United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment
Home > NRC Library > Document Collections > NRC Regulations (10 CFR) >  Part Index > § 51.31 Determinations based on environmental assessment.

§ 51.31 Determinations based on environmental assessment.

(a) General. Upon completion of an environmental assessment for proposed actions other than those involving a standard design certification or a manufacturing license under part 52 of this chapter, the appropriate NRC staff director will determine whether to prepare an environmental impact statement or a finding of no significant impact on the proposed action. As provided in § 51.33, a determination to prepare a draft finding of no significant impact may be made.

(b) Standard design certification.

(1) For actions involving the issuance or amendment of a standard design certification, the Commission shall prepare a draft environmental assessment for public comment as part of the proposed rule. The proposed rule must state that:

(i) The Commission has determined in § 51.32 that there is no significant environmental impact associated with the issuance of the standard design certification or its amendment, as applicable; and

(ii) Comments on the environmental assessment will be limited to the consideration of SAMDAs as required by § 51.30(d).

(2) The Commission will prepare a final environmental assessment following the close of the public comment period for the proposed standard design certification.

(c) Manufacturing license. (1) Upon completion of the environmental assessment for actions involving issuance or amendment of a manufacturing license (manufacturing license environmental assessment), the appropriate NRC staff director will determine the costs and benefits of severe accident mitigation design alternatives and the bases for not incorporating severe accident mitigation design alternatives in the design of the reactor to be manufactured under the manufacturing license. The NRC staff director may determine to prepare a draft environmental assessment.

(2) The manufacturing license environmental assessment must state that:

(i) The Commission has determined in § 51.32 that there is no significant environmental impact associated with the issuance of a manufacturing license or an amendment to a manufacturing license, as applicable;

(ii) The environmental assessment will not address the environmental impacts associated with manufacturing the reactor under the manufacturing license; and

(iii) Comments on the environmental assessment will be limited to the consideration of severe accident mitigation design alternatives as required by § 51.30(e).

(3) If the NRC staff director makes a determination to prepare and issue a draft environmental assessment for public review and comment before making a final determination on the manufacturing license application, the assessment will be marked, "Draft." The NRC notice of availability on the draft environmental assessment will include a request for comments which specifies where comments should be submitted and when the comment period expires. The notice will state that copies of the environmental assessment and any related environmental documents are available for public inspection and where inspections can be made. A copy of the final environmental assessment will be sent to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the applicant, any party to a proceeding, each commenter, and any other Federal, State, and local agencies, and Indian tribes, State, regional, and metropolitan clearinghouses expressing an interest in the action. Additional copies will be made available in accordance with § 51.123.

(4) When a hearing is held under the regulations in part 2 of this chapter on the proposed issuance of the manufacturing license or amendment, the NRC staff director will prepare a final environmental assessment which may be subject to modification as a result of review and decision as appropriate to the nature and scope of the proceeding.

(5) Only a party admitted into the proceeding with respect to a contention on the environmental assessment, or an entity participating in the proceeding pursuant to § 2.315(c) of this chapter, may take a position and offer evidence on the matters within the scope of the environmental assessment.

[72 FR 49510, Aug. 28, 2007]

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Thursday, July 10, 2014