United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Question 389: The revised 10 CFR 20 includes a new

provision that allows disposal of licensed material "...by

decay in storage..." What criteria should be used in

implementing this provision? Is the NRC planning to

develop generic guidance for "decay in storage"?

Answer: See the answer to Question 376 for a discussion

of "decay in storage." As indicated in that answer, "decay

in storage" is not a practical means of disposal of

licensed material at nuclear power plants (and at some

other facilities). Therefore, the NRC is providing no

criteria to be used in implementing this provision at

nuclear power plants and is not planning to develop

(additional) generic guidance for "decay in storage" at

nuclear power plants. As noted in the statement of

considerations for revised Part 20 (56 FR 23380, third

column, and 23381, first column), technically, the "decay

in storage" option has always been available to licensees

as an allowed waste disposal option. This option was

formally included in the proposed and final rules because

the list of disposal options is exclusive and there had

been questions as to whether this option is allowed under

§§20.1-20.601 (in old Part 20). It should be noted that

this option does not allow material that has "decayed in

storage" to be released to an unrestricted area unless it

meets the requirements of one of the other allowed forms of

waste disposal in part 20, or the requirements of §35.92,

"Decay in Storage," of 10 CFR Part 35, or the specific

requirements given in any NRC or Agreement State license.

(References: 10 CFR 20.2001).

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Thursday, March 29, 2012