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U.S. NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION
Office of Public Affairs Telephone: 301/415-8200
Washington, DC 20555-0001 E-mail: OPA.Resource@nrc.gov
www.nrc.gov

No. 05-044 March 8, 2005

NRC SEEKS PUBLIC INPUT ON CLINTON EARLY SITE PERMIT
APPLICATION; MEETING TO BE HELD APRIL 19
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The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is seeking public comment on its preliminary conclusion that environmental impacts would not prevent issuing an Early Site Permit (ESP) for the Clinton site, about six miles east of Clinton, Ill.

The preliminary conclusion is contained in NUREG-1815, "Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for an Early Site Permit at the Exelon ESP Site." The draft EIS is open for public comment until May 25, and will also be the subject of a public meeting April 19 in Clinton.

The ESP process allows an applicant to address site-related issues, such as environmental impacts, for possible future construction and operation of a nuclear power plant at the site. The Clinton application was filed Sept. 25, 2003, by Exelon Generation Company, LLC. If approved, the permit would give Exelon up to 20 years to decide whether to build a new nuclear unit on the site and to file an application with the NRC for approval to begin construction.

The NRC staff’s preliminary recommendation is that a permit should be issued. The staff’s conclusion is based on its independent review of a report submitted by Exelon, taking into account consultations with federal, state, tribal and local agencies and consideration of comments received during the public scoping process. The staff’s preliminary conclusions include a finding that there are no environmentally preferable or obviously superior sites, and that any adverse environmental impacts from possible site preparation and preliminary construction activities at Clinton could be redressed.

On Tuesday, April 19, the NRC staff will hold a meeting to obtain comments on the draft EIS at the Vespasian Warner Public Library, located at 310 North Quincy Street in Clinton. The meeting, which will be transcribed, begins at 7:00 p.m. and will conclude by 10:00 p.m. In addition, the NRC staff will host an informal discussion one hour prior to the meeting. NRC staff members will answer questions and explain the ESP process during this informal session, but "official comments" on the EIS must be made during the meeting.

For planning purposes, anyone interested in attending or presenting oral comments at the April 19 meeting is encouraged to pre-register no later than April 13, by contacting Jennifer Davis of the NRC by telephone at (800) 368-5642, extension 3835, or by e-mail at ClintonEIS@nrc.gov. Interested persons may also register to speak within 15 minutes of the start of the meeting. Time for individual comments at the meetings may be limited to accommodate all speakers. People requesting special accommodations to attend or present information at the meeting should contact the NRC by April 13 so the requests can be properly reviewed.

Written comments on the draft EIS will also be considered by NRC staff. Comments should be submitted either by mail (postmarked by May 25, 2005) to the Chief, Rules and Directives Branch, Division of Administrative Services, Office of Administration, Mailstop T-6D59, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, or by e-mail (sent no later than May 25, 2005) at ClintonEIS@nrc.gov.

The draft EIS and related documents are available electronically for public inspection in the NRC Public Document Room, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Md. They are also available on the NRC’s Web site at: http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/new-licensing/esp/clinton.html. In addition, the Vespasian Warner Public Library has agreed to make the draft EIS available for public inspection.

At the conclusion of the public comment period on May 25, 2005, the NRC staff will consider and address the comments provided, then issue a final EIS on the environmental acceptability of an ESP at Clinton later in 2005.


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