[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 99 (Tuesday, May 26, 2009)]
[Pages 24884-24886]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-12098]



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

Arizona Public Service Company; Notice of Intent To Prepare an 
Environmental Impact Statement and Conduct Scoping Process for Palo 
Verde Nuclear Generating Station, Units 1, 2, and 3

    Arizona Public Service Company (APS) has submitted an application 
for renewal of Facility Operating License Nos. NPF-41, NPF-51, and NPF-
74 for an additional 20 years of operation at the Palo Verde Nuclear 
Generating Station, Units 1, 2, and 3 (Palo Verde). Palo Verde is 
located in Maricopa County, Arizona, approximately 26 miles west of the 
Phoenix city limits.
    The current operating licenses for Palo Verde expire on June 1, 
2025, April 24, 2026, and November 25, 2027, for Units 1, 2, and 3, 
respectively. The application for renewal, dated December 11, 2008, and 
supplemented by letter dated April 14, 2009, was submitted pursuant to 
Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) Part 54. A notice 
of receipt and availability of the application, which included the 
environmental report (ER), was published in the Federal Register on 
January 21, 2009 (74 FR 3655). A notice of acceptance for docketing of 
the application and opportunity for hearing regarding renewal of the 
facility operating license was published in the Federal Register on May 
15, 2009 (74 FR 22978). 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) related to 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).

[[Page 24885]]

    In accordance with 10 CFR 51.53(c) and 10 CFR 54.23, APS submitted 
the ER as part of the application. The ER was prepared pursuant to 10 
CFR Part 51 and is publicly available at the NRC Public Document Room 
(PDR), located at One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, 
Rockville, Maryland 20852, or from the NRC's Agencywide Documents 
Access and Management System (ADAMS). The ADAMS Public Electronic 
Reading Room is accessible at http://adamswebsearch.nrc.gov/dologin.htm. The ADAMS accession number for the ER is ML083510615 (pp. 
371-794) and the supplement is ML091130221. 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 by 
telephone at 1-800-397-4209, or 301-415-4737, or by e-mail at 
[email protected]. The ER may also be viewed on the Internet at 
http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/operating/licensing/renewal/applications/palo-verde.html. In addition, the ER is available for public inspection 
near the Palo Verde site at the Litchfield Park Branch Library, 101 
West Wigwam Boulevard, Litchfield Park, Arizona 85340.
    This notice advises the public that the NRC intends to gather the 
information necessary to prepare a plant-specific supplement to the 
Commission's ``Generic Environmental Impact Statement (GEIS) for 
License Renewal of Nuclear Plants,'' (NUREG-1437), related to the 
review of the application for renewal of the Palo Verde operating 
license for an additional 20 years. Possible alternatives to the 
proposed action (license renewal) include no action and reasonable 
alternative energy sources. The NRC is required by 10 CFR 51.95 to 
prepare a supplement to the GEIS in connection with the renewal of an 
operating license. 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 supplement to 
the GEIS and, as soon as practicable thereafter, will prepare a draft 
supplement to the GEIS 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 
supplement to the GEIS will be used to accomplish the following:
    a. Define the proposed action which is to be the subject of the 
supplement to the GEIS.
    b. Determine the scope of the supplement to the GEIS 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 ElSs that are 
being or will be prepared that are related to, but are not part of, the 
scope of the supplement to the GEIS 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 decision-making schedule.
    g. Identify any cooperating agencies and, as appropriate, allocate 
assignments for preparation and schedules for completing the supplement 
to the GEIS to the NRC and any cooperating agencies.
    h. Describe how the supplement to the GEIS will be prepared, and 
include any contractor assistance to be used.
    The NRC invites the following entities to participate in scoping:
    a. The applicant, APS.
    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.
    f. Any person who has petitioned or intends to petition for leave 
to intervene.
    In accordance with 10 CFR 51.26, the scoping process for an EIS may 
include a public scoping meeting to help identify significant issues 
related to a proposed activity and to determine the scope of issues to 
be addressed in an EIS. The NRC has decided to hold public meetings for 
the Palo Verde license renewal supplement to the GEIS. The scoping 
meetings will be held on June 25, 2009, and there will be two sessions 
to accommodate interested parties. The first session will convene at 2 
p.m. and will continue until 5 p.m., as necessary, and will be held at 
the Tonopah Valley High School, 38201 West Indian School Road, Tonopah, 
Arizona 85354. The second session will convene at 7 p.m. with a repeat 
of the overview portions of the meeting and will continue until 10 
p.m., as necessary, and will be held at the Estrella Mountain Community 
College, 3000 North Dysart Road, Avondale, Arizona 85392. Both meetings 
will be transcribed and will include: (1) An overview by the NRC staff 
of the NEPA environmental review process, the proposed scope of the 
supplement to the GEIS, and the proposed review schedule; and (2) the 
opportunity for interested government agencies, organizations, and 
individuals to submit comments or suggestions on the environmental 
issues or the proposed scope of the supplement to the GEIS. 
Additionally, the NRC staff will host informal discussions one hour 
prior to the start of each session at the same location. No formal 
comments on the proposed scope of the supplement to the GEIS will be 
accepted during the informal discussions. To be considered, comments 
must be provided either at the transcribed public meetings or in 
writing, as discussed below. Persons may register to attend or present 
oral comments at the meetings on the scope of the NEPA review by 
contacting the NRC Project Manager, Lisa Regner, by telephone at 1-800-
368-5642, extension 1906 or by e-mail at [email protected] no later 
than June 18, 2009. Members of the public may also register to speak at 
the meeting within 15 minutes of the start of each session. Individual 
oral comments may be limited by the time available, depending on the 
number of persons who register. Members of the public who have not 
registered may also have an opportunity to speak, if time permits. 
Public comments will be considered in the scoping process for the 
supplement to the GEIS. Ms. Regner will need to be contacted no later 
than June 18, 2009, if special equipment or accommodations are needed 
to attend or present information at the public meeting, so that the NRC 
staff can determine whether the request can be accommodated.
    Members of the public may send written comments on the 
environmental scope of the Palo Verde license renewal review to: Chief, 
Rulemaking and Directives Branch, Division of Administrative Services, 
Office of Administration, Mailstop TWB 5B-01M, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory 
Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, and should cite the publication 
date and page number of this Federal Register notice. To be considered 
in the scoping process, written comments should be postmarked by July 
27, 2009. Electronic comments may be sent by e-mail to the NRC at 
[email protected], and should be sent no later than July 27,

[[Page 24886]]

2009, to be considered in the scoping process. Comments will be 
available electronically and accessible through ADAMS at http://adamswebsearch.nrc.gov/dologin.htm.
    Participation in the scoping process for the supplement to the GEIS 
does not entitle participants to become parties to the proceeding to 
which the supplement to the GEIS relates. Matters related to 
participation in any hearing are outside the scope of matters to be 
discussed at this public meeting.
    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://adamswebsearch.nrc.gov/dologin.htm. The staff will then prepare and issue for comment the 
draft supplement to the GEIS, which will be the subject of separate 
notices and separate public meetings. 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 supplement 
to the GEIS, which will also be available for public inspection.
    Information about the proposed action, the supplement to the GEIS, 
and the scoping process may be obtained from Ms. Regner at the 
aforementioned telephone number or e-mail address.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 18th day of May, 2009.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
David J. Wrona,
Chief, Projects Branch 2, Division of License Renewal, Office of 
Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
[FR Doc. E9-12098 Filed 5-22-09; 8:45 am]