Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact; Department of the Navy, 18089-18092 [2019-08531]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 82 / Monday, April 29, 2019 / Notices 8:35 a.m.–12:00 p.m.: NuScale Safety Evaluation Report for Chapters 4 and 5 (Open/Closed)—The Committee will have briefings by and discussion with representatives of the NRC staff and NuScale regarding the identified chapters. [Note: This session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C 552b(c)(4)] 1:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m.: Preparation of ACRS Reports/Retreat (Open/Closed)— The Committee will continue its discussion of proposed ACRS reports and retreat items. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C 552b(c)(4)]. [Note: A portion of this meeting may be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(2) and (6) to discuss organizational and personnel matters that relate solely to internal personnel rules and practices of the ACRS, and information the release of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.] khammond on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES Friday, May 3, 2019, Conference Room T2D10 8:30 a.m.–10:00 a.m.: Future ACRS Activities/Report of the Planning and Procedures Subcommittee and Reconciliation of ACRS Comments and Recommendations (Open/Closed)—The Committee will hear discussion of the recommendations of the Planning and Procedures Subcommittee regarding items proposed for consideration by the Full Committee during future ACRS meetings. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C 552b(c)(4)]. [Note: A portion of this meeting may be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(2) and (6) to discuss organizational and personnel matters that relate solely to internal personnel rules and practices of the ACRS, and information the release of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy]. 10:15 a.m.–12:00 p.m.: Preparation of ACRS Reports/Retreat (Open/Closed)— The Committee will continue its discussion of proposed ACRS reports and retreat items. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C 552b(c)(4)]. [Note: A portion of this meeting may be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(2) and (6) to discuss organizational and personnel matters that relate solely to internal personnel rules and practices of the ACRS, and information the release of which would VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:56 Apr 26, 2019 Jkt 247001 constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy]. 1:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m.: Preparation of ACRS Reports/Retreat (Open/Closed)— The Committee will continue its discussion of proposed ACRS reports and retreat items. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C 552b(c)(4)]. [Note: A portion of this meeting may be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(2) and (6) to discuss organizational and personnel matters that relate solely to internal personnel rules and practices of the ACRS, and information the release of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.] Saturday, May 4, 2019, Conference Room T2D10 8:30 a.m.–12:00 p.m.: Preparation of ACRS Reports/Retreat (Open/Closed)— The Committee will continue its discussion of proposed ACRS reports and retreat items. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C 552b(c)(4)]. [Note: A portion of this meeting may be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(2) and (6) to discuss organizational and personnel matters that relate solely to internal personnel rules and practices of the ACRS, and information the release of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy]. Procedures for the conduct of and participation in ACRS meetings were published in the Federal Register on December 7, 2018 (83 FR 26506). In accordance with those procedures, oral or written views may be presented by members of the public, including representatives of the nuclear industry. Persons desiring to make oral statements should notify Quynh Nguyen, Cognizant ACRS Staff (Telephone: 301–415–5844, Email: Quynh.Nguyen@nrc.gov), 5 days before the meeting, if possible, so that appropriate arrangements can be made to allow necessary time during the meeting for such statements. In view of the possibility that the schedule for ACRS meetings may be adjusted by the Chairman as necessary to facilitate the conduct of the meeting, persons planning to attend should check with the Cognizant ACRS staff if such rescheduling would result in major inconvenience. The bridgeline number for the meeting is 866–822–3032, passcode 8272423#. Thirty-five hard copies of each presentation or handout should be provided 30 minutes before the meeting. In addition, one electronic copy of each PO 00000 Frm 00096 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 18089 presentation should be emailed to the Cognizant ACRS Staff one day before meeting. If an electronic copy cannot be provided within this timeframe, presenters should provide the Cognizant ACRS Staff with a CD containing each presentation at least 30 minutes before the meeting. In accordance with Subsection 10(d) of Public Law 92–463 and 5 U.S.C. 552b(c), certain portions of this meeting may be closed, as specifically noted above. Use of still, motion picture, and television cameras during the meeting may be limited to selected portions of the meeting as determined by the Chairman. Electronic recordings will be permitted only during the open portions of the meeting. ACRS meeting agendas, meeting transcripts, and letter reports are available through the NRC Public Document Room at pdr.resource@ nrc.gov, or by calling the PDR at 1–800– 397–4209, or from the Publicly Available Records System component of NRC’s document system (ADAMS) which is accessible from the NRC website at http://www.nrc.gov/readingrm/adams.html or http://www.nrc.gov/ reading-rm/doc-collections/#ACRS/. Video teleconferencing service is available for observing open sessions of ACRS meetings. Those wishing to use this service should contact Ms. Paula Dorm, ACRS Audio Visual Technician (301–415–7799), between 7:30 a.m. and 3:45 p.m. (ET), at least 10 days before the meeting to ensure the availability of this service. Individuals or organizations requesting this service will be responsible for telephone line charges and for providing the equipment and facilities that they use to establish the video teleconferencing link. The availability of video teleconferencing services is not guaranteed. Dated: April 23, 2019. Russell E. Chazell, Federal Advisory Committee Management Officer, Office of the Secretary. [FR Doc. 2019–08506 Filed 4–26–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7590–01–P NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION [Docket No. 030–29462; NRC–2019–0106] Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact; Department of the Navy Nuclear Regulatory Commission. AGENCY: E:\FR\FM\29APN1.SGM 29APN1 18090 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 82 / Monday, April 29, 2019 / Notices Environmental assessment and finding of no significant impact; issuance. ACTION: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering an exemption to License 45–23645–01NA, to exempt the Department of the Navy (Navy) from certain reporting requirements involving the use and storage of radioactive sealed source devices used for a helicopter in-flight blade inspection system (IBIS) during military exercises and maneuvers. The NRC has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) and finding of no significant impact (FONSI) for this licensing action. SUMMARY: DATES: April 29, 2019. Please refer to Docket ID NRC–2019–0106 when contacting the NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You may obtain publicly-available information related to this document using any of the following methods: • Federal Rulemaking website: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC–2019–0106. Address questions about Docket IDs in Regulations.gov to Jennifer Borges; telephone: 301–287–9127; email: Jennifer.Borges@nrc.gov. For technical questions, contact the individual listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document. • NRC’s Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS): You may obtain publiclyavailable documents online in the ADAMS Public Documents collection at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/ adams.html. To begin the search, select ‘‘Begin Web-based ADAMS Search.’’ For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC’s Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1–800–397–4209, 301– 415–4737, or by email to pdr.resource@ nrc.gov. The ADAMS accession number for each document referenced (if it is available in ADAMS) is provided the first time that it is mentioned in this document. • NRC’s PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public documents at the NRC’s PDR, Room O1–F21, One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852. khammond on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES ADDRESSES: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Richard Struckmeyer, Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington DC 20555–0001; telephone: 301–415–5477; email: Richard.Struckmeyer@nrc.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:56 Apr 26, 2019 Jkt 247001 I. Introduction NRC staff has evaluated the environmental impacts of an exemption and associated license amendment (ADAMS Accession No. ML17305B127) that would remove the requirements in section 20.1802 of title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR), ‘‘Control of material not in storage,’’ for the helicopter in-flight blade inspection system (IBIS) during military exercises and maneuvers; and 10 CFR 20.2201, ‘‘Reports of theft or loss of licensed byproduct material,’’ when these devices are lost when they are used during military exercises or maneuvers. This EA has been prepared pursuant to the NRC regulations in 10 CFR part 51, which implement the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969. The NRC has established a license category known as a Master Materials License (MML). An MML can be issued only to a Federal organization that successfully meets the criteria stated in 10 CFR 30.33 (and 10 CFR 40.32 or 10 CFR 70.31, as appropriate), and can demonstrate to NRC, through its diverse licensing activities, experience in complex radiation-program centralized management, inspection, education, qualification, training, and experience as outlined in NUREG–1556, Volume 10, Rev. 1, ‘‘Consolidated Guidance About Materials Licenses: ProgramSpecific Guidance About Master Materials Licenses’’ (ADAMS Accession No. ML16181A111) that it is able to administer effectively a licensing program. The Navy holds MML No. 45–23645– 01NA from NRC, which allows the Navy to possess and use sealed sources. The Navy and Marine Corps use the Navy’s MML for IBIS devices in their possession. The IBIS devices provide in-flight warning of blade failure on various models of helicopters. One device is located on the root of each blade attached to the rotor. The IBIS detects a decrease in pressure in the blades of a CH–53 model helicopter. Any cracks in the blades will result in a decrease in air pressure in the blade. Such cracks could result in structural failure in the blade, thereby resulting in a potentially dangerous operational situation for the helicopter, such as a hard landing and/ or injury to the craft and/or personnel up to, and including, death. Each device contains approximately 500 microcuries (18.5 MBq) of strontium-90 (Sr-90) in the form of a rolled metal foil, encased in a small stainless steel protective cylinder about the size of the press button on a PO 00000 Frm 00097 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 ballpoint pen. The external radiation level of the IBIS is 0.8 mR/hr at 3 inches in the normal (shielded) mode, and 75 mR/hr at 12 inches in the failure (extended) mode. The source capsule is designed to minimize any hazards to personnel in shipping, storing, installing, or testing the IBIS. The Sr-90 source material is sealed either in a metallic foil ring or a ceramic ‘‘doughnut’’ inside the steel capsule. The source is locked inside the IBIS unless the helicopter blade loses pressure, or when the ‘‘self-test’’ button is depressed, causing the source to pop out of its shielded recess. Currently, the Navy possess approximately 2,700 of these IBIS devices. The Navy has reported a loss of 9 devices since 2008. Because the Navy uses IBIS in both wartime and simulated military battlefield exercises and ordered maneuvers, in the air, on land, and at sea, it is anticipated that the loss rate of these devices will remain constant for the next 5 years or beyond. As the deployment of IBIS-free helicopter models continues, the numbers of losses will decrease as the older models are replaced. The U.S. Marine Corps plans to have all helicopters that use IBIS replaced with IBIS-free models by Fiscal Year 2027. The two Navy squadrons have similar replacement goals. II. Environmental Assessment Description of the Proposed Action In accordance with 10 CFR part 51, this EA (1) presents information and analysis for determining whether to issue a FONSI or to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS); (2) fulfills NRC’s compliance with NEPA when no EIS is necessary; and (3) facilitates preparation of an EIS if one is necessary. Should NRC issue a FONSI, no EIS would be prepared and NRC would issue a license condition to the Navy exempting them from meeting the requirements in 10 CFR 20.1802 and 20.2201 when the Navy uses authorized radioactive sealed source devices for IBIS during planned military exercises or maneuvers, as described herein. This EA applies to consideration of amendments to licenses held by the Navy as discussed in this document. The proposed action would grant an exemption and associated license amendment to the Navy from 10 CFR 20.1802, ‘‘Control of material not in storage,’’ when the Navy employs these devices during exercises or maneuvers; and 10 CFR 20.2201, ‘‘Reports of theft or loss of licensed byproduct material,’’ when these devices are lost when they are used during military exercises or E:\FR\FM\29APN1.SGM 29APN1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 82 / Monday, April 29, 2019 / Notices khammond on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES maneuvers. The Navy license will be amended to incorporate this exemption. The exemption would not apply to devices used at times other than during exercises or maneuvers, or lost under other conditions, nor would it apply to stolen devices. Additionally, the Navy licensees would continue to implement their established existing programs for tracking military assets and storage records for these devices, and would still be required to maintain its annual inventory of these devices. Need for the Proposed Action Although the Navy has established an effective tracking and control program for these devices, losses have occurred, and losses could still reasonably occur because of the unique circumstances associated with the use of such devices by the Navy and Marine Corps during military exercises and maneuvers. Given the scope and nature of the Navy exercises, constant control and surveillance over such devices during military exercises and maneuvers may not always be possible or practical. To ensure constant control could be hazardous to some military personnel. According to Navy reports, the majority of the losses have occurred during military exercises and, with just one possible exception, on U.S. Government-controlled property, or at sea, over rivers, heavily wooded areas, or desert locations that are not heavily populated, if at all. Although a member of the public who finds an IBIS device could be at risk to localized parts of the body from exposure to the Sr-90 source, this risk is mitigated by several factors: The extremely low probability of finding the device in remotely populated areas; the label on the device stating that it contains radioactive material; and the amount of time spent in close proximity to the device. The extreme case would consist of a person finding the device, ignoring the labeling, and carrying it for an extended period of time. The proposed exemption requested by the Navy would have no impact on this possible risk because it only modifies the reporting requirements for such a lost source where the Navy is generally unaware of the precise timing, location, or circumstances of the loss event. The finder’s risk would be affected only by whether the IBIS device came into close contact to the finder, and not by the timing of a lost device report. Environmental Impacts of the Proposed Action Because of the potential radiological risk if a member of the public finds an IBIS device, isolated lapses in control VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:56 Apr 26, 2019 Jkt 247001 and accountability of these devices are of concern the Commission. However, the U.S. Navy has established a safe operational record with these devices. The principal users of IBIS are the Navy and Marines, which utilize IBIS devices on aircraft (helicopters) for crew safety. These aircraft are deployed on training and actual maneuvers from various bases and commands. These devices are occasionally lost during flights or crashes and are often not recoverable. The Navy uses IBIS devices containing a nominal 500 microcuries of Sr-90. Sr-90 decays with a half-life of 28.8 years to Y–90. Y–90 has a half-life of 64.1 hours; therefore about 450 hours (about 19 days) after production of a pure Sr-90 source, the Y–90 daughter is in secular equilibrium with its parent Sr-90. (Secular equilibrium exists when the half-life of the parent is much greater than the half-life of the daughter, and is reached after about 7 half-lives of the daughter). Sr-90 and its daughter product, Y–90, are beta emitting radionuclides. Y–90 also produces a very low yield (0.01%, or 1 photon per 10,000 decays) of 1.7 MeV photons. The NRC performed an analysis with respect to the use of Strontium-90 in beta transmission devices in accordance with the general license regulations in 10 CFR 31.5. The model, computer codes used, and assumptions made in the exemption analysis for such devices are presented in section 4.2 of NUREG– 1717, ‘‘Systematic Radiological Assessment of Exemptions for Source and Byproduct Materials’’ (ADAMS Accession No. ML011980433). Although the IBIS devices are not generallylicensed products, and perform a different function, the accident analyses in NUREG–1717 are a useful analog due to their similarity to beta transmission devices. These analyses indicate that the most severe consequences (i.e., greatest potential for dose) would result from an accident involving a fire that releases the entire Sr-90/Y–90 content of an IBIS device into the surrounding atmospheric environment. NUREG–1717, Table A.1.4, provides radiation dose-to-source ratios (DSRs) for inhalation, submersion, and resuspension resulting from a transportation accident involving fire. Radiation doses are estimated using the effective dose equivalent (EDE) based on the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) 26 approach. The DSRs are 1.1 × 10¥9 rem/ mCi, 8.8 × 10¥12 rem/mCi, and 1.3 × 10¥8 rem/mCi, respectively. These DSRs take into account the release fraction (the fraction of the radioactivity in the device that is released as a result of the accident). They also assume that a PO 00000 Frm 00098 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 18091 bystander would be exposed for 30 minutes and would not stand in the plume of smoke from a fire. For a release of 500 mCi, the resulting doses to a member of the public would be 0.55 mrem, 4.4 × 10¥3 mrem, and 6.5 mrem, respectively. The affected environment for the proposed action, as well as for the alternative to the proposed action, is considered to be the immediate vicinity of the loss of a device, primarily in remote areas. Loss or loss of control of a device may, but would not necessarily lead to a release of radioactive material to the environment because the radioactive material is contained in a robust metal housing. However, release of radioactive material could occur in the relatively rare event of a helicopter crash followed by fire. These devices are normally tracked from central locations under the supervision of the licensee’s staff and are used on Navy and Marine helicopters that may be stationed throughout the world. However, this exemption is only applicable to devices used during military exercises or maneuvers. The Navy currently informs NRC of lost devices that occur both in the U.S. and overseas, including some losses that occur in areas outside NRC’s jurisdiction. Based upon the above, the NRC staff finds that the proposed licensing exemption will not impact the quality of water resources, since the radioactive source quantities are very small and are not soluble in water, and at issue is only an exemption to reporting requirements. The staff finds that the proposed exemption will not significantly impact geology, soils, air quality, demography, biota, and cultural and historic resources, under either normal or accident use scenarios because of the circumstances of use of the material, and the narrow reporting scope of the requested exemption. The NRC staff has reviewed the historical performance of this type of device and the potential for future deployment and concluded that no significant cumulative impacts are anticipated. In addition, the NRC staff finds that the proposed action will not affect listed or proposed threatened or endangered species or critical habitat. The NRC staff has determined that the proposed action is not the type that has the potential to cause effects on historic properties. Therefore, no further consultation with the regulatory authority responsible for overseeing section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act was found necessary. We conclude that no significant impacts on the public health, under E:\FR\FM\29APN1.SGM 29APN1 18092 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 82 / Monday, April 29, 2019 / Notices normal or accident conditions, are expected as a result of granting this exemption with respect to reporting requirements to the Navy. Environmental Impacts of the Alternatives to the Proposed Action As an alternative to the proposed action, the staff considered not issuing the requested exemptions (no-action alternative). The impact of the no-action alternative would be similar to the proposed action. Based on the review of the circumstances surrounding losses of the IBIS devices, the NRC believes that both the burden to the licensee of reporting and the expenditure of NRC and MML resources performing reactive inspections after reports of loss of control of these devices do not enhance their safe use. The impact of implementing the noaction alternative will be the same as the proposed action with respect to public health because the proposed action and alternative address device loss reporting requirements only. Impacts on water, geology, soils, air quality, demography, biota, and historic resources would therefore be similar or same. khammond on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES Agencies and Persons Consulted In accordance with its stated policy, on November 29, 2018, the staff consulted with the U.S. Navy MML National Radiation Program Oversight Committees regarding the environmental impact of the proposed action. State consultation is not necessary, given that the requested exemption would apply to the Navy’s national (and some international) operations, are not focused on any particular state, and further, are generally limited to federally-controlled facilities and properties. III. Finding of No Significant Impact The NRC is considering the issuance of an exemption and associated license amendment to the Navy in the form of a license condition that would exempt the Navy from the requirements contained in 10 CFR 20.1802, ‘‘Control of material not in storage,’’ when the Navy employs these devices during exercises or maneuvers and 10 CFR 20.2201, ‘‘Reports of theft or loss of licensed byproduct material,’’ when these devices are lost when they are used during military exercises or maneuvers. On the basis of this environmental assessment, the NRC staff concludes that the proposed action, issuing the requested exemptions concerning certain reporting requirements, will not VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:56 Apr 26, 2019 Jkt 247001 have a significant effect on the quality of the human environment. Accordingly, the NRC has determined not to prepare an environmental impact statement for the proposed action. Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 23rd day of April, 2019. For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Kevin Williams, Deputy Director, Division of Materials Safety, Security, State, and Tribal Programs, Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards. [FR Doc. 2019–08531 Filed 4–26–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7590–01–P NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION 664th Meeting of the Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS) In accordance with the purposes of Sections 29 and 182b of the Atomic Energy Act (42 U.S.C. 2039, 2232b), the Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS) will hold meetings on June 5–7, 2019, Two White Flint North, 11545 Rockville Pike, ACRS Conference Room T2D10, Rockville, MD 20852. Wednesday, June 5, 2019, Conference Room T2D10 8:30 a.m.—8:35 a.m.: Opening Remarks by the ACRS Chairman (Open)—The ACRS Chairman will make opening remarks regarding the conduct of the meeting. 8:35 a.m.—10:00 a.m.: Reactor Oversight Program (ROP) Enhancements Project (Open)—The Committee will have briefings by and discussion with representatives of the NRC staff and other stakeholders regarding the ROP Enhancements Project. 10:15 a.m.—12:15 p.m.: Appendix D to NEI–9607 and Associated Draft Regulatory Guide for Digital Upgrades under 10 CFR 50.59 (Open)—The Committee will have briefings by and discussion with representatives of the NRC staff regarding the subject topic. 1:15 a.m.—5:30 p.m.: NuScale Design Certification Application Chapters 3.9.2, 14, 19, 20, and 21 (Open/Closed))—The Committee will have briefings by and discussion with representatives of the NRC staff and NuScale regarding the subject chapters and seismic probabilistic risk assessment. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(4)]. 5:30 p.m.—6:00 p.m.: Preparation of ACRS Reports/Retreat (Open/Closed)— The Committee will continue its PO 00000 Frm 00099 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 discussion of proposed ACRS reports and retreat items. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(4)]. [Note: A portion of this meeting may be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(2) and (6) to discuss organizational and personnel matters that relate solely to internal personnel rules and practices of the ACRS, and information the release of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.] Thursday, JUNE 6, 2019, Conference Room T2D10 8:30 a.m.—10:00 a.m.: Future ACRS Activities/Report of the Planning and Procedures Subcommittee and Reconciliation of ACRS Comments and Recommendations (Open/Closed)—The Committee will hear discussion of the recommendations of the Planning and Procedures Subcommittee regarding items proposed for consideration by the Full Committee during future ACRS meetings. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(4)]. [Note: A portion of this meeting may be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(2) and (6) to discuss organizational and personnel matters that relate solely to internal personnel rules and practices of the ACRS, and information the release of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy]. 10:15 a.m.—12:00 p.m.: Preparation of ACRS Reports/Retreat (Open/ Closed)—The Committee will continue its discussion of proposed ACRS reports and retreat items. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(4)]. [Note: A portion of this meeting may be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(2) and (6) to discuss organizational and personnel matters that relate solely to internal personnel rules and practices of the ACRS, and information the release of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy]. 1:00 p.m.—6:00 p.m.: Preparation of ACRS Reports/Retreat (Open/Closed)— The Committee will continue its discussion of proposed ACRS reports and retreat items. [Note: A portion of this session may be closed in order to discuss and protect information designated as proprietary, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(4)]. [Note: A portion of this meeting may be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(2) and (6) to discuss organizational and personnel matters E:\FR\FM\29APN1.SGM 29APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 82 (Monday, April 29, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Pages 18089-18092]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-08531]


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NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION

[Docket No. 030-29462; NRC-2019-0106]


Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact; 
Department of the Navy

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

[[Page 18090]]


ACTION: Environmental assessment and finding of no significant impact; 
issuance.

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SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering an 
exemption to License 45-23645-01NA, to exempt the Department of the 
Navy (Navy) from certain reporting requirements involving the use and 
storage of radioactive sealed source devices used for a helicopter in-
flight blade inspection system (IBIS) during military exercises and 
maneuvers. The NRC has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) and 
finding of no significant impact (FONSI) for this licensing action.

DATES: April 29, 2019.

ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2019-0106 when contacting the 
NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You 
may obtain publicly-available information related to this document 
using any of the following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking website: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2019-0106. Address 
questions about Docket IDs in Regulations.gov to Jennifer Borges; 
telephone: 301-287-9127; email: [email protected]. For technical 
questions, contact the individual listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
CONTACT section of this document.
     NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System 
(ADAMS): You may obtain publicly-available documents online in the 
ADAMS Public Documents collection at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. To begin the search, select ``Begin Web-based ADAMS 
Search.'' For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC's Public 
Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-4737, or 
by email to [email protected]. The ADAMS accession number for each 
document referenced (if it is available in ADAMS) is provided the first 
time that it is mentioned in this document.
     NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public 
documents at the NRC's PDR, Room O1-F21, One White Flint North, 11555 
Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Richard Struckmeyer, Office of Nuclear 
Material Safety and Safeguards, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 
Washington DC 20555-0001; telephone: 301-415-5477; email: 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Introduction

    NRC staff has evaluated the environmental impacts of an exemption 
and associated license amendment (ADAMS Accession No. ML17305B127) that 
would remove the requirements in section 20.1802 of title 10 of the 
Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR), ``Control of material not in 
storage,'' for the helicopter in-flight blade inspection system (IBIS) 
during military exercises and maneuvers; and 10 CFR 20.2201, ``Reports 
of theft or loss of licensed byproduct material,'' when these devices 
are lost when they are used during military exercises or maneuvers. 
This EA has been prepared pursuant to the NRC regulations in 10 CFR 
part 51, which implement the requirements of the National Environmental 
Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969.
    The NRC has established a license category known as a Master 
Materials License (MML). An MML can be issued only to a Federal 
organization that successfully meets the criteria stated in 10 CFR 
30.33 (and 10 CFR 40.32 or 10 CFR 70.31, as appropriate), and can 
demonstrate to NRC, through its diverse licensing activities, 
experience in complex radiation-program centralized management, 
inspection, education, qualification, training, and experience as 
outlined in NUREG-1556, Volume 10, Rev. 1, ``Consolidated Guidance 
About Materials Licenses: Program-Specific Guidance About Master 
Materials Licenses'' (ADAMS Accession No. ML16181A111) that it is able 
to administer effectively a licensing program.
    The Navy holds MML No. 45-23645-01NA from NRC, which allows the 
Navy to possess and use sealed sources. The Navy and Marine Corps use 
the Navy's MML for IBIS devices in their possession.
    The IBIS devices provide in-flight warning of blade failure on 
various models of helicopters. One device is located on the root of 
each blade attached to the rotor. The IBIS detects a decrease in 
pressure in the blades of a CH-53 model helicopter. Any cracks in the 
blades will result in a decrease in air pressure in the blade. Such 
cracks could result in structural failure in the blade, thereby 
resulting in a potentially dangerous operational situation for the 
helicopter, such as a hard landing and/or injury to the craft and/or 
personnel up to, and including, death.
    Each device contains approximately 500 microcuries (18.5 MBq) of 
strontium-90 (Sr-90) in the form of a rolled metal foil, encased in a 
small stainless steel protective cylinder about the size of the press 
button on a ballpoint pen. The external radiation level of the IBIS is 
0.8 mR/hr at 3 inches in the normal (shielded) mode, and 75 mR/hr at 12 
inches in the failure (extended) mode.
    The source capsule is designed to minimize any hazards to personnel 
in shipping, storing, installing, or testing the IBIS. The Sr-90 source 
material is sealed either in a metallic foil ring or a ceramic 
``doughnut'' inside the steel capsule. The source is locked inside the 
IBIS unless the helicopter blade loses pressure, or when the ``self-
test'' button is depressed, causing the source to pop out of its 
shielded recess.
    Currently, the Navy possess approximately 2,700 of these IBIS 
devices. The Navy has reported a loss of 9 devices since 2008. Because 
the Navy uses IBIS in both wartime and simulated military battlefield 
exercises and ordered maneuvers, in the air, on land, and at sea, it is 
anticipated that the loss rate of these devices will remain constant 
for the next 5 years or beyond. As the deployment of IBIS-free 
helicopter models continues, the numbers of losses will decrease as the 
older models are replaced. The U.S. Marine Corps plans to have all 
helicopters that use IBIS replaced with IBIS-free models by Fiscal Year 
2027. The two Navy squadrons have similar replacement goals.

II. Environmental Assessment

Description of the Proposed Action

    In accordance with 10 CFR part 51, this EA (1) presents information 
and analysis for determining whether to issue a FONSI or to prepare an 
environmental impact statement (EIS); (2) fulfills NRC's compliance 
with NEPA when no EIS is necessary; and (3) facilitates preparation of 
an EIS if one is necessary. Should NRC issue a FONSI, no EIS would be 
prepared and NRC would issue a license condition to the Navy exempting 
them from meeting the requirements in 10 CFR 20.1802 and 20.2201 when 
the Navy uses authorized radioactive sealed source devices for IBIS 
during planned military exercises or maneuvers, as described herein. 
This EA applies to consideration of amendments to licenses held by the 
Navy as discussed in this document.
    The proposed action would grant an exemption and associated license 
amendment to the Navy from 10 CFR 20.1802, ``Control of material not in 
storage,'' when the Navy employs these devices during exercises or 
maneuvers; and 10 CFR 20.2201, ``Reports of theft or loss of licensed 
byproduct material,'' when these devices are lost when they are used 
during military exercises or

[[Page 18091]]

maneuvers. The Navy license will be amended to incorporate this 
exemption.
    The exemption would not apply to devices used at times other than 
during exercises or maneuvers, or lost under other conditions, nor 
would it apply to stolen devices. Additionally, the Navy licensees 
would continue to implement their established existing programs for 
tracking military assets and storage records for these devices, and 
would still be required to maintain its annual inventory of these 
devices.

Need for the Proposed Action

    Although the Navy has established an effective tracking and control 
program for these devices, losses have occurred, and losses could still 
reasonably occur because of the unique circumstances associated with 
the use of such devices by the Navy and Marine Corps during military 
exercises and maneuvers.
    Given the scope and nature of the Navy exercises, constant control 
and surveillance over such devices during military exercises and 
maneuvers may not always be possible or practical. To ensure constant 
control could be hazardous to some military personnel. According to 
Navy reports, the majority of the losses have occurred during military 
exercises and, with just one possible exception, on U.S. Government-
controlled property, or at sea, over rivers, heavily wooded areas, or 
desert locations that are not heavily populated, if at all.
    Although a member of the public who finds an IBIS device could be 
at risk to localized parts of the body from exposure to the Sr-90 
source, this risk is mitigated by several factors: The extremely low 
probability of finding the device in remotely populated areas; the 
label on the device stating that it contains radioactive material; and 
the amount of time spent in close proximity to the device. The extreme 
case would consist of a person finding the device, ignoring the 
labeling, and carrying it for an extended period of time. The proposed 
exemption requested by the Navy would have no impact on this possible 
risk because it only modifies the reporting requirements for such a 
lost source where the Navy is generally unaware of the precise timing, 
location, or circumstances of the loss event. The finder's risk would 
be affected only by whether the IBIS device came into close contact to 
the finder, and not by the timing of a lost device report.

Environmental Impacts of the Proposed Action

    Because of the potential radiological risk if a member of the 
public finds an IBIS device, isolated lapses in control and 
accountability of these devices are of concern the Commission. However, 
the U.S. Navy has established a safe operational record with these 
devices. The principal users of IBIS are the Navy and Marines, which 
utilize IBIS devices on aircraft (helicopters) for crew safety. These 
aircraft are deployed on training and actual maneuvers from various 
bases and commands. These devices are occasionally lost during flights 
or crashes and are often not recoverable.
    The Navy uses IBIS devices containing a nominal 500 microcuries of 
Sr-90. Sr-90 decays with a half-life of 28.8 years to Y-90. Y-90 has a 
half-life of 64.1 hours; therefore about 450 hours (about 19 days) 
after production of a pure Sr-90 source, the Y-90 daughter is in 
secular equilibrium with its parent Sr-90. (Secular equilibrium exists 
when the half-life of the parent is much greater than the half-life of 
the daughter, and is reached after about 7 half-lives of the daughter). 
Sr-90 and its daughter product, Y-90, are beta emitting radionuclides. 
Y-90 also produces a very low yield (0.01%, or 1 photon per 10,000 
decays) of 1.7 MeV photons.
    The NRC performed an analysis with respect to the use of Strontium-
90 in beta transmission devices in accordance with the general license 
regulations in 10 CFR 31.5. The model, computer codes used, and 
assumptions made in the exemption analysis for such devices are 
presented in section 4.2 of NUREG-1717, ``Systematic Radiological 
Assessment of Exemptions for Source and Byproduct Materials'' (ADAMS 
Accession No. ML011980433). Although the IBIS devices are not 
generally-licensed products, and perform a different function, the 
accident analyses in NUREG-1717 are a useful analog due to their 
similarity to beta transmission devices. These analyses indicate that 
the most severe consequences (i.e., greatest potential for dose) would 
result from an accident involving a fire that releases the entire Sr-
90/Y-90 content of an IBIS device into the surrounding atmospheric 
environment.
    NUREG-1717, Table A.1.4, provides radiation dose-to-source ratios 
(DSRs) for inhalation, submersion, and resuspension resulting from a 
transportation accident involving fire. Radiation doses are estimated 
using the effective dose equivalent (EDE) based on the International 
Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) 26 approach. The DSRs are 
1.1 x 10-9 rem/[micro]Ci, 8.8 x 10-12 rem/
[micro]Ci, and 1.3 x 10-8 rem/[micro]Ci, respectively. These 
DSRs take into account the release fraction (the fraction of the 
radioactivity in the device that is released as a result of the 
accident). They also assume that a bystander would be exposed for 30 
minutes and would not stand in the plume of smoke from a fire. For a 
release of 500 [micro]Ci, the resulting doses to a member of the public 
would be 0.55 [micro]rem, 4.4 x 10-3 [micro]rem, and 6.5 
[micro]rem, respectively.
    The affected environment for the proposed action, as well as for 
the alternative to the proposed action, is considered to be the 
immediate vicinity of the loss of a device, primarily in remote areas. 
Loss or loss of control of a device may, but would not necessarily lead 
to a release of radioactive material to the environment because the 
radioactive material is contained in a robust metal housing. However, 
release of radioactive material could occur in the relatively rare 
event of a helicopter crash followed by fire.
    These devices are normally tracked from central locations under the 
supervision of the licensee's staff and are used on Navy and Marine 
helicopters that may be stationed throughout the world. However, this 
exemption is only applicable to devices used during military exercises 
or maneuvers. The Navy currently informs NRC of lost devices that occur 
both in the U.S. and overseas, including some losses that occur in 
areas outside NRC's jurisdiction.
    Based upon the above, the NRC staff finds that the proposed 
licensing exemption will not impact the quality of water resources, 
since the radioactive source quantities are very small and are not 
soluble in water, and at issue is only an exemption to reporting 
requirements. The staff finds that the proposed exemption will not 
significantly impact geology, soils, air quality, demography, biota, 
and cultural and historic resources, under either normal or accident 
use scenarios because of the circumstances of use of the material, and 
the narrow reporting scope of the requested exemption. The NRC staff 
has reviewed the historical performance of this type of device and the 
potential for future deployment and concluded that no significant 
cumulative impacts are anticipated.
    In addition, the NRC staff finds that the proposed action will not 
affect listed or proposed threatened or endangered species or critical 
habitat. The NRC staff has determined that the proposed action is not 
the type that has the potential to cause effects on historic 
properties. Therefore, no further consultation with the regulatory 
authority responsible for overseeing section 106 of the National 
Historic Preservation Act was found necessary.
    We conclude that no significant impacts on the public health, under

[[Page 18092]]

normal or accident conditions, are expected as a result of granting 
this exemption with respect to reporting requirements to the Navy.

Environmental Impacts of the Alternatives to the Proposed Action

    As an alternative to the proposed action, the staff considered not 
issuing the requested exemptions (no-action alternative).
    The impact of the no-action alternative would be similar to the 
proposed action. Based on the review of the circumstances surrounding 
losses of the IBIS devices, the NRC believes that both the burden to 
the licensee of reporting and the expenditure of NRC and MML resources 
performing reactive inspections after reports of loss of control of 
these devices do not enhance their safe use.
    The impact of implementing the no-action alternative will be the 
same as the proposed action with respect to public health because the 
proposed action and alternative address device loss reporting 
requirements only. Impacts on water, geology, soils, air quality, 
demography, biota, and historic resources would therefore be similar or 
same.

Agencies and Persons Consulted

    In accordance with its stated policy, on November 29, 2018, the 
staff consulted with the U.S. Navy MML National Radiation Program 
Oversight Committees regarding the environmental impact of the proposed 
action. State consultation is not necessary, given that the requested 
exemption would apply to the Navy's national (and some international) 
operations, are not focused on any particular state, and further, are 
generally limited to federally-controlled facilities and properties.

III. Finding of No Significant Impact

    The NRC is considering the issuance of an exemption and associated 
license amendment to the Navy in the form of a license condition that 
would exempt the Navy from the requirements contained in 10 CFR 
20.1802, ``Control of material not in storage,'' when the Navy employs 
these devices during exercises or maneuvers and 10 CFR 20.2201, 
``Reports of theft or loss of licensed byproduct material,'' when these 
devices are lost when they are used during military exercises or 
maneuvers.
    On the basis of this environmental assessment, the NRC staff 
concludes that the proposed action, issuing the requested exemptions 
concerning certain reporting requirements, will not have a significant 
effect on the quality of the human environment. Accordingly, the NRC 
has determined not to prepare an environmental impact statement for the 
proposed action.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 23rd day of April, 2019.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Kevin Williams,
Deputy Director, Division of Materials Safety, Security, State, and 
Tribal Programs, Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards.
[FR Doc. 2019-08531 Filed 4-26-19; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 7590-01-P