[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 93 (Friday, May 15, 2009)]
[Pages 22978-22981]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-11388]



[Docket Nos. 50-528, 50-529, and 50-530; NRC-2009-0012]

Notice of Acceptance for Docketing of the Application and Notice 
of Opportunity for Hearing Regarding Renewal of Facility Operating 
License Nos. NPF-41, NPF-51, and NPF-74 for an Additional 20-Year 
Period; Arizona Public Service Company; Palo Verde Nuclear Generating 
Station, Units 1, 2, and 3

    The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC or the Commission) is 
considering an application for the renewal of operating licenses NPF-
41, NPF-51, and NPF-74, which authorize Arizona Public Service Company 
(APS), to operate the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station (PVNGS), 
Units 1, 2, and 3, at 3,990 megawatts thermal. The

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renewed license would authorize the applicant to operate the PVNGS for 
an additional 20 years beyond the period specified in the current 
license. PVNGS is located in Maricopa County, AZ, near Phoenix and its 
current operating licenses expire at midnight June 1, 2025, April 24, 
2026, and November 25, 2027, respectively.
    APS submitted the application dated December 11, 2008, pursuant to 
Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR), Parts 50, 51, and 
54, to renew operating licenses NPF-41, NPF-51, and NPF-74 for PVNGS. A 
notice of receipt and availability of the license renewal application 
(LRA) was published in the Federal Register on January 21, 2009 (74 FR 
    Supplemental information to the application was submitted by APS by 
letter dated April 14, 2009. The Commission's staff has determined that 
APS has submitted sufficient information in accordance with 10 CFR 
54.19, 54.21, 54.22, 54.23, 51.45, and 51.53(c) to enable the staff to 
undertake a review of the application, and the application is therefore 
acceptable for docketing. The current Docket Nos. 50-528, 50-529, and 
50-530, for operating licenses NPF-41, NPF-51, and NPF-74, will be 
retained. The determination to accept the LRA for docketing does not 
constitute a determination that a renewed license should be issued and 
does not preclude the NRC staff from requesting additional information 
as the review proceeds.
    Before issuance of the requested renewed license, the NRC will have 
made the findings required by the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (the Act), 
as amended, and the Commission's rules and regulations. In accordance 
with 10 CFR 54.29, ``Standards for Issuance of a Renewed License,'' the 
NRC may issue a renewed license on the basis of its review if it finds 
that actions have been identified and have been or will be taken with 
respect to (1) managing, during the period of extended operation, the 
effects of aging on the functionality of structures and components that 
have been identified as requiring aging management review and (2) time-
limited aging analyses that have been identified as requiring review, 
such that there is reasonable assurance that the activities authorized 
by the renewed license will continue to be conducted in accordance with 
the current licensing basis and that any changes made to the plant's 
current licensing basis will comply with the Act and the Commission's 
    Additionally, in accordance with 10 CFR 51.95(c), the NRC will 
prepare an environmental impact statement that is a supplement to the 
Commission's NUREG-1437, ``Generic Environmental Impact Statement for 
License Renewal of Nuclear Power Plants,'' issued May 1996. In 
considering the LRA, the Commission must find that the applicable 
requirements of Subpart A of 10 CFR Part 51, ``Environmental Protection 
Regulations for Domestic Licensing and Related Regulatory Functions,'' 
have been satisfied, and that matters raised under 10 CFR 2.335, 
``Consideration of Commission Rules and Regulations in Adjudicatory 
Proceedings,'' have been addressed. Pursuant to 10 CFR 51.26, 
``Requirement to Publish Notice of Intent and Conduct Scoping 
Process,'' and as part of the environmental scoping process, the staff 
intends to hold a public scoping meeting. Detailed information 
regarding the environmental scoping meeting will be the subject of a 
separate Federal Register notice.
    Within 60 days after the date of publication of this Federal 
Register notice, any person whose interest may be affected by this 
proceeding and who wishes to participate as a party in the proceeding 
must file a written request for a hearing and a petition for leave to 
intervene with respect to the renewal of the license. Requests for a 
hearing or petitions for leave to intervene shall be filed in 
accordance with the Commission's ``Rules of Practice for Domestic 
Licensing Proceedings and Issuance of Orders'' in 10 CFR part 2. 
Interested persons should consult a current copy of 10 CFR 2.309, 
``Hearing Requests, Petitions to Intervene, Requirements for Standing, 
and Contentions,'' which is available at the Commission's Public 
Document Room (PDR), located at One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville 
Pike (first floor), Rockville, MD 20852 and is accessible from the 
NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS) Public 
Electronic Reading Room on the Internet at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. Persons who do not have access to the Internet or who 
encounter problems in accessing the documents located in ADAMS should 
contact the NRC's PDR reference staff by telephone at 1-800-397-4209, 
or 301-415-4737, or by e-mail at [email protected]. If a request for 
a hearing/petition for leave to intervene is filed within the 60-day 
period, the Commission or a presiding officer designated by the 
Commission or by the Chief Administrative Judge of the Atomic Safety 
and Licensing Board Panel will rule on the request and/or petition, and 
the Secretary or the Chief Administrative Judge of the Atomic Safety 
and Licensing Board Panel will issue a notice of a hearing or an 
appropriate order. If no request for a hearing or petition for leave to 
intervene is filed within the 60-day period, the NRC may, upon 
completion of its evaluations and upon making the findings required 
under 10 CFR part 51 and 10 CFR part 54, ``Requirements for Renewal of 
Operating Licenses for Nuclear Power Plants,'' renew the license 
without further notice.
    As required by 10 CFR 2.309, a petition for leave to intervene 
shall set forth with particularity the interest of the petitioner in 
the proceeding, and how that interest may be affected by the results of 
the proceeding, taking into consideration the limited scope of matters 
that may be considered pursuant to 10 CFR parts 51 and 54. The petition 
shall specifically explain the reasons why intervention should be 
permitted with particular reference to the following factors: (1) The 
nature of the requestor's/petitioner's right under the Act to be made a 
party to the proceeding; (2) the nature and extent of the requestor's/
petitioner's property, financial, or other interest in the proceeding; 
and (3) the possible effect of any decision or order which may be 
entered in the proceeding on the requestor's/petitioner's interest. The 
petition shall also set forth the specific contentions which the 
petitioner/requestor seeks to have litigated at the proceeding.
    Each contention shall consist of a specific statement of the issue 
of law or fact to be raised or controverted. In addition, the 
requestor/petitioner must briefly explain the bases of each contention 
and state concisely the alleged facts or the expert opinion that 
supports the contention on which the requestor/petitioner intends to 
rely in proving the contention at the hearing. The requestor/petitioner 
must also provide references to those specific sources and documents of 
which the requestor/petitioner is aware and on which the requestor/
petitioner intends to rely to establish those facts or expert opinions. 
The requestor/petitioner must provide sufficient information to show 
that a genuine dispute exists with the applicant on a material issue of 
law or fact.\1\ Contentions shall be limited to matters within the 
scope of the action under consideration. The contention shall be one 
that, if proven, would

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entitle the requestor/petitioner to relief. A requestor/petitioner who 
fails to satisfy these requirements with respect to at least one 
contention will not be permitted to participate as a party.

    \1\ If the application contains attachments and supporting 
documents that are not publicly available because they are asserted 
to contain safeguards or proprietary information, petitioners 
desiring access to this information should contact the applicant or 
applicant's counsel to discuss the need for a protective order.

    The Commission requests that each contention be given a separate 
numeric or alphabetic designation within one of the following groups: 
(1) Technical (primarily related to safety concerns), (2) 
environmental, or (3) miscellaneous.
    As specified in 10 CFR 2.309, if two or more requestors/petitioners 
seek to co-sponsor a contention or propose substantially the same 
contention, the requestors/petitioners will be required to jointly 
designate a representative who will have the authority to act for the 
requestors/petitioners with respect to that contention.
    Those permitted to intervene become parties to the proceeding, 
subject to any limitations in the order granting leave to intervene, 
and have the opportunity to participate fully in the conduct of the 
hearing. A request for hearing or a petition for leave to intervene 
shall be filed in accordance with the NRC E-Filing rule, which the NRC 
officially announced in the Federal Register on August 28, 2007 (72 FR 
49139). The E-Filing process requires participants to submit and serve 
all adjudicatory documents over the Internet, or in some cases to mail 
copies on electronic storage media. Participants may not submit paper 
copies of their filings unless they seek an exemption in accordance 
with the procedures described below.
    To comply with the procedural requirements of E-Filing, at least 10 
days prior to the filing deadline, the petitioner/requestor should 
contact the Office of the Secretary by e-mail at [email protected], 
or by calling (301) 415-1677, to request (1) a digital ID certificate, 
which allows the participant (or its counsel or representative) to 
digitally sign documents and access the E-Submittal server for any 
proceeding in which it is participating and/or (2) the creation of an 
electronic docket for the proceeding (even in instances in which the 
petitioner/requestor (or its counsel or representative) already holds 
an NRC-issued digital ID certificate). Each petitioner/requestor will 
need to download the Workplace Forms ViewerTM to access the 
Electronic Information Exchange (EIE), a component of the E-Filing 
system. The Workplace Forms ViewerTM is free and available 
at http://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals/install-viewer.html. 
Information about applying for a digital ID certificate is available on 
the NRC's public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals/apply-certificates.html.
    Once a petitioner/requestor has obtained a digital ID certificate, 
had a docket created, and downloaded the EIE viewer, it can then submit 
a request for hearing or petition for leave to intervene. Submissions 
should be in Portable Document Format (PDF) in accordance with NRC 
guidance available on the NRC public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals.html. A filing is considered complete at the 
time the filer submits its documents through EIE. To be timely, an 
electronic filing shall be submitted to the EIE system no later than 
11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on the due date. Upon receipt of a 
transmission, the E-Filing system time-stamps the document and sends 
the submitter an e-mail notice confirming receipt of the document. The 
EIE system also distributes an e-mail notice that provides access to 
the document to the NRC Office of the General Counsel and any others 
who have advised the Office of the Secretary that they wish to 
participate in the proceeding, so that the filer need not serve the 
documents on those participants separately. Therefore, applicants and 
other participants (or their counsel or representative) must apply for 
and receive a digital ID certificate before a hearing request/petition 
to intervene is filed so that they can obtain access to the document 
via the E-Filing system.
    A person filing electronically using the agency's adjudicatory e-
filing system may seek assistance through the ``Contact Us'' link 
located on the NRC Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals.html or by calling the NRC electronic filing Help Desk, 
which is available between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday 
through Friday, excluding government holidays. The toll-free help line 
number is (866) 672-7640. A person filing electronically may also seek 
assistance by sending an e-mail to the NRC electronic filing Help Desk 
at [email protected].
    Participants who believe that they have a good cause for not 
submitting documents electronically must file an exemption request, in 
accordance with 10 CFR 2.302(g), with their initial paper filing 
requesting authorization to continue to submit documents in paper 
format. Such filings shall be submitted by: (1) First-class mail 
addressed to the Office of the Secretary of the Commission, U.S. 
Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, Attention: 
Rulemaking and Adjudications Staff, or (2) courier, express mail, or 
expedited delivery service to the Office of the Secretary, Sixteenth 
Floor, One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 
20852, Attention: Rulemaking and Adjudications Staff. Participants 
filing a document in this manner are responsible for serving the 
document on all other participants. Filing is considered complete by 
first-class mail as of the time of deposit in the mail, or by courier, 
express mail, or expedited delivery service upon depositing the 
document with the provider of the service.
    Non-timely requests and/or petitions and contentions will not be 
entertained absent a determination by the Commission, the Presiding 
Officer, or the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board that the petition 
and/or request should be granted and/or the contentions should be 
admitted based on a balancing of the factors specified in 10 CFR 
2.309(c)(1)(i)-(viii). To be timely, filings shall be submitted no 
later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on the due date.
    Documents submitted in adjudicatory proceedings will appear in the 
NRC's electronic hearing docket which is available to the public at 
http://ehd.nrc.gov/EHD_Proceeding/home.asp, unless excluded pursuant 
to an order of the Commission, an Atomic Safety and Licensing Board, or 
a Presiding Officer. Participants are requested not to include personal 
privacy information, such as social security numbers, home addresses, 
or home phone numbers in their filings, unless an NRC regulation or 
other law requires submission of such information. With respect to 
copyrighted works, except for limited excerpts that serve the purpose 
of the adjudicatory filings and would constitute a Fair Use 
application, participants are requested not to include copyrighted 
materials in their submission.
    Detailed information about the license renewal process can be found 
under the Nuclear Reactors icon at http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/operating/licensing/renewal.html on the NRC's Web site. Copies of the 
application to renew the operating license for PVNGS, Units 1, 2, and 
3, are available for public inspection at the Commission's PDR, located 
at One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike (first floor), 
Rockville, MD 20852-2738, and at the NRC's Web site, http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/operating/licensing/renewal/applications.html, 
while the application is under review. The application may be accessed 
in ADAMS through the NRC's Public Electronic Reading Room on the 
Internet at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html under ADAMS 
Accession Nos. ML083510627 and

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ML091130221 (for the April supplement). As stated above, persons who do 
not have access to ADAMS or who encounter problems in accessing the 
documents located in ADAMS may contact the NRC PDR reference staff by 
telephone at 1-800-397-4209 or 301-415-4737, or by e-mail to 
[email protected].
    The NRC staff has verified that a copy of the LRA is also available 
to local residents near PVNGS at the Litchfield Park Branch Library, 
101 West Wigwam Boulevard, Litchfield Park, AZ 85340, and the Sam 
Garcia Western Avenue Library, 495 East Western Avenue, Avondale, AZ 
    Attorney for Arizona Public Service Company: Michael G. Green, 
Senior Regulatory Counsel, Pinnacle West Capital Corporation, P.O. Box 
52034, Mail Station 8695, Phoenix, AZ 85072-2034.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 11th day of May 2009.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Brian E. Holian,
Director, Division of License Renewal, Office of Nuclear Reactor 
[FR Doc. E9-11388 Filed 5-14-09; 8:45 am]