Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact Related to License Termination Plan for the Yankee Atomic Electric Company; License DPR-003, Rowe, MA, 32664-32672 [E5-2850]

Download as PDF 32664 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 106 / Friday, June 3, 2005 / Notices NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION [Docket No. 50–029] Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact Related to License Termination Plan for the Yankee Atomic Electric Company; License DPR–003, Rowe, MA Nuclear Regulatory Commission. ACTION: Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact. AGENCY: John Hickman, Division of Waste Management and Environmental Protection, Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Mail Stop T7E18, Washington, DC 20555–00001. Telephone: (301) 415–3017; e-mail jbh@nrc.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 1.0 Introduction The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) (or the staff) is considering Yankee Atomic Electric Company’s request for approval of the License Termination Plan (LTP) submitted for the Yankee Nuclear Power Station (YNPS) in Rowe, Massachusetts. The NRC has prepared this environmental assessment (EA) to determine the environmental impacts (radiological and non-radiological) of approving the LTP and of subsequently releasing the site for unrestricted use (as defined in 10 CFR 20.1402). This is consistent with the final rule, 10 CFR 50.82 that appeared in the Federal Register on July 29, 1996 (61 FR 39278, Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Reactors), which established the criteria for license termination and the requirement for a license termination plan. As discussed in Section 1.3 below, the primary scope of this EA is the evaluation of the impacts of the radiation release criteria and the adequacy of the final status survey, as presented in the LTP. 1.1 Background YNPS is a deactivated pressurizedwater nuclear reactor situated on a small portion of a 2,200-acre site. The site is located in northwestern Massachusetts in Franklin County, near the southern Vermont border. The plant and most of the 2,200-acre site are owned by the Yankee Atomic Electric Company (YAEC). A small portion on the west side of the site (along the east bank of VerDate jul<14>2003 18:03 Jun 02, 2005 Jkt 205001 the Sherman Reservoir) is owned by USGen New England, Inc. The YNPS plant was constructed between 1958 and 1960 and operated commercially at 185 megawatts electrical production (after a 1963 upgrade) until 1992. In 1992, YAEC determined that closing the plant would be in the best economic interest of its customers. In December 1993, NRC amended the YNPS operating license to retain a ‘‘possession-only’’ status. YAEC began dismantling and decommissioning activities at that time. These activities continue and their relevance with respect to this EA is discussed in Section 1.3. The spent nuclear fuel remaining onsite was transferred in 2003 from the spent fuel pool to the independent spent fuel storage installation (ISFSI) located adjacent to the plant. The spent fuel pool was subsequently drained in compliance with regulatory requirements. In November 2003, YAEC submitted its LTP with a goal to complete decommissioning by mid-2005 (YAEC, 2003). Draft Revision 1 to the plan was submitted September 2, 2004 (YAEC, 2004a), in response to a NRC request for additional information (NRC, 2004). Subsequently, on November 19, 2004, YAEC submitted Revision 1 to the LTP (YAEC, 2004f). YAEC is proposing to decontaminate the YNPS site to meet the unrestricted release criteria of 10 CFR 20.1402. Additionally, YAEC has stated that it intends to comply with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts cleanup criteria of 105 CMR 120.291 established by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MDEP). Most site structures will be demolished to grade or entirely removed, and most buried piping or utilities removed. Basements will be perforated to allow groundwater to flow through during remediation. The following structures will remain after phased release of the site: the administration building, guard building, a small switchyard outside the guard building, the ISFSI, the ISFSI security building, and access roads. After the irradiated fuel has been removed from the site and prior to license termination the ISFSI and ISFSI security building will be removed. 1.2 Need for the Proposed Action Licensees of nuclear facilities must apply to the NRC before terminating a license voluntarily and decommissioning a facility. YAEC submitted the LTP, as required by 10 CFR 50.82, before requesting license termination. The NRC must determine PO 00000 Frm 00101 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 whether the proposed procedures, adequacy of radiation criteria for license termination, and the final status survey planned for completing decommissioning appear sufficient and, if implemented according to the plan, would demonstrate that the site is suitable for release. 1.3 Scope To fulfill its obligations under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the NRC must evaluate the radiological and nonradiological environmental impacts associated with approval of the LTP and subsequent termination of the license. These evaluations involve an assessment of the impacts of the remaining buildings or structures and residual material present at the site at the time of license termination. As described in the Statements of Consideration accompanying the Final Rule on Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Reactors (61 FR 39278), the NRC must consider the following in order to approve the LTP: (1) The licensee’s plan for assuring that adequate funds will be available for final site release, (2) radiation release criteria for license termination, and (3) the adequacy of the final survey required to verify that these release criteria have been met. 1.3.1 Issues Studied in Detail Consistent with NEPA regulations and guidance to focus on environmental issues of concern, impacts to land use, water resources, and human health were selected for detailed study because of their potential to be affected by an approval of the LTP. These issues are discussed in this EA due to the potential for impacts from remaining structures and/or residual material left at the site. 1.3.2 Issues Eliminated From Detailed Study Issues eliminated from detailed study in this EA include air quality, historic and cultural resources, ecological resources (including endangered and threatened species), socioeconomic conditions, transportation, noise, visual and scenic quality, off-site waste management, and accident scenarios. These issues were eliminated because they would not be affected by implementation of the LTP at the site (i.e., ensuring the site meets radiation release criteria in the final status survey). The financial assurance review, which is a required part of the LTP approval, is not related to human health or the environment and will not be discussed in this EA. E:\FR\FM\03JNN1.SGM 03JNN1 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 106 / Friday, June 3, 2005 / Notices Impacts from decommissioning activities at the YNPS site are not evaluated in this EA. NRC has already assessed power plant decommissioning impacts in programmatic NEPA documents. Specifically, the environmental impact statement for decommissioning activities (NRC, 1988, 2002) discusses the range of impacts expected from power plant decommissioning activities. Further, in reviewing the LTP, the staff also determined that the environmental impacts were enveloped by the generic analysis performed in support of ‘‘Radiological Criteria for License Termination.’’ (62 FR 39058) Decommissioning impacts at the YNPS site were also addressed in the YAEC’s Post-Shutdown Decommissioning Activities Report (PSDAR) (YAEC, 2000). Additionally, the Commission has made a generic determination that, if necessary, spent fuel generated in any reactor can be stored safely and without significant environmental impacts for at least 30 years beyond the plant’s licensed operating life (64 FR 68005 and 10 CFR 51.23). Therefore, this EA does not evaluate environmental impacts of spent fuel storage in the onsite independent spent fuel storage installation (ISFSI). However, the ISFSI is discussed briefly in Sections 3.2 and 4.1. 2.0 Proposed Action and Alternatives 2.1 The Proposed Action The proposed action is the NRC’s review and approval of YAEC’s LTP. The NRC staff will review the plan to ensure that the license termination activities (i.e., designation of radiation release criteria and design of the final status survey) will comply with NRC regulations. If NRC approves the plan, the approval will be issued in the form of an amendment to the YNPS license (Possession Only License No. DPR–3). YAEC plans to complete decommissioning of the YNPS site for unrestricted use, as described in the LTP and consistent with NRC regulations at 10 CFR 20.1402. In addition, YAEC intends to comply with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts cleanup criteria in 105 CMR 120.291 specified by the MDPH and by the MDEP in the Massachusetts Contingency Plan (MCP) and Solid Waste Regulations, as applicable. To meet NRC’s unrestricted release criteria, areas of the site will be divided into survey units. These units will be sampled or surveyed in accordance with the LTP to verify that site-specific criteria have been met. These criteria, VerDate jul<14>2003 18:03 Jun 02, 2005 Jkt 205001 known as ‘‘derived concentration guideline levels’’ (DCGLs), are discussed further in Sections 3.4 and 4.3. Initially, YAEC plans to release all but 87 acres of the site for unrestricted use after having passed the final survey. The remaining 87 acres would remain on the license until the spent fuel is shipped offsite for permanent disposal (see Section 4.1) and the ISFSI is decommissioned. At that time, the remaining acreage would again be surveyed and, contingent on survey results, the license terminated. 2.2 Alternatives As an alternative to the proposed action, the staff considered the ‘‘noaction alternative.’’ The no-action alternative would maintain the status quo. This would result in no change to current environmental impacts, which are larger than those resulting from the proposed action. 3.0 Affected Environment 3.1 Site Description The YNPS site is located at 49 Yankee Road, approximately three miles northnorthwest of the northwestern Massachusetts town of Rowe, in Franklin County. The site is adjacent to the Vermont border on land characterized by heavily wooded, steep hills. It is situated within the Deerfield River Valley and abuts the eastern shores of the Deerfield River and Sherman Reservoir. Hills bounding the Deerfield River valley rise 500 to 1000 feet above the site, reaching elevations of 2100 feet above mean sea level (ERM, 2004a). The combined population of the two nearest towns, Rowe and Monroe, is less than 500. The YNPS property consists of about 2,200 acres in the towns of Rowe and Monroe. Most of this property (approximately 1,825-acres) is owned by YAEC; the remaining portion is owned by USGen New England, Inc., (USGen). The USGen property is a narrow strip of upland to the west of the plant, extending along the entire eastern bank of Sherman Reservoir. USGen also owns the reservoir itself, the Sherman Dam, property west of the Sherman Reservoir, and property downstream of Sherman Dam encompassing both banks of the Deerfield River. YNPS operations have been conducted on about 15 developed acres, primarily on land owned by YAEC, but extending onto property owned by USGen (ERM, 2004a). The YNPS site is divided into three areas based on past site activities and land use: 1. Industrial Area: approximately 12acre fenced portion of the site that PO 00000 Frm 00102 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 32665 contains industrial plant structures and operations. 2. Radiologically Controlled Area (RCA): 4-acre parcel within the industrial area that contains radiological materials associated with plant operation. 3. Non-Industrial Area: remaining land outside the fenced industrial area that contains the USGen Sherman Station hydroelectric plant, the Sherman Reservoir and Dam, transmission lines traversing the site, administration building and visitor center, roadways, fill areas and undeveloped woodland (YAEC, 2004b; ERM, 2004a). During construction of the YNPS facility, some construction and demolition debris was placed into what is now the Southeast Construction Fill Area (SCFA). This area of approximately 1.5 acres contains soil and rock, in addition to wood, concrete, asphalt, and metal debris. In accordance with MDEP Solid Waste permits, YAEC plans to remove the materials from this area, returning native soils to other areas of the site for regrading. Ecology and Cultural Resources The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service confirmed in correspondence with YAEC that no federally listed endangered or threatened species occur on the site. (ERM, 2004b) Massachusetts species of concern have been identified on the YNPS site. A northern spring salamander was identified in a headwater channel of Wheeler Brook. The bristly black currant was discovered in a drainage area along the Wheeler Brook Divertment, outside the site’s eastern fenceline. Longnose suckers are documented to exist in the Sherman Reservoir. YAEC is working with the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries & Wildlife under the National Heritage and Endangered Species Program (NHESP) to develop a plan for the protection of these species during the remainder of decommissioning activities. Several resources of cultural and historic significance exist at the site; however, none of these have been affected by decommissioning activities. A 2003 report documents these resources, most of which are located in the undeveloped uplands (PAL, 2003). The report also includes a management plan that meets Massachusetts Historical Commission guidelines. 3.1.1 Existing Radiological Contamination The majority of the site located outside the industrial area was determined to be non-impacted (about E:\FR\FM\03JNN1.SGM 03JNN1 32666 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 106 / Friday, June 3, 2005 / Notices 2170 acres), as documented in Section 2.5 of the LTP. The non-impacted area consists mostly of forested, rugged terrain that has not been disturbed. This determination is based on both the Historical Site Assessment (YAEC, 2004c) and additional characterization surveys. Radiologically-impacted areas of the site include the industrial area and surrounding open land areas extending out approximately 1000 feet from the vapor container (now dismantled). The radiologically impacted areas comprise approximately 30 acres, the majority of which are minimally impacted (contain residual radioactivity at levels no greater than a fraction of the proposed DCGLs). For a more detailed description of initial radiological characterization of the impacted area, refer to the YNPS Historical Site Assessment and Section 2.4 of the LTP. The Historical Site Assessment also identified low levels of contamination, primarily Co-60, in the sediments of Sherman Reservoir. This radioactive material was deposited as a result of permitted and monitored radioactive liquid releases. Characterization surveys showed the radioactive material concentration is a small fraction of the proposed DCGLs. Areas with potentially contaminated sediments are included in the final status surveys for further evaluation. Characterization Process Site characterization activities were performed in two phases, initial and continuing. The results of the initial phase were submitted to the NRC in January 2004. After a review of the results of the initial characterization, YAEC initiated the continuing phase, which will be ongoing throughout the remainder of the decommissioning activities. The results would be used to guide the remediation activities, and to confirm the appropriateness of the radiological source terms used for the dose model and basis for the corresponding DCGLs by media. Site characterization surveys are conducted to determine the nature and extent of radiological contamination at the YNPS site. The purpose of the site characterization survey is to: (1) Permit planning for remediation activities; (2) demonstrate that it is unlikely that significant quantities of residual radioactivity have gone undetected at the site after remediation; (3) provide information to design the final site survey (i.e., identify survey unit classifications for impacted areas); and (4) provide input to dose modeling (NRC, 2003). Site characterization activities include the collection of VerDate jul<14>2003 18:03 Jun 02, 2005 Jkt 205001 various types of samples, including soil, sediment, water, concrete, metal, and surface residues. Surveys and sampling conducted during site characterization are based on knowledge of the plant history and likely areas of contamination. In accordance with 10 CFR 50.82(a)(9)(ii)(A), radiological conditions of the site were provided in Section 2.0 of the LTP. The results of sample analyses and the use of the results in identifying the significant radionuclides expected to be present after remediation are described in Attachments 2B and 2C of Chapter 2 of the LTP. YAEC conducted a series of sample analyses using site media believed to represent the distribution of radionuclide contaminants, and their decay-corrected isotopic distribution, over the operational history of the plant. In its technical basis document, YAEC describes the method that was used to determine radionuclides that could be present at the site (YAEC 2003). The radionuclides include, but are not limited to: 3H, 14C, 54Mn, 55Fe, 57Co, 58Co, 59Ni, 60Co, 63Ni, 65Zn, 90Sr, 94Nb, 99Tc, 106Ru, 108mAg, 125Sb, 129I, 134Cs, 137Cs, 144Ce, 145Pm, 152Eu, 154Eu, 155Eu, 238Pu, 239Pu, 240Pu, 241Pu, 241Am, 243Cm, and 244Cm. These radionuclides include fission and activation products, which are typical of those found in pressurized-water reactor plants. These radionuclides are also described in two NRC documents: NUREG/CR–0130, ‘‘Technology, Safety and Costs of Decommissioning a Reference Pressurized Water Reactor Power Station,’’ (Smith et al., 1978) and NUREG/CR–3474, ‘‘Long-Lived Activation Products in Reactor Materials,’’ (Evans et al., 1984). Based on dose model assumptions (including the expected time at which the site will be remediated) YAEC has identified the following 22 radionuclides as potentially contributing to the dose after license termination: 3H, 14C, 55Fe, 60Co, 63Ni, 90Sr, 94Nb, 99Tc, 108mAg, 125Sb, 134Cs, 137Cs, 152Eu, 154Eu, 155Eu, 238Pu, 239Pu, 240Pu, 241Pu, 241Am, 243Cm, and 244Cm. Accordingly, these radionuclides would form the basis in planning and conducting all final status surveys, and demonstrating compliance with the site release criteria. 3.1.2 Existing Hazardous and Chemical Contamination Chemical Use Over the YNPS plant’s operating life, a number of hazardous materials or chemicals were used throughout the industrial area. Some of these materials PO 00000 Frm 00103 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 are: water treatment and other maintenance chemicals, fuel, lubricating and transformer oils (including oils containing polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)), and chemicals used for the various reactor systems (including boron, hydrazine, 1,1,1-trichloroethane, and trisodium phosphate). Additionally, some of the building structures and surfaces contain asbestos, PCBcontaining paint, and/or lead-based paint (ERM, 2004a). While the plant was operating, it was classified as a small quantity generator of hazardous wastes under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). However, YAEC is currently a large quantity generator (generating over 1,000 kilograms of hazardous wastes per month) due to the increased volume of hazardous and mixed wastes associated with decommissioning activities. The MDEP regulates YAEC’s hazardous waste generation and storage activities. Contamination and Remediation Nonradiological chemical cleanup at the site must comply with MDEP regulations under the Massachusetts Contingency Plan (MCP) (310 CMR 40.00), which regulates the investigation and cleanup of oil and hazardous materials releases to soil or water (ERM, 2004a), and the MDEP Solid Waste Regulations at 310 CMR 19.000, which regulate the investigation and remediation of the SCFA and the review of beneficial reuse determination (BUD) permits. YAEC had intended to remediate onsite contamination to enable future use of the site without restrictions, however deed restrictions will be utilized in the remediation of the industrial use of the site. The primary non-radiological contaminant of concern at the site is PCBs. A release of PCB-containing paint chips from the vapor container (reactor containment) into the Sherman Reservoir was discovered in the spring of 2000. The paint chips migrated to the reservoir through the stormwater drainage system. Immediate action was taken to remediate some of the storm drain sediments. Additional cleanup has been ongoing since 2001, including remediation of soils in landscaped areas onsite and of the sediments in the Sherman Reservoir and western storm drainage ditch. PCBs in soils and sediments are being remediated to meet the requirements of both the MDEP and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) generally to a level of 1 milligrams/kilogram (mg/kg, or partsper-million). YAEC has documented its PCB remediation program in three reports prepared according to MCP E:\FR\FM\03JNN1.SGM 03JNN1 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 106 / Friday, June 3, 2005 / Notices requirements: Phase II Comprehensive Site Assessment, Phase III Remedial Action Plan, and Phase IV Remedy Implementation Plan. Massachusetts and Vermont public health agencies have issued advisories due to the presence of mercury in fish from the Sherman Reservoir. Atmospheric deposition from industrial activities is a likely source of the mercury found in these fish. Additionally, PCBs were detected at trace levels in the tissues of fish in the vicinity of the East Storm Drain Outfall. The source of the PCBs is likely the PCB-containing paint chips that migrated into the reservoir. The licensee is controlling any remaining PCBcontaining paint so no further environmental impact is expected. As discussed in Section 3.1.2, YAEC is in the process of remediating the PCBcontaminated areas of the reservoir near the East Storm Drain Outfall (ERM, 2004a). YAEC began an additional site-wide characterization of soils, groundwater, and sediments in 2003 and identified several areas for further study. According to the June 2004 Site Characterization Status Report (ERM, 2004c) and the January 2005 Phase II Comprehensive Site Assessment Report, minor contamination in groundwater and sediment, as well as localized areas of contaminated soil, were identified as requiring further evaluation. Groundwater contaminants are discussed in Section 3.3.2. Sediment impacts include PCBs, which is consistent with previous investigations. Soil impacts include low levels of the following compounds: petroleum hydrocarbon impacts near parking areas; PCBs near the transformer yard; dioxin near the former incinerator; lead around the former shooting range; and beryllium near the ISFSI and former cooling water discharge structure. YAEC will continue to work with the MDEP to fulfill MCP requirements and demonstrate that the entire site has been adequately characterized and remediated where necessary, according to MDEP regulations. When the site is released from NRC jurisdiction, it will remain under state jurisdiction until all nonradiological contamination issues are resolved with the MDEP. As discussed earlier, most site buildings are being demolished to ground level, and some foundations (notably, the Spent Fuel Pool/Ion Exchange Pit, or SFP/IXP) will be removed entirely. Basements will be remediated to meet the DCGLs before they are perforated to facilitate groundwater flow. Soils will be used to backfill the basements and other holes. VerDate jul<14>2003 18:03 Jun 02, 2005 Jkt 205001 Additionally, concrete demolition debris generated from dismantlement activities may be used as backfill material if it passes the final status survey or contains no detectable contamination. Backfill using concrete demolition debris will be conducted under a BUD permit from MDEP, which will include a deed restriction and compliance with MDEP and MDPH requirements for such reuse. 3.2 Land Use YNPS industrial and administrative operations are conducted on approximately 15 acres of land, primarily owned by YAEC but also including property owned by USGen, as discussed in Section 3.1. The USGen property, consisting of a segment that extends along the entire eastern bank of the Sherman Reservoir, is subject to a 2001 Grant of Conservation Restriction issued by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Management. USGen has agreed to restrict future uses of its property for preservation purposes, except as necessary for operation of its hydroelectric power plant (ERM, 2004a). Approximately 87 acres of the site is dedicated to the long term storage (about 20 years) of spent fuel and other high-level radioactive waste in the ISFSI. The ISFSI consists of a concrete pad within a fence and a buffer area with a 300-meter radius. Transmission lines and two public roads traverse the site. Readsboro Road runs in a north-south direction approximately 1500 feet west of the plant, across the river. Monroe Hill Road is approximately 2500 feet from the plant to the southwest, running in a north-south direction between the towns of Rowe and Monroe. Some farms and a few commercial sites are located in the surrounding area. There are no exclusively commercial areas within five miles of the site. The only industrial property in the area is the adjacent USGen hydroelectric station and five associated powerhouses that are situated near the Sherman and other reservoirs along the Deerfield River. The nearest highway and railroad right-of-way are each located about five miles south of the site. Several public lands and conservation areas are located within five miles of the site (YAEC, 1999, 2004a). The river is used for recreation and sport fishing, as well as for producing hydroelectric power. 3.3 Water Resources The discussion of water resources is divided into surface water and groundwater. The following sections provide a summary of the characteristics PO 00000 Frm 00104 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 32667 of each within and around the YNPS site. 3.3.1 Surface Water Surface Water Features Surface water bodies on the site or in its immediate vicinity include the Deerfield River, Sherman Reservoir, Wheeler Brook and an associated tributary, a divertment from Wheeler Brook, a discharge canal, and the stormwater drainage systems for the eastern and western halves of the Industrial Area. Wheeler Brook and its tributaries flow about 400 to 500 feet outside the Industrial Area around the south and east sides of the site before Wheeler Brook discharges into Sherman Reservoir (Framatome, 2003). Sherman Reservoir was formed by the installation of Sherman Dam on the Deerfield River. The reservoir is approximately two miles long, a quarter mile wide, and up to 75 feet deep along its central channel (Framatome, 2003). The discharge canal, which discharges into the Sherman Reservoir, was constructed to receive return water from the plant’s cooling water processes. Stormwater at the site flows into two systems, the East Storm Drain System and the West Storm Drain System, draining the eastern and western halves of the Industrial Area, respectively. The East Storm Drain System discharges to the Sherman Reservoir, while the West Storm Drain System discharges to the Deerfield River. Stormwater from the undeveloped uplands is captured by the Wheeler Brook Divertment. The divertment flows into Wheeler Brook, which flows into the Sherman Reservoir. Wetlands on the site are located in several areas and primarily border water bodies such as the Sherman Reservoir, Deerfield River, Wheeler Brook, and associated tributaries. Additional wetland areas were identified in the two stormwater detention basins at the site. Some isolated wetlands exist in the southern part of the site. Wetlands were formally delineated in an Abbreviated Notice of Resource Area Delineation (Woodlot, 2004), which was approved by the Town of Rowe Conservation Commission in March 2004. Wastewater Discharges During the plant operation, stormwater, service water, and noncontact cooling water were discharged as wastewaters through seven outfalls to the Sherman Reservoir and the West Storm Drain System (to the river). Currently, stormwater and treated wastewaters from the laboratory or from decommissioning activities are E:\FR\FM\03JNN1.SGM 03JNN1 32668 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 106 / Friday, June 3, 2005 / Notices discharged through three remaining outfalls. Discharges are approved under a National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit issued jointly by the MDEP and EPA, which sets specific limits for pH, oil and grease, suspended solids, and flow, and also requires the maintenance of a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (ERM, 2004b). These discharges are also monitored and treated for radiological materials according to NRC requirements. A temporary wastewater processing system treats and stores wastewaters received from the radioactive laboratory sump discharge line. This water is treated and then batch-discharged. Discharges of these wastewaters through the treatment plant or through the stormwater drainage system are covered under the NPDES permit. The temporary treatment system will be dismantled and disposed of off-site as radioactive waste (YAEC, 2004a). The auxiliary service water system is being used to supply water from the Sherman Reservoir to support decontamination and dismantling activities. The system will be dismantled once it is no longer needed for these activities (YAEC, 2004a). Three septic systems with several associated leach fields have been used at the YNPS site. The leach fields are located generally on the western portion of the site. Three of these leach fields have been in use since 1978, when two formerly-used leach fields were abandoned in place. 3.3.2 Groundwater Aquifers and Geology The groundwater system at the YNPS site is a product of the geology, particularly the petrology and hydraulic conductivity of the rocks, the glacial history, the geomorphology, and the hydrology of this area. The YNPS site is located on the east side of the Berkshire Mountains predominantly on a terrace of the Deerfield River. The terrace is recessed into the east side of a two mile wide glacially-derived river valley where the valley walls rise to over 1,000 feet above the river elevation. The YNPS plant is adjacent to a dammed portion of the Deerfield River, Sherman Dam and Sherman Reservoir. The local gradient for this portion of the Deerfield River is 28.4 feet/mile over a river distance of about 33 miles from the Vermont border at the Sherman Pond to the West Deerfield, Massachusetts gauging station (Framatome, 2003). The local groundwater system is extremely complex, with three groundwater-bearing units, from top to VerDate jul<14>2003 18:03 Jun 02, 2005 Jkt 205001 bottom: stratified drift, glaciolacustrine, and bedrock. The stratified drift unit contains permeable surficial sands and gravels,10 to 20 feet thick, that are water-laid, ice-contact deposits derived from a melting glacier. The glaciolacustrine unit comprises sediments up to 260 feet thick of glaciolacustrine origin, containing multiple, relatively thin water-bearing units of fine to medium-grained sand, interspersed within relatively impermeable, fine-grained sand and silts. The bedrock unit is a gray, medium-grained, moderately foliated metamorphic rock that contains significant amounts of megacrystals of plagioclase feldspar albite. This bedrock is the upper member of the Lower Cambrian Hoosac Formation, which is relatively competent with few fractures (YAEC, 2004e). Contamination and Monitoring As discussed in Section 3.1.2, YAEC began additional site-wide characterization of groundwater in 2003 and identified several areas for further study. According to the June 2004 Site Characterization Status Report (ERM, 2004c), nonradiological contamination in groundwater and sediment, as well as localized areas of contaminated soil, were identified that required further evaluation. Non-radiological groundwater contaminants identified were found to be in isolated areas and do not suggest the presence of a plume. These contaminants include low levels of 1,1-dichloroethane, PCBs, and petroleum hydrocarbons. YAEC will continue to work with the MDEP to fulfill MCP requirements and demonstrate that groundwater has been adequately characterized and remediated where necessary. Radiological groundwater monitoring at the YNPS site (excluding monitoring for the Radiological Environmental Monitoring Program) has occurred since the plant shut down in 1992. Currently, 39 monitoring wells are in operation throughout the site. Monitoring wells were installed in stages, as follows: two in the late 1970s, 15 in 1993–94, 21 from 1997 through 2001, and 17 during the summer of 2003, with 14 of the older wells properly abandoned due to decommissioning (demolition) activities. Most of the wells that were installed prior to 2003 are located in the RCA, although a few are either downgradient or upgradient of the RCA. All of the wells installed before 2003 except one are shallow, ranging in depth from 7 to 31 feet below the land surface. The exception is a 49-foot bedrock monitoring well in the RCA. The monitoring wells installed during the PO 00000 Frm 00105 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 summer of 2003 contain wells screened as follows: three in the stratified drift unit, seven in the glaciolacustrine unit, and seven in the bedrock unit. Groundwater samples have been collected for radiological analysis since 1993. Until 2003, YAEC analyzed the groundwater samples for tritium, gross alpha, gross beta, and gamma spectroscopy. The analytical results for these samples (i.e., groundwater samples from monitoring wells screened primarily in the stratified drift unit) indicated that only tritium was present above the minimum detection concentration. The largest tritium concentrations were observed in wells located immediately downgradient of the spent fuel pit and ion exchange pit (SFP/IXP). In 2003, YAEC made several changes to improve site characterization and sampling and analytical procedures: 1. During the summer of 2003, YAEC installed 17 monitoring wells, as mentioned above, to characterize the glaciolacustrine and bedrock units more adequately. YAEC installed additional monitoring wells in 2004 and will install more as required by MDEP to improve its characterization of groundwater at the site. 2. YAEC began quarterly sampling events in 2003, and in 2004 improved sampling procedures by measuring the groundwater levels in all monitoring wells within a few hours before any water samples were collected. YAEC has also committed to collecting the water samples from the monitoring wells over a shorter time period. 3. YAEC improved and explained its analytical analysis of the groundwater samples by analyzing for the radionuclides of concern at the YNPS site. Table 2–6 of the LTP lists the radionuclides of concern (or see Section 3.1.1). In July and November 2003, YAEC conducted analyses for these radionuclides of concern and for Mn-54. Tritium was the only plant-generated radionuclide that was detected in samples from the July and November 2003 events. The largest tritium concentration historically observed at the YNPS site was groundwater flowing from Sherman Spring early in plant operation, which is downgradient from the Sherman Dam and Sherman Pond near the Deerfield River. Groundwater from Sherman Spring had a tritium concentration of 7,195,000 picoCuries/liter (pCi/L) in December 1965. The tritium contamination is reported to have been caused by a leakage from the SFP/IXP, which was repaired in May 1965 and in 1979, when a stainless-steel liner was installed. Tritium levels in groundwater E:\FR\FM\03JNN1.SGM 03JNN1 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 106 / Friday, June 3, 2005 / Notices samples from Sherman Spring have decreased steadily over time, and have varied from non-detectable (ND) to 890 picoCuries/liter in recent monitoring rounds. Tritium concentrations from the July and November 2003, sampling events are variable by space and time throughout the hydrogeologic units at the site. The tritium plume extends from the source area at the SFP/IXP towards Sherman Spring and the Deerfield River, with the highest tritium concentrations present immediately downgradient of the SFP/IXP. The maximum tritium concentrations were approximately 2,000 pCi/L in the stratified drift unit, 45,000 pCi/L in the glaciolacustrine unit, and 6,000 pCi/L in the bedrock unit. 3.4 Human Health Potential human health hazards associated with the YNPS site range from potential exposure to very low levels of radioactivity in soils and groundwater, to limited areas of relatively high levels of radioactivity within the remaining portions of the reactor support structures and systems. The intent of the final decommissioning activity at the site is to reduce radiological contamination at the site to meet NRC’s unrestricted release criteria, and to also meet the criteria of the MDPH and MDEP. After decommissioning activities are complete, license termination activities will verify adequacy of the radiological release criteria (i.e., DCGLs) and the final status survey. Unrestricted use of the site is defined in 10 CFR 20.1402, as follows: A site will be considered acceptable for unrestricted use if the residual radioactivity that is distinguishable from background radiation results in a TEDE [total effective dose equivalent] to an average member of the critical group that does not exceed 25 mrem [millirem] (0.25 mSv) [milliSievert] per year, including that from groundwater sources of drinking water, and that the residual radioactivity has been reduced to levels that are as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) * * *. As planned, the 0.25 mSv/yr (25 mrem/yr) TEDE all-pathway limit would be achieved at the site through the application of DCGLs used to measure the adequacy of remediation activities. The DCGLs in use at the YNPS site were calculated using dose models based on guidance provided in NUREG/CR–5512, Volumes 1, 2, and 3, NUREG/CR–6697, and the computer codes RESRAD Version 6.21 and RESRAD-BUILD Version 3.21 code for generating the DCGLs. These dose models translate VerDate jul<14>2003 18:03 Jun 02, 2005 Jkt 205001 residual radioactivity into potential radiation doses to the public, based on select land-use scenarios, exposure pathways, and identified critical groups. A critical group is defined as the group of individuals reasonably expected to receive the greatest exposure to residual radioactivity given the assumptions of a given scenario. Such scenarios and their associated modeling are designed to overestimate, rather than underestimate, potential dose. YAEC has also agreed to meet the following radiological site criteria of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts: 1 mrem/yr for concrete rubble used onsite as fill; 10 mrem/yr for the entire site; and the risk criteria for cumulative radiological and non-radiological risk as determined by a Risk Assessment according to the MCP. 4.0 Environmental Impacts 4.1 Land Use YAEC plans to release eventually all of the property associated with the YNPS site to local, state, or federal government or non-profit entities for conservation purposes. YAEC has developed an American Land Title Association survey to document the site’s legal boundaries. In addition, natural and cultural resources inventories and management plans have been developed. The management plans specify the obligations necessary to preserve the site for conservation (YAEC, 2004b). Termination of the YAEC license is not reasonably expected to result in any adverse impacts to onsite and adjacent land use. Soils not meeting the radiological criteria for license termination will be removed and disposed of at a licensed facility as lowlevel radioactive waste. Initially, most of the YAEC-owned property would be released, except for approximately 87 acres containing the spent fuel storage facility and associated buffer zone. That acreage would be released when the fuel is removed to a permanent repository and the storage facility is decommissioned. Land on and directly adjacent to the site is expected to remain heavily wooded, with lightly populated communities in the surrounding area. Recreational opportunities afforded by the Deerfield River will likely continue and could increase. The deed restriction required by the MDEP Solid Waste BUD permit will require prior written approval by the MDEP for any use of the former industrial area of the site other than as passive recreation, and will prohibit excavations in that area. PO 00000 Frm 00106 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 4.2 32669 Water Resources Approval of the LTP and eventual termination of the license are not anticipated to result in any significant impacts to either surface water or groundwater. The approved radiation release criteria must be met as a condition of license termination and release of the site. 4.2.1 Surface Water Land areas from which precipitation runs off to surface waters, will be subject to further investigation, remediation where necessary, and the final status survey. YAEC will need to verify that DCGLs have been met in accordance with Section 5 of the LTP, thus demonstrating compliance with the release criteria. Further, YAEC will need to demonstrate compliance with the MCP surface water requirements for both nonradiological and radiological contaminants. YAEC’s future license termination also would not be expected to result in any adverse impact to surface water flow or quality, as batch discharges will cease along with other license termination activities. Prior to license termination, the amount of impervious area will be reduced by about 8 acres (from about 9.5 acres) due to revegetation of areas currently occupied by buildings, roads, and parking lots (ERM, 2004d). YAEC intends to leave the current stormwater drainages unaltered to prevent the destruction of wetland areas that have formed in the drainages. Drainage pipes will be closed, so that discharges will likely continue as sheet flow from the drainages into water bodies. Both the existing water supply system (upgradient supply well) and sewage system will remain in place. YAEC will inspect the remaining septic systems (discussed in Section 3.3.1) for compliance with state septic system regulations before the property title is transferred. Groundwater monitoring wells have been installed and monitored in the vicinity of the site septic systems. Several closure activities are being conducted on or near wetlands resources. YAEC has prepared an Integrated Permit Package to address the regulatory requirements applicable to such activities (ERM, 2004d). The activities requiring wetlands-related permits include PCB remediation, decommissioning of circulating water intake and discharge structures, removal of the Southeast Construction Fill Area, implementation of Sherman Dam flood control measures, and regrading of the site. Additionally, a wetlands restoration plan has been developed (Woodlot, 2004) to implement the E:\FR\FM\03JNN1.SGM 03JNN1 32670 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 106 / Friday, June 3, 2005 / Notices permit requirements. Further information concerning wetlands activities can be found in the Integrated Permit Package and the Wetland Restoration and Replication Plan (Woodlot, 2004). YAEC samples three surface water sites for its Radiological Environmental Monitoring Program (REMP) at the YNPS site. The Deerfield River is sampled downstream from the YNPS site at Bear Swamp Lower Reservoir with an automatic sampler every two hours. These samples are composited each month. YAEC also collects monthly grab samples from Sherman Pond and from an upstream Deerfield River site at the Harriman Reservoir. Samples from all three sites are analyzed for gamma emitting radionuclides, tritium, and gross beta. The tritium and gamma spectroscopy results for 2003 indicated that no surface water samples contained detectable levels of plant-generated radionuclides. Also, the gross beta averages for 2003 were slightly greater at the upstream Deerfield River site than at the downstream site (YAEC, 2004d). Based upon these recent data, YAEC states that the surface waters do not require remediation pertaining to plantgenerated radionuclides. 4.2.2 Groundwater YAEC states that remediation will not likely be required for groundwater at the YNPS site to meet NRC’s license termination criteria because H–3 levels are expected to meet NRC’s unrestricted release criteria when the site is released (when the ISFSI is decommissioned and the license terminated). If decommissioning activities at the YNPS site increase the concentrations of plantgenerated radionuclides dissolved in the groundwater, the monitoring program at this site should detect this change. Groundwater samples from the existing 39 monitoring wells should indicate changes in the groundwater downgradient from the radiologicallycontrolled area. Because some monitoring wells have been abandoned during decommissioning, new monitoring wells will need to be installed to meet MDEP requirements to characterize potential changes in the level of plant-generated radionuclides dissolved in the groundwater. Groundwater at the site also will be required to meet the dose-based radiological criteris of the MDPH and the risk-based criteria of the MDEP Risk Assessment process (for both radiological and non-radiological parameters). VerDate jul<14>2003 18:03 Jun 02, 2005 Jkt 205001 4.3 Human Health Impacts Compliance with 10 CFR 20.1402 for unrestricted release (and, therefore, human health protection requirements) is contingent upon successful remediation and/or removal of contaminated soil, groundwater, ancillary contaminated materials, and structures to acceptable levels (corresponding to a total dose of 0.25 mSv/yr (25 mrem/yr) or less per year) to an average member of the critical group. In addition, residual radioactivity must meet the ALARA requirements of the rule. As noted in Sec. 3.4, YAEC also has agreed to meet the more restrictive radiological release criteria of the MDPH and the MDEP. Derived Concentration Guideline Levels YAEC has defined levels of residual radioactivity for various sources at the site that correspond to meeting the dose limit. These acceptable levels are defined as the DCGLs. Potential radiation doses for the bounding exposure scenarios are calculated by assuming an average fixed concentration level for each of the potential sources of residual radioactivity. The sources are soil, building surfaces, subsurface partial structures, and concrete debris. Two critical groups were identified to whom the DCGLs would be applicable: A full-time resident farmer group (associated with soil, building surfaces, subsurface partial structures, and concrete debris sources) and a building occupancy group (associated with the building surfaces source). The DCGLs for each source were derived using the radiation doses per unit activity and a separate dose constraint for each source. Table 4–1 lists the DCGLs for each radionuclide from each source. Within each critical group, each DCGL was selected to correspond to a fraction of the 0.25 mSv/yr (25 mrem/yr) dose limit so that the total dose to the average member of that group from all sources would equal the limit. For the resident farmer critical group, the doses corresponding to DCGLs (and totaling 25 mrem/yr) are: • Subsurface partial structures: 0.005 mSv/yr (0.5 mrem/yr) • Groundwater: 0.0077 mSv/yr (0.77 mrem/yr). • Concrete debris and soil: 0.2373 mSv/yr (23.73 mrem/yr) In areas that have co-mingled soil and concrete debris, YAEC would use the smaller of the two DCGLs for each radionuclide (see Table 4–1), and for areas with only soil, YAEC would use the soil DCGLs. PO 00000 Frm 00107 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 For the building occupancy critical group, YAEC would take a sum-offractions approach to ensure that if a member of the public were both a member of the building occupancy critical group and the resident farmer critical group, their total dose would be less than 0.25 mSv/yr (25 mrem/yr). Any actual doses would likely be much less than the 0.25 mSv/yr (25 mrem/yr) limit. This is due to the conservatism in both the modeling and the assumption that the entire source would have residual radioactivity at the DCGL. (It is more likely that the sources will have residual radioactivity at considerably less than the DCGLs.) Provided compliance with the 10 CFR 20.1402 limit is demonstrated through the results of the final status survey, there would be no anticipated adverse impacts to human health from approval of license termination, as described in the environmental impact statement for license termination (NUREG–1496) (NRC, 1997a). Exposure Scenarios The manner in which the DCGLs are derived for the YNPS site is documented in Chapter 6 of the LTP, Revision 1. In deriving the DCGLs, an adult resident farmer is considered to represent the average member of the critical group. The hypothetical resident farmer is assumed to build a house on the contaminated soil (or soil/concrete debris mix), draw water from a well placed into the tritium plume, grow plant food and fodder on the contaminated area, raise livestock on the contaminated area, and catch fish from a pond on the contaminated area. The resident farmer scenario is considered the bounding scenario because it embodies the greatest number of exposure pathways, represents the longest exposure durations, and includes the greatest number of sources, of all scenarios envisioned. The DCGLs are shown in Table 4–1. The NRC will evaluate the appropriateness of the postulated exposure scenarios and the methodology used for deriving the DCGLs as part of its review of the LTP. The NRC staff’s Safety Evaluation Report will provide the details of this review. Survey Design YAEC would use a series of surveys, including the final status survey, to demonstrate compliance with the radiological release criteria consistent with the Multi-Agency Radiation Survey and Site Investigation Manual (NRC, 1997a). Planning for the final status survey involves an iterative process that E:\FR\FM\03JNN1.SGM 03JNN1 32671 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 106 / Friday, June 3, 2005 / Notices requires appropriate site classification (on the basis of the potential residual radioactivity levels relative to the DCGLs) and formal planning using the Data Quality Objective process. YAEC has committed to an integrated design that would address the selection of appropriate survey and laboratory instrumentation and procedures, including a statistically-based measurement and sampling plan for collecting and evaluating the data needed for the final status survey. YAEC has requested that it be permitted to modify the classification levels based on new information during the decommissioning process. TABLE 4–1.—DERIVED CONCENTRATION GUIDELINE LEVELS* Radionuclide Soil (pCi/g)† Building surface (dpm/100 cm2) ‡ Subsurface partial structures (pCI/g) § Concrete debris† (pCi/g) H-3 ...................................... 3.5E+02 .............................. 3.4E+08 .............................. 1.35E+02 ............................ C-14 .................................... Fe-55 .................................. Co-60 .................................. Ni-63 ................................... Sr-90 ................................... Nb-94 .................................. Tc-99 ................................... Ag-108m ............................. Sb-125 ................................ Cs-134 ................................ Cs-137 ................................ Eu-152 ................................ Eu-154 ................................ Eu-155 ................................ Pu-238 ................................ Pu-239 ................................ Pu-241 ................................ Am-241 ............................... Cm-243 ............................... 5.2E+00 2.8E+04 3.8E+00 7.7E+02 1.6E+00 6.8E+00 1.3E+01 6.9E+00 3.0E+01 4.7E+00 8.2E+00 9.5E+00 9.0E+00 3.8E+02 3.1E+01 2.8E+01 9.3E+02 2.8E+01 3.0E+01 1.0E+07 4.0E+07 1.8E+04 3.7E+07 1.5E+05 2.6E+04 1.4E+07 2.5E+04 1.0E+05 2.9E+04 6.3E+04 3.7E+04 3.4E+04 6.5E+05 5.7E+03 5.1E+03 2.5E+05 5.0E=03 7.2E+03 2.34E+03 ............................ ............................................. 3.45E+03 ............................ 6.16E+04 ............................ 1.39E+01 ............................ ............................................. ............................................. ............................................. ............................................. ............................................. 1.45E+03 ............................ ............................................. ............................................. ............................................. ............................................. ............................................. ............................................. ............................................. ............................................. 9.5E+01 (cellar holes). 2.8E+02 (grading). 7.2E+00. 1.4E+02. 4.3E+00. 1.0E+02. 7.5E01. 7.0E+00. 6.1E+01. 7.0E+00. 3.1E+01. 4.7E+00. 6.7E+00. 9.5E+00. 9.1E+00. 3.8E+02. 9.5E+00. 8.8E+00. 1.4E+02. 4.1E+00. 4.7E+00. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. * To convert to Bq from pCi, multiply by 0.037. † Represents a dose of 23.73 mrem/yr. ‡ Represents a dose of 25 mrem/yr. § Represents a dose of 0.5 mrem/yr, radionuclides based upon those found in concrete samples. 5.0 Agencies and Persons Consulted and Sources Used A copy of the Environmental Assessment was provided to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on March 3, 2005. The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection provided comments by letter dated March 31, 2005, which were incorporated into this EA. The NRC staff has determined that the proposed action would not affect listed threatened or endangered species or critical habitat designated under the Endangered Species Act. Therefore, no consultation is required under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act. Likewise, the NRC staff has determined that the proposed action would not affect historic or archaeological resources. Therefore, no consultation is required under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act. 6.0 Conclusion The NRC has prepared this EA related to the issuance of a license amendment that would approve the LTP. On the basis of this EA, the NRC has concluded that there are no significant environmental impacts and the VerDate jul<14>2003 18:03 Jun 02, 2005 Jkt 205001 proposed license amendment does not warrant the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement. Accordingly, it has been determined that a Finding of No Significant Impact is appropriate. The documents related to this proposed action are available for public inspection and copying at NRC’s Public Document Room at NRC Headquarters, One White Flint North, 1555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852. Most of these documents also are available for public review through our electronic reading room (ADAMS): http:// www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. 7.0 List of Preparers C. McKenney, Health Physicist, Division of Waste Management, dose assessment. J. Peckenpaugh, Hydrologist, Division of Waste Management, groundwater issues. C. Schulte, Project Manager, Division of Waste Management and Environmental Protection, nonradiological environmental issues. J. Thompson, Health Physicist, Division of Waste Management and Environmental Protection, Final Status Survey, radiation release criteria. PO 00000 Frm 00108 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 8.0 List of Acronyms ALARA as low as reasonably achievable BUD beneficial reuse determination CFR Code of Federal Regulations DCGL derived concentration guideline limit dpm/100cm2 disintegrations per minute per 100 square centimeters EA environmental assessment EPA Environmental Protection Agency FR Federal Register FSS final status survey ISFSI independent spent fuel storage installation kV kilovolt LTP license termination plan MCP Massachusetts Contingency Plan MDEP Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection MDPH Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Radiation Control Program mrem/y millirem per year mSv/yr milliSievert per year NEPA National Environmental Policy Act NHESP National Heritage and Endangered Species Program NPDES National Pollution Discharge Elimination System NRC Nuclear Regulatory Commission E:\FR\FM\03JNN1.SGM 03JNN1 32672 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 106 / Friday, June 3, 2005 / Notices ORISE Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education PCBs Polychlorinated biphenyls pCi/L picocurie per liter PSDAR post shutdown decommissioning activities report RCA Radiologically-controlled area REMP Radiological Environmental Monitoring Program RCRA Resource Conservation and Recovery Act SCFA Southeast Construction Fill Area TEDE total effective dose equivalent TSCA Toxic Substances Control Act YAEC Yankee Atomic Electric Company YNPS Yankee Nuclear Power Station 9.0 References 10 CFR Part 20. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 20, ‘‘Standards for protection against radiation.’’ 10 CFR Part 50. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 50, ‘‘Domestic licensing of production and utilization facilities.’’ 10 CFR Part 51. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 51, ‘‘Environmental protection regulations for domestic licensing and related regulatory functions.’’ 61 FR 39278. ‘‘Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Reactors.’’ Federal Register. July 29, 1996. 62 FR 39058. ‘‘Radiological Criteria for License Termination. Final Rule.’’ Federal Register. July 21, 1997. 64 FR 68005. ‘‘Waste Confidence Decision Review.’’ Federal Register. December 6, 1999. Evans et al., 1984. ‘‘Long-Lived Activation Products in Reactor Materials,’’ NUREG/CR– 3474. August 1984. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC. ERM, 2004a. ‘‘Baseline Environmental Report,’’ April 30, 2004. Environmental Resources Management, Boston, Massachusetts. ERM, 2004b, ‘‘Expanded Environmental Notification Form,’’ March 31, 2004. Environmental Resources Management, Boston, Massachusetts. ERM, 2004c, ‘‘Site Characterization Status Report,’’ June 4, 2004. Environmental Resources Management, Boston, Massachusetts. ERM, 2004d, ‘‘Integrated Permit Package, Yankee Nuclear Power Station,’’ May 7, 2004. Environmental Resources Management, Boston, Massachusetts. Kennedy and Strenge, 1992. ‘‘Residual Radioactive Contamination From Decommissioning.’’ NUREG/CR–5512, Volume 1. October 1992. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC. Kleinschmidt, 2004. ‘‘PostDecommissioning Grading Plan and Stormwater Management Analysis,’’ August 2004. Kleinschmidt Energy and Water Resource Consultants. MASS, 2004. ‘‘Certificate of the Secretary of Environmental Affairs on the Expanded Environmental Notification Form,’’ May 7, VerDate jul<14>2003 18:03 Jun 02, 2005 Jkt 205001 2004, Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs, Boston, Massachusetts. MHC, 2003. Letter, Massachusetts Historical Commission to YAEC, ‘‘Yankee Nuclear Power Station Decommissioning, Rowe; MHC#33426,’’ dated August 18, 2003. NRC, 1988. ‘‘Final Generic Environmental Impact Statement on the Decommissioning of Nuclear Facilities.’’ August 1988. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC. NRC, 1997a. ‘‘Generic Environmental Impact Statement in Support of Rulemaking on Radiological Criteria for License Termination of NRC-Licensed Nuclear Facilities.’’ NUREG–1496. July 1997. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC. NRC, 1997b. ‘‘Multi-Agency Radiation Survey and Site Investigation Manual (MARSSIM).’’ NUREG–1575. December 1997. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC. NRC, 2002. ‘‘Generic Environmental Impact Statement on the Decommissioning of Nuclear Facilities. Supplement Dealing with Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Reactors.’’ November 2002. NUREG–0586, Supplement 1, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC. NRC, 2003. ‘‘Consolidated NMSS Decommissioning Guidance,’’ NUREG–1757. September 2003 NRC, 2004. Letter, NRC to YAEC, ‘‘Yankee (Rowe) Nuclear Power Station—Request for Additional Information Re: License Termination Plan,’’ dated June 16, 2004. PAL, 2003. ‘‘Archeological Reconnaissance Survey, Archeological Resources Management Plan, Yankee Nuclear Power Station,’’ November, 2003. Public Archeology Laboratory, Inc., Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Smith et al., 1978. ‘‘Technology, Safety and Costs of Decommissioning a Reference Pressurized Water Reactor Power Station.’’ NUREG/CR–0130. June 1978. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC. Woodlot, 2004. ‘‘Yankee Nuclear Power Station Site Closure Project Wetland Restoration and Replication Plan,’’ August 2004. Woodlot Alternatives, Inc., Topsham, Maine, and Environmental Resources Management, Boston, Massachusetts. YAEC, 1993. ‘‘YNPS Decommissioning Environmental Report,’’ December, 1993, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. YAEC, 2000. ‘‘Post Shutdown Decommissioning Activities Report,’’ June, 2001. Excerpted from the YNPS Final Safety Analysis Report, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. YAEC, 2003. ‘‘YNPS License Termination Plan,’’ Revision 0. November 24, 2003, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. YAEC, 2004a. ‘‘YNPS License Termination Plan,’’ Draft Revision 1, September 2, 2004, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. YAEC, 2004b. ‘‘Site Closure Project Plan,’’ Revision 2. March 31, 2004, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. YAEC, 2004c. ‘‘YNPS Historical Site Assessment,’’ January 2004, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. PO 00000 Frm 00109 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 YAEC, 2004d. ‘‘Annual Radiological Environmental Operating Report,’’ Yankee Rowe Station Radiological Environmental Monitoring Program—January 1, 2003— December 31, 2003. Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. YAEC, 2004e. ‘‘Hydrogeologic Report of 2003 Supplemental Investigation’’ March 15, 2004. Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. YAEC, 2004f. ‘‘YNPS License Termination Plan,’’ Revision 1, November 19, 2004, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. YAEC, 2005. ‘‘Supplement to Proposed Amendment to YNPS Possession Only License,’’ April 7, 2005, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts. Framatome, 2003. ‘‘Site Ground Water Data Collection for YNPS Decommissioning, quo; Rev 1. February, 2003, Framatome ANP DE&S, Marlborough, Massachusetts. Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 23rd day of May, 2005. For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Andrew Persinko, Acting Deputy Director, Division of Waste Management and Environmental Protection, Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards. [FR Doc. E5–2850 Filed 6–2–05; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7590–01–P RAILROAD RETIREMENT BOARD Agency Forms Submitted for OMB Review Summary: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) has submitted the following proposal(s) for the collection of information to the Office of Management and Budget for review and approval. Summary of Proposal(s) (1) Collection title: Statement Regarding Contributions and Support. (2) Form(s) submitted: G–134. (3) OMB Number: 3220–0099. (4) Expiration date of current OMB clearance: 09/30/2005. (5) Type of request: Extension of a currently approved collection. (6) Respondents: Individuals or households. (7) Estimated annual number of respondents: 100. (8) Total annual responses: 100. (9) Total annual reporting hours: 259. (10) Collection description: Dependency on the employee for onehalf support at the time of the employee’s death can be a condition affecting eligibility for a survivor annuity provided for under Section 2 of the Railroad Retirement Act. One-half support is also a condition which may E:\FR\FM\03JNN1.SGM 03JNN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 70, Number 106 (Friday, June 3, 2005)]
[Notices]
[Pages 32664-32672]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E5-2850]



[[Page 32664]]

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NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION

[Docket No. 50-029]


Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact 
Related to License Termination Plan for the Yankee Atomic Electric 
Company; License DPR-003, Rowe, MA

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John Hickman, Division of Waste 
Management and Environmental Protection, Office of Nuclear Material 
Safety and Safeguards, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Mail Stop 
T7E18, Washington, DC 20555-00001. Telephone: (301) 415-3017; e-mail 
jbh@nrc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

1.0 Introduction

    The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) (or the staff) is 
considering Yankee Atomic Electric Company's request for approval of 
the License Termination Plan (LTP) submitted for the Yankee Nuclear 
Power Station (YNPS) in Rowe, Massachusetts. The NRC has prepared this 
environmental assessment (EA) to determine the environmental impacts 
(radiological and non-radiological) of approving the LTP and of 
subsequently releasing the site for unrestricted use (as defined in 10 
CFR 20.1402). This is consistent with the final rule, 10 CFR 50.82 that 
appeared in the Federal Register on July 29, 1996 (61 FR 39278, 
Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Reactors), which established the 
criteria for license termination and the requirement for a license 
termination plan.
    As discussed in Section 1.3 below, the primary scope of this EA is 
the evaluation of the impacts of the radiation release criteria and the 
adequacy of the final status survey, as presented in the LTP.

1.1 Background

    YNPS is a deactivated pressurized-water nuclear reactor situated on 
a small portion of a 2,200-acre site. The site is located in 
northwestern Massachusetts in Franklin County, near the southern 
Vermont border. The plant and most of the 2,200-acre site are owned by 
the Yankee Atomic Electric Company (YAEC). A small portion on the west 
side of the site (along the east bank of the Sherman Reservoir) is 
owned by USGen New England, Inc. The YNPS plant was constructed between 
1958 and 1960 and operated commercially at 185 megawatts electrical 
production (after a 1963 upgrade) until 1992. In 1992, YAEC determined 
that closing the plant would be in the best economic interest of its 
customers. In December 1993, NRC amended the YNPS operating license to 
retain a ``possession-only'' status. YAEC began dismantling and 
decommissioning activities at that time. These activities continue and 
their relevance with respect to this EA is discussed in Section 1.3. 
The spent nuclear fuel remaining onsite was transferred in 2003 from 
the spent fuel pool to the independent spent fuel storage installation 
(ISFSI) located adjacent to the plant. The spent fuel pool was 
subsequently drained in compliance with regulatory requirements.
    In November 2003, YAEC submitted its LTP with a goal to complete 
decommissioning by mid-2005 (YAEC, 2003). Draft Revision 1 to the plan 
was submitted September 2, 2004 (YAEC, 2004a), in response to a NRC 
request for additional information (NRC, 2004). Subsequently, on 
November 19, 2004, YAEC submitted Revision 1 to the LTP (YAEC, 2004f).
    YAEC is proposing to decontaminate the YNPS site to meet the 
unrestricted release criteria of 10 CFR 20.1402. Additionally, YAEC has 
stated that it intends to comply with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts 
cleanup criteria of 105 CMR 120.291 established by the Massachusetts 
Department of Public Health (MDPH) and the Massachusetts Department of 
Environmental Protection (MDEP). Most site structures will be 
demolished to grade or entirely removed, and most buried piping or 
utilities removed. Basements will be perforated to allow groundwater to 
flow through during remediation. The following structures will remain 
after phased release of the site: the administration building, guard 
building, a small switchyard outside the guard building, the ISFSI, the 
ISFSI security building, and access roads. After the irradiated fuel 
has been removed from the site and prior to license termination the 
ISFSI and ISFSI security building will be removed.

1.2 Need for the Proposed Action

    Licensees of nuclear facilities must apply to the NRC before 
terminating a license voluntarily and decommissioning a facility. YAEC 
submitted the LTP, as required by 10 CFR 50.82, before requesting 
license termination. The NRC must determine whether the proposed 
procedures, adequacy of radiation criteria for license termination, and 
the final status survey planned for completing decommissioning appear 
sufficient and, if implemented according to the plan, would demonstrate 
that the site is suitable for release.

1.3 Scope

    To fulfill its obligations under the National Environmental Policy 
Act (NEPA), the NRC must evaluate the radiological and nonradiological 
environmental impacts associated with approval of the LTP and 
subsequent termination of the license. These evaluations involve an 
assessment of the impacts of the remaining buildings or structures and 
residual material present at the site at the time of license 
termination.
    As described in the Statements of Consideration accompanying the 
Final Rule on Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Reactors (61 FR 39278), 
the NRC must consider the following in order to approve the LTP:
    (1) The licensee's plan for assuring that adequate funds will be 
available for final site release,
    (2) radiation release criteria for license termination, and
    (3) the adequacy of the final survey required to verify that these 
release criteria have been met.
1.3.1 Issues Studied in Detail
    Consistent with NEPA regulations and guidance to focus on 
environmental issues of concern, impacts to land use, water resources, 
and human health were selected for detailed study because of their 
potential to be affected by an approval of the LTP. These issues are 
discussed in this EA due to the potential for impacts from remaining 
structures and/or residual material left at the site.
1.3.2 Issues Eliminated From Detailed Study
    Issues eliminated from detailed study in this EA include air 
quality, historic and cultural resources, ecological resources 
(including endangered and threatened species), socioeconomic 
conditions, transportation, noise, visual and scenic quality, off-site 
waste management, and accident scenarios. These issues were eliminated 
because they would not be affected by implementation of the LTP at the 
site (i.e., ensuring the site meets radiation release criteria in the 
final status survey). The financial assurance review, which is a 
required part of the LTP approval, is not related to human health or 
the environment and will not be discussed in this EA.

[[Page 32665]]

    Impacts from decommissioning activities at the YNPS site are not 
evaluated in this EA. NRC has already assessed power plant 
decommissioning impacts in programmatic NEPA documents. Specifically, 
the environmental impact statement for decommissioning activities (NRC, 
1988, 2002) discusses the range of impacts expected from power plant 
decommissioning activities. Further, in reviewing the LTP, the staff 
also determined that the environmental impacts were enveloped by the 
generic analysis performed in support of ``Radiological Criteria for 
License Termination.'' (62 FR 39058) Decommissioning impacts at the 
YNPS site were also addressed in the YAEC's Post-Shutdown 
Decommissioning Activities Report (PSDAR) (YAEC, 2000).
    Additionally, the Commission has made a generic determination that, 
if necessary, spent fuel generated in any reactor can be stored safely 
and without significant environmental impacts for at least 30 years 
beyond the plant's licensed operating life (64 FR 68005 and 10 CFR 
51.23). Therefore, this EA does not evaluate environmental impacts of 
spent fuel storage in the onsite independent spent fuel storage 
installation (ISFSI). However, the ISFSI is discussed briefly in 
Sections 3.2 and 4.1.

2.0 Proposed Action and Alternatives

2.1 The Proposed Action

    The proposed action is the NRC's review and approval of YAEC's LTP. 
The NRC staff will review the plan to ensure that the license 
termination activities (i.e., designation of radiation release criteria 
and design of the final status survey) will comply with NRC 
regulations. If NRC approves the plan, the approval will be issued in 
the form of an amendment to the YNPS license (Possession Only License 
No. DPR-3).
    YAEC plans to complete decommissioning of the YNPS site for 
unrestricted use, as described in the LTP and consistent with NRC 
regulations at 10 CFR 20.1402. In addition, YAEC intends to comply with 
the Commonwealth of Massachusetts cleanup criteria in 105 CMR 120.291 
specified by the MDPH and by the MDEP in the Massachusetts Contingency 
Plan (MCP) and Solid Waste Regulations, as applicable. To meet NRC's 
unrestricted release criteria, areas of the site will be divided into 
survey units. These units will be sampled or surveyed in accordance 
with the LTP to verify that site-specific criteria have been met. These 
criteria, known as ``derived concentration guideline levels'' (DCGLs), 
are discussed further in Sections 3.4 and 4.3.
    Initially, YAEC plans to release all but 87 acres of the site for 
unrestricted use after having passed the final survey. The remaining 87 
acres would remain on the license until the spent fuel is shipped 
offsite for permanent disposal (see Section 4.1) and the ISFSI is 
decommissioned. At that time, the remaining acreage would again be 
surveyed and, contingent on survey results, the license terminated.

2.2 Alternatives

    As an alternative to the proposed action, the staff considered the 
``no-action alternative.'' The no-action alternative would maintain the 
status quo. This would result in no change to current environmental 
impacts, which are larger than those resulting from the proposed 
action.

3.0 Affected Environment

3.1 Site Description

    The YNPS site is located at 49 Yankee Road, approximately three 
miles north-northwest of the northwestern Massachusetts town of Rowe, 
in Franklin County.
    The site is adjacent to the Vermont border on land characterized by 
heavily wooded, steep hills. It is situated within the Deerfield River 
Valley and abuts the eastern shores of the Deerfield River and Sherman 
Reservoir. Hills bounding the Deerfield River valley rise 500 to 1000 
feet above the site, reaching elevations of 2100 feet above mean sea 
level (ERM, 2004a). The combined population of the two nearest towns, 
Rowe and Monroe, is less than 500.
    The YNPS property consists of about 2,200 acres in the towns of 
Rowe and Monroe. Most of this property (approximately 1,825-acres) is 
owned by YAEC; the remaining portion is owned by USGen New England, 
Inc., (USGen). The USGen property is a narrow strip of upland to the 
west of the plant, extending along the entire eastern bank of Sherman 
Reservoir. USGen also owns the reservoir itself, the Sherman Dam, 
property west of the Sherman Reservoir, and property downstream of 
Sherman Dam encompassing both banks of the Deerfield River. YNPS 
operations have been conducted on about 15 developed acres, primarily 
on land owned by YAEC, but extending onto property owned by USGen (ERM, 
2004a).
    The YNPS site is divided into three areas based on past site 
activities and land use:
    1. Industrial Area: approximately 12-acre fenced portion of the 
site that contains industrial plant structures and operations.
    2. Radiologically Controlled Area (RCA): 4-acre parcel within the 
industrial area that contains radiological materials associated with 
plant operation.
    3. Non-Industrial Area: remaining land outside the fenced 
industrial area that contains the USGen Sherman Station hydroelectric 
plant, the Sherman Reservoir and Dam, transmission lines traversing the 
site, administration building and visitor center, roadways, fill areas 
and undeveloped woodland (YAEC, 2004b; ERM, 2004a).
    During construction of the YNPS facility, some construction and 
demolition debris was placed into what is now the Southeast 
Construction Fill Area (SCFA). This area of approximately 1.5 acres 
contains soil and rock, in addition to wood, concrete, asphalt, and 
metal debris. In accordance with MDEP Solid Waste permits, YAEC plans 
to remove the materials from this area, returning native soils to other 
areas of the site for regrading.

Ecology and Cultural Resources

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service confirmed in correspondence with 
YAEC that no federally listed endangered or threatened species occur on 
the site. (ERM, 2004b) Massachusetts species of concern have been 
identified on the YNPS site. A northern spring salamander was 
identified in a headwater channel of Wheeler Brook. The bristly black 
currant was discovered in a drainage area along the Wheeler Brook 
Divertment, outside the site's eastern fenceline. Longnose suckers are 
documented to exist in the Sherman Reservoir. YAEC is working with the 
Massachusetts Division of Fisheries & Wildlife under the National 
Heritage and Endangered Species Program (NHESP) to develop a plan for 
the protection of these species during the remainder of decommissioning 
activities.
    Several resources of cultural and historic significance exist at 
the site; however, none of these have been affected by decommissioning 
activities. A 2003 report documents these resources, most of which are 
located in the undeveloped uplands (PAL, 2003). The report also 
includes a management plan that meets Massachusetts Historical 
Commission guidelines.
3.1.1 Existing Radiological Contamination
    The majority of the site located outside the industrial area was 
determined to be non-impacted (about

[[Page 32666]]

2170 acres), as documented in Section 2.5 of the LTP. The non-impacted 
area consists mostly of forested, rugged terrain that has not been 
disturbed. This determination is based on both the Historical Site 
Assessment (YAEC, 2004c) and additional characterization surveys.
    Radiologically-impacted areas of the site include the industrial 
area and surrounding open land areas extending out approximately 1000 
feet from the vapor container (now dismantled). The radiologically 
impacted areas comprise approximately 30 acres, the majority of which 
are minimally impacted (contain residual radioactivity at levels no 
greater than a fraction of the proposed DCGLs). For a more detailed 
description of initial radiological characterization of the impacted 
area, refer to the YNPS Historical Site Assessment and Section 2.4 of 
the LTP.
    The Historical Site Assessment also identified low levels of 
contamination, primarily Co-60, in the sediments of Sherman Reservoir. 
This radioactive material was deposited as a result of permitted and 
monitored radioactive liquid releases. Characterization surveys showed 
the radioactive material concentration is a small fraction of the 
proposed DCGLs. Areas with potentially contaminated sediments are 
included in the final status surveys for further evaluation.

Characterization Process

    Site characterization activities were performed in two phases, 
initial and continuing. The results of the initial phase were submitted 
to the NRC in January 2004. After a review of the results of the 
initial characterization, YAEC initiated the continuing phase, which 
will be ongoing throughout the remainder of the decommissioning 
activities. The results would be used to guide the remediation 
activities, and to confirm the appropriateness of the radiological 
source terms used for the dose model and basis for the corresponding 
DCGLs by media.
    Site characterization surveys are conducted to determine the nature 
and extent of radiological contamination at the YNPS site. The purpose 
of the site characterization survey is to: (1) Permit planning for 
remediation activities; (2) demonstrate that it is unlikely that 
significant quantities of residual radioactivity have gone undetected 
at the site after remediation; (3) provide information to design the 
final site survey (i.e., identify survey unit classifications for 
impacted areas); and (4) provide input to dose modeling (NRC, 2003). 
Site characterization activities include the collection of various 
types of samples, including soil, sediment, water, concrete, metal, and 
surface residues. Surveys and sampling conducted during site 
characterization are based on knowledge of the plant history and likely 
areas of contamination. In accordance with 10 CFR 50.82(a)(9)(ii)(A), 
radiological conditions of the site were provided in Section 2.0 of the 
LTP. The results of sample analyses and the use of the results in 
identifying the significant radionuclides expected to be present after 
remediation are described in Attachments 2B and 2C of Chapter 2 of the 
LTP.
    YAEC conducted a series of sample analyses using site media 
believed to represent the distribution of radionuclide contaminants, 
and their decay-corrected isotopic distribution, over the operational 
history of the plant. In its technical basis document, YAEC describes 
the method that was used to determine radionuclides that could be 
present at the site (YAEC 2003). The radionuclides include, but are not 
limited to: 3H, 14C, 54Mn, 
55Fe, 57Co, 58Co, 59Ni, 
60Co, 63Ni, 65Zn, 90Sr, 
94Nb, 99Tc, 106Ru, 108mAg, 
125Sb, 129I, 134Cs, 137Cs, 
144Ce, 145Pm, 152Eu, 154Eu, 
155Eu, 238Pu, 239Pu, 240Pu, 
241Pu, 241Am, 243Cm, and 
244Cm. These radionuclides include fission and activation 
products, which are typical of those found in pressurized-water reactor 
plants. These radionuclides are also described in two NRC documents: 
NUREG/CR-0130, ``Technology, Safety and Costs of Decommissioning a 
Reference Pressurized Water Reactor Power Station,'' (Smith et al., 
1978) and NUREG/CR-3474, ``Long-Lived Activation Products in Reactor 
Materials,'' (Evans et al., 1984).
    Based on dose model assumptions (including the expected time at 
which the site will be remediated) YAEC has identified the following 22 
radionuclides as potentially contributing to the dose after license 
termination: 3H, 14C, 55Fe, 
60Co, 63Ni, 90Sr, 94Nb, 
99Tc, 108mAg, 125Sb, 134Cs, 
137Cs, 152Eu, 154Eu, 155Eu, 
238Pu, 239Pu, 240Pu, 241Pu, 
241Am, 243Cm, and 244Cm. Accordingly, 
these radionuclides would form the basis in planning and conducting all 
final status surveys, and demonstrating compliance with the site 
release criteria.
3.1.2 Existing Hazardous and Chemical Contamination

Chemical Use

    Over the YNPS plant's operating life, a number of hazardous 
materials or chemicals were used throughout the industrial area. Some 
of these materials are: water treatment and other maintenance 
chemicals, fuel, lubricating and transformer oils (including oils 
containing polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)), and chemicals used for 
the various reactor systems (including boron, hydrazine, 1,1,1-
trichloroethane, and trisodium phosphate). Additionally, some of the 
building structures and surfaces contain asbestos, PCB-containing 
paint, and/or lead-based paint (ERM, 2004a).
    While the plant was operating, it was classified as a small 
quantity generator of hazardous wastes under the Resource Conservation 
and Recovery Act (RCRA). However, YAEC is currently a large quantity 
generator (generating over 1,000 kilograms of hazardous wastes per 
month) due to the increased volume of hazardous and mixed wastes 
associated with decommissioning activities. The MDEP regulates YAEC's 
hazardous waste generation and storage activities.

Contamination and Remediation

    Nonradiological chemical cleanup at the site must comply with MDEP 
regulations under the Massachusetts Contingency Plan (MCP) (310 CMR 
40.00), which regulates the investigation and cleanup of oil and 
hazardous materials releases to soil or water (ERM, 2004a), and the 
MDEP Solid Waste Regulations at 310 CMR 19.000, which regulate the 
investigation and remediation of the SCFA and the review of beneficial 
reuse determination (BUD) permits. YAEC had intended to remediate 
onsite contamination to enable future use of the site without 
restrictions, however deed restrictions will be utilized in the 
remediation of the industrial use of the site.
    The primary non-radiological contaminant of concern at the site is 
PCBs. A release of PCB-containing paint chips from the vapor container 
(reactor containment) into the Sherman Reservoir was discovered in the 
spring of 2000. The paint chips migrated to the reservoir through the 
stormwater drainage system. Immediate action was taken to remediate 
some of the storm drain sediments. Additional cleanup has been ongoing 
since 2001, including remediation of soils in landscaped areas onsite 
and of the sediments in the Sherman Reservoir and western storm 
drainage ditch. PCBs in soils and sediments are being remediated to 
meet the requirements of both the MDEP and the U.S. Environmental 
Protection Agency (EPA) Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) generally 
to a level of 1 milligrams/kilogram (mg/kg, or parts-per-million). YAEC 
has documented its PCB remediation program in three reports prepared 
according to MCP

[[Page 32667]]

requirements: Phase II Comprehensive Site Assessment, Phase III 
Remedial Action Plan, and Phase IV Remedy Implementation Plan.
    Massachusetts and Vermont public health agencies have issued 
advisories due to the presence of mercury in fish from the Sherman 
Reservoir. Atmospheric deposition from industrial activities is a 
likely source of the mercury found in these fish. Additionally, PCBs 
were detected at trace levels in the tissues of fish in the vicinity of 
the East Storm Drain Outfall. The source of the PCBs is likely the PCB-
containing paint chips that migrated into the reservoir. The licensee 
is controlling any remaining PCB-containing paint so no further 
environmental impact is expected. As discussed in Section 3.1.2, YAEC 
is in the process of remediating the PCB-contaminated areas of the 
reservoir near the East Storm Drain Outfall (ERM, 2004a).
    YAEC began an additional site-wide characterization of soils, 
groundwater, and sediments in 2003 and identified several areas for 
further study. According to the June 2004 Site Characterization Status 
Report (ERM, 2004c) and the January 2005 Phase II Comprehensive Site 
Assessment Report, minor contamination in groundwater and sediment, as 
well as localized areas of contaminated soil, were identified as 
requiring further evaluation. Groundwater contaminants are discussed in 
Section 3.3.2. Sediment impacts include PCBs, which is consistent with 
previous investigations. Soil impacts include low levels of the 
following compounds: petroleum hydrocarbon impacts near parking areas; 
PCBs near the transformer yard; dioxin near the former incinerator; 
lead around the former shooting range; and beryllium near the ISFSI and 
former cooling water discharge structure. YAEC will continue to work 
with the MDEP to fulfill MCP requirements and demonstrate that the 
entire site has been adequately characterized and remediated where 
necessary, according to MDEP regulations. When the site is released 
from NRC jurisdiction, it will remain under state jurisdiction until 
all nonradiological contamination issues are resolved with the MDEP.
    As discussed earlier, most site buildings are being demolished to 
ground level, and some foundations (notably, the Spent Fuel Pool/Ion 
Exchange Pit, or SFP/IXP) will be removed entirely. Basements will be 
remediated to meet the DCGLs before they are perforated to facilitate 
groundwater flow. Soils will be used to backfill the basements and 
other holes. Additionally, concrete demolition debris generated from 
dismantlement activities may be used as backfill material if it passes 
the final status survey or contains no detectable contamination. 
Backfill using concrete demolition debris will be conducted under a BUD 
permit from MDEP, which will include a deed restriction and compliance 
with MDEP and MDPH requirements for such reuse.

3.2 Land Use

    YNPS industrial and administrative operations are conducted on 
approximately 15 acres of land, primarily owned by YAEC but also 
including property owned by USGen, as discussed in Section 3.1. The 
USGen property, consisting of a segment that extends along the entire 
eastern bank of the Sherman Reservoir, is subject to a 2001 Grant of 
Conservation Restriction issued by the Massachusetts Department of 
Environmental Management. USGen has agreed to restrict future uses of 
its property for preservation purposes, except as necessary for 
operation of its hydroelectric power plant (ERM, 2004a).
    Approximately 87 acres of the site is dedicated to the long term 
storage (about 20 years) of spent fuel and other high-level radioactive 
waste in the ISFSI. The ISFSI consists of a concrete pad within a fence 
and a buffer area with a 300-meter radius.
    Transmission lines and two public roads traverse the site. 
Readsboro Road runs in a north-south direction approximately 1500 feet 
west of the plant, across the river. Monroe Hill Road is approximately 
2500 feet from the plant to the southwest, running in a north-south 
direction between the towns of Rowe and Monroe.
    Some farms and a few commercial sites are located in the 
surrounding area. There are no exclusively commercial areas within five 
miles of the site. The only industrial property in the area is the 
adjacent USGen hydroelectric station and five associated powerhouses 
that are situated near the Sherman and other reservoirs along the 
Deerfield River. The nearest highway and railroad right-of-way are each 
located about five miles south of the site. Several public lands and 
conservation areas are located within five miles of the site (YAEC, 
1999, 2004a). The river is used for recreation and sport fishing, as 
well as for producing hydroelectric power.

3.3 Water Resources

    The discussion of water resources is divided into surface water and 
groundwater. The following sections provide a summary of the 
characteristics of each within and around the YNPS site.
3.3.1 Surface Water

Surface Water Features

    Surface water bodies on the site or in its immediate vicinity 
include the Deerfield River, Sherman Reservoir, Wheeler Brook and an 
associated tributary, a divertment from Wheeler Brook, a discharge 
canal, and the stormwater drainage systems for the eastern and western 
halves of the Industrial Area. Wheeler Brook and its tributaries flow 
about 400 to 500 feet outside the Industrial Area around the south and 
east sides of the site before Wheeler Brook discharges into Sherman 
Reservoir (Framatome, 2003).
    Sherman Reservoir was formed by the installation of Sherman Dam on 
the Deerfield River. The reservoir is approximately two miles long, a 
quarter mile wide, and up to 75 feet deep along its central channel 
(Framatome, 2003). The discharge canal, which discharges into the 
Sherman Reservoir, was constructed to receive return water from the 
plant's cooling water processes.
    Stormwater at the site flows into two systems, the East Storm Drain 
System and the West Storm Drain System, draining the eastern and 
western halves of the Industrial Area, respectively. The East Storm 
Drain System discharges to the Sherman Reservoir, while the West Storm 
Drain System discharges to the Deerfield River. Stormwater from the 
undeveloped uplands is captured by the Wheeler Brook Divertment. The 
divertment flows into Wheeler Brook, which flows into the Sherman 
Reservoir.
    Wetlands on the site are located in several areas and primarily 
border water bodies such as the Sherman Reservoir, Deerfield River, 
Wheeler Brook, and associated tributaries. Additional wetland areas 
were identified in the two stormwater detention basins at the site. 
Some isolated wetlands exist in the southern part of the site. Wetlands 
were formally delineated in an Abbreviated Notice of Resource Area 
Delineation (Woodlot, 2004), which was approved by the Town of Rowe 
Conservation Commission in March 2004.

Wastewater Discharges

    During the plant operation, stormwater, service water, and 
noncontact cooling water were discharged as wastewaters through seven 
outfalls to the Sherman Reservoir and the West Storm Drain System (to 
the river). Currently, stormwater and treated wastewaters from the 
laboratory or from decommissioning activities are

[[Page 32668]]

discharged through three remaining outfalls. Discharges are approved 
under a National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit 
issued jointly by the MDEP and EPA, which sets specific limits for pH, 
oil and grease, suspended solids, and flow, and also requires the 
maintenance of a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (ERM, 2004b). 
These discharges are also monitored and treated for radiological 
materials according to NRC requirements.
    A temporary wastewater processing system treats and stores 
wastewaters received from the radioactive laboratory sump discharge 
line. This water is treated and then batch-discharged. Discharges of 
these wastewaters through the treatment plant or through the stormwater 
drainage system are covered under the NPDES permit. The temporary 
treatment system will be dismantled and disposed of off-site as 
radioactive waste (YAEC, 2004a).
    The auxiliary service water system is being used to supply water 
from the Sherman Reservoir to support decontamination and dismantling 
activities. The system will be dismantled once it is no longer needed 
for these activities (YAEC, 2004a).
    Three septic systems with several associated leach fields have been 
used at the YNPS site. The leach fields are located generally on the 
western portion of the site. Three of these leach fields have been in 
use since 1978, when two formerly-used leach fields were abandoned in 
place.
3.3.2 Groundwater

Aquifers and Geology

    The groundwater system at the YNPS site is a product of the 
geology, particularly the petrology and hydraulic conductivity of the 
rocks, the glacial history, the geomorphology, and the hydrology of 
this area. The YNPS site is located on the east side of the Berkshire 
Mountains predominantly on a terrace of the Deerfield River. The 
terrace is recessed into the east side of a two mile wide glacially-
derived river valley where the valley walls rise to over 1,000 feet 
above the river elevation. The YNPS plant is adjacent to a dammed 
portion of the Deerfield River, Sherman Dam and Sherman Reservoir. The 
local gradient for this portion of the Deerfield River is 28.4 feet/
mile over a river distance of about 33 miles from the Vermont border at 
the Sherman Pond to the West Deerfield, Massachusetts gauging station 
(Framatome, 2003).
    The local groundwater system is extremely complex, with three 
groundwater-bearing units, from top to bottom: stratified drift, 
glaciolacustrine, and bedrock. The stratified drift unit contains 
permeable surficial sands and gravels,10 to 20 feet thick, that are 
water-laid, ice-contact deposits derived from a melting glacier. The 
glaciolacustrine unit comprises sediments up to 260 feet thick of 
glaciolacustrine origin, containing multiple, relatively thin water-
bearing units of fine to medium-grained sand, interspersed within 
relatively impermeable, fine-grained sand and silts. The bedrock unit 
is a gray, medium-grained, moderately foliated metamorphic rock that 
contains significant amounts of megacrystals of plagioclase feldspar 
albite. This bedrock is the upper member of the Lower Cambrian Hoosac 
Formation, which is relatively competent with few fractures (YAEC, 
2004e).

Contamination and Monitoring

    As discussed in Section 3.1.2, YAEC began additional site-wide 
characterization of groundwater in 2003 and identified several areas 
for further study. According to the June 2004 Site Characterization 
Status Report (ERM, 2004c), nonradiological contamination in 
groundwater and sediment, as well as localized areas of contaminated 
soil, were identified that required further evaluation. Non-
radiological groundwater contaminants identified were found to be in 
isolated areas and do not suggest the presence of a plume. These 
contaminants include low levels of 1,1-dichloroethane, PCBs, and 
petroleum hydrocarbons. YAEC will continue to work with the MDEP to 
fulfill MCP requirements and demonstrate that groundwater has been 
adequately characterized and remediated where necessary.
    Radiological groundwater monitoring at the YNPS site (excluding 
monitoring for the Radiological Environmental Monitoring Program) has 
occurred since the plant shut down in 1992. Currently, 39 monitoring 
wells are in operation throughout the site. Monitoring wells were 
installed in stages, as follows: two in the late 1970s, 15 in 1993-94, 
21 from 1997 through 2001, and 17 during the summer of 2003, with 14 of 
the older wells properly abandoned due to decommissioning (demolition) 
activities. Most of the wells that were installed prior to 2003 are 
located in the RCA, although a few are either downgradient or 
upgradient of the RCA. All of the wells installed before 2003 except 
one are shallow, ranging in depth from 7 to 31 feet below the land 
surface. The exception is a 49-foot bedrock monitoring well in the RCA. 
The monitoring wells installed during the summer of 2003 contain wells 
screened as follows: three in the stratified drift unit, seven in the 
glaciolacustrine unit, and seven in the bedrock unit.
    Groundwater samples have been collected for radiological analysis 
since 1993. Until 2003, YAEC analyzed the groundwater samples for 
tritium, gross alpha, gross beta, and gamma spectroscopy. The 
analytical results for these samples (i.e., groundwater samples from 
monitoring wells screened primarily in the stratified drift unit) 
indicated that only tritium was present above the minimum detection 
concentration. The largest tritium concentrations were observed in 
wells located immediately downgradient of the spent fuel pit and ion 
exchange pit (SFP/IXP).
    In 2003, YAEC made several changes to improve site characterization 
and sampling and analytical procedures:
    1. During the summer of 2003, YAEC installed 17 monitoring wells, 
as mentioned above, to characterize the glaciolacustrine and bedrock 
units more adequately. YAEC installed additional monitoring wells in 
2004 and will install more as required by MDEP to improve its 
characterization of groundwater at the site.
    2. YAEC began quarterly sampling events in 2003, and in 2004 
improved sampling procedures by measuring the groundwater levels in all 
monitoring wells within a few hours before any water samples were 
collected. YAEC has also committed to collecting the water samples from 
the monitoring wells over a shorter time period.
    3. YAEC improved and explained its analytical analysis of the 
groundwater samples by analyzing for the radionuclides of concern at 
the YNPS site. Table 2-6 of the LTP lists the radionuclides of concern 
(or see Section 3.1.1). In July and November 2003, YAEC conducted 
analyses for these radionuclides of concern and for Mn-54. Tritium was 
the only plant-generated radionuclide that was detected in samples from 
the July and November 2003 events.
    The largest tritium concentration historically observed at the YNPS 
site was groundwater flowing from Sherman Spring early in plant 
operation, which is downgradient from the Sherman Dam and Sherman Pond 
near the Deerfield River. Groundwater from Sherman Spring had a tritium 
concentration of 7,195,000 picoCuries/liter (pCi/L) in December 1965. 
The tritium contamination is reported to have been caused by a leakage 
from the SFP/IXP, which was repaired in May 1965 and in 1979, when a 
stainless-steel liner was installed. Tritium levels in groundwater

[[Page 32669]]

samples from Sherman Spring have decreased steadily over time, and have 
varied from non-detectable (ND) to 890 picoCuries/liter in recent 
monitoring rounds.
    Tritium concentrations from the July and November 2003, sampling 
events are variable by space and time throughout the hydrogeologic 
units at the site. The tritium plume extends from the source area at 
the SFP/IXP towards Sherman Spring and the Deerfield River, with the 
highest tritium concentrations present immediately downgradient of the 
SFP/IXP. The maximum tritium concentrations were approximately 2,000 
pCi/L in the stratified drift unit, 45,000 pCi/L in the 
glaciolacustrine unit, and 6,000 pCi/L in the bedrock unit.

3.4 Human Health

    Potential human health hazards associated with the YNPS site range 
from potential exposure to very low levels of radioactivity in soils 
and groundwater, to limited areas of relatively high levels of 
radioactivity within the remaining portions of the reactor support 
structures and systems.
    The intent of the final decommissioning activity at the site is to 
reduce radiological contamination at the site to meet NRC's 
unrestricted release criteria, and to also meet the criteria of the 
MDPH and MDEP. After decommissioning activities are complete, license 
termination activities will verify adequacy of the radiological release 
criteria (i.e., DCGLs) and the final status survey. Unrestricted use of 
the site is defined in 10 CFR 20.1402, as follows:
    A site will be considered acceptable for unrestricted use if the 
residual radioactivity that is distinguishable from background 
radiation results in a TEDE [total effective dose equivalent] to an 
average member of the critical group that does not exceed 25 mrem 
[millirem] (0.25 mSv) [milliSievert] per year, including that from 
groundwater sources of drinking water, and that the residual 
radioactivity has been reduced to levels that are as low as reasonably 
achievable (ALARA) * * *.

    As planned, the 0.25 mSv/yr (25 mrem/yr) TEDE all-pathway limit 
would be achieved at the site through the application of DCGLs used to 
measure the adequacy of remediation activities. The DCGLs in use at the 
YNPS site were calculated using dose models based on guidance provided 
in NUREG/CR-5512, Volumes 1, 2, and 3, NUREG/CR-6697, and the computer 
codes RESRAD Version 6.21 and RESRAD-BUILD Version 3.21 code for 
generating the DCGLs. These dose models translate residual 
radioactivity into potential radiation doses to the public, based on 
select land-use scenarios, exposure pathways, and identified critical 
groups. A critical group is defined as the group of individuals 
reasonably expected to receive the greatest exposure to residual 
radioactivity given the assumptions of a given scenario. Such scenarios 
and their associated modeling are designed to overestimate, rather than 
underestimate, potential dose.
    YAEC has also agreed to meet the following radiological site 
criteria of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts: 1 mrem/yr for concrete 
rubble used on-site as fill; 10 mrem/yr for the entire site; and the 
risk criteria for cumulative radiological and non-radiological risk as 
determined by a Risk Assessment according to the MCP.

4.0 Environmental Impacts

4.1 Land Use
    YAEC plans to release eventually all of the property associated 
with the YNPS site to local, state, or federal government or non-profit 
entities for conservation purposes. YAEC has developed an American Land 
Title Association survey to document the site's legal boundaries. In 
addition, natural and cultural resources inventories and management 
plans have been developed. The management plans specify the obligations 
necessary to preserve the site for conservation (YAEC, 2004b).
    Termination of the YAEC license is not reasonably expected to 
result in any adverse impacts to onsite and adjacent land use. Soils 
not meeting the radiological criteria for license termination will be 
removed and disposed of at a licensed facility as low-level radioactive 
waste. Initially, most of the YAEC-owned property would be released, 
except for approximately 87 acres containing the spent fuel storage 
facility and associated buffer zone. That acreage would be released 
when the fuel is removed to a permanent repository and the storage 
facility is decommissioned.
    Land on and directly adjacent to the site is expected to remain 
heavily wooded, with lightly populated communities in the surrounding 
area. Recreational opportunities afforded by the Deerfield River will 
likely continue and could increase.
    The deed restriction required by the MDEP Solid Waste BUD permit 
will require prior written approval by the MDEP for any use of the 
former industrial area of the site other than as passive recreation, 
and will prohibit excavations in that area.

4.2 Water Resources

    Approval of the LTP and eventual termination of the license are not 
anticipated to result in any significant impacts to either surface 
water or groundwater. The approved radiation release criteria must be 
met as a condition of license termination and release of the site.
4.2.1 Surface Water
    Land areas from which precipitation runs off to surface waters, 
will be subject to further investigation, remediation where necessary, 
and the final status survey. YAEC will need to verify that DCGLs have 
been met in accordance with Section 5 of the LTP, thus demonstrating 
compliance with the release criteria. Further, YAEC will need to 
demonstrate compliance with the MCP surface water requirements for both 
nonradiological and radiological contaminants. YAEC's future license 
termination also would not be expected to result in any adverse impact 
to surface water flow or quality, as batch discharges will cease along 
with other license termination activities.
    Prior to license termination, the amount of impervious area will be 
reduced by about 8 acres (from about 9.5 acres) due to revegetation of 
areas currently occupied by buildings, roads, and parking lots (ERM, 
2004d). YAEC intends to leave the current stormwater drainages 
unaltered to prevent the destruction of wetland areas that have formed 
in the drainages. Drainage pipes will be closed, so that discharges 
will likely continue as sheet flow from the drainages into water 
bodies.
    Both the existing water supply system (upgradient supply well) and 
sewage system will remain in place. YAEC will inspect the remaining 
septic systems (discussed in Section 3.3.1) for compliance with state 
septic system regulations before the property title is transferred. 
Groundwater monitoring wells have been installed and monitored in the 
vicinity of the site septic systems.
    Several closure activities are being conducted on or near wetlands 
resources. YAEC has prepared an Integrated Permit Package to address 
the regulatory requirements applicable to such activities (ERM, 2004d). 
The activities requiring wetlands-related permits include PCB 
remediation, decommissioning of circulating water intake and discharge 
structures, removal of the Southeast Construction Fill Area, 
implementation of Sherman Dam flood control measures, and regrading of 
the site. Additionally, a wetlands restoration plan has been developed 
(Woodlot, 2004) to implement the

[[Page 32670]]

permit requirements. Further information concerning wetlands activities 
can be found in the Integrated Permit Package and the Wetland 
Restoration and Replication Plan (Woodlot, 2004).
    YAEC samples three surface water sites for its Radiological 
Environmental Monitoring Program (REMP) at the YNPS site. The Deerfield 
River is sampled downstream from the YNPS site at Bear Swamp Lower 
Reservoir with an automatic sampler every two hours. These samples are 
composited each month. YAEC also collects monthly grab samples from 
Sherman Pond and from an upstream Deerfield River site at the Harriman 
Reservoir. Samples from all three sites are analyzed for gamma emitting 
radionuclides, tritium, and gross beta. The tritium and gamma 
spectroscopy results for 2003 indicated that no surface water samples 
contained detectable levels of plant-generated radionuclides. Also, the 
gross beta averages for 2003 were slightly greater at the upstream 
Deerfield River site than at the downstream site (YAEC, 2004d). Based 
upon these recent data, YAEC states that the surface waters do not 
require remediation pertaining to plant-generated radionuclides.
4.2.2 Groundwater
    YAEC states that remediation will not likely be required for 
groundwater at the YNPS site to meet NRC's license termination criteria 
because H-3 levels are expected to meet NRC's unrestricted release 
criteria when the site is released (when the ISFSI is decommissioned 
and the license terminated). If decommissioning activities at the YNPS 
site increase the concentrations of plant-generated radionuclides 
dissolved in the groundwater, the monitoring program at this site 
should detect this change. Groundwater samples from the existing 39 
monitoring wells should indicate changes in the groundwater 
downgradient from the radiologically-controlled area. Because some 
monitoring wells have been abandoned during decommissioning, new 
monitoring wells will need to be installed to meet MDEP requirements to 
characterize potential changes in the level of plant-generated 
radionuclides dissolved in the groundwater.
    Groundwater at the site also will be required to meet the dose-
based radiological criteris of the MDPH and the risk-based criteria of 
the MDEP Risk Assessment process (for both radiological and non-
radiological parameters).

4.3 Human Health Impacts

    Compliance with 10 CFR 20.1402 for unrestricted release (and, 
therefore, human health protection requirements) is contingent upon 
successful remediation and/or removal of contaminated soil, 
groundwater, ancillary contaminated materials, and structures to 
acceptable levels (corresponding to a total dose of 0.25 mSv/yr (25 
mrem/yr) or less per year) to an average member of the critical group. 
In addition, residual radioactivity must meet the ALARA requirements of 
the rule.
    As noted in Sec. 3.4, YAEC also has agreed to meet the more 
restrictive radiological release criteria of the MDPH and the MDEP.

Derived Concentration Guideline Levels

    YAEC has defined levels of residual radioactivity for various 
sources at the site that correspond to meeting the dose limit. These 
acceptable levels are defined as the DCGLs. Potential radiation doses 
for the bounding exposure scenarios are calculated by assuming an 
average fixed concentration level for each of the potential sources of 
residual radioactivity. The sources are soil, building surfaces, 
subsurface partial structures, and concrete debris. Two critical groups 
were identified to whom the DCGLs would be applicable: A full-time 
resident farmer group (associated with soil, building surfaces, 
subsurface partial structures, and concrete debris sources) and a 
building occupancy group (associated with the building surfaces 
source).
    The DCGLs for each source were derived using the radiation doses 
per unit activity and a separate dose constraint for each source. Table 
4-1 lists the DCGLs for each radionuclide from each source. Within each 
critical group, each DCGL was selected to correspond to a fraction of 
the 0.25 mSv/yr (25 mrem/yr) dose limit so that the total dose to the 
average member of that group from all sources would equal the limit.
    For the resident farmer critical group, the doses corresponding to 
DCGLs (and totaling 25 mrem/yr) are:
     Subsurface partial structures: 0.005 mSv/yr (0.5 mrem/yr)
     Groundwater: 0.0077 mSv/yr (0.77 mrem/yr).
     Concrete debris and soil: 0.2373 mSv/yr (23.73 mrem/yr)
    In areas that have co-mingled soil and concrete debris, YAEC would 
use the smaller of the two DCGLs for each radionuclide (see Table 4-1), 
and for areas with only soil, YAEC would use the soil DCGLs.
    For the building occupancy critical group, YAEC would take a sum-
of-fractions approach to ensure that if a member of the public were 
both a member of the building occupancy critical group and the resident 
farmer critical group, their total dose would be less than 0.25 mSv/yr 
(25 mrem/yr).
    Any actual doses would likely be much less than the 0.25 mSv/yr (25 
mrem/yr) limit. This is due to the conservatism in both the modeling 
and the assumption that the entire source would have residual 
radioactivity at the DCGL. (It is more likely that the sources will 
have residual radioactivity at considerably less than the DCGLs.) 
Provided compliance with the 10 CFR 20.1402 limit is demonstrated 
through the results of the final status survey, there would be no 
anticipated adverse impacts to human health from approval of license 
termination, as described in the environmental impact statement for 
license termination (NUREG-1496) (NRC, 1997a).

Exposure Scenarios

    The manner in which the DCGLs are derived for the YNPS site is 
documented in Chapter 6 of the LTP, Revision 1. In deriving the DCGLs, 
an adult resident farmer is considered to represent the average member 
of the critical group. The hypothetical resident farmer is assumed to 
build a house on the contaminated soil (or soil/concrete debris mix), 
draw water from a well placed into the tritium plume, grow plant food 
and fodder on the contaminated area, raise livestock on the 
contaminated area, and catch fish from a pond on the contaminated area. 
The resident farmer scenario is considered the bounding scenario 
because it embodies the greatest number of exposure pathways, 
represents the longest exposure durations, and includes the greatest 
number of sources, of all scenarios envisioned. The DCGLs are shown in 
Table 4-1.
    The NRC will evaluate the appropriateness of the postulated 
exposure scenarios and the methodology used for deriving the DCGLs as 
part of its review of the LTP. The NRC staff's Safety Evaluation Report 
will provide the details of this review.

Survey Design

    YAEC would use a series of surveys, including the final status 
survey, to demonstrate compliance with the radiological release 
criteria consistent with the Multi-Agency Radiation Survey and Site 
Investigation Manual (NRC, 1997a). Planning for the final status survey 
involves an iterative process that

[[Page 32671]]

requires appropriate site classification (on the basis of the potential 
residual radioactivity levels relative to the DCGLs) and formal 
planning using the Data Quality Objective process. YAEC has committed 
to an integrated design that would address the selection of appropriate 
survey and laboratory instrumentation and procedures, including a 
statistically-based measurement and sampling plan for collecting and 
evaluating the data needed for the final status survey. YAEC has 
requested that it be permitted to modify the classification levels 
based on new information during the decommissioning process.

                               Table 4-1.--Derived Concentration Guideline Levels*
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                      Subsurface
                                  Soil  (pCi/    Building surface      partial         Concrete debris[dagger]
         Radionuclide             g)[dagger]       (dpm/100 cm2)      structures               (pCi/g)
                                                     [Dagger]       (pCI/g) Sec.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
H-3..........................  3.5E+02.........  3.4E+08.........  1.35E+02.......  9.5E+01 (cellar holes).
                                                                                    2.8E+02 (grading).
C-14.........................  5.2E+00.........  1.0E+07.........  2.34E+03.......  7.2E+00.
Fe-55........................  2.8E+04.........  4.0E+07.........  ...............  1.4E+02.
Co-60........................  3.8E+00.........  1.8E+04.........  3.45E+03.......  4.3E+00.
Ni-63........................  7.7E+02.........  3.7E+07.........  6.16E+04.......  1.0E+02.
Sr-90........................  1.6E+00.........  1.5E+05.........  1.39E+01.......  7.5E01.
Nb-94........................  6.8E+00.........  2.6E+04.........  ...............  7.0E+00.
Tc-99........................  1.3E+01.........  1.4E+07.........  ...............  6.1E+01.
Ag-108m......................  6.9E+00.........  2.5E+04.........  ...............  7.0E+00.
Sb-125.......................  3.0E+01.........  1.0E+05.........  ...............  3.1E+01.
Cs-134.......................  4.7E+00.........  2.9E+04.........  ...............  4.7E+00.
Cs-137.......................  8.2E+00.........  6.3E+04.........  1.45E+03.......  6.7E+00.
Eu-152.......................  9.5E+00.........  3.7E+04.........  ...............  9.5E+00.
Eu-154.......................  9.0E+00.........  3.4E+04.........  ...............  9.1E+00.
Eu-155.......................  3.8E+02.........  6.5E+05.........  ...............  3.8E+02.
Pu-238.......................  3.1E+01.........  5.7E+03.........  ...............  9.5E+00.
Pu-239.......................  2.8E+01.........  5.1E+03.........  ...............  8.8E+00.
Pu-241.......................  9.3E+02.........  2.5E+05.........  ...............  1.4E+02.
Am-241.......................  2.8E+01.........  5.0E=03.........  ...............  4.1E+00.
Cm-243.......................  3.0E+01.........  7.2E+03.........  ...............  4.7E+00.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
* To convert to Bq from pCi, multiply by 0.037.
[dagger] Represents a dose of 23.73 mrem/yr.
[Dagger] Represents a dose of 25 mrem/yr.
Sec.   Represents a dose of 0.5 mrem/yr, radionuclides based upon those found in concrete samples.

5.0 Agencies and Persons Consulted and Sources Used

    A copy of the Environmental Assessment was provided to the 
Commonwealth of Massachusetts on March 3, 2005. The Massachusetts 
Department of Environmental Protection provided comments by letter 
dated March 31, 2005, which were incorporated into this EA.
    The NRC staff has determined that the proposed action would not 
affect listed threatened or endangered species or critical habitat 
designated under the Endangered Species Act. Therefore, no consultation 
is required under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act. Likewise, 
the NRC staff has determined that the proposed action would not affect 
historic or archaeological resources. Therefore, no consultation is 
required under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act.

6.0 Conclusion

    The NRC has prepared this EA related to the issuance of a license 
amendment that would approve the LTP. On the basis of this EA, the NRC 
has concluded that there are no significant environmental impacts and 
the proposed license amendment does not warrant the preparation of an 
Environmental Impact Statement. Accordingly, it has been determined 
that a Finding of No Significant Impact is appropriate.
    The documents related to this proposed action are available for 
public inspection and copying at NRC's Public Document Room at NRC 
Headquarters, One White Flint North, 1555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, 
Maryland 20852. Most of these documents also are available for public 
review through our electronic reading room (ADAMS): http://www.nrc.gov/
reading-rm/adams.html.

7.0 List of Preparers

    C. McKenney, Health Physicist, Division of Waste Management, dose 
assessment.
    J. Peckenpaugh, Hydrologist, Division of Waste Management, 
groundwater issues.
    C. Schulte, Project Manager, Division of Waste Management and 
Environmental Protection, non-radiological environmental issues.
    J. Thompson, Health Physicist, Division of Waste Management and 
Environmental Protection, Final Status Survey, radiation release 
criteria.

8.0 List of Acronyms

ALARA as low as reasonably achievable
BUD beneficial reuse determination
CFR Code of Federal Regulations
DCGL derived concentration guideline limit
dpm/100cm2 disintegrations per minute per 100 square 
centimeters
EA environmental assessment
EPA Environmental Protection Agency
FR Federal Register
FSS final status survey
ISFSI independent spent fuel storage installation
kV kilovolt
LTP license termination plan
MCP Massachusetts Contingency Plan
MDEP Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection
MDPH Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Radiation Control 
Program
mrem/y millirem per year
mSv/yr milliSievert per year
NEPA National Environmental Policy Act
NHESP National Heritage and Endangered Species Program
NPDES National Pollution Discharge Elimination System
NRC Nuclear Regulatory Commission

[[Page 32672]]

ORISE Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education
PCBs Polychlorinated biphenyls
pCi/L picocurie per liter
PSDAR post shutdown decommissioning activities report
RCA Radiologically-controlled area
REMP Radiological Environmental Monitoring Program
RCRA Resource Conservation and Recovery Act
SCFA Southeast Construction Fill Area
TEDE total effective dose equivalent
TSCA Toxic Substances Control Act
YAEC Yankee Atomic Electric Company
YNPS Yankee Nuclear Power Station

9.0 References

    10 CFR Part 20. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, 
Part 20, ``Standards for protection against radiation.''
    10 CFR Part 50. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, 
Part 50, ``Domestic licensing of production and utilization 
facilities.''
    10 CFR Part 51. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, 
Part 51, ``Environmental protection regulations for domestic 
licensing and related regulatory functions.''
    61 FR 39278. ``Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Reactors.'' 
Federal Register. July 29, 1996.
    62 FR 39058. ``Radiological Criteria for License Termination. 
Final Rule.'' Federal Register. July 21, 1997.
    64 FR 68005. ``Waste Confidence Decision Review.'' Federal 
Register. December 6, 1999.
    Evans et al., 1984. ``Long-Lived Activation Products in Reactor 
Materials,'' NUREG/CR-3474. August 1984. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory 
Commission, Washington, DC.
    ERM, 2004a. ``Baseline Environmental Report,'' April 30, 2004. 
Environmental Resources Management, Boston, Massachusetts.
    ERM, 2004b, ``Expanded Environmental Notification Form,'' March 
31, 2004. Environmental Resources Management, Boston, Massachusetts.
    ERM, 2004c, ``Site Characterization Status Report,'' June 4, 
2004. Environmental Resources Management, Boston, Massachusetts.
    ERM, 2004d, ``Integrated Permit Package, Yankee Nuclear Power 
Station,'' May 7, 2004. Environmental Resources Management, Boston, 
Massachusetts.
    Kennedy and Strenge, 1992. ``Residual Radioactive Contamination 
From Decommissioning.'' NUREG/CR-5512, Volume 1. October 1992. U.S. 
Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC.
    Kleinschmidt, 2004. ``Post-Decommissioning Grading Plan and 
Stormwater Management Analysis,'' August 2004. Kleinschmidt Energy 
and Water Resource Consultants.
    MASS, 2004. ``Certificate of the Secretary of Environmental 
Affairs on the Expanded Environmental Notification Form,'' May 7, 
2004, Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs, 
Boston, Massachusetts.
    MHC, 2003. Letter, Massachusetts Historical Commission to YAEC, 
``Yankee Nuclear Power Station Decommissioning, Rowe; 
MHC33426,'' dated August 18, 2003.
    NRC, 1988. ``Final Generic Environmental Impact Statement on the 
Decommissioning of Nuclear Facilities.'' August 1988. U.S. Nuclear 
Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC.
    NRC, 1997a. ``Generic Environmental Impact Statement in Support 
of Rulemaking on Radiological Criteria for License Termination of 
NRC-Licensed Nuclear Facilities.'' NUREG-1496. July 1997. U.S. 
Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC.
    NRC, 1997b. ``Multi-Agency Radiation Survey and Site 
Investigation Manual (MARSSIM).'' NUREG-1575. December 1997. U.S. 
Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC.
    NRC, 2002. ``Generic Environmental Impact Statement on the 
Decommissioning of Nuclear Facilities. Supplement Dealing with 
Decommissioning of Nuclear Power Reactors.'' November 2002. NUREG-
0586, Supplement 1, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, 
DC.
    NRC, 2003. ``Consolidated NMSS Decommissioning Guidance,'' 
NUREG-1757. September 2003
    NRC, 2004. Letter, NRC to YAEC, ``Yankee (Rowe) Nuclear Power 
Station--Request for Additional Information Re: License Termination 
Plan,'' dated June 16, 2004.
    PAL, 2003. ``Archeological Reconnaissance Survey, Archeological 
Resources Management Plan, Yankee Nuclear Power Station,'' November, 
2003. Public Archeology Laboratory, Inc., Pawtucket, Rhode Island.
    Smith et al., 1978. ``Technology, Safety and Costs of 
Decommissioning a Reference Pressurized Water Reactor Power 
Station.'' NUREG/CR-0130. June 1978. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory 
Commission, Washington, DC.
    Woodlot, 2004. ``Yankee Nuclear Power Station Site Closure 
Project Wetland Restoration and Replication Plan,'' August 2004. 
Woodlot Alternatives, Inc., Topsham, Maine, and Environmental 
Resources Management, Boston, Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 1993. ``YNPS Decommissioning Environmental Report,'' 
December, 1993, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 2000. ``Post Shutdown Decommissioning Activities Report,'' 
June, 2001. Excerpted from the YNPS Final Safety Analysis Report, 
Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 2003. ``YNPS License Termination Plan,'' Revision 0. 
November 24, 2003, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, 
Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 2004a. ``YNPS License Termination Plan,'' Draft Revision 
1, September 2, 2004, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, 
Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 2004b. ``Site Closure Project Plan,'' Revision 2. March 
31, 2004, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 2004c. ``YNPS Historical Site Assessment,'' January 2004, 
Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 2004d. ``Annual Radiological Environmental Operating 
Report,'' Yankee Rowe Station Radiological Environmental Monitoring 
Program--January 1, 2003--December 31, 2003. Yankee Atomic Electric 
Company, Rowe, Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 2004e. ``Hydrogeologic Report of 2003 Supplemental 
Investigation'' March 15, 2004. Yankee Atomic Electric Company, 
Rowe, Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 2004f. ``YNPS License Termination Plan,'' Revision 1, 
November 19, 2004, Yankee Atomic Electric Company, Rowe, 
Massachusetts.
    YAEC, 2005. ``Supplement to Proposed Amendment to YNPS 
Possession Only License,'' April 7, 2005, Yankee Atomic Electric 
Company, Rowe, Massachusetts.
    Framatome, 2003. ``Site Ground Water Data Collection for YNPS 
Decommissioning, quo; Rev 1. February, 2003, Framatome ANP DE&S, 
Marlborough, Massachusetts.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 23rd day of May, 2005.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Andrew Persinko,
Acting Deputy Director, Division of Waste Management and Environmental 
Protection, Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards.
[FR Doc. E5-2850 Filed 6-2-05; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 7590-01-P