U.S. Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Bob Corker (R-TN) today praised the announcement by NuStart Energy – the nation’s largest consortium of nuclear energy companies and TVA – the nation’s largest public power utility – that they have filed an application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission for a license that would allow for the future construction and operation of an advanced reactor design.
“Climate change may be an inconvenient truth,” Alexander said. “A second inconvenient truth is that, if we want to deal with climate change in this generation, conservation and nuclear power are the only real alternatives. Nuclear power today produces 70 percent of our nation’s carbon free electricity.”
“I am very proud of the role Tennessee and TVA are playing within the nuclear industry to make our country more energy secure,” Corker said. “The volatility of other energy resources and increased concern over carbon dioxide emissions creates a tremendous opportunity for greater focus and development of nuclear power.”
Senator Alexander is a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee and the Co-Chairman of the TVA Caucus.
Senator Corker is a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
NUSTART / TVA SUBMIT “FORWARD LOOKING” REFERENCE APPLICATION
Washington D.C. — October 30, 2007 — NuStart Energy, the nation’s largest consortium of nuclear energy companies, and TVA, the nation’s largest public power utility, today submitted an application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission for a license that would allow for the future construction and operation of an advanced reactor design that is also being considered by other utilities in the U.S.
The material submitted to the NRC will serve as the reference combined Construction and Operating License (COL) application for a Westinghouse dual-unit AP1000™ design at TVA’s Bellefonte site in northern Alabama. As a result of the industry’s commitment to plant standardization, most of the content of the application can be used by other nuclear utilities planning to use the AP1000 technology to develop their own site-specific license applications more efficiently.
In addition to the TVA COL application, NuStart is working with Dominion on developing the reference application for the GE-Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) Economic Simplified Boiling Water Reactor (ESBWR). Dominion will be submitting later this year, the reference ESBWR application for a single unit at its North Anna Power Station site in Louisa County, Virginia.
“The Department of Energy's NP2010 initiative has paved the way for the industry to work together as never before to develop technical, regulatory, and other opportunities that can renew nuclear energy in the United States," said NuStart President Marilyn Kray. “NuStart has been at the forefront of these efforts and prominent in establishing standardized license applications using the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s design-centered review approach.”
“Submittal of this application is the next key step in the process,” said TVA Chief Operating Officer Bill McCollum. “The NRC’s thorough and comprehensive review will help build certainty into the regulatory schedule for this and future applications. That will help minimize regulatory and financial risks if TVA and other utilities decide to pursue construction.”
Currently, four other utilities, which are also members of NuStart and helped prepare the Bellefonte application, have selected the Westinghouse AP1000 design and have informed the NRC that they plan to reference the TVA application in their own COL applications during the coming year.
Similarly, Dominion’s North Anna reference application for the ESBWR will be used by Entergy in the development of two proposed COL applications for its Grand Gulf and River Bend sites. These applications are expected to be submitted in the first and second quarters of 2008, respectively.
The reference applications have been developed using a design-centered review concept that focuses the industry’s engineering and technical expertise on the specific reactor design that utilities are pursuing.
The design-centered working group for the Westinghouse AP1000 is comprised of TVA, Progress Energy, Duke Energy, Southern Co., South Carolina Electric and Gas, and Westinghouse, each of these companies is a member of the NuStart consortium. GEH’s ESBWR design-centered working group includes Dominion, Entergy, and GEH.
The TVA reference COL application consists of 7,000-pages and required more than 100,000 work hours over a two-year period. The application was completed on schedule and according to the budget allocated for the work. In addition, the Westinghouse design team has expended over one million engineering work hours since 2004 to develop the standardized design information that is referenced in the TVA COL application.
While today’s submittal of the Bellefonte application is an important milestone, it marks the midway point in the overall objectives of NuStart and the Nuclear Power 2010 Program.
NuStart acknowledges the significant workload ahead for the NRC staff as it begins to review the first wave of applications submitted under the revised licensing process. The regulatory review schedule for the Bellefonte application will be established by the NRC and will include many opportunities for public involvement.
Members of NuStart Energy consortium are:
• Constellation Energy, Baltimore, MD
• Duke Energy, Charlotte, NC
• Detroit Edison, Detroit, MI (membership pending)
• EDF International North America, Washington, D.C.
• Entergy Nuclear, Jackson, MS
• Exelon Generation, Philadelphia, PA
• Florida Power & Light Company, Juno Beach, FL
• Progress Energy, Raleigh, NC
• South Carolina Electric & Gas, Columbia, SC
• Southern Company, Atlanta, GA
• Tennessee Valley Authority, Knoxville, TN
• GE-Hitachi Nuclear Energy, Wilmington, NC
• Westinghouse Electric Co., Pittsburgh, PA
What Members of Congress Say About the Application for Bellefonte License:
Nuclear energy is clean, safe, and efficient, and it is important that we tap into this source of power to help meet the growing energy needs of our country. Last month we celebrated the first application for a nuclear power plant in close to thirty years, and I am pleased to now be celebrating another. If America wishes to get serious about reducing carbon emissions, then we must increase the use of nuclear energy.
--U.S. Sen. Pete Domenici of New Mexico
I am pleased that NuStart and TVA are moving forward with this historic license application. The NuStart consortium saw three big plusses for choosing the Bellefonte site in Alabama -- TVA, an attractive pre-existing site, and a community that welcomes a future with nuclear energy. As a nation, we must commit ourselves to a greater usage of nuclear power, our best source of clean, reliable and safe energy. Applying for a new nuclear license puts TVA in a leadership position within the nuclear industry, and we’re proud that Alabama may be home to one of the first new plants in decades.
--U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama
Climate change may be an inconvenient truth. A second inconvenient truth is that, if we want to deal with climate change in this generation, conservation and nuclear power are the only real alternatives. Nuclear power today produces 70 percent of our nation’s carbon free electricity.
--U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee
I applaud NuStart’s and TVA’s decision to formally apply for a Combined Operating License for the Bellefonte Nuclear Facility. I have worked with Jackson County and TVA officials for years to complete Bellefonte. This is a major move in the right direction for North Alabama to utilize the next generation of nuclear power technology.
--U.S. Rep. Bud Cramer of Alabama
What Members of Congress Say About the Application for Bellefonte License:
I am proud to see that Alabama is a leader in the effort to diversify our energy resources through the expansion of nuclear power. I believe that nuclear power is safe and environmentally sound and should continue to be part of a long term energy plan for Alabama and the nation.
--U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama
I am very proud of the role Tennessee and TVA are playing within the nuclear industry to make our country more energy secure. The volatility of other energy resources and increased concern over carbon dioxide emissions creates a tremendous opportunity for greater focus and development of nuclear power.
--U.S. Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee
Nuclear power production is an essential component to help meet our country's future energy demands while reducing our fossil fuel use. The rebirth of nuclear power may be our best approach to climate change because it produces zero carbon emissions, and TVA is leading this effort.
--U.S. Rep. Zach Wamp of Tennessee
The United States must aggressively pursue a comprehensive, long term energy policy that protects our environment, lowers prices and promotes energy security. Nuclear power must be part of that solution. The Tennessee Valley Authority continues its commitment to find the best way to meet growing customer energy demands. Increasing our ability to generate nuclear power is a critical step to providing affordable base load power that Tennessee's growing economy requires.
--U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee