§ 72.54 Expiration and termination of licenses and decommissioning of sites and separate buildings or outdoor areas.
(a) Each specific license expires at the end of the day on the expiration date stated in the license except when a licensee has filed an application for renewal pursuant to § 72.42 not less than 24 months before the expiration of the existing license. If an application for renewal has been filed at least 24 months prior to the expiration date stated in the existing license, the existing license expires at the end of the day on which the Commission makes a final determination to deny the renewal application or, if the determination states an expiration date, the expiration date stated in the determination.
(b) Each specific license revoked by the Commission expires at the end of the day on the date of the Commission's final determination to revoke the license or on the expiration date stated in the determination or as otherwise provided by Commission Order.
(c) Each specific license continues in effect, beyond the expiration date if necessary, with respect to possession of licensed material until the Commission notifies the licensee in writing that the license is terminated. During this time, the licensee shall—
(1) Limit actions involving spent fuel, reactor-related GTCC waste, or other licensed material to those related to decommissioning; and
(2) Continue to control entry to restricted areas until they are suitable for release in accordance with NRC requirements.
(d) As required by § 72.42(b), or within 60 days of the occurrence of any of the following, consistent with the administrative directions in § 72.4, each licensee shall notify the NRC in writing, and submit within 12 months of this notification, a final decommissioning plan and begin decommissioning upon approval of the plan if—
(1) The licensee has decided to permanently cease principal activities, as defined in this part, at the entire site or any separate building or outdoor area that contains residual radioactivity such that the building or outdoor area is unsuitable for release in accordance with NRC requirements; or
(2) No principal activities under the license have been conducted for a period of 24 months; or
(3) No principal activities have been conducted for a period of 24 months in any separate building or outdoor area that contains residual radioactivity such that the building or outdoor area is unsuitable for release in accordance with NRC requirements.
(e) Coincident with the notification required by paragraph (d) of this section, the licensee shall maintain in effect all decommissioning financial assurances established by the licensee pursuant to § 72.30 in conjunction with a license issuance or renewal or as required by this section. The amount of the financial assurance must be increased, or may be decreased, as appropriate, to cover the detailed cost estimate for decommissioning established pursuant to paragraph (g)(5) of this section.
(1) Any licensee who has not provided financial assurance to cover the detailed cost estimate submitted with the decommissioning plan shall do so when this rule becomes effective November 24, 1995.
(2) Following approval of the decommissioning plan, a licensee may reduce the amount of the financial assurance as decommissioning proceeds and radiological contamination is reduced at the site with the approval of the Commission.
(f)(1) The Commission may grant a request to delay or postpone initiation of the decommissioning process if the Commission determines that this relief is not detrimental to the public health and safety and is otherwise in the public interest. The request must be submitted no later than 30 days before notification pursuant to paragraph (d) of this section. The schedule for decommissioning set forth in paragraph (d) of this section may not commence until the Commission has made a determination on the request.
(2) The Commission may approve an alternate schedule for submittal of the final decommissioning plan required pursuant to paragraph (d) of this section if the Commission determines that the alternate schedule is necessary to the effective conduct of decommissioning operations and presents no undue risk from radiation to the public health and safety, and is otherwise to the public interest.
(g) The proposed final decommissioning plan must include—
(1) A description of the current conditions of the site or separate building or outdoor area sufficient to evaluate the acceptability of the plan;
(2) The choice of the alternative for decommissioning with a description of the activities involved;
(3) A description of controls and limits on procedures and equipment to protect occupational and public health and safety;
(4) A description of the planned final radiation survey; and
(5) An updated detailed cost estimate for the chosen alternative for decommissioning, comparison of that estimate with present funds set aside for decommissioning, and plan for assuring the availability of adequate funds for completion of decommissioning including means for adjusting cost estimates and associated funding levels over any storage or surveillance period; and
(6) A description of technical specifications and quality assurance provisions in place during decommissioning.
(h) For final decommissioning plans in which the major dismantlement activities are delayed by first placing the ISFSI or MRS in storage, planning for these delayed activities may be less detailed. Updated detailed plans must be submitted and approved prior to the start of these activities.
(i) If the final decommissioning plan demonstrates that the decommissioning will be completed as soon as practicable, performed in accordance with the regulations in this chapter, and will not be inimical to the common defense and security or to the health and safety of the public, and after notice to interested persons, the Commission will approve the plan subject to any appropriate conditions and limitations and issue an order authorizing decommissioning.
(j)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (k) of this section, each licensee shall complete decommissioning of the site or separate building or outdoor area as soon as practicable but no later than 24 months following approval of the final decommissioning plan by the Commission.
(2) Except as provided in paragraph (k) of this section, when decommissioning involves the entire site, each licensee shall request license termination as soon as practicable but no later than 24 months following approval of the final decommissioning plan by the Commission.
(k) The Commission may approve a request for an alternate schedule for completion of decommissioning of the site or separate building or outdoor area, and license termination if appropriate, if the Commission determines that the alternate schedule is warranted by consideration of the following:
(1) Whether it is technically feasible to complete decommissioning within the allotted 24-month period;
(2) Whether sufficient waste disposal capacity is available to allow completion of decommissioning within the allotted 24-month period;
(3) Whether a significant volume reduction in wastes requiring disposal will be achieved by allowing short-lived radionuclides to decay;
(4) Whether a significant reduction in radiation exposure to workers can be achieved by allowing short-lived radionuclides to decay; and
(5) Other site-specific factors that the Commission may consider appropriate on a case-by-case basis, such as regulatory requirements of other government agencies, lawsuits, groundwater treatment activities, monitored natural groundwater restoration, actions that could result in more environmental harm than deferred cleanup, and other factors beyond the control of the licensee.
(l) As the final step in decommissioning, the licensee shall—
(1) Certify the disposition of all licensed material, including accumulated wastes, by submitting a completed NRC Form 314 or equivalent information; and
(2) Conduct a radiation survey of the premises where the licensed activities were conducted and submit a report of the results of this survey, unless the licensee demonstrates in some other manner that the premises are suitable for release in accordance with the criteria for decommissioning in 10 CFR part 20, subpart E. The licensee shall, as appropriate—
(i) Report levels of gamma radiation in units of millisieverts (microroentgen) per hour at one meter from surfaces, and report levels of radioactivity, including alpha and beta, in units of megabecquerels (disintegrations per minute or microcuries) per 100 square centimeters removable and fixed for surfaces, megabecquerels (microcuries) per milliliter for water, and becquerels (picocuries) per gram for solids such as soils or concrete; and
(ii) Specify the survey instrument(s) used and certify that each instrument is properly calibrated and tested.
(m) Specific licenses, including expired licenses, will be terminated by written notice to the licensee when the Commission determines that—
(1) The decommissioning has been performed in accordance with the approved final decommissioning plan and the order authorizing decommissioning; and
(2)(i) A radiation survey has been performed which demonstrates that the premises are suitable for release in accordance with the criteria for decommissioning in 10 CFR part 20, subpart E; or
(ii) Other information submitted by the licensee is sufficient to demonstrate that the premises are suitable for release in accordance with the criteria for decommissioning in 10 CFR part 20, subpart E.
(3) Records required by § 72.80(e) have been received.
[59 FR 36038, July 15, 1994, as amended at 60 FR 38240, July 26, 1995; 61 FR 24675, May 16, 1996; 61 FR 29638, June 12, 1996; 62 FR 59726, Nov. 3, 1997; 66 FR 51840, Oct. 11, 2001; 81 FR 86910, Dec. 2, 2016]