[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 63 (Friday, April 3, 2009)]
[Pages 15312-15313]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-7492]



[Docket No. 70-1257; NRC-2009-0147]

Notice of Availability of Environmental Assessment and Finding of 
No Significant Impact for License Amendment for AREVA NP, Inc., 
Richland, WA

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gloria Kulesa, Senior Environmental 
Project Manager, Environmental Review Branch, Division of Waste 
Management and Environmental Protection, Office of Federal and State 
Materials and Environmental Management Programs, U.S. Nuclear 
Regulatory Commission, Rockville, Maryland 20852. Telephone: (301) 415-
5308; fax number: (301) 415-5369; e-mail: [email protected].


I. Introduction

    The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering the renewal 
of Special Nuclear Material License SNM-1227 for the continued 
operation of the AREVA NP, Inc. Fuel Fabrication Facility located in 
Richland, Washington. This renewal authorizes the licensee to receive 
and possess nuclear materials at the Richland facility to fabricate and 
assemble nuclear fuel components under the provisions of 10 CFR part 
70, Domestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material. If NRC approves the 
renewal of the license, the term would cover 40 years. NRC has prepared 
an Environmental Assessment (EA) in support of this action in 
accordance with the requirements of 10 CFR part 51. Based on the EA, 
the NRC has concluded that a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) 
is appropriate. If approved, NRC will issue the renewed license 
following the publication of this notice.

II. EA Summary

    The licensee requests approval to renew SNM-1227 for an additional 
40 years at the Richland, Washington facility. Specifically, this would 
allow AREVA NP to continue manufacturing and assembling nuclear fuel 
components for use in commercial light-water-cooled nuclear reactors. 
On October 24, 2006, AREVA NP requested that NRC approve the proposed 
amendment. AREVA NP's request for the proposed change was previously 
noticed in the Federal Register on March 15, 2007 (72 FR 12202), with a 
Notice of an Opportunity to Request a Hearing.
    The staff has prepared the EA in support of the proposed license 
renewal. Staff considered 12 environmental impacts in their evaluation, 
including: Land use; transportation; socioeconomics; air quality; water 
quality; geology and soils; ecology; noise; historic and cultural; 
scenic and visual; public and occupational health; and waste 
management. All of the environmental impacts were small, with the 
exception of transportation. NRC staff considered the transportation 
long-term and cumulative impacts as small-to-moderate based on 
projected population growth estimates and anticipated development of 
residential communities and commercial lands. The regional government 
and industry collaboratively plan the area's future transportation 
system to minimize traffic impacts. NRC considers that the proactive 
planning efforts will keep the impact small. A brief summary of the 
other environmental resources follows. The license renewal request does 
not require altering the site footprint nor does it change the 
operating processes of the existing facility, therefore there are no 
anticipated impacts in land use, noise, historic and cultural, scenic 
and visual, and site ecology resources. The proposed action will not 
adversely affect federal or state-listed threatened or endangered 
species nor flora and fauna in the site vicinity. AREVA NP is a major 
business that contributes a positive benefit towards the region's 
socioeconomics. Airborne and liquid effluent monitoring indicates 
readings below regulatory 10 CFR part 20 limits for non-radiological 
and radiological contaminants. Public and occupational exposures are 
below the limit established in 10 CFR part 20. AREVA NP maintains 
acceptable waste management practices and procedures. The staff 
concluded that the proposed 40 year renewal of license SNM-1227 will 
not result in a significant impact to the environment.
    NRC staff consulted with other agencies regarding the proposed 
action, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), the 
Washington Department of Ecology, Washington Department of Archaeology 
and Historic Preservation [i.e. the State Historic Preservation 
Office], the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation [i.e., 
one of the two local Tribal Historic Preservation Offices], and the 
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation. The 
consultations ensured that the requirements of Section 7 of the 
Endangered Species Act and

[[Page 15313]]

Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act were met and 
provided the designated state liaison agency the opportunity to comment 
on the proposed action.

III. Finding of No Significant Impact

    On the basis of the EA, NRC has concluded that there are no 
significant environmental impacts from the proposed amendment and has 
determined not to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement.

IV. Further Information

    Documents related to this action, including the application for 
amendment and supporting documentation, are available electronically at 
the NRC's Electronic Reading Room at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. From this site, you can access the NRC's Agencywide 
Document Access and Management System (ADAMS), which provides text and 
image files of NRC's public documents. The ADAMS accession numbers for 
the documents related to this notice are:

                Document                       ADAMS Accession No.
License Renewal--Letter................  ML063110083
    --Application......................  ML063110089
    --Environmental Report.............  ML063110087
NRC Letters to Confederate Tribes &      ML073370055
 Bands of Yakama Nation.
NRC Letters to Confederated Tribes of    ML080250134
 the Umatilla Indian Reservation.
NRC Letter to Washington State SHPO....  ML073100238
NRC Letter to U.S. Fish and Wildlife     ML073100164
Request for Additional Information       ML080600457/ML080640145
 (RAI) and Responses.
Tribal letters to NRC..................  ML080790549
State Historic Preservation Office,      ML080560066
 letter to NRC.
Washington Department of Ecology letter  ML083040124
 to NRC.
USFWS correspondence with NRC..........  ML090720616
Environmental Assessment...............  ML090700258

If you do not have access to ADAMS or if there are problems in 
accessing the documents located in ADAMS, contact the NRC Public 
Document Room (PDR) Reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-4737 or 
by e-mail to [email protected].
    These documents may also be viewed electronically on the public 
computers located at the NRC's PDR, O 1 F21, One White Flint North, 
11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 20852. The PDR reproduction 
contractor will copy documents for a fee.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland this 27th day of March 2009.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Andrea Kock,
Chief, Environmental Review Branch, Environmental Protection and 
Performance Assessment Directorate, Division of Waste Management and 
Environmental Protection, Office of Federal and State Materials and 
Environmental Management Programs.
[FR Doc. E9-7492 Filed 4-2-09; 8:45 am]