[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 214 (Wednesday, November 5, 2014)]
[Pages 65729-65730]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-26308]

[[Page 65729]]



[Docket No. 50-333; NRC-2014-0034]

Entergy Nuclear Operations, Inc., James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear 
Power Plant

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Director's Decision under 10 CFR 2.206; issuance.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has issued a 
director's decision with regard to a petition dated July 25, 2013, as 
supplemented on November 13, 2013, filed by Mr. David Lochbaum, (the 
petitioner), on behalf of Alliance for Green Economy, Beyond Nuclear, 
Citizens Awareness Network, and Union of Concerned Scientists, 
requesting that the NRC take action with regard to concerns with the 
operation of James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant (FitzPatrick), 
owned by Entergy Nuclear Generation Company and operated by Entergy 
Nuclear Operations, Inc. (Entergy, the licensee). The petitioner's 
requests and the director's decision are included in the SUPPLEMENTARY 
INFORMATION section of this document.

ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2014-0034 when contacting the 
NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You 
may obtain publicly-available information related to this document 
using any of the following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2014-0034. Address 
questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-287-
3422; email: [email protected]. For technical questions, contact 
the individual listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of 
this document.
     NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System 
(ADAMS): You may obtain publicly-available documents online in the 
ADAMS Public Documents collection at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. To begin the search, select ``ADAMS Public Documents'' and 
then select ``Begin Web-based ADAMS Search.'' For problems with ADAMS, 
please contact the NRC's Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 
1-800-397-4209, 301-415-4737, or by email to [email protected]. For 
the convenience of the reader, the ADAMS accession numbers are provided 
in a table in the ``Availability of Documents'' section of this 
     NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public 
documents at the NRC's PDR, Room O1-F21, One White Flint North, 11555 
Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mohan Thadani, Office of Nuclear 
Reactor Regulation, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 
20555-0001; telephone: 301-415-1476, email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Notice is hereby given that the Director, 
Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation, has issued a director's decision 
(ADAMS Accession No. ML14247A306) on a petition filed by the petitioner 
on July 25, 2013, (ADAMS Accession No. ML13217A061). The petition was 
supplemented by letter dated November 13, 2013 (ADAMS Accession No. 
ML13347B133). The petitioner requested that the NRC take enforcement 
action by imposing a regulatory requirement that all the condenser 
tubes be replaced at FitzPatrick prior to the reactor restarting from 
its fall 2014 refueling outage.
    On November 13, 2013, the petitioner and the licensee met with the 
NRC's Petition Review Board. The meeting provided the petitioner and 
the licensee an opportunity to provide additional information and to 
clarify issues cited in the petition. The transcript for that meeting 
is available in ADAMS under Accession No. ML14036A234.
    As a basis of the request, the petitioners asserted that 
FitzPatrick is experiencing abnormally high occurrences of condenser 
tube failures. To repair these leaks, Entergy Nuclear Operations Inc. 
(Entergy) routinely reduces power, makes the repairs needed, and 
returns to full power. The petitioners state that these power 
excursions constitute a risk to public health and safety. The NRC's 
Reactor Oversight Process also recognizes the elevated risk associated 
with unplanned power changes.
    The petitioner also asserts that operating experience indicates 
that condenser-tube leaks have contaminated the reactor coolant water 
with impurities from the condenser cooling water and have caused 
extensive damage to nuclear power plant components. Appendix B, 
``Quality Assurance Criteria for Nuclear Power Plants and Fuel 
Reprocessing Plants,'' to part 50 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations (10 CFR), ``Domestic Licensing of Production and 
Utilization Facilities'' (see http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/cfr/part050/part050-appb.html), requires that plant owners 
develop and maintain quality-assurance programs.
    The NRC observed that Entergy did not properly consider 
FitzPatrick's operating history, specifically the 4 years of outages, 
when projecting the expected condenser-tube life. Consequently, Entergy 
did not properly plan and design for condenser tube replacement before 
tube leakage, which has necessitated frequent downpowers for repair. 
Corrective actions include condenser-tube sleeving during the fall 2012 
refueling outage and a planned complete replacement of all condenser 
tubes in the fall 2014 refueling outage.
    The NRC sent a copy of the Proposed Director's Decision to the 
petitioner and the licensee for comments on June 27, 2014. The 
Petitioner and the licensee were asked to provide comments within 30 
days on any part of the proposed Director's Decision that was 
considered to be erroneous or any issues in the petition that were not 
addressed. Comments were received from the Petitioner and are addressed 
in an attachment to the final Director's Decision.
    The Director of the Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation has 
determined that the request, to require the NRC to issue an Order 
requiring the licensee to replace all the condenser tubes prior to 
restart from FitzPatrick's fall 2014 refueling outage, be denied. The 
reasons for this decision are explained in the director's decision 
dated October 17, 2014, pursuant to 10 CFR 2.206 of the Commission's 
    The NRC will file a copy of the director's decision with the 
Secretary of the Commission for the Commission's review in accordance 
with 10 CFR 2.206. As provided by this regulation, the Director's 
Decision will constitute the final action of the Commission 25 days 
after the date of the Decision unless the Commission, on its own 
motion, institutes a review of the director's decision in that time.

Availability of Documents

    The documents identified in the following table are available to 
interested persons through one or more of the following methods, as 

[[Page 65730]]

                    Document                          ADAMS Accession No./web link/Federal Register citation
G20130561--David Lochbaum E-mail re Tanya         ML13217A061, July 25, 2013.
 Mensah, NRR, Merrilee Banic, NRR; Andrea
 Russell, NRR, David Pelton, NRR; Mary Spencer;
2013/12/12 NRR E-mail Capture--Attached please    ML14036A234, November 13, 2013.
 find the transcript for PRB telecon with
 petitioner Lochbaum ``10 CFR 2.206 Petition
 Review Board re: Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power
 Plant'' dated November 13, 2013.
G20130561--James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power     ML14034A028 and ML14034A071, February 12, 2014.
 Plant--Petition Pursuant to Section 2.206 of
 Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
 (Acknowledgement Letter and Federal Register
IR 05000333-14-007; 01/20/2014--01/24/2014;       ML14133A051, May 12, 2014.
 James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant
 (FitzPatrick); Supplemental Inspection--
 Inspection Procedure (IP) 95001.
G20130561--James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power     ML13217A059.
 Plant--Petition Pursuant to Section 2.206 of
 Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
G20130561--Letter to Licensee Re: David Lochbaum  ML14127A323, June 27, 2014.
 ltr dtd 07/25/13 Concerning the 2.206 Petition
 on the Recurring Condenser Tube Leaks at the
 James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant (TAC
 No. MF2521).
G20130561--Letter to Petitioner Re: David         ML14127A335, June 27, 2014.
 Lochbaum Ltr dtd 07/25/13 Concerning the 2.206
 Petition on the Recurring Condenser Tube Leaks
 at the James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant
 (TAC No. MF2521).
G20130561--2.206 Proposed Director's Decision     ML14127A338, June 27, 2014.
 Re: David Lochbaum Ltr dtd 07/25/13 Concerning
 the Recurring Condenser Tube Leaks at the James
 A Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant (TAC No.
2014/07/09 NRR E-mail Capture--Comments on Draft  ML14251A270, July 09, 2014.
 Director's Decision on FitzPatrick. (From
James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant--        ML14204A819, July 23, 2014.
 Comments to Proposed Director's Decision Under
 10 CFR 2.206. (From Licensee).
Letter to David Lochbaum: Response to petition    ML14247A311.
 filed on July 25, 2013.
Final Director's Decision: Petition filed on      ML14247A306.
 July 25, 2013.
James A. FitzPatrick Final Federal Register       ML14303A178.
 Notice--Issuance of Director's Decision 2.206
 Petition Re: Condenser Tubes.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 17th day of October 2014.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
William M. Dean,
Director, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
[FR Doc. 2014-26308 Filed 11-4-14; 8:45 am]