NRC Extends Construction Permit For Watts Bar Unit 2

Friday, November 22, 2013

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has extended the expiration date of the construction permit for the unfinished Unit 2 at the Watts Bar nuclear power plant to Sept. 30, 2016. The Tennessee Valley Authority, which operates Unit 1 at the plant about 10 miles south of Spring City, Tn., requested the extension on May 17, 2012.

The NRC staff’s environmental assessment of the extension request, which found no significant impact on the environment, was published in the Federal Register on Oct.

22. The agency has issued the staff’s safety evaluation of the extension, as well as an order extending the construction permit. The documents will appear shortly in the Federal Register

Any person adversely affected by the order may request a hearing within 20 days of its publication in the Register, specifically listing whether TVA failed to show good cause for the extension and why the NRC should not have issued the order. The order includes instructions on how to file a hearing request.

TVA has informed the NRC it intends to complete Unit 2 and request an operating license in 2014. The NRC will decide whether to issue a license for Unit 2 in accordance with the agency’s regulations. Unit 2, if completed, would be an 1,100-MWe, Westinghouse-designed pressurized water reactor essentially the same as the operating Unit 1. More information on Watts Bar Unit 2 is available on the NRC’s website.

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