United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Mitigation Strategies

Ability to Handle Unanticipated Events

Mitigation Strategies icon, consisting of a tan circle with a white on/off switch in the middle, and the words 'on' and 'off' with the switch in the off positionIn order to maintain key safety functions, the NRC ordered every U.S. commercial reactor operator to have strategies for dealing with the long-term loss of standard safety systems. Instead of speculating on which events might happen, the order focused on improving plant flexibility and diversity in responding to extreme natural phenomena, such as severe flooding and earthquakes. The goal is to keep the reactor core cool, preserve the containment barrier that prevents or controls radiation releases, and cool the spent fuel pool, all for an indefinite period of time. Plants with multiple reactors should be able to implement these measures at all reactors simultaneously. Each plant installed new emergency response equipment, stored onsite and protected from natural hazards. NRC inspectors have verified that the strategies are in place at all U.S. nuclear power plants. Additional equipment and resources are stored at two National Response Centers, ready to be deployed to a plant during an emergency.

Image of a generic nuclear plant highlighting the different mitigation strategies including Portable -protected backup pumps, hoses and diesel generators; offsite response Offsite Response – Supplies from offsite and national response centers; Installed – Protected battery banks and pumps; Loss of Offsite Power and National response centers – Phoenix, Arizona and Memphis, Tennessee Mitigation Strategies page hyperlink

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Friday, January 04, 2019