Advisory Committee on Nuclear Waste 125th Meeting, March 22, 2001

                Official Transcript of Proceedings


Title:                    Advisory Committee on Nuclear Waste
                               125th Meeting

Docket Number:  (not applicable)

Location:                 Rockville, Maryland

Date:                     Thursday, March 22, 2001

Work Order No.: NRC-125                             Pages 145-191

                   NEAL R. GROSS AND CO., INC.
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                              MARCH 22, 2001
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                            ROCKVILLE, MARYLAND
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                       The ACNW Committee met at the
           Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Two White Flint North,
           Room T2B3, 11545 Rockville Pike, at 1:03 p.m.,
           DR. JOHN GARRICK, Chairman, presiding.
                 DR. JOHN GARRICK, Chairman
                 DR. GEORGE M. HORNBERGER, Vice Chairman
                 MR. MILTON LEVENSON, Member
                 DR. RAYMOND WYMER, Member

           .           ACRS STAFF PRESENT:
                 DR. ANDREW C. CAMPBELL
                 LYNN DEERING
                 SAM DURAISWAMY
                 CAROL HARRIS
                 CAROL HANLON
                 DR. JOHN LARKINS
                 HOWARD LARSON
                 JAMES LYONS
                 RICHARD K. MAJOR
                 AMARJIT SINGH

                 NAIEM S. TANIOUS

           .                                 I-N-D-E-X

                         AGENDA ITEM                       PAGE
           Presentation by Naiem S. Tanious . . . . . . . . 149
           Proposed Revisions to 10 CFR Part 71,
           "Packaging and Transportation of Radioactive

           .                           P-R-O-C-E-E-D-I-N-G-S
                                                    (1:03 p.m.)
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  All right.  The meeting
           will come to order.  This afternoon we are going to
           get a briefing on the proposed revisions to 10 CFR
           Part 71, Packaging and Transportation of Radioactive
                       The committee member that has the lead on
           matters having to do with this topic is Milt Levenson,
           and so I will let you lead the discussion, Milt.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Well, this topic is of
           interest to the community and in two directions.  One
           is from a standpoint of consistency in things which
           are safety based, but there is a very practical reason
           why compatibility is important.
                       Currently, we have a strange situation
           where fuel can be shipped half way around the world,
           and land in San Francisco, be transshipped to Idaho.
           They unload the container, find out that they made a
           mistake and it didn't belong there.  It belonged in
           Savannah River.
                       And if they reload it in the same
           container, they can't ship it on anymore in the U.S.,
           and these are some of the odd things that we have to
           deal with in the real world.
                       So every effort or any undertaking to make
           the IAEA standards and the NRC standards as -- if not
           fully compatible, as compatible as possible, I think
           is of interest to the committee.  And with that, we
           will turn it over to our speaker.
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  Introduce yourself and
           your position for the record.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Yes, my name is Naiem
           Tanious, and I work in the Industrial Medical and
           Nuclear Safety Division in NMSS.  And the branch we
           are in, the rule making and guidance branch, we do the
           rule making for NMSS.
                       And we basically work with the other
           divisions, assemble the technical information into our
           rule package, and get it circulated and reviewed by
           the NRC offices, and then give it to the Commission.
                       Our partners in this effort is the Spent
           Fuel Project Office, and what we affectionately call
           the Fab 5.  SFPO gives us the technical input for the
                       You have had a chance to see the FRN.  It
           is a rather large rule with a large number of issues,
           and we had very little time to assemble this rule.
           Most of the work was done between September and
           November of last year.
                       I should also say that the transportation
           group, people who review transportation packages and
           approve designs, licensing actions, are in SFPO, and
           they are the ones who deal with that, with certificate
           holders and licensees every day.
                       Before I begin, I would like to say a few
           words about the Part 71, the NRC, and DOT.  We in DOT
           co-regulate the transportation of radioactive
           materials in the United States, and the
           responsibilities between the two agencies is divided
           along the level of activity in the package.
                       If the package is Type A, a certain level
           of activity, and below that, that's DOT's
           responsibility; and when it is Type B and Fissile,
           that is NRC's responsibility.  And Part 71 mostly
           deals with Type B and Fissile.
                       The other thing that I would also like to
           mention here is that the rule covers a large
           population of packages, from small pharmaceutical type
           packages for medical applications, to the Type B
           packages, to Fissile material packages, and to of
           course spent fuel, and the new dual purpose cast,
           which is a new package that is now being approved.
                       Let's go to the first slide.  This is an
           overview of the whole presentation which I plan to
           give in the next 40 minutes or so.  The scope of the
           Part 71 Rule as you mentioned in your introduction is
           that we try to stay compatible with the international
                       It has been about every 10 years that the
           IAEA revises its regulations, and we revise our Part
           71, and DOT, of course, revises their 49 CFR at the
           same time that we do.
                       So it has been the practice in the past
           that every time we revise Part 71 that we do it
           concurrently with the DOT.  This effort in this
           particular division of the Part 71 is based on
           directives from the Commission.
                       I am looking at my notes here and we had
           several SRMs telling us how to go about doing this
           work.  We had an emergency -- there is an SRM, Section
           99-200, which basically told us to roll in the
           unintended economic impact of the -- well, to give you
           a little background.
                       We had an emergency final rule a few years
           ago when a license discovered that a mix of brillium
           oxide with enriched uranium can cause criticality in
                       What made this thing peculiar that it was
           approved under a Part 71 provision that it really does
           not require NRC review, and so we had that emergency
           rule.  It was adequate and it did take care of the
                       But then we had after that from the public
           that it was too much of a fix.  There was a lot of
           unintended economic impact on water moderated type
           shipments.  Not the ones that have the special
                       So the Commission in this SRM told us to
           revise Part 71 and this general license provisions,
           and these exemption parts, the various sections in
           this fissile material exemptions.  And also that we
           were about to embark on revising Part 71 to make it
           compatible with the IAEA.
                       And that we would address both in the same
           rule.  The next SRM was SRM M9911109A, which was
           directing the staff to engage the stakeholders to our
           rule making activities, meaning to discuss the
           proposed rule or rule making plan in public meetings
           before we proposed the rule.
                       There was another one, SRM M00211, which
           told us to do a comparison between Part 71 and ST-1,
           which is this document.  That is the latest IAEA
           regulations, and pick up the most significant
           differences which we would be addressing in this rule.
                       I guess my second bullet here is that I
           will give you a little bit on where we stand on the
           rule, the current status of this rule.  Right now it
           is down to the Commission, and it has been released to
           the public.  I will give you a summary of the general
           public comments that we had.
                       We had three meetings last year, and we
           issued Part 71 issues paper, and that issues paper
           basically summarized 17 of these issues for the public
           that we wanted comments on.
                       We had one meeting here downstairs in
           August, and we had two meetings in September in
           Oakland, California, with the intent to solicit public
           comments, and to get public input before we write the
           proposed rule.
                       And our schedule called for delivering the
           proposed rule on March 1st of this year.  And after
           this, I will go through some of the specific issues,
           and briefly describe the issue, and give you the
           staff's position on the proposed NRC position.
                       As you stated, and as I stated earlier,
           this rule is to make Part 71 compatible with TS-R-1,
           or ST-1, the same name, the same document essentially;
           and to bring Part 71 regulations to the international
           standards where applicable.
                       There were a number of other changes that
           the Commission and management here wanted to do, and
           these were eight other changes, and that is my next
           bullet.  So we have a total of about 11 IAEA issues,
           and we have 8 NRC initiated issues.
                       I should mention here that we had a
           petition for rule making for the double containment
           requirement in 71-63, and that was under
           consideration.  And it was decided before we started
           writing the issues paper to roll that in as well.  So
           we had that as one of the NRC initiated changes.
                       And of course the further revision of the
           general license provisions for the fissile materials
           for the unintended economic impact.  We used the
           enhanced public participation process, which was
           directed by the Commission in one of the SRMs.
                       We had the three public meetings as I
           mentioned, and we established a website, and the three
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  What do you mean by
                       MR. TANIOUS:  That is over and above the
           regular process where you engage the public via
           publishing the petition, or advance notice of a
           proposed rule making and the like, and get written
                       This is more like holding a meeting and
           getting verbal comments, and recording all of that,
           and also get comments on the website.
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  Oh, I see.  Is that a
           standard NRC descripter?
                       MR. TANIOUS:  I believe it is.
                       DR. LARSON:  Yes, lately it is.  It is
           sort of a facilitated meeting.  They started those
           probably several years ago.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  It is a facilitated meeting,
           that is correct, yes.
                       DR. LARSON:  And it costs more money, and
           that's why the Commission tells the staff when to do
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  Enriched.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Enriched is right.  Thank
           you.  Part of the process like I said was that we
           established a website under NMSS materials, and we
           announced the public meetings and invited the public,
           and it was a rather involved process, where we have
           the meeting recorded, and put the transcript of the
           meeting on the website, and provide summaries, and
           also put them on the website.
                       And all the comments that we received,
           written comments, are also placed on the website.  And
           I think I already covered my last bullet on this
                       One of the SRM requirements, the last SRM
           that we received, giving us the deadline of March 1st,
           was to keep the Commission informed of our activities
           via briefing the Commissioner's TA's, and we made
           comments or copies to the Commissioner's TA's, and
           also gave them a briefing back on December 18th.
                       Let's go to my next slide.  The current
           status of this rule, I think we kind of passed that
           first bullet.  We delivered the proposed rule to the
           Commission, and the EDO gave it to the Commission on
           March 2nd of this year.
                       That is FRN if you had a chance to see or
           review the package.  The package is a rather large
           package that has the FRN, which is some 300 pages.  We
           also prepared the draft RA, and an draft EA, to
           support the proposed positions of the NRC.
                       The draft RA, and I will say a few words
           about the draft RA, as it is qualitative mostly, but
           the conclusion on most of the 19 issues is that there
           is no significant cost impact from adopting these
           IAEA, or at least the ones that we adopted.
                       I should also mention that I have -- that
           I will go through the positions in a minute, but I
           think we have a table that may be in your package
           which summarizes the whole rule, which tells you which
           positions we have taken on any one issue or all.
                       As far as the EA, the same thing.  The
           changes will not cause a significant environmental
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  Now do the ones that
           are not adopted, is that a final issue, or is that
           just a timing issue, or not applicable, or what does
           it mean?
                       MR. TANIOUS:  I think I could safely say
           -- and I will invite SFPO to make a comment, but I
           would say that issue number one, for example,  I think
           for the foreseeable future that is final.
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  So you are not going to
           go to the international system of units?
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Well, we would like to stay
           with the dual system because that is the Commission
           policy.  All the comments that we had in the public
           meetings are against this.  It is really a foolish
                       It caused a lot of problems, because we
           all think in the English units, and I will get into
           more discussion on this later, but I don't see us
           going for the CSI units in any near term.  Of course,
           we are complying with the Commission policy here.
                       But Type C, perhaps.  It is possible in
           the future that that might change, but we are not
           adopting Type C right now.  But you have that
           background table, which is pretty handy for reference.
           I will go back to my slide here.
                       My third bullet says that we had been
           working with DOT on this rule since we began drafting
           the rule and even before that.  We have a working
           group staff that is from IMNS and SFPO, and also State
           programs, OGC.
                       One member of our working group is from
           DOT, and I don't see Fred here, but he knows of this
           meeting.  But he attended all of our meetings and had
           copies of the drafts to be prepared.
                       The bottom line is that we proposed the
           rule to the Commission, and DOT's agreement with NRC
           on these 11 compatibility issues.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  You don't comment on
           whether DOT concurred with those that were NRC
           initiated changes, or was that not part of the  review
           program with DOT?
                       MR. TANIOUS:  That is outside their
           perview if you will.  They made comments.  They are of
           course in the building and transportation arena, and
           they are the U.S. competent authority.  So they have
           ideas and they give us comments, but most of this was
           an NRC thing.
                       But the reason that I singled out the IAEA
           is because they had an advanced notice of proposed
           rule last year, where they listed very much the same
           issues that we have in our portion of our rule.
                       That is the one that we spent most of the
           time discussing with them.  And the last bullet is
           that if we get approval from the Commission to publish
           this proposed rule.  Right now it has been released to
           the public, and we have taken as I said on all 19
           issues, and we plan to hold public meetings to discuss
           these proposed positions.
                       I would like to mention here that this is
           for your info, and that we have a Commission briefing
           on the 9th of April.  That would be at the Commission
           hearing room in the afternoon on Monday, April 9th.
                       And we will be making a presentation
           there, and the Commission invited five members of the
           public, stakeholders, to give their views on this
           proposed rule.  These are NEI public citizens groups.
                       Don't hold me to this, but I believe  this
           is the final list, but it has not been released to us
           yet.  But it will be a large shipper of spent fuel
           transport, and a State program rep that will be
           attending this and making a presentation.
                       I will give you next sort of a flavor of
           the general type comments that we received from the
           meeting that we had downstairs, and from the other
           meetings as well.
                       Now, NRC should increase the number of
           meetings, despite the fact that we had three meetings,
           and that is my own view, and I think it is pretty
           good.  Still, they wanted more meetings.
                       And given the fact that it takes a lot of
           effort to prepare for these meetings, and staff travel
           time, and to transcribe the meetings, and all the
           rest, you know; and to prepare the slides, and it is
           a tremendous amount of work.
                       So that is one of the comments that we
           heard.  The public comment period for that issues
           paper was the end of September.  It was September
           30th, and our last meeting was September 26th, I
           believe.  So the end of the public comment period was
           very close to the last meeting.
                       And there were complaints about that, and
           they wanted an extension of the public comment period
           so that they would have more time to prepare comments.
                       And we got letters actually requesting to
           extend this public comment period by six months and so
           forth.  We could not do that in view of the schedule
           by the Commission to deliver the proposed rule by
           March 1st.
                       But we did encourage everyone -- you know,
           all the phone calls that we got and everything -- to
           submit the comments even if it is after the deadline.
           We will take the comments.  We will take all comments.
                       And we had the comments come in as late as
           the middle of November, and by that time we were
           already drafting the proposed rule.  One of the other
           comments is that the lack of easy access to the
           documents, and this is mostly meaning this document,
           where it is very expensive to get a hold of.  It is
           about $80 a copy.
                       And this last summer, I think the
           publisher here made the new version, and TS-R-1 is
           cheaper now, and it is $18.  And we tried to respond
           to this comment by putting all of our documents on the
           website, all the comments and transcripts of the
           meetings, and all the rest.
                       We also tried to make it easy by putting
           the publisher's name or direct link in our website to
           the publisher of this document so that they can get a
           hold of it.
                       There were other comments about the  ASME
           code.  One of the changes here is for the adaption of
           the ASME code, but they couldn't access that and we
           couldn't give it to them.  But we put it in the public
           document group if they wanted to see it.
                       The other comments was mostly about the
           IAEA process to develop ST-1 was not open to the
           public.  That is true.  It is not open to the public.
           These comments were mostly directed to DOT, and DOT is
           the one who assembled the U.S. delegation to go to
           Vienna,and they are the ones who organized all the
           subcommittees and meetings  and so forth.
                       And it did not appear feasible that the
           public could go and participate in the drafting of
           these IAEA rules.  But the negative comment was that
           you guys go to Europe, and bring back these
           regulations and try to adopt it here in this country,
           which may not be safe, or that we didn't have a chance
           to influence this regulation.
                       The next comment is that DOT and NRC
           should coordinate and address all public comments
           since we both are doing this rule concurrently, and
           yes, we are doing this.
                       We have the working group like I
           mentioned, and they have their own set of comments on
           their own website, about 60 or 65 comments, and we
           have our comments.  Whatever comments apply to both
           agencies, we will coordinate.
                       One comment that we heard is the last
           bullet here on this slide from two of the agreements
           by the State representatives, and they play an
           important role, and they do because they adopt by
           agreement the NRC rules.
                       The next slide is that there were a lot of
           concerns about the objectives of this rule, which was
           to harmonization of the Part 71 with the IAEA, but the
           cost of implementation of these changes, especially
           when there is no obvious safety benefit from the
           change, except perhaps new models or new signs, but
           the old rules may be just fine.
                       The next bullet is the concern over the
           proposed NRC changes, causing some material to come
           under the NRC jurisdiction.  This mostly refers to the
           norm, which is naturally carrying radioactive
           materials in oils and in slaggs.
                       And there is an issue, too, about the
           exemption, and we will come to that in a minute.  But
           the changing of the definition of the radioactive
           material from one single value to a table, and they
           are fearful that the NRC is seeking to increase its
           jurisdiction over them.
                       I think Susan Shackman was replying to
           someone at that meeting saying that we do not seek to
           bring you under NRC authority.  Most of the comments
           were from the oil and gas industries, and mining
                       Another comment is on the Part 71
           regulation and that it should be the minimum; meaning
           that the values that we have for the A-1 and A-2 or
           the exemption values, that should be the minimum, and
           irrespective of whatever new values the IAEA has.
                       The next one is that we should not make
           changes that result in the reduction of transportation
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  And how did they
           respond to that one?
                       MR. TANIOUS:  We are not making any
           changes that result in reduction of transportation
           safety.  All the changes will enhance safety, and when
           we get to the next bullet, we will cover some of the
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  But isn't that a
           technicality?  Do the changes in any way increase the
           transportation traffic, and if so, how can you really
           say that there is no reduction in transportation
                       MR. TANIOUS:  I don't know if it is going
           to increase transportation traffic.  I don't think so,
           but I would invite SFPO to make a comment here, you
           know, since they are the technical experts in this
           agency.  I don't think that increases the traffic, but
           please make a comment.
                       MR. BRACH:  I am Bill Brach from the Spent
           Fuel Project Office, and I was just talking with my
           staff.  In a direct answer to your question, we are
           not aware of any proposed rule content in the 71 rule
           package that would result in an increase in
           transportation traffic.
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  Well, I guess my point
           is that the question or the comment is kind of a trap,
           and I think that any time you take an action to
           increase transportation that you increase the risk of
           transportation accidents.  And so it is the context of
           the question that becomes important.
                       MR. BRACH:  I believe on this overhead the
           third and fourth bullet can maybe be read together.
           In a number of the public meetings, what we have heard
           from a number of the stakeholders were comments that
           we shouldn't, if you will, lower the NRC Part 71 bar
           or set requirements for transportation to an IAEA or
           other standard that we might feel is below the NRC
                       But yet the NRC standard should be the
           minimum, and then look beyond that in enhancements to
           the rule making, coupled with -- clearly there was a
           comment that we heard from the public that we
           shouldn't be doing anything in changing the Part 71
           rule that would reduce the effectiveness of -- reduce
           the safety or reduce the effectiveness of our
           transportation safety regulations.  Those two comments
           were often times in context provided.
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  And I guess the other
           thing that I am thinking of is downstream.  You don't
           want to get yourself in a position where you put an
           undue constraint on the transportation of nuclear
           materials, because there are other materials that you
           will be writing regulations in due course on probably.
                       MR. BRACH:  We agree, and I think that
           that comment was -- we tried in our development of the
           proposed rule to also look at that as well, and be
           sure that what we would be incorporating in Part 71
           would not put an undue burden on either domestic
           transportation or transportation in general.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  You know, we talk about
           transportation safety, and that is pretty broad, and
           I think the kind of things that some of us have been
           involved in -- John has and I have -- is that -- and,
           for instance, on of the requirements on a TRUPAC-2
           potentially results in 10,000 additional cross-country
           truck shipments.
                       Well, an assessment of whether the TRUPAC-
           2 requirements could be changed slightly, you might
           say that maybe you shouldn't because it slightly
           reduces safety of the TRUPAC-2.
                       But if it results in 15,000 fewer cross-
           country shipments, the total transportation safety
           issue, it comes out the other way.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Right.  Exactly.  And I
           think that this very point will be become more clear
           as we go through the issues in the next few slides.
           That is my last bullet, is that we have more comments
           on specific issues, and we will tell you on that issue
           what we have heard.
                       So some of the issues I have talked about
           already, and so we may not take too much time talking
           about them.  But the first one, we are not adopting or
           changing to the SI units on.  We like the dual system
           and all the comments that we heard, whether it is a
           transportation accident or a medical administration,
           where on the outside of the package it is SI -- if we
           comply with this, or adopt it rather.
                       And on the inside, it is English units,
           and you would have to have a quick conversion made
           right on the spot by emergency people, which defeats
           the intent of the whole exercise, where we are
           communicating information quickly about the package on
           the label, or the shipping papers.
                       So we are not offering that.  And number
           two is the implied exemption value as I mentioned
           already.  And the industry by the way was supportive
           of the NRC here.  Most everyone said to stay with the
           dual system.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Now, when you say stay with
           the system, what does that mean?  The table says
           adopted.  Do you mean that you adopted the IAEA
                       MR. TANIOUS:  No, the table says not
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Radionuclide exemption
           value is adopted.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Yes, we are adopting that.
           I'm sorry.  We are adopting the --
                       MR. LEVENSON:  And when it says adopted,
           that means that you have adopted the IAEA?
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Yes.  Yes.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Okay.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Although we heard many
           comments against it, it would be complicated to apply,
           and you have to calculate the radioactivity, and you
           have to sample the shipments, and you have to do the
           mixture rule, and change all the paperwork.
                       There would be a lot of expense,
           especially from the oil and gas, and industry, where
           some of their shipments right now are exempt under the
           70 becquerel.
                       But with the new table, which each would
           imply would have its own activity, they feel that
           there would be now as radioactive material.  So
           despite all these problems, the staff's judgment is to
           stay compatible with the international commerce.
                       It is on balance to be compatible with
           IAEA, despite the shortcomings of going away from a
           single value, simple rule, to a state-of-the-art if
           you will model that gives you one millennium per year
           to every one that is close to these packages, which is
           better science and better engineering, but
           complicated, because of the costs to some of the
           segments of the non-radioactive material
           transportation entities.
                       I will quickly go through the rest of
           them, I guess.  On number three, we are adopting the
           new table of A-1 and A--2 that is in ST-1, again to
           stay compatible with international commerce.
                       It does not appear feasible that you can
           have your own table here in the United States and
           there is another table in Europe, and especially DOT
           is going to adopt that table as well.  So we will
           adopt that.
                       On number four, we will adopt the
           requirement of criticality evaluation for the UF6
           fissile packages be done without considering any
           leakage of water.  The staff had a 5 percent max on
           the enrichment of these packages.
                       But this issue is mostly a DOT issue, but
           we covered the type of packages that is in our field
           of authority.  The next one is number five, and we are
           adopting that.
                       It is sort of a paper change, where the
           current TI index is used, but this will separate the
           two indices from each other; the one for radiological
           safety from the criticality safety.
                       Right now they are both calculated, and
           you take the larger one to be put on the package as a
           TI.  This will separate the two, and you will you have
           two labels on the package.  We are adopting it and it
           is a good development.
                       The next one or position taken is that we
           are not adopting the Type C package, which is a new
           type package designed to withstand severe air
           accidents for plutonium.
                       Most of these are not adopting it because
           it is a brand new package, and there is not much use
           for it in this country, and still the IAEA is still
           studying this package, and there may be more
           modifications coming on it.
                       The rest of the issues -- 7, 8, 9, 10, 11
           -- number seven is a test done -- it used to be
           required for aerated fuel shipments, and the IAEA now
           is using the so-called enhanced deep emergent test,
           where it covers all packages that has activity greater
           than 10 to the 5-A2 value.
                       We are adopting that with some
           modification, using our own criteria to judge the
           results of the test.
                       And number eight is a standard clause in
           all the revisions of Part 71, which is grandfathering
           previously approved packages, and where the package is
           still safe, even when you change the regulations.
                       We are adopting it and proposing a phasing
           out of the 1967 package during a 3 year transition
                       And for number nine, there are various
           definitions that have been changed, such as the CSI
           and TI, and so forth.  I am getting ahead of myself
                       The last two on the compatibility issues
           are crush test for fissile material packages, and we
           are adopting that, and number 11 is the fissile
           material package design for air transport, and we are
           adopting that.
                       Before I go into the next bullet, I will
           just summarize by saying that out of 11 changes by the
           IAEA, we are adopting 9, and two we are not adopting.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Let me ask a somewhat
           generic question.  These 11 are changes made to the
           IAEA document; is that right?
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Yes, the 11 are changes made
           in the recent version of the IAEA transportation
           standards.  Of the 11, we are adopting 9.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Are there issues in the
           previous version with which NRC had not adopted, so
           that the difference between the two -- the question is
           whether the difference between the two larger than
           what is shown here?
                       You have only addressed whether you have
           adopted or not adopted changes the IAEA made.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  I apologize for this, but
           the reason is to keep the table simple.  There are
           some modifications.  I can think of one, and I would
           invite SFPO to make comments on this.
                       For example, take number seven, the deep
           emergent test.  In the last version of the IAEA, there
           was the adoption to judge the results of the test by
           using no ruptures.  That the package or the specimen
           should withstand the pressure -- I think it is 290 psi
           -- of the test for one hour.
                       And the criteria to pass the packages with
           no rupture, but the staff in the SFPO felt that a
           rupture is difficult to define or to defend the
           adopted criteria called no collapse or leakage of
                       And I think that in this proposed rule
           that we are still staying with that criteria.  Does
           this answer your question?
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Well, no.  If one and six
           were changed to adopted, the NRC's position on Part 71
           would not be identical to the IAEA would it?  There
           are still differences?
                       MR. TANIOUS:  There would be differences,
           yes, but not major differences.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  But is there anywhere -- if
           I wanted to say, well, I have a copy of the IAEA, and
           in order to conform to Part 71, there are only these
           few exceptions, is that spelled out anywhere, or do
           you have to go and dig through both of them page by
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Yes, you have to.  For
           example, on Issue 16 in your package -- if I may go to
           Issue 16 -- the fissile material exemptions and
           general license provisions, right now there are four
           different sections that cover general license
           provisions for fissile material packages.
                       And also there is some exemptions to
           these.  These are the ones that cause this nuclear
           criticality safety problem.  That is not in the IAEA,
           for example.  We have it in our regulation, but they
           don't it.  Yes, John?
                       MR. COOK:  Hello.  My name is John Cook,
           and I am with the Spent Fuel Project Office, and I
           think I would like to provide a little bit of
           information regarding your question.
                       As part of the rule making package, there
           is a comparison -- and this is Attachment 5 to the
           Commission paper, which provides a comparison between
           TS-R-1 and Part 71.  This identifies all of the
           differences that exist between the two sets of
                       What the rule making we have for us now is
           trying to do is just look at the differences that IAEA
           made going from their 1985 edition of their
           regulations to the 1996 edition of their regulations.
                       And it is those changes that we are trying
           to address in this rule making.  There were
           preexisting differences between NRC regulations and
           IAEA regulations, but those were all individually
           justified and addressed in the previous NRC attempts
           to become compatible with the previous editions of
           IAEA regulations.
                       So we do have some preexisting differences
           and those would be identified in this comparison in
           Attachment 5 to the proposed rule package.
                       The changes that we see in going from the
           '85 edition to the '96 edition, those are the 11 that
           Naiem has referred to, and those are the ones that are
           -- that nine of which we are proposing adopting, and
           two of which we are proposing not to adopt.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  So this exercise is not
           aimed at trying to reconcile past differences?
                       MR. COOK:  That's correct.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  It is only aimed at --
           well, I am sure that it is aimed at just the changes
           the IAEA made.  The IAEA made 11 and you have
           addressed those.
                       MR. COOK:  Right.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  But you have added nine
                       MR. COOK:  Right.  The other additional
           issues were either initiated by the staff or by the
           Commission staff's requirements memo.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  I guess the bottom line
           question is does this still mean that a foreign
           container can be shipped all the way across the United
           States as long as you don't open it; but if you open
           it, you can't ship it on any further?  Are we still
           going to have that problem?
                       MR. COOK:  Well, that does depend on the
           circumstances, but that situation could occur still.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  I think we are coming
           actually close to the end of my assigned time, but I
           will try to cover the rest of them in about five
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Go ahead.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Number 12 is a special
           package approval.  These refer to these large object
           packages, such as a decommissioned reactor, and NRC
           had experience with this, with the Trojan reactor, and
           this particular change is to -- that instead of going
           through the route of asking for exemptions from the
           Commission because the package itself is so unusual
           that it doesn't satisfy all the requirements of Part
           71 -- you know, various tests, like drop tests and
           puncture tests, and all the tests required for Type B
           packages, this package sometimes does not satisfy a
           couple of them, but still is safe, we you would ask
           for an exemption from the Commission.
                       Well, this is a way to streamline this,
           and not to the Commission for these changes.  There
           were a lot of comments about this, and mostly feared
           that NRC is trying to not go through the rigorous
           review process.
                       The next one is an expansion of the QA
           requirement to Part 71.  The Commission approved a
           rule for 50-59 for reactors, and for -- no, that's not
           the one.  They approved one for the Part 72 to
           increase the NRC authority over the certificate
           holders, and to allow NRC to issue notice of
                       That was approved last year, I think, and
           the Commission wanted us to consider doing the same
           thing in Part 71.  That is what that change is, number
                       Number 14 was the adoption of the ASME
           code, and it was an idea amongst the staff here to use
           the experience of some problem with the fabrication of
           spent fuel casts.
                       It was felt that if you have an authorized
           nuclear inspector on site using this code to develop
           one of the committee's of the ASME that would improve
           quality control and quality assurance problems.
                       But the staff, when we got to write the
           proposed rule, decided that we had enough sufficient
           improvement in the situation, and there wasn't enough
           problems right now.  Plus, the code itself is not
                       The Committee that was writing this code
           is still studying it, and is still working on it.  It
           is not final.  So we are not adopting this right now.
                       Number 15 is adoption of change authority
           to allow minimal changes.  I mentioned earlier by
           mistake that it was 50-59 on reactors, and 72-48 in
           Part 72, to allow the licensee to make small changes
           in the design or the procedure, such as that they
           don't have to come to the NRC for every change they
           make, because it is a cumbersome, costly process.
                       And the Commission wanted us to do the
           same for Part 71, and it is a good change.  The only
           thing I would say here is that the SFPO decided -- and
           rightfully so perhaps -- to go for one type of package
           only, the dual purpose package, the one that does
           interim storage and transportation.
                       The next slide is the emergency final
           rule, and we SFPO had a study done by Oakridge, and
           Oakridge came back with recommendations, about 16 ot
           17 recommendations, saying that the original emergency
           final rule was correct, and fixing the problem for
           these special packages, but here are some fixes for
           the general license sections.
                       And  we are adopting those, or most of
           them, and that would take care of this unintended
           economic impact that we call by the emergency final
                       Number 17 is the petition that we had for
           the double containment of plutonium, and this proposed
           rule as a proposed position for the NRC to do away
           with the double containment requirement.
                       You mentioned TRUPAC, and that is one of
           the comments saying that we had all these TRUPAC
           designs based on this double containment requirement,
           which was okay back in the '70s, but not today.
                       Plus, the rationale and discussion on this
           is quite extensive.  The bottom line is the type of
           protection you get from a Type B package is quite
                       So the position on this 17 is a partially
           granted petition, meaning we approve the double
           containment, and drop that from our regulations, but
           keep 71-63A, which si the requirement for a package to
           be in solid form if it is over 20 curies.
                       And Number 18 is an issue about surface
           contamination limits, and NRC is not taking any
           position on this right now because it still is an
           issue under discussion, and under study by the IAEA.
                       The SFPO or John Cook, I think, is a
           member of this group, and this issue had been brought
           to us by the Commission, and mentioned in the last SRM
           by Commissioner McGaffin, but the position today is
           that we hold off for right now and until the position
           is cleared by the IAEA.
                       The last one was added after we had the
           public meetings, and it is sort of a reduction in
           burden because the events reporting requirements of
           30 days is now extended to 60 days.
                       I have only one more slide.  I already
           mentioned that we will have that Commission briefing
           on the 9th of April, where the Commission will hear us
           and will hear the representative from the stakeholders
           on this proposed rule.
                       We plan to have three public meetings or
           at least that is what we have planned right now.
           These will be probably one here and two others
           somewhere else in the country.
                       We plan to have 90 days public comment
           period, because of the size of this rule we need more
           time, and usually 75 days is the normal time.  We will
           continue coordination with DOT so that we both publish
           the rules around the same time.
                       And it is forecasted now that we will have
           this rule published sometime next year, and it will be
           estimated one year after the end of the public comment
           period.  That is the end of my presentation.  Thank
           you very much.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Okay.  Thank you.
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Thank you.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Ray, do you have any
                       DR. WYMER:  No, that was very thorough and
           I can't think of anything to ask.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  George.
                       VICE CHAIRMAN HORNBERGER:  Can you tell me
           how you apply the notions of risk-informed
           performance-based regulation into your decision making
           process in this whole thing?  Can you give me some
           indication of how risk measures may --
                       MR. TANIOUS:  I think that SFPO would be
           better qualified to answer this question.  I can
           certainly respond to you, but I don't want to since
           they are the experts on this.
                       MR. COOK:  Well, I think basically the
           International Atomic Energy Agency regulations have
           been developed over a long period of time, and they
           are basically empirically based.
                       It would be probably not correct to say
           that these were risk-informed regulations since they
           have been around for many, many years based on
           practical experience with making shipments.
                       That is especially with regard to the
           package testing provisions for the accident resistant
           packaging as an example.  However, more recently, as
           improvements are made in what we know about the
           radiological hazards of nuclides, and those are
           considered when changes are made.
                       For example, in the proposal of the
           revision of A-1 and A-2 values, those are based on the
           recent work of the ICRP, the ICRP-60 data, including
           the latest work on radionuclide modeling, to find out
           what is the most accurate valid to use for the oddity
           limits between what type of packaging is required to
           be accident resistant, and which type of shipments
           don't require accident resistants.
                       And the same is true with the radionuclide
           exemption values.  Those values have been changed from
           what was previously the 70 becquerel that you heard
           about earlier.  That was a historical value that
           worked very well.
                       It has been used for a long time, but IAEA
           decided to move from that single value to a more dose
           based value.  And again their more recent evaluations
           of the dose that does occur as a result of making
           shipments at those specific activity limits indicate
           that the agency is trying to apply when it can in risk
           informed concepts and ideas.
                       VICE CHAIRMAN HORNBERGER:  Just one quick
           follow-up.  In particular I wonder if you could tell
           me how this Number 17, the double-containment of
           plutonium, was that granted in part, or at least in
           part on the basis of a risk-informed approach.
                       MR. COOK:  Yes, I would say that it is.
           The double-containment issue, the one that you are
           referring to, is one that is a staff initiation.  It
           is not particularly related to the IAEA activities.
                       But we did take a look at this petition
           that we got and which said that plutonium should be
           treated on the same basis as all the other
           radionuclides, and then they all have their A-1 values
           identified, and that there is no additional
           justification that would warrant a double-containment
           for plutonium.
                       And on that basis that is why we are
           proposing to agree with that part of the petition in
           the proposed rule.
                       VICE CHAIRMAN HORNBERGER:  Thank you.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  I have a follow-up to
           George's question.  Is 13 an expansion of the quality
           assurance requirements?  Is that rooted in some risk
           analysis?  Were there some defects found , or where
           did that come from?
                       MR. COOK:  Well, that is not particularly
           a risk related initiative.  That is to provide the
           same sort of quality assurance treatment in the
           transportation space that is provided in the package
           storage area.
                       What this does is apply more directly
           NRC's quality assurance program to certificate holders
           and to package vendors.  Those entities are not
           currently directly regulated.
                       This change would pull them under Part 71
           explicitly, and that would provide us the opportunity
           were we to conduct an inspection at those types of
           facilities to issue a notice of violation.
                       Whereas, currently, with them not being
           specifically identified in Part 71, all we can do is
           issue a notice of non-conformance.  So that is not so
           much a risk issue as one of being able to enhance
           NRC's enforcement actions.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  But shouldn't an
           enforcement action exist because it reduces or
           eliminates a risk?  If there is no risk connotation,
           how do you justify an enhanced enforcement?
                       MR. BRACH:  I am Bill Brach.  Let me
           address that.  The issue that you are raising is
           really more of an administrative change.  As John had
           mentioned, historically NRC, in taking inspection
           follow-up and enforcement action with what we refer to
           as a vendor, we have issued notices of non-conformance
           across the agency, whether it be in Part 50 activities
           for reactors, or Parts 30, 40, or 70 for non-reactor
           activities and licensees there.
                       The standard norm for NRC correspondence
           following inspections is to issue a notice of
           violation for an inspection finding.  The exception
           has been in the past where we were inspecting vendors
           under previously Part 72 and Part 71, and as I believe
           that Naiem had mentioned, the Commission approved
           recently a change to Part 72, to where an inspection
           and follow-up activity for a vendor under Part 72,
           those findings are characterized as violations and
           that is the means for NRC communicating to the vendor
           for changes in Part 71 and the NRC's classification of
           the inspection finding would be characterized as a
           notice of violation.
                       The change in and of itself is not
           changing the enforcement sanctions available to the
           NRC with regard to orders or  civil penalties.  That
           stays the same as previously existing.
                       This is really a change to the
           nomenclature in our efforts to address and
           characterize the inspection findings.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Are you saying it really
           isn't a change in the quality assurance requirements?
           I mean, that is the words --
                       MR. BRACH:  It is expanding the scope of
           the requirements under QA to facilitate the
           implementation on NRC's part that I mentioned.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  And is this a graded
           expansion?  In other words, a little bottle that holds
           a radioisotope for medical purposes, does it now have
           the same QA requirements as a spent fuel coffin?
                       MR. TANIOUS:  No, no, it is only spent
           fuel, I believe.  This change is only for spent fuel,
           I think.
                       MR. BRACH:  There are no changes to the QA
           requirements and to the changes as John was saying to
           the scope of whom they are applied, and how an NRC
           inspection follow-up activity corresponds with that
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Okay.  That is a whole
           different issue.  What about this comment on the side
           here that this Item 13 only applies to spent fuel?  Is
           that true?
                       MR. BRACH:  The proposed change under Item
           13 is applicable to all certificate holders under Part
           71. and not limited to only spent fuel certificate
                       MR. TANIOUS:  Right.  Right. I'm sorry.
           Thanks for the correction.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  John.
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  Are there guidance
           documents for the rule?
                       (Brief Pause.)
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  The transcript will
           note a long pause.
                       MR. BRACH:  We understood and heard the
           question, but we want to make sure before we respond
           that we give you the correct answer.
                       (Brief Pause.)
                       MR. BRACH:  After a long pause on our
           part, I apologize.  There is no guidance provided in
           the rule package.  It was mentioned that one change
           that is being proposed under Item 15, the change
           authority, where we are proposing a new type of
           categorization, a DP designation for certain casts.
                       There may be a need for regulatory
           guidance to be developed to go along with that change.
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  The thought here is
           that the guidance might be an opportunity to begin to
           introduce the risk informing process, and I just
           wondered if this was at all under consideration.
                       MR. BRACH:  With regard to your earlier
           question or the other panel members' questions about
           the consideration of the risk informing, the answer is
                       And to the extent that guidance is
           developed, that clearly provides both us, as well as
           the stakeholders in commenting on that guidance
           opportunity, to see if there are additional avenues
           for risk informing or risk consideration in our
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  Well, I like what you
           are doing, of trying to establish some sort of
           connection with the international standards.  Is this
           going on with respect to other regulations, this same
           kind of practice, or is this an unusual situation?
                       MR. BRACH:  In the transportation arena,
           it is a little unique, in that the transportation
           activities, there is some legislation actually that
           directs and mandates the Department of Transportation
           from an international commerce standpoint to strife to
           have U.S. regulations consistent with international
           regulations to support international commerce.
                       So in that regard, our efforts and DOT's
           efforts with regard to the IA standard in
           transportation are unique in that regard.  I was
           looking at the staff, and there is one other area that
           I can think of just off the top of my head with regard
           to, for example, Part 20 and radiation protection
           standards, where I know there is much coordination and
           effort with our staff, and IAEA, and NCRP and ICRP,
           with regard to radiation protection standards.
                       But I think in the area of Part 71 and the
           Department of Transportation's very directed efforts
           to have our standards mirror and be compatible, and
           consistent with international standards, it may be
           unique in that regard in looking at other NRC 10 CFR
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  Thank you.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Any questions from the
                       (No audible response.)
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Any from the audience, any
           comments or questions?  Please identify yourself for
           the record.
                       MS. GUE:  Thank you for this opportunity.
           I am Lisa Gue, with the Public Citizens Critical Mass
           Energy and Environment Program.
                       And I just wanted to jump back to the
           brief conversation that you had early on in the
           presentation with respect to public comment and
           concern about using international standards, I guess,
           as a way of -- well, the concern that international
           standards could be used to degradate domestic
                       And in addition to the conversation that
           you had -- and I know that Public Citizen has
           participated in various forums, and so I won't get
           into the detail of this, but just to say generally
           that another aspect of our concern is the increasing
           trends that we see in a number of different regulatory
           agencies, including the NRC, to punt decision making
           authority to unaccountable and non-transparent
           international agencies.
                       And so I guess we urge you to not put
           forward simply harmonization with international
           standards simply as an end in and of itself, because
           we certainly find that unacceptable as a policy
           standpoint, and frequently see its effect as being to
           degradate the domestic standards.  Thank you.
                       MR. LEVENSON:  Thank you.  Anyone else?
           If not, I turn it back over to you.
                       CHAIRMAN GARRICK:  All right.  We are a
           little ahead of schedule, which is great and unique,
           and I don't know about the rest of you, but I need a
                       (Whereupon, the meeting was recessed at
           2:05 p.m.)


Page Last Reviewed/Updated Monday, October 02, 2017