill the idea.
    Opponents of the bond issue said yesterday that they could gather the 400,000 signatures necessary to mount either an initiative or a referendum on the bond issue. An initiative would allow the voters to approve an alternative law, while a referendum, would ask the voters to approve the law as it was passed by the legislature.
    Getting 400,000 signatures in California is no difficult matter. Organizers put a few thousand signature gatherers in front of supermarkets and pay them anywhere from a dollar to two dollars per valid name.

  • California started the year with a budget surplus of $6.6 billion dollars, and Gov. Gray Davis had plans to spend every cent on things that make voters happy, like education, highways and cops. But $6.2 billion of that surplus has now been spent by the state buying power, because no one has been willing to charge retail electricity customers what the stuff really costs.
    There will be no funds from bond issues to permit further power purchases until summer is nearly over, and that will force the state to dip into pet programs like anti-tobacco campaigns and tire recycling programs. The money in those funds should be enough to cover power buying until the revenue bonds can be issued.
    Davis will unveil his annual budget on Monday.

  • Gov. Davis has until next Monday to file papers defending his refusal to make public the financial details of long-term power contracts being entered into by the state. California newspapers and broadcasters are suing the governor for access to the contracts, which involve about $40 million in public funds.
    In a ruling last week that was made public yesterday, a state judge in San Diego gave the governor until May 14 to defend his position. Little is known about the contracts, except what Davis has told in press conferences. He has said, for example, that the price the state will pay for power under the contracts is an average of $69 per megawatt-hour, but no one knows for sure.

  • In a filing yesterday with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, SoCal Ed accused El Paso Corp. of artificially inflating the price of natural gas in California by $3.7 billion over the past year. The company said El Paso's partial control of a pipeline had enabled the Texas company to bilk the cash-strapped utility out of at least $1 billion over the 13 months ended March 31.
    In its response, also filed yesterday, El Paso said California's high gas prices were the result of "unexpected and unprecedented demand and an insufficient supply infrastructure," not from manipulation of the market. California's energy problems, El Paso said, reflect "more than a decade's worth of bad public policy decisions that are now coming back to haunt the state."

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