[Federal Register Volume 70, Number 188 (Thursday, September 29, 2005)]
[Pages 56935-56936]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E5-5316]



[Docket No. 50-184]

National Institute of Standards and Technology, National Bureau 
of Standards Reactor; Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental 
Impact Statement and Conduct Scoping Process

    The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), formerly 
known as the National Bureau of Standards, has submitted an application 
for renewal of Facility Operating License No. TR-5 for an additional 20 
years of operation at the National Bureau of Standards Reactor (NBSR). 
The NBSR is located in Montgomery County in Maryland, about 20 miles 
northwest of Washington, DC. The operating license for the NBSR expired 
on May 16, 2004. The application for license renewal, which included an 
environmental report (ER), was received on April 9, 2004. A notice of 
receipt and availability of the application was published in the 
Federal Register on May 12, 2004 (69 FR 26414). A notice of acceptance 
for docketing of the application and a notice of opportunity for 
hearing regarding renewal of the facility operating licenses was 
published in the Federal Register on September 21, 2004 (69 FR 56462). 
The purpose of this notice is to inform the public that the U.S. 
Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) will be preparing an environmental 
impact statement (EIS) in support of the review of the license renewal 
application and to provide the public an opportunity to participate in 
the environmental scoping process, as defined in 10 CFR 51.29. In 
addition, as outlined in 36 CFR 800.8, ``Coordination with the National 
Environmental Policy Act,'' the NRC plans to coordinate compliance with 
Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act in meeting the 
requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA).
    In accordance with 10 CFR 50.20 and 10 CFR 51.45, NIST submitted 
the ER as part of the application. The ER was prepared pursuant to 10 
CFR part 51 and is available for public inspection at the NRC Public 
Document Room (PDR), located at One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville 
Pike (first floor), Rockville, Maryland 20852, or from the Publicly 
Available Records component of NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and 
Management System (ADAMS). ADAMS is accessible at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html, which provides access through the NRC's 
Electronic Reading Room link. Persons who do not have access to ADAMS, 
or who encounter problems in accessing the documents located in ADAMS, 
should contact the NRC's PDR Reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, or 
(301) 415-4737, or by e-mail to [email protected].
    This notice advises the public that the NRC intends to gather the 
information necessary to prepare an EIS documenting the staff's 
environmental review of the application for renewal of the NBSR 
operating license for an additional 20 years. Alternatives to the 
proposed action (license renewal), including the no-action alternative 
will be considered. The NRC is required by

[[Page 56936]]

10 CFR 51.20(b)(2) to prepare an EIS in connection with the renewal of 
the operating license for a testing facility. This notice is being 
published in accordance with NEPA and the NRC's regulations found in 10 
CFR part 51.
    The NRC will first conduct a scoping process for the EIS and, as 
soon as practicable thereafter, will prepare a draft EIS for public 
comment. Participation in the scoping process by members of the public 
and local, State, tribal, and Federal government agencies is 
encouraged. The scoping process for the EIS will be used to accomplish 
the following:
    a. Define the proposed action which is to be the subject of the 
    b. Determine the scope of the EIS and identify the significant 
issues to be analyzed in depth;
    c. Identify and eliminate from detailed study those issues that are 
peripheral or that are not significant;
    d. Identify any environmental assessments and other EISs that are 
being or will be prepared that are related to, but are not part of the 
scope of the EIS being considered;
    e. Identify other environmental review and consultation 
requirements related to the proposed action;
    f. Indicate the relationship between the timing of the preparation 
of the environmental analyses and the Commission's tentative planning 
and decisionmaking schedule;
    g. Identify any cooperating agencies and, as appropriate, allocate 
assignments for preparation and schedules for completing the EIS to the 
NRC and any cooperating agencies; and
    h. Describe how the EIS will be prepared, and include any 
contractor assistance to be used.
    The NRC invites the following entities to participate in scoping:
    a. The applicant, the National Institute of Standards and 
    b. Any Federal agency that has jurisdiction by law or special 
expertise with respect to any environmental impact involved, or that is 
authorized to develop and enforce relevant environmental standards;
    c. Affected State and local government agencies, including those 
authorized to develop and enforce relevant environmental standards;
    d. Any affected Indian tribe;
    e. Any person who requests or has requested an opportunity to 
participate in the scoping process; and
    f. Any person who has petitioned or intends to petition for leave 
to intervene.
    Members of the public may send written comments on the 
environmental scope of the NBSR license renewal review to the Chief, 
Rules and Directives Branch, Division of Administrative Services, 
Office of Administration, Mailstop T-6D59, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory 
Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, and should cite the publication 
date and page number of this Federal Register notice. Comments may also 
be delivered to the NRC, Room T-6D59, Two White Flint North, 11545 
Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland, from 7:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. during 
Federal workdays. To be considered in the scoping process, written 
comments should be postmarked no later than 60 days after the date of 
this Notice. Electronic comments may be sent by e-mail to the NRC at 
[email protected] and should be sent no later than 60 days from the 
date of this Notice, to be considered in the scoping process. No public 
scoping meeting is planned. Comments will be available electronically 
and accessible through ADAMS at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. Participation in the scoping process for the EIS does not 
entitle participants to become parties to the proceeding to which the 
EIS relates. Notice of opportunity for a hearing regarding the renewal 
application was the subject of the aforementioned Federal Register 
notice (69 FR 56462).
    At the conclusion of the scoping process, the NRC will prepare a 
concise summary of the determination and conclusions reached, including 
the significant issues identified, and will send a copy of the summary 
to each participant in the scoping process. The summary will also be 
available for inspection in ADAMS at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. The staff will then prepare and issue for comment the draft 
EIS, which will be the subject of a separate notice. Copies will be 
available for public inspection at the above-mentioned addresses, and 
one copy per request will be provided free of charge. After receipt and 
consideration of the comments, the NRC will prepare a final EIS, which 
will also be available for public inspection.
    Information about the proposed action, the EIS, and the scoping 
process may be obtained from NRC Environmental Project Manager, Mr. 
James H. Wilson, at (301) 415-1108, or via e-mail at [email protected].

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 23rd day of September 2005.
    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Brian E. Thomas,
Section Chief, Research and Test Reactors Section, New, Research and 
Test Reactors Program, Division of Regulatory Improvement Programs, 
Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
 [FR Doc. E5-5316 Filed 9-28-05; 8:45 am]