On February 22, 2018, the Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards (NMSS) of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) will host a public meeting to discuss the Very Low-Level Radioactive Waste (VLLW) Scoping Study and concerns associated with the disposal of Greater-than-Class C (GTCC) waste.
The public meeting will be held in the auditorium at the agency’s headquarters in Rockville, Maryland. It is scheduled from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on February 22, 2018.
Interested stakeholders may participate via webinar or teleconference using the following information:
- Teleconference Number: (800) 857-9840
- Teleconference Password: 4975456
This meeting will be transcribed and will have a facilitated bridgeline.
NRC Activities re GTCC
On September 8, 2017, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) issued a Staff Requirements Memorandum (SRM) in response to SECY-16-0106, which sought Commission approval to publish a final rule in the Federal Register that would amend Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) Parts 20, “Standards for Protection Against Radiation,” and Part 61, “Licensing Requirements for Land Disposal of Radioactive Waste.” (See LLW Notes, September/October 2017, pp. 23-26.)
In the SRM, the Commission directed that the timing for the staff to prepare a regulatory basis for the disposal of GTCC waste as directed in SRM-SECY-15-0094, “Historical and Current Issues Related to Disposal of Greater-Than-Class C Low-Level Radioactive Waste,” should be changed from the previous direction of within six (6) months of the completion of the ongoing 10 CFR Part 61 rulemaking to six (6) months after the publication of the supplemental proposed rule.
The SRM can be found online at https://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1725/ML17251B147.pdf.
DOE Activities re GTCC
On November 14, 2017, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) submitted a Report to Congress titled, Alternatives for the Disposal of Greater-than-Class C Low-Level Radioactive Waste and Greater-than-Class C-Like Waste. (See LLW Notes, November/December 2017, pp. 1, 23-28.)
GTCC low-level radioactive waste, which is generated by NRC or Agreement State licensees, has radionuclide concentrations exceeding the limits for Class C low-level radioactive waste established by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). The federal government is responsible for the disposal of GTCC low-level radioactive waste. At this time, there is no disposal facility for GTCC low-level radioactive waste.
In February 2016, DOE issued a Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Disposal of Greater-Than–Class C (GTCC) Low-Level Radioactive Waste and GTCC-Like Waste (DOE/EIS-0375). The Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) did not constitute a final decision, however, as the Energy Policy Act of 2005 requires the Department to submit a Report to Congress on disposal alternatives for GTCC low-level radioactive waste and await action by Congress. (See LLW Notes, January/February 2016, pp. 1, 24-25.)
Accordingly, the November 2017 Report to Congress evaluates the potential environmental impacts associated with the proposed development, operation and long-term management of a disposal facility or facilities for GTCC low-level radioactive waste and GTCC-like waste in DOE’s inventory as shown in the Final EIS. The report satisfies a statutory requirement in the Energy Policy Act of 2005 which requires that, prior to making a final decision on the disposal alternative or alternatives to be implemented regarding GTCC low-level radioactive waste, the Secretary of Energy shall submit a report to Congress that describes the alternatives under consideration and await action by Congress. The report must also include all the information required by the Low-Level Radioactive Waste Policy Amendments Act of 1985 (LLRWPAA) for inclusion in a comprehensive report — submitted by the Secretary of Energy to Congress in February 1987 — on ensuring the safe disposal of GTCC low-level radioactive waste.
The November 2017 report has been posted to the DOE’s Greater-than-Class C (GTCC) low-level radioactive waste website at http://www.gtcceis.anl.gov/.
For additional information on the NRC public meeting, please contact Cardelia Maupin at (301) 415-2312 or Maurice Heath at (301) 415-3137.