Judge permits Uranium Mining Near Grand Canyon: No Tribal Consult, No Environmental Update; Appeal Expected

Donna Gilmore:

The Colorado River is a source of drinking water for Southern Californians.

Originally posted on Mining Awareness Plus:

D_3516 PREHISTORIC GRANARIES ABOVE NANKOWEAP IN MARBLE CANYON, GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK. MARK LELLOUCH, NPS
D_3516 Prehistoric granaries about Nankoweap in Marble Canyon, Grand Canyon National Park. Mark Lellouch, NPS

The nuclear fuel chain destroys the environment and kills from the start, with uranium mining, to the finish, with long-lived, deadly, nuclear waste. Why does the US government refuse to protect America’s National Forests and water supply? Why does it fail to uphold its obligations to the American Indians?Especially at the behest of foreign mining companies? Why must Americans fight foreign companies in court, and even fight Congressmen, to protect the land and water?
Boating down the Colorado River Below Havasu Creek in Grand Canyon National Park, by Mark Lellouch NPS
Boating down the Colorado River Below Havasu Creek in Grand Canyon National Part, by Mark Lellouch, NPS
Grand Canyon NPS
Grand Canyon, National Park Service (NPS)

Press Release from the Center for Biological Diversity:
April 8, 2015

Federal Judge OKs Uranium Mining Next to Grand Canyon National Park

Decision Allows Mining Without Tribal Consultation or Update Decades-old Environmental Review

PHOENIX, Ariz.— U.S. District…

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Childhood Cancer Near Nuclear Power Stations

Originally posted on Mining Awareness Plus:

Another US NRC deadline is upon us for 24 March 2015: https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2014/11/20/2014-27519/radiation-protection The following article by Dr. Ian Fairlie should prove helpful for the question about embryo-fetal exposure to radiation, dose assessment, and more. Dr. Fairlie has a degree in radiation biology and his doctoral studies concerned the radiological hazards of nuclear fuel reprocessing. [1] His research was instrumental in shutting down Quebec’s nuclear power station. His 2014 article, related to the one below, is discussed here: http://www.ianfairlie.org/news/childhood-leukemias-near-nuclear-power-stations-new-article/ Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.  p. 1Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 2Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 3Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 4Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 5Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 6Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.. p. 7Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 8 Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 9Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 10Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 11Commentary: childhood cancer near nuclear power stations Ian Fairlie © 2009 Fairlie; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. , p. 12 Highlight-Underline added. Original document here: http://www.ehjournal.net/content/8/1/43

Note that many nuclear reactors do “Batch releases” of radionuclides into the air, and/or water, multiple times per year and not only when the fuel is changed. That is, some reactors leak constantly and some hold back the leaks until some of the short-lived radionuclides have become less radioactive or non-radioactive. Then they release the remaining longer and long-lived radionuclides all at once as “effluent”. Dilution…

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10/21/2015 Laguna Woods City Council approves San Onofre nuclear waste resolution

Laguna Woods City Council adopted San Onofre Resolution 15-02 regarding concerns about continued storage of 1,609 metric tons of highly radioactive spent nuclear fuel at San Onofre.  It states that while waste remains on-site “…it must be stored in a manner that is as safe as possible including, but not limited to, that it is inspectable, transportable, and includes continuous, real-time monitoring information that is made available to the public…” and

“…that the proper storage and disposition of spent nuclear fuel must be a consideration in the decommissioning process and that the decommissioning plan must not be considered complete until those issues are resolved…”

See Laguna Woods Resolution 15-02 SONGS Storage and Spent Nuclear Fuel, January 21, 2015.

HoltecHI-STORM-UMAX-AirFlow

Holtec HI-STORM UMAX air flow around thin walled canister

Community members spoke about significant and urgent issues concerning Southern California Edison’s plan to spend almost $1.3 billion for a Holtec UMAX canister system that cannot be inspected or adequately maintained.

A similar Holtec canister at Diablo Canyon has conditions for cracking after only two years of use due to salt in the marine environment, yet Edison is ignoring this and other critical issues. See Reasons to buy thick nuclear waste dry storage casks and myths about nuclear waste storage.

The Laguna Woods resolution along with a letter from the Mayor will be sent to state and federal regulators and elected officials urging them to join immediately in efforts set forth in this resolution. The resolution was adopted at the January 21, 2015 City Council Meeting.

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has not approved funds for the Holtec UMAX canister system. A pre-conference hearing on the CPUC San Onofre decommissioning proceeding (A1412007) will be held at the CPUC in San Francisco on March 2nd at 2:00 pm.  This January 9, 2015 response to Edison’s San Onofre Decommissioning Plan and Costs was submitted to the CPUC, expressing numerous concerns with Edison’s plans.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has not approved the Holtec UMAX canister system Edison selected. Here are public comments submitted regarding why the Holtec UMAX system should not be approved by the NRC.

Edison has not considered the impact of on-site indefinite storage and the NRC has not completed their assessment of regulatory changes needed after the NRC August 26, 2014 decision allowing on-site indefinite storage. Here are San Onofre Safety comments submitted to the NRC regarding the San Onofre decommissioning plan and costs.

Most of the U.S. uses thin canister designs, such as Holtec. Most of the rest of the world uses thick casks that do not have the thin canister problems.  The NRC Division of Spent Fuel Management has chosen to weaken dry storage standards rather than raise them, in spite of the new requirement of indefinite on-site storage.  Learn more at SanOnofreSafety.org.

Reasons To Buy Thick Casks

Posted in City Council, CPUC, Diablo Canyon, Events, Nuclear Waste, PG&E, Press Release, Radiation Monitoring, SDG&E, Senator Barbara Boxer, Southern California Edison | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Radioactive Reindeer

Originally posted on Mining Awareness Plus:

Reindeer pulling sleigh, Russia
Reindeer Pulling Sleigh Photo by Elen Schurova via wikimedia.

The Chernobyl accident is an obvious example of how human failures when dealing with a modern technical system can have global consequences and also be a potential threat to what we like to think of as the unspoiled wilderness of the Arctic.” (Ahman, 1995) http://septentrio.uit.no/index.php/rangifer/article/viewFile/1455/1370

Reindeer are particularly at risk from nuclear fallout because Reindeer love to eat lichens, and lichens are excellent absorbers of radiation. The, 26 April, 1986, Chernobyl disaster is well-documented to have scattered radioactive caesium 137 (cesium 137), with a half life of about 30 years over Europe. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caesium-137. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chernobyl_disaster This is very bad, as caesium is very similar to potassium and hence can be taken up by human and animal body as well. Potassium is one of the most important, and perhaps the most important element in the body, as it is necessary for…

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10/27/2014 Carlsbad: NRC San Onofre Decommissioning meeting

PRESS RELEASE                                                                            FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 Media Contact:  Donna Gilmore, SanOnofreSafety.org
                               949-204-7794  dgilmore@cox.net
 
Updated 2/22/2015 with this link to Official Transcript of 10/27/2014 NRC San Onofre Decommissioning meeting
 
San Onofre’s Decommissioning Plan is not what it’s cracked up to be
Are the nuclear waste dry storage canisters at San Onofre cracking?
No one knows, but Edison wants to buy more of these inferior canisters.
 

NUHOMS 32PTH canisterOctober 27, 2014 (Carlsbad, CA) – The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) should not approve Southern California Edison’s San Onofre Decommissioning Plan.[1]  Edison plans to use dry storage canisters designed for temporary short term storage for long-term indefinite storage. The mission has completely changed but the canisters have not. The thin steel canisters Edison is proposing are vulnerable to cracking within a few years and there is no way to know if they have cracks and the cracks cannot be repaired. Canisters with cracks cannot be stored or moved safely.

The NRC has scheduled a public meeting today from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., to receive public comments on this plan. Meeting location is the Omni La Costa, Poinsettia Ballroom, 2100 Costa Del Mar Road in Carlsbad.

The NRC recently approved leaving the tons of highly radioactive nuclear waste at San Onofre and all other nuclear plants in the nation for 60 years (short-term), 100 years (long-term) and indefinitely. Edison’s plan does not address this new reality.

A 2014 partial surface inspection of a two year old Diablo Canyon nuclear waste dry storage canister found conditions for stress corrosion cracks – a low enough temperature for ocean salts to corrode and crack the ½” thick stainless steel canister.[2] The NRC originally said it would be at least 30 years before cracking might occur.[3]    Now both the NRC and Edison know better, but have not addressed this issue.

The NRC has not revised its spent fuel dry cask storage system requirements or its aging management plan given the above new realities. They plan to revise it in 2015.

Edison’s plan does not address many major issues. The ratepayers could be set up for another billion dollar boondoggle similar to the steam generator boondoggle where metal tubes failed within one year in a system that was supposed to last 40 years.  We’re facing similar problems with Edison’s decommissioning plan.  However, the consequences could be much worse. The NRC needs to do their job and not approve Edison’s plan.

No technology exists to inspect or repair the thin steel canisters Edison wants to procure. Not even the outside of these thin 5/8” thick canisters can be inspected.

Cracked canisters must be replaced. Edison has allocated no money to replace cracked canisters and these welded canisters were not designed to be opened. Instead, Edison wants to eliminate the spent fuel pools even though this is the only on-site method to transfer fuel into another canister.

No seismic rating for cracked canisters exists. The NRC proposes allowing up to a 75% crack before canisters must be taken out of service. However, cracked canisters have not been evaluated for earthquake conditions. And cracked canisters are not approved for transport.

It is unknown if existing San Onofre canisters are cracked, yet Edison wants to buy more of this same inferior technology and they have no money allocated to replace the existing canisters with better technology, over the many decades they plan to leave them on our coastline.

There is no early warning monitoring system. We won’t know the canisters have failed until after they leak radiation into the environment. If one fails, they all could fail and yet there is no contingency plan for this possibility.

Castor-V-19 cask

Castor V/19 cask

Edison refuses to allow bidding from vendors with the most widely used dry storage technology in the world (e.g., ~20” thick Castor ductile cast iron casks), even though this technology does not have the problems of the thin canisters. Germany, Japan and other countries use thick casks and house them in reinforced buildings for additional environmental and other external hazards. Edison should do this, too.

The NRC has no aging management plan for stress corrosion cracking or other degradation issues with these canisters – either short-term or long term. And they plan to require inspection of only one canister per facility and only of the exterior surface. The NRC is allowing the industry 5 years to develop technology to inspect the exterior for cracks. However, this will be challenging to accomplish, since the steel canisters provide no protection from gamma and neutron radiation, so must be inspected while inside a concrete overpack or concrete cask. If they do find cracks they still have no way to repair them in.

Recommendations

The NRC needs to revise their NUREG-1927, “Standard Review Plan for Renewal of Spent Fuel Dry Cask Storage System Licenses and Certificates of Compliance” [4] before approving a decommissioning plan for San Onofre.

The NRC needs to revise these standards to reflect the best available dry storage technology in the world and not lowered due to the limitations of current U.S. thin steel canister designs. The NRC must not approve this incomplete and inadequate decommissioning plan until all these issues are resolved.  To do otherwise, risks the future of California and threatens the food supply, health and economy of our nation and our families.

Edison should allow vendors with better cask technology to bid on this project. We need a nuclear waste storage system that can be inspected, repaired, and adequately monitored or ratepayers may be on the hook for millions or billions more than collected in the decommissioning fund. Until adequate funds are assured, the NRC should not approve Edison’s plan.

###

PDF printable version of press release (revised)

Footnotes:

[1] NRC webpage: Plans for Decommissioning of San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station Units 2 and 3
[2] Diablo Canyon: conditions for stress corrosion cracking in 2 years, D. Gilmore, October 2014
[3]  Summary of August 5, 2014 Public Meeting with the Nuclear Energy Institute on Chloride Induced Stress Corrosion Cracking Regulatory Issue Resolution Protocol  
[4] NUREG-1927, Standard Review Plan for Renewal of Spent Fuel Dry Cask Storage System Licenses and Certificates of Compliance, March 2011

Decom Fund Assurance 9-26-2013Slide35

Meeting information from the previous NRC public meeting on San Onofre Decommissioning held September 26, 2013:

Meeting summary
http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1332/ML13322A422.pdf
 
Presentations
http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1326/ML13268A003.pdf
 
Meeting Transcript
http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1331/ML13317A029.pdf
Posted in Action Alert, Events, NRC, Nuclear Waste, Press Release, SDG&E, Southern California Edison | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Battle For The Net

If you woke up tomorrow, and your internet looked like this, what would you do? Imagine all your favorite websites taking forever to load, while you get annoying notifications from your ISP suggesting you switch to one of their approved “Fast Lane” sites.Think about what we would lose: all the weird, alternative, interesting, and enlightening stuff that makes the Internet so much cooler than mainstream Cable TV. What if the only news sites you could reliably connect to were the ones that had deals with companies like Comcast and Verizon?On September 10th, just a few days before the FCC’s comment deadline, public interest organizations are issuing an open, international call for websites and internet users to unite for an “Internet Slowdown” to show the world what the web would be like if Team Cable gets their way and trashes net neutrality. Net neutrality is hard to explain, so our hope is that this action will help SHOW the world what’s really at stake if we lose the open Internet.If you’ve got a website, blog or tumblr, get the code to join the #InternetSlowdown here: https://battleforthenet.com/sept10thEveryone else, here’s a quick list of things you can do to help spread the word about the slowdown: http://tumblr.fightforthefuture.org/post/96020972118/be-a-part-of-the-great-internet-slowdown Get creative! Don’t let us tell you what to do. See you on the net September 10th!

via Battle For The Net.

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Premature failure of U.S. spent nuclear fuel storage canisters

Stress Corrosion Cracking NRC Slide2 2014-07-14

Component failure observed in 11-33 years. NRC 7/14/2014

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) should delay funding the new San Onofre dry cask storage system until Southern California Edison provides written substantiation that the major problems identified below are resolved.

Sign petition to STOP California from wasting $400 million on inferior nuclear waste storage canisters.

Print version: Premature Failure of U.S. Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Canisters 8/28/2014

San Onofre’s Chief Nuclear Officer, Tom Palmisano, told the California Senate Energy, Utilities and Communications Committee on August 12th that Edison plans to decide in August or September on a dry cask system vendor.

  • The dry cask systems Edison is considering may fail within 30 years or possibly sooner, based on information provided by Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) technical staff.
  • There is no technology to adequately inspect canisters.
  • There is no system in place to mitigate a failed canister.
  • Edison should consider other dry casks systems that do not have these problems.

Edison created an artificial date of June 2019 to have all the spent fuel assemblies loaded into canisters. We do not need to rush into another “steam generator” like boondoggle. Edison’s Tom Palmisano told the California Senate Energy, Utilities and Communication Committee on August 12th that issues regarding high burnup fuel and dry cask storage have been addressed. However, these issues have not been resolved.

Canisters may need to be replaced within 30-42 years or sooner. 

NUHOMS 32PTH canister

NUHOMS canister

Recent information provided by the NRC technical staff indicates dry storage canisters may need to be replaced within 30-42 years or sooner, due to stress corrosion cracking of the thin (1/2 to 5/8 inch) stainless steel canisters (due to our coastal environment). Similar stainless steel materials at nuclear plants have failed within 16 to 33 years.  The concrete overpacks also have aging issues that are accelerated in coastal environments.

Southern California Edison has budgeted $400 million dollars for the dry storage system. As Commissioner Florio stated after the recent CPUC meeting in Costa Mesa, “We don’t want to have to buy these again.”

No remediation plan to repair or replace failed canisters.

The NRC stated that if one of the canisters becomes defective (e.g. 75% through-wall stress corrosion cracks), there is no way to repair or replace the canister; especially if the spent fuel storage and transfer pools are demolished, as Edison plans to do. And before a canister can be transported (inside a transport cask), the canister must not have cracks.

No technology to adequately inspect canisters for stress corrosion cracking.

Intergrain Stress Corrosion Cracking

Stress Corrosion Crack

The NRC states technology does not exist to adequately inspect steel canisters for stress corrosion cracks or to measure how or when the cracks will go through the wall of the canister. They plan to allow the nuclear industry 5 years to try to develop technology. And then they only plan to require inspection of one canister at each nuclear plant.

No license renewals until aging management issued addressed.

The NRC is in the process of developing an aging management plan due to the new requirement that dry storage systems need to last 100 to 300+ years. They are delaying license renewals until unresolved aging management issues can be addressed. However, they plan to allow the NUHOMS 32PTH2 canister that Edison may procure to be included in an existing license. The NRC is evaluating how long dry storage systems will last. Previously, they only needed to last 20+ years with the assumption there would be a permanent repository.

No canisters approved for high burnup fuel for more than the initial 20 years.

Cross Section Fuel Rod Significant Radial Hydride Orientation DE-NE-0000593

High burnup fuel cladding damage

The NRC has not extended licenses past the initial 20 years for storage of high burnup fuel (>45GWd/MTU) due to unknowns about high burnup fuel in storage and transport. This fuel is over twice as radioactive and hotter than lower burnup fuel.  The NRC has allowed nuclear plants to burn fuel longer, without the research to show that it is safe in storage and transport. The protective fuel cladding can become brittle and crack; resulting is higher risk for radiation exposure, if the canisters fail.

NUHOMS dry canister license certification expires in less than nine years.

The NUHOMS DSC-32PTH2 canisters that Edison wants to procure are not yet licensed by the NRC. If approved, the license will expire in less than nine years (February 5, 2023), since Areva-TN decided to avoid a new license certification and include it in their existing license for the DSC-24PT series, which has a different design.

New design of the NUMHOMS DSC-32PTH2 eliminates failed fuel cans.  

Unlike the existing 24 fuel assembly canisters, the new 32 fuel assembly canisters have no provision for Failed Fuel Cans. This means damaged fuel assemblies (of which San Onofre has many) cannot be used in the DSC-32PTH2 canisters. The NRC and DOE require fuel assemblies to be retrievable so they can be transferred to other containers. The Failed Fuel Cans met this requirement.

Background

On July 14th, 15th and August 5th the NRC had public meetings to address aging management issues with dry cask storage system. Their goal is to require an aging management plan before relicensing or issuing new licenses, now that the NRC knows on-site or interim dry cask storage will be needed for up to 300 years or more. The NRC stated the earliest date for a permanent repository is 2048 and that is optimistic. They are researching on-site and interim dry cask storage requirements for 40,100, 150 and 300+ years.

No NRC canisters are certified for extended storage or for geological repository storage. Canister licenses for the more dangerous and unstable high burnup (>45GWd/MTU) spent fuel have not been renewed for more than the initial 20 year license, even for expired licenses. And the NRC’s Bob Einziger states there are still transportation problems with high burnup fuel.

NRC staff plan to have a draft for public comment regarding dry cask storage relicensing by the end of 2014, according to Mark Lombard, Director, Division of Spent Fuel Storage and Transportation. However, this will not address our current issues.

Stainless Steel Dry Canister Problems

NRC 08-05-2014 Slide 9 Power Plant with SCCDarrell Dunn, an NRC materials engineer, stated stainless steel dry storage canisters are vulnerable to failure within about 25 – 42 years. If any of the fuel cladding in the canister fails, there is no protective barrier and we could have a serious radiation release.

The NRC said they have no current mitigation plan for that consequence.  They suggested we MIGHT be able to put the fuel back in the spent fuel pool.  However, Edison plans to destroy the spent fuel and transfer pools. And there is no technology to repair the canisters. The NRC said they HOPE there will be a solution for mitigation in the future. Even an NRC May 2nd High Burnup Fuel letter admits there are mitigation problems.

No Inspections of Stainless Steel Canisters

Unknown conditions on actual spent fuel storage canisters

EPRI 2012 presentation

To make matters worse, these stainless steel canisters are not inspected after they are loaded into the unsealed concrete overpacks (Areva NUHOMS) or concrete casks (Holtec and NAC Magnastor).  The NRC proposed having each nuclear plant inspect the outside of only ONE stainless steel canister before they receive a license renewal and then do that once every 5 years.  The industry balked at having to even check one canister at every plant. The problem with the stainless steel canisters is they do not protect against gamma rays; so it’s not a simple task to remove a canister from the concrete overpack/cask to examine the exterior for corrosion or other degradation. And since welded canisters do not have monitoring for helium leaks, we may not have any warning of an impending radiation release.

Concrete Overpack Corrosion Problems

Concrete Aging Effects NRC 7/14/2014

Concrete Aging Effects NRC 7/14/2014

Darrell Dunn discussed serious corrosion problems with the concrete overpacks/casks, especially in coastal environments.

Alternatives

Ductile Cast Iron Casks may be a better solution

Castor-V-19 cask

Asked if San Onofre would be better off using ductile cast iron casks like the CASTOR, due to our coastal environment, Aladar (Al) Csontos, NRC Branch Chief in the Division of Spent Fuel Storage and Transportation (SFST), said that might be a better option near the ocean. Casks, such as CASTOR, may eventually have aging issues with bolts and seals. The CASTOR has double sealed lids, so even if one fails, we’ll still have a sealed canister. And Edison would be able to easily monitor for cask material degradation with all the casks.

The NRC licensed the CASTOR V/21 ductile cast iron cask years ago and the cask is still in use. In fact, a CASTOR V/21 was used to prove low burnup fuel is safe to store for over 15 years. However, none of the current U.S. cask designs have been tested even though they use a different storage technology.

The U.S. industry chose a different technology (stainless steel/concrete overpack/cask) mainly due to the cost of ductile cast iron at the time and with the assumption that the canisters would only be needed until Yucca Mountain opened.

The CASTOR V/21 was considered the “Cadillac” of the industry and the CASTOR line is still very popular in other parts of the world for BOTH storage and transport (including high burnup fuel).

The CASTOR canisters have multiple certifications for quality manufacturing, unlike the U.S. stainless steel canisters that are allowed exceptions to ASME and other standards. Material prices for stainless and cast iron have changed, so the price point should be lower.

The CASTOR has pressurized lid monitoring to detect helium leaks and temperature changes. The welded U.S. canisters do not have this capability, but the NRC and Department of Energy (DOE) state this is a high priority issue to resolve.

The inside of the CASTOR cask, including the sealing surface, has a nickel coating for corrosion protection. On the outside, the cask is protected by an epoxy resin coating in the fin area and nickel coating elsewhere.  And unlike the U.S. stainless steel canisters, it does not have stress corrosion cracking issues and does not require a concrete overpack/cask.

The original CASTOR V/21 is almost 15″ thick as opposed to the 1/2″ to 5/8″ stainless steel canisters.  The newer model CASTOR V/19 is almost 20″ thick. There are other ductile cast iron canister brands that are used in other countries. However, the U.S. emphasis on cost rather than longer term safety discourages competition from better quality casks vendors. With new U.S. needs for longer term onsite and interim dry cask storage, this should change.

Forged Steel Casks (AREVA TN Series)

TN24CaskFamilyNov2010ArevaAreva makes thick walled forged steel casks (TN series), which were approved for limited use years ago by the NRC. The TN cask is much thicker than the stainless steel canisters and doesn’t require a cement overpack/cask.  Its specifications are not as robust as the CASTOR, but better than the Areva NUHOMS system that Edison may procure.

Fukushima Daiichi and Germany use some TN casks. Germany mainly uses the CASTOR casks.

Enclose Casks in Buildings

CASTOR Droste BAM2013Both Japan and Germany enclose their casks in buildings for protection from the environment and other external forces.

This is something Edison should consider.

 Action Needed

No dry cask solution is even close to perfect, but we need to buy ourselves as much time as possible. Given the issues with stress corrosion cracking, concrete degradation, lack of monitoring, and lack of external inspection of stainless steel canisters, we can do better.

Spent fuel pools are dangerous. However, the spent fuel needs to cool in the pools for a number of years, so we have time to do a better job selecting a dry cask storage system. Edison’s artificial deadline of June 2019 to have all canisters loaded should not be the driving factor for the future of California.

The NRC does not proactively research dry storage system designs. They only respond to vendor requests for licensing. Vendors will only do this if they think they have a customer lined up for their product. California needs to be that customer.

Edison should reopen the bidding to include vendors with other cask technology. Edison’s Community Engagement Panel (CEP) had a presentation from Areva, but from no other dry cask storage vendors. Edison only solicited bids from three canister system manufacturers who all have the problems mentioned in this document.

Edison requested the NRC approve the NUHOMS 32PTH2 canister – it was not licensed when they decided to use it. That license amendment (Docket No. 72-1029, Certificate of Compliance No. 1029 Amendment No. 3) may be approved in August.  However, the CPUC should not approve funding for this canister system.

Edison has not shared with us the documents they used to solicit bids (Request for Proposal), so we have no idea what the requirements are in that bid package.  That would be useful information and the public should have access to this information.

If you have questions about sources for any information, contact Donna Gilmore. There are also detailed references on the SanOnofreSafety.org website.  A link to the NRC July and August presentations as well as other documents discussed here are included below.

Donna Gilmore                                                      
SanOnofreSafety.org                                          
dgilmore at cox.net                                             
949-204-7794    
 
Gene Stone
Residents Organized for a Safe Environment
Member, SONGS Community Engagement Panel
genston at sbcglobal.net
949-233-7724

References

High Burnup Fuel

High Burnup Nuclear Fuel −Pushing the Safety Envelope, M. Resnikoff, D. Gilmore, Jan 2014  http://sanonofresafety.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/hbffactsheet01-09-2014.pdf
 
Letter from Chairman Macfarlane regarding high burnup fuel, May 2, 2014 http://sanonofresafety.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/05-02-14-ltr-to-priscilla-star-fm-chairman-macfarlane.pdf
 
Response from Donna Gilmore to NRC regarding May 2, 2014 request for NRC high burnup fuel technical basis, June 25, 2014
http://sanonofresafety.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/responsetonrc-hbf-recommendations2014dg.pdf
 

NRC Presentations and documents

NRC Meeting to Obtain Stakeholder Input on Potential Changes to Guidance for Renewal of Spent Fuel Dry Cask Storage System Licenses and Certificates of Compliance, July 14th/15th, 2014 (includes slide presentations)
http://www.nrc.gov/waste/spent-fuel-storage/public-involvement.html
 
Chloride-Induced Stress Corrosion Cracking Tests and Example Aging Management Program, Darrell S. Dunn, NRC/NMSS/SFST, Public Meeting with NEI on Chloride Induced Stress Corrosion Cracking Regulatory Issue Resolution Protocol, August 5, 2014
https://sanonofresafety.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/8-5-14-scc-rirp-nrc-presentation.pdf
 
NRC Information Notice 2012-20: Potential Chloride-Induced Stress Corrosion Cracking of Austenitic Stainless Steel and Maintenance of Dry Cask Storage System Canisters. November 14, 2012
http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1231/ML12319A440.pdf
 

CASTOR Dry Casks (Ductile cast iron cask technology)

CASTOR V/21 NRC Certificate of Compliance and Safety Analysis Report, August 17, 1990   http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML0330/ML033020117.pdf
 
CASTOR brochure (includes the CASTOR V/19 and other ductile cast iron casks).
http://www.siempelkamp.com/fileadmin/media/Englisch/Nukleartechnik/produkte/CASTOR_A_high_tech_Product_made_of_ductile_Cast_Iron.pdf
 
GNS’ [CASTOR] experience in the long-term storage at dry interim storage facilities in Ahaus and Gorleben, IAEA Vienna, May 20, 2014  http://bit.ly/1jUSNOZ
 
Spent Fuel Storage and Transportation Experience, Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (GNS Castor V/21, Transnuclear TN-24P, Westinghouse MC-10, NAC S-100-C), 1987
https://canteach.candu.org/Content%20Library/NJC-1-2-11.pdf
 
BAM test results for CASTOR transport containers
http://www.tes.bam.de/en/umschliessungen/behaelter_radioaktive_stoffe/behaelterpruefungen/index.htm#castor
 
Fracture Mechanics Based Design for Radioactive Material Transport Packagings, Historical Review, Sandia SAND98-0764 UC-804, April 1998 http://www.osti.gov/scitech/servlets/purl/654001
 
GNS CASTOR Presentation, June 09-11, 2010, Varna, Bulgaria (slide 18: CASTOR V/19, V52)
http://www.bulatom-bg.org/files/conferences/dokladi2010/Section%203/Report_Thomas.pdf
 

Areva TN Series Casks (forged steel cask technology)

TN-24 NRC Certificate of Compliance and Safety Analysis Report, November 4, 1993
http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML0330/ML033020128.pdf
 
AREVA Innovation in the Design of the Used Fuel Storage System, CRIEPI Tokyo, November 15-17, 2010 (includes information on TN 24 casks)
http://criepi.denken.or.jp/result/event/seminar/2010/issf/pdf/4-1_powerpoint.pdf
 
AREVA Dual Purpose Casks in Operation, AREVA TN Experience, Vienna, May 19-21, 2014 http://bit.ly/1l9xO5R
 

 NUHOMS 32PTH2 and San Onofre Decommissioning Plans

NRC Certificate of Compliance for Spent Fuel Storage Casks, COC 1029, Docket 72-1029, Amendment 3, Model No. Standardized Advanced NUHOMS®-24PT1, 24PT4, and 32PTH2,  expires 02/05/2023 (pending NRC approval as of 8/20/2014)
http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1329/ML13290A176.pdf
 
Comments on Direct Rule re List of Approved Storage Casks (79 Fed. Reg. 21,121 (April 15, 2014), Request for Rescission of the Direct Rule, and Request for Publication of a New and Revised Notice of  Proposed Rulemaking, Docket No. 13-0271, Diane Curran, on behalf of 20 environmental organizations and individuals.
https://sanonofresafety.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/2014-05-15-comment-letter-to-nrc-re-nuhoms-cask-approval-corrected-2014-05-27.pdf
 
February 10, 2012 letter from Edison to NRC: Support for NRC Review of Transnuclear Inc. Application for Amendment 3 to the Standardized Advanced NUHOMS® Certificate of Compliance No. 1029, San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, Units 2 and 3 and Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation Docket Nos. 50-36, 50-362 and 72041
http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1204/ML12046A013.pdf
 
Update on Decommissioning Plans, Tom Palmisano, Vice President & Chief Nuclear Officer, August 12, 2014 presentation to CA Senate Energy, Utilities and Communications Committee, Chairman Alex Padilla
http://seuc.senate.ca.gov/sites/seuc.senate.ca.gov/files/08-12-14%20Edison%20presentation.pdf
 

 Community Engagement Panel Correspondence

High Burnup Fuel and Dry Cask Storage Issues, July 17, 2014 letter to CEP Chairman David Victor from Donna Gilmore, San Onofre Safety
https://sanonofresafety.files.wordpress.com/2011/11/lettertodavidvictor2014-07-17dg.pdf
 
David Victor testimony to NRC Commissioners, July 15, 2014
http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/commission/slides/2014/20140715/victor-20140715.pdf
 

Additional references at SanOnofreSafety.org

Nuclear Waste  http://sanonofresafety.org/nuclear-waste/
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