- On October 22, 2012, Dominion Resources Inc. announced that it would close and decommission its Kewaunee Power Station located in Carlton, Wis. after failing to find a buyer for the plant. The company said that the plant closure was a purely economic decision resulting from low projected wholesale electricity prices. Power production will cease in the second quarter of 2013.
- On November 20, the Department of Energy announced that it had selected the Generation mPower team as a recipient for Government cost-shared funding as part of its Small Modular Reactor Licensing Technical Support program. The Department also announced plans to issue a follow-on solicitation open to other companies and manufacturers, focused on furthering small modular reactor efficiency, operations and design.
- On November 28 Lehigh Heavy Forge Corporation announced an agreement with Babcock and Wilcox Company to fabricate and qualify large forgings for the B&W mPower SMR. Forgings would be manufactured at Lehigh Heavy Forge’s Bethlehem facility in Bethlehem, PA.
- Eighteen Combined Construction and Operating License (COL) applications have been docketed, ten of which (totaling 16 nuclear reactors) remain under active NRC review. NRC reviews of five applications were suspended due to utility economic considerations. Review of the Fermi and South Texas Project applications could continue after submittal of additional technical information; in addition, the South Texas Project and Calvert Cliffs applications face foreign ownership issues. The Reference COL (R-COL) application has been submitted for five reactor designs; subsequent COLs (S-COLs) will incorporate the corresponding R-COL application by reference, noting any site-specific departures. Southern Nuclear’s Vogtle Units 3 and 4 and SCE&G’s VC Summer Units 2 and 3 have received COLs.
Reactor Design Certification (DC)
Two reactor designs that are being considered for future builds are certified and two renewal applications are under NRC review.
- AREVA US-EPR – Submitted December 12, 2007, and docketed February 25, 2008; rulemaking expected in December 2014.
- GE ESBWR – Final Design Approval in March 2011; rulemaking expected 2013.
- Mitsubishi Heavy Industries US-APWR – Submitted December 31, 2007, and docketed February 29, 2008; rulemaking expected in 2015.
- KEPCO APR1400 – Pre-application interactions began in January 2012. Design certification application anticipated March 2013.
- GE ABWR – Certified in 1997. Toshiba and GEH have also separately submitted Design Certification renewal applications that are currently under review.
- Westinghouse AP1000 – Amended design certified on December 30, 2011.
- B&W mPower and NuScale are in pre-application meetings with NRC.
Early Site Permits (ESP)
Four ESPs issued; one under review:
- Exelon has withdrawn its application for an Early Site Permit for its Victoria County, Texas site.
- PSEG submitted an ESP application for its nuclear plant site in Salem County, New Jersey, on May 25, 2010. The final SER and EIS are expected in mid to late 2014.
- NRC anticipates two further ESP applications at Blue Castle, Utah, and Callaway, Missouri.
- The following ESPs have been issued: Exelon – Clinton (IL), 3/15/07; Entergy – Grand Gulf (MS), 4/5/07; Dominion – North Anna (VA), 11/ 27/07; Southern – Vogtle site (GA), 08/26/09.