[Federal Register Volume 75, Number 222 (Thursday, November 18, 2010)]
[Pages 70707-70708]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2010-29114]



[Docket No. 50-341; NRC-2010-0357; FERMI, Unit 2]

 Detroit Edison Company; Environmental Assessment and Finding of 
No Significant Impact

    The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering 
issuance of an exemption from Title 10 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations (10 CFR) part 20 Appendix G, Section III.E, for Facility 
Operating License No. NFP-43, issued to Detroit Edison Company (DECo, 
the licensee), for operation of Fermi, Unit 2 (Fermi-2) located in 
Monroe County, Michigan. Therefore, as required by 10 CFR 51.21, the 
NRC performed an environmental assessment. Based on the results of the 
environmental assessment, the NRC is issuing a finding of no 
significant impact.

Environmental Assessment

Identification of the Proposed Action

    The proposed action would grant an exemption to extend the time 
period that can elapse during shipments of low-level radioactive waste 
before the licensee is required to investigate and file a report with 
the NRC. Specifically, the exemption would extend the time period for 
the licensee to receive acknowledgment that the low-level radioactive 
waste shipment has been received by the intended recipient from 20 days 
to 35 days.
    The proposed action is in accordance with the licensee's 
application for an exemption dated February 5, 2010. The licensee has 
requested an exemption from certain control and tracking requirements 
in 10 CFR part 20, Appendix G, Section III.E, which require the 
licensee to investigate, and file a report with the NRC, if shipments 
of low-level radioactive waste are not acknowledged by the intended 
recipient within 20 days after transfer to the shipper.

The Need for the Proposed Action

    DECo anticipates the increased use of rail as the method to ship 
radioactive waste. The licensee has experience with rail shipments from 
the Fermi-1 decommissioning project. Those rail shipments typically 
took more than 20 days to reach their destination in Clive, Utah. On 
April 26, 2010, the NRC granted a similar exemption extending the time 
period from 20 days to 35 days for radioactive shipments from Fermi-1 
based on historical data submitted in support of that exemption 
    The licensee believes, and the NRC staff agrees, that the need to 
investigate, trace, and report to the NRC on the shipment of low-level 
waste packages not reaching their destination within 20 days does not 
serve the underlying purpose of the rule. The Commission finds that the 
underlying purpose of the Appendix G timing provision at issue is to 
investigate a late shipment that may be lost, misdirected or diverted. 
Furthermore, by extending the elapsed time for receipt acknowledgement 
to 35 days before requiring investigations and reporting, a reasonable 
upper limit on shipment duration (based on historical analysis) is 
still maintained if a breakdown of normal tracking systems were to 
occur. Therefore, the NRC staff finds that granting an exemption to 
extend the time period from 20 days to 35 days for mixed-mode or truck/
rail or rail shipments of low-level radioactive waste will not result 
in an undue hazard to life or property.

Environmental Impacts of the Proposed Action

    The NRC has completed its environmental assessment of the proposed 
action and concludes that the proposed action is procedural and 
administrative in nature. The staff has concluded that the changes 
would not significantly affect plant safety and would not have a 
significant adverse effect on the probability of an accident occurring. 
The proposed action would not result in an increased radiological 
hazard beyond those previously analyzed in the Updated Safety Analysis 
Report. There will be no change to radioactive effluents that affect 
radiation exposures to plant workers and members of the public. No 
changes will be made to plant buildings or the site property. 
Therefore, no changes or different types of radiological impacts are 
expected as a result of the proposed changes.
    The proposed action does not result in changes to land use or water 
use, or result in changes to the quality or quantity of non-
radiological effluents. No changes to the National Pollution Discharge 
Elimination System permit are needed. No effects on the aquatic or 
terrestrial habitat in the vicinity or the plant, or to threatened, 
endangered, or protected species under the Endangered Species Act, or 
impacts to essential fish habitat covered by the Magnuson-Stevens Act 
are expected. There are no impacts to the air or ambient air quality. 
There are no impacts to historical and cultural resources. There would 
be no noticeable effect on socioeconomic conditions in the region. 
Therefore, no changes or different types of non-radiological 
environmental impacts are expected as a result of the proposed action. 
Accordingly, the NRC concludes that there are no significant 
environmental impacts associated with the proposed action. The details 
of the NRC staff's safety evaluation will be provided in the exemption 
issued as part of the letter to the licensee approving the exemption to 
the regulation, if granted.

Environmental Impacts of the Alternatives to the Proposed Action

    As an alternative to the proposed action, the NRC staff considered 
denial of the proposed action (i.e., the ``no-action'' alternative). 
Denial of the application would result in no change in current 
environmental impacts. The environmental impacts of the proposed action 
and the alternative action are similar.

Alternative Use of Resources

    The action does not involve the use of any different resources than 
those previously considered in the Final Environmental Statement for 
the Enrico Fermi Atomic Power Plant, Unit 2, NUREG-0769, dated August 
1981, as supplemented with Addendum No. 1 in March 1982.

Agencies and Persons Consulted

    In accordance with its stated policy, on September 21, 2010, the 
NRC staff consulted with the State official, Mr. Ken Yale, of the 
Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment regarding the 
environmental impact of the proposed action. The State official had no 

Finding of No Significant Impact

    On the basis of the environmental assessment, the NRC concludes 
that the proposed action will not have a significant effect on the 
quality of the human environment. Accordingly, the NRC has determined 
not to prepare an environmental impact statement for the proposed 
    For further details with respect to the proposed action, see the 
licensee's letter dated February 5, 2010 (Agencywide Documents Access 
and Management System (ADAMS) Accession No.

[[Page 70708]]

ML100430349). Documents may be examined, and/or copied for a fee, at 
the NRC's Public Document Room (PDR), located at One White Flint North, 
Public File Area O1 F21, 11555 Rockville Pike (first floor), Rockville, 
Maryland. Publicly available records will be accessible electronically 
from the ADAMS Public Electronic Reading Room on the Internet at the 
NRC Web site, http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. Persons who do 
not have access to ADAMS or who encounter problems in accessing the 
documents located in ADAMS should contact the NRC PDR Reference staff 
by telephone at 1-800-397-4209 or 301-415-4737, or send an e-mail to 
[email protected].

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 3rd day of November, 2010.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Mahesh L. Chawla,
 Project Manager, Plant Licensing Branch III-1, Division of Operating 
Reactor Licensing, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
[FR Doc. 2010-29114 Filed 11-17-10; 8:45 am]