Measurement Standards Used at U.S. Nuclear Power Plants, 16678-16679 [2021-06432]

Download as PDF 16678 Proposed Rules Federal Register Vol. 86, No. 60 Wednesday, March 31, 2021 This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules. NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION 10 CFR Part 50 [Docket No. PRM–50–118; NRC–2019–0071] Measurement Standards Used at U.S. Nuclear Power Plants Nuclear Regulatory Commission. ACTION: Petition for rulemaking; denial. AGENCY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is denying a petition for rulemaking, submitted by Mr. Michael Taylor (the petitioner), dated December 3, 2018. The petition was docketed by the NRC on March 4, 2019, and was assigned Docket No. PRM–50– 118. The petitioner requested that the NRC amend its regulations regarding the measurement standards used at U.S. nuclear power plants. The NRC is denying the petition because the NRC’s current regulations and oversight activities provide reasonable assurance of adequate protection of public health and safety. DATES: The docket for PRM–50–118 is closed on March 31, 2021. ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC–2019–0071 when contacting the NRC about the availability of information for this action. You may obtain publicly-available information related to this action by any of the following methods: • Federal Rulemaking Website: Go to https://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC–2019–0071. Address questions about NRC dockets to Dawn Forder; telephone: 301–415–3407; email: Dawn.Forder@nrc.gov. For technical questions, contact the individuals 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 https://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/ jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:49 Mar 30, 2021 Jkt 253001 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 in this document (if that document is available in ADAMS) is provided the first time that it is mentioned in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section. • Attention: The Public Document Room (PDR), where you may examine and order copies of public documents, is currently closed. You may submit your request to the PDR via email at PDR.Resource@nrc.gov or call 1–800– 397–4209 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. (EST), Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Solomon Sahle, Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards, telephone: 301–415–3781, email: Solomon.Sahle@nrc.gov, or Greg Galletti, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation, telephone: 301–415–1831, email: Greg.Galletti@nrc.gov. Both are staff of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555– 0001. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. The Petition Section 2.802 of title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR), ‘‘Petition for rulemaking—requirements for filing,’’ provides an opportunity for any interested person to petition the Commission to issue, amend, or rescind any regulation. On December 3, 2018, the NRC received a petition for rulemaking (PRM) from Mr. Michael Taylor, as amended on July 22, 2019 (ADAMS Accession Nos. ML19074A303 and ML19199A014, respectively). The petitioner requested that the NRC amend its regulations to require that all metrology and calibration laboratories at nuclear power plants become certified by accrediting organizations that require the use of certain measurement standards. The petitioner also requested that the NRC require training of all personnel and their management that make measurements at nuclear power plants, to ensure a clear understanding of the effects of measurement standards. The petitioner is concerned that U.S. nuclear power plants are not required to use or have internal metrology or PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 calibration laboratories that are certified under an accrediting organization such as the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation, National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program, or similar accrediting body, as a part of normal and required operations. The petitioner states that, because of this lack of accreditation, certain important factors are not currently considered in measurements conducted at nuclear power plants, including the ratio of measurement standards to units under test. The petitioner contends that this leads to an unresolved safety issue for Quality (safety-related) measurements in particular. The petitioner also states that existing internal quality assurance and documents and standards currently in use for inspections and audits do not adequately address this concern. II. Public Comments on the Petition A. Overview of Public Comments The NRC published the notice of receipt and request for public comment in the Federal Register on May 15, 2019 (84 FR 21727). The public comment period closed on July 29, 2019. The NRC received a total of five public comments. Three comments expressed support for the petition, one did not clearly support or oppose the petition, and one (from the petitioner) provided grammatical corrections and minor clarifications to the petition. The NRC reviewed and considered the public comments received in making its decision to deny the PRM. The NRC response follows a short summary of each comment. B. NRC Responses to Public Comments Comment: One comment, from an anonymous individual, agrees with the petitioner that the current regulations leave margin for error and that additional regulations are necessary. NRC Response: The NRC disagrees with this comment. The NRC performed an independent search of all licensee event reports and greater-than-green inspection findings since 2015 and did not identify any examples of safety issues caused by the lack of laboratory certification requirements. In addition, a licensee’s calibration program must meet the requirements of criterion XII, ‘‘Control of Measuring and Test Equipment,’’ of appendix B, ‘‘Quality Assurance Criteria for Nuclear Power E:\FR\FM\31MRP1.SGM 31MRP1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 60 / Wednesday, March 31, 2021 / Proposed Rules Plants and Fuel Reprocessing Plants,’’ to 10 CFR part 50, ‘‘Domestic Licensing of Production and Utilization Facilities.’’ Furthermore, a licensee’s compliance with the requirements of appendix B to 10 CFR part 50 is subject to inspection by the NRC. As such, the NRC has reasonable assurance that the existing regulations provide adequate protection of public health and safety. Comment: A comment from an anonymous individual stated that current internal labs in the utility industry should be required to go through the same requirements that external calibration facilities must go through when calibrating and testing equipment for nuclear plants. According to this comment, it is not economically fair for the external calibration labs to pay for and go through the rigorous audits and try to compete for business when internal laboratories are not required to pay for this expensive certification. This comment suggests that this petition puts every calibration business on an equal playing field and would ensure uniform, basic knowledge and skills prior to employment and continuing education each year after to satisfy certification renewal. NRC Response: The NRC disagrees with this comment. Training requirements for nuclear power plant personnel, including calibration technicians, are covered under criterion II, ‘‘Quality Assurance Program,’’ of appendix B to 10 CFR part 50, ‘‘Domestic Licensing of Production and Utilization Facilities.’’ Meeting these requirements provides reasonable assurance that the calibration technicians will have the education, training, knowledge, and skills necessary to adequately perform their responsibilities. The economic considerations for external calibration activity facilities are outside the scope of NRC’s rulemaking determination. To the extent that a nuclear power plant licensee chooses to use an external calibration facility, the licensee must ensure that the calibration facility meets appendix B requirements. Comment: A comment from an anonymous individual stated that any entity such as the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Central Lab Calibration Services should be accredited. According to this comment, just because the Tennessee Valley Authority is a federal agency does not mean it should not have to adhere to the rules of all the other calibration services. NRC Response: The NRC disagrees with this comment. When performing safety-related calibration services for nuclear power plants, Tennessee Valley Authority’s Central Lab Calibration VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:49 Mar 30, 2021 Jkt 253001 Services must meet the requirements of criterion II of appendix B to 10 CFR part 50. Meeting this regulation provides reasonable assurance of adequate protection of public health and safety. Comment: A comment from James Anderson, a private citizen, requested that the NRC not reduce time or money spent on nuclear power plants. NRC Response: The NRC interprets this comment to request that the NRC not reduce its oversight or resources spent on the regulation of nuclear power plants. The NRC considers the comment to be out-of-scope of this petition. Comment: The petitioner, Michael Taylor, submitted a document providing revisions to the PRM, including grammatical corrections and a few minor clarifications of the original petition. NRC Response: The NRC considered the revised PRM submitted in this comment. III. Reasons for Denial The NRC is denying the petition because the petition does not raise a significant safety or security concern that would warrant the requested changes to the NRC’s regulations. To reach this determination, the staff evaluated the merits of the petition, public comments received, the immediacy of any safety concerns raised by the petition, and the NRC’s relevant past decisions and current policies. Specifically, staff considered existing NRC requirements for the control of measuring and test equipment. Although the NRC does not require nuclear power plant laboratories to be certified by accrediting organizations, their programs for safety-related measuring and test equipment calibration must meet the requirements in 10 CFR part 50, ‘‘Domestic Licensing of Production and Utilization Facilities,’’ appendix B, ‘‘Quality Assurance Criteria for Nuclear Power Plants and Fuel Reprocessing Plants,’’ criterion XII, ‘‘Control of Measuring and Test Equipment,’’ and their programs are subject to NRC inspection. The NRC inspections provide additional assurance that licensees are adequately implementing the requirements of criterion XII of appendix B to 10 CFR part 50 to measure and test equipment programs through direct inspection of calibration and testing activities. These direct inspections ensure that measurement calculations are being adequately performed. Any safety-related calibrations or measurements that are performed at metrology laboratories utilized by nuclear power plants would fall under these requirements. The requirements PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 16679 for the training of nuclear power plant personnel performing safety-related activities are covered by criterion II, ‘‘Quality Assurance Program,’’ of appendix B to 10 CFR part 50. Any personnel performing safety-related calibrations in an onsite laboratory or at a metrology laboratory utilized by nuclear power plants would fall under these requirements. In addition, the NRC conducted an independent search of all license event reports and greater-than-green inspection findings from 2015 onward and did not identify any examples of safety issues caused by improper calibrations of measurement and test equipment at nuclear power plant internal laboratories or by the lack of laboratory certification requirements. In summary, the NRC is denying the petition because the petition does not raise a significant safety or security concern. The requested amendments to NRC regulations are not necessary because existing NRC regulations and inspection procedures provide reasonable assurance of adequate protection of public health and safety. IV. Conclusion For the reasons cited in this document, the NRC is denying PRM– 50–118. The NRC has concluded that its existing regulations provide reasonable assurance of adequate protection of public health and safety. Dated March 24, 2021. For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Annette L. Vietti-Cook, Secretary of the Commission. [FR Doc. 2021–06432 Filed 3–30–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7590–01–P NATIONAL CREDIT UNION ADMINISTRATION 12 CFR Part 712 [NCUA–2021–0036] RIN 3133–AE95 Credit Union Service Organizations (CUSOs) National Credit Union Administration (NCUA). ACTION: Supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking; extension of comment period. AGENCY: On February 26, 2021, the NCUA Board (Board) published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in the Federal Register requesting comment on the Board’s proposal to amend the NCUA’s credit union service organization SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\31MRP1.SGM 31MRP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 60 (Wednesday, March 31, 2021)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 16678-16679]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-06432]


========================================================================
Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.

========================================================================


Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 60 / Wednesday, March 31, 2021 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 16678]]



NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION

10 CFR Part 50

[Docket No. PRM-50-118; NRC-2019-0071]


Measurement Standards Used at U.S. Nuclear Power Plants

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Petition for rulemaking; denial.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is denying a 
petition for rulemaking, submitted by Mr. Michael Taylor (the 
petitioner), dated December 3, 2018. The petition was docketed by the 
NRC on March 4, 2019, and was assigned Docket No. PRM-50-118. The 
petitioner requested that the NRC amend its regulations regarding the 
measurement standards used at U.S. nuclear power plants. The NRC is 
denying the petition because the NRC's current regulations and 
oversight activities provide reasonable assurance of adequate 
protection of public health and safety.

DATES: The docket for PRM-50-118 is closed on March 31, 2021.

ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2019-0071 when contacting the 
NRC about the availability of information for this action. You may 
obtain publicly-available information related to this action by any of 
the following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking Website: Go to https://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2019-0071. Address 
questions about NRC dockets to Dawn Forder; telephone: 301-415-3407; 
email: [email protected]. For technical questions, contact the 
individuals 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 https://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 in this document (if that document is available in 
ADAMS) is provided the first time that it is mentioned in the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section.
     Attention: The Public Document Room (PDR), where you may 
examine and order copies of public documents, is currently closed. You 
may submit your request to the PDR via email at [email protected] or 
call 1-800-397-4209 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. (EST), Monday 
through Friday, except Federal holidays.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Solomon Sahle, Office of Nuclear 
Material Safety and Safeguards, telephone: 301-415-3781, email: 
[email protected], or Greg Galletti, Office of Nuclear Reactor 
Regulation, telephone: 301-415-1831, email: [email protected]. Both 
are staff of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 
20555-0001.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. The Petition

    Section 2.802 of title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 
CFR), ``Petition for rulemaking--requirements for filing,'' provides an 
opportunity for any interested person to petition the Commission to 
issue, amend, or rescind any regulation. On December 3, 2018, the NRC 
received a petition for rulemaking (PRM) from Mr. Michael Taylor, as 
amended on July 22, 2019 (ADAMS Accession Nos. ML19074A303 and 
ML19199A014, respectively). The petitioner requested that the NRC amend 
its regulations to require that all metrology and calibration 
laboratories at nuclear power plants become certified by accrediting 
organizations that require the use of certain measurement standards. 
The petitioner also requested that the NRC require training of all 
personnel and their management that make measurements at nuclear power 
plants, to ensure a clear understanding of the effects of measurement 
standards.
    The petitioner is concerned that U.S. nuclear power plants are not 
required to use or have internal metrology or calibration laboratories 
that are certified under an accrediting organization such as the 
American Association for Laboratory Accreditation, National Voluntary 
Laboratory Accreditation Program, or similar accrediting body, as a 
part of normal and required operations. The petitioner states that, 
because of this lack of accreditation, certain important factors are 
not currently considered in measurements conducted at nuclear power 
plants, including the ratio of measurement standards to units under 
test. The petitioner contends that this leads to an unresolved safety 
issue for Quality (safety-related) measurements in particular. The 
petitioner also states that existing internal quality assurance and 
documents and standards currently in use for inspections and audits do 
not adequately address this concern.

II. Public Comments on the Petition

A. Overview of Public Comments

    The NRC published the notice of receipt and request for public 
comment in the Federal Register on May 15, 2019 (84 FR 21727). The 
public comment period closed on July 29, 2019. The NRC received a total 
of five public comments. Three comments expressed support for the 
petition, one did not clearly support or oppose the petition, and one 
(from the petitioner) provided grammatical corrections and minor 
clarifications to the petition.
    The NRC reviewed and considered the public comments received in 
making its decision to deny the PRM. The NRC response follows a short 
summary of each comment.

B. NRC Responses to Public Comments

    Comment: One comment, from an anonymous individual, agrees with the 
petitioner that the current regulations leave margin for error and that 
additional regulations are necessary.
    NRC Response: The NRC disagrees with this comment. The NRC 
performed an independent search of all licensee event reports and 
greater-than-green inspection findings since 2015 and did not identify 
any examples of safety issues caused by the lack of laboratory 
certification requirements. In addition, a licensee's calibration 
program must meet the requirements of criterion XII, ``Control of 
Measuring and Test Equipment,'' of appendix B, ``Quality Assurance 
Criteria for Nuclear Power

[[Page 16679]]

Plants and Fuel Reprocessing Plants,'' to 10 CFR part 50, ``Domestic 
Licensing of Production and Utilization Facilities.'' Furthermore, a 
licensee's compliance with the requirements of appendix B to 10 CFR 
part 50 is subject to inspection by the NRC. As such, the NRC has 
reasonable assurance that the existing regulations provide adequate 
protection of public health and safety.
    Comment: A comment from an anonymous individual stated that current 
internal labs in the utility industry should be required to go through 
the same requirements that external calibration facilities must go 
through when calibrating and testing equipment for nuclear plants. 
According to this comment, it is not economically fair for the external 
calibration labs to pay for and go through the rigorous audits and try 
to compete for business when internal laboratories are not required to 
pay for this expensive certification. This comment suggests that this 
petition puts every calibration business on an equal playing field and 
would ensure uniform, basic knowledge and skills prior to employment 
and continuing education each year after to satisfy certification 
renewal.
    NRC Response: The NRC disagrees with this comment. Training 
requirements for nuclear power plant personnel, including calibration 
technicians, are covered under criterion II, ``Quality Assurance 
Program,'' of appendix B to 10 CFR part 50, ``Domestic Licensing of 
Production and Utilization Facilities.'' Meeting these requirements 
provides reasonable assurance that the calibration technicians will 
have the education, training, knowledge, and skills necessary to 
adequately perform their responsibilities. The economic considerations 
for external calibration activity facilities are outside the scope of 
NRC's rulemaking determination. To the extent that a nuclear power 
plant licensee chooses to use an external calibration facility, the 
licensee must ensure that the calibration facility meets appendix B 
requirements.
    Comment: A comment from an anonymous individual stated that any 
entity such as the Tennessee Valley Authority's Central Lab Calibration 
Services should be accredited. According to this comment, just because 
the Tennessee Valley Authority is a federal agency does not mean it 
should not have to adhere to the rules of all the other calibration 
services.
    NRC Response: The NRC disagrees with this comment. When performing 
safety-related calibration services for nuclear power plants, Tennessee 
Valley Authority's Central Lab Calibration Services must meet the 
requirements of criterion II of appendix B to 10 CFR part 50. Meeting 
this regulation provides reasonable assurance of adequate protection of 
public health and safety.
    Comment: A comment from James Anderson, a private citizen, 
requested that the NRC not reduce time or money spent on nuclear power 
plants.
    NRC Response: The NRC interprets this comment to request that the 
NRC not reduce its oversight or resources spent on the regulation of 
nuclear power plants. The NRC considers the comment to be out-of-scope 
of this petition.
    Comment: The petitioner, Michael Taylor, submitted a document 
providing revisions to the PRM, including grammatical corrections and a 
few minor clarifications of the original petition.
    NRC Response: The NRC considered the revised PRM submitted in this 
comment.

III. Reasons for Denial

    The NRC is denying the petition because the petition does not raise 
a significant safety or security concern that would warrant the 
requested changes to the NRC's regulations. To reach this 
determination, the staff evaluated the merits of the petition, public 
comments received, the immediacy of any safety concerns raised by the 
petition, and the NRC's relevant past decisions and current policies. 
Specifically, staff considered existing NRC requirements for the 
control of measuring and test equipment. Although the NRC does not 
require nuclear power plant laboratories to be certified by accrediting 
organizations, their programs for safety-related measuring and test 
equipment calibration must meet the requirements in 10 CFR part 50, 
``Domestic Licensing of Production and Utilization Facilities,'' 
appendix B, ``Quality Assurance Criteria for Nuclear Power Plants and 
Fuel Reprocessing Plants,'' criterion XII, ``Control of Measuring and 
Test Equipment,'' and their programs are subject to NRC inspection. The 
NRC inspections provide additional assurance that licensees are 
adequately implementing the requirements of criterion XII of appendix B 
to 10 CFR part 50 to measure and test equipment programs through direct 
inspection of calibration and testing activities. These direct 
inspections ensure that measurement calculations are being adequately 
performed.
    Any safety-related calibrations or measurements that are performed 
at metrology laboratories utilized by nuclear power plants would fall 
under these requirements. The requirements for the training of nuclear 
power plant personnel performing safety-related activities are covered 
by criterion II, ``Quality Assurance Program,'' of appendix B to 10 CFR 
part 50. Any personnel performing safety-related calibrations in an 
onsite laboratory or at a metrology laboratory utilized by nuclear 
power plants would fall under these requirements.
    In addition, the NRC conducted an independent search of all license 
event reports and greater-than-green inspection findings from 2015 
onward and did not identify any examples of safety issues caused by 
improper calibrations of measurement and test equipment at nuclear 
power plant internal laboratories or by the lack of laboratory 
certification requirements.
    In summary, the NRC is denying the petition because the petition 
does not raise a significant safety or security concern. The requested 
amendments to NRC regulations are not necessary because existing NRC 
regulations and inspection procedures provide reasonable assurance of 
adequate protection of public health and safety.

IV. Conclusion

    For the reasons cited in this document, the NRC is denying PRM-50-
118. The NRC has concluded that its existing regulations provide 
reasonable assurance of adequate protection of public health and 
safety.

    Dated March 24, 2021.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Annette L. Vietti-Cook,
Secretary of the Commission.
[FR Doc. 2021-06432 Filed 3-30-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 7590-01-P