Environmental Impact Statement for the License Renewal of the Columbia Fuel Fabrication Facility in Richland County, South Carolina: Draft Report for Comment (NUREG-2248)

This NUREG-series publication was issued for public comment. The comment period is now closed.

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Publication Information

Manuscript Completed: July 2021
Date Published: July 2021

Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, DC 20555-0001

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The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) prepared this draft environmental impact statement (EIS) as part of its environmental review of the Westinghouse Electric Company, LLC (WEC) license renewal application to continue operating the Columbia Fuel Fabrication Facility (CFFF) for an additional 40 years. The CFFF is located in Hopkins, South Carolina, and has been operating since 1969. This draft EIS provides the NRC staff’s evaluation of the potential environmental impacts of the proposed action, the no-action alternative, and a 20-year license renewal alternative. The proposed action is the renewal of the special nuclear material license SNM-1107 to allow the WEC to continue licensed operations and activities at the CFFF site for an additional 40 years. 

On June 5, 2020, the NRC staff decided to prepare an EIS because new information related to the WEC’s remedial investigations being conducted under a Consent Agreement (CA) with South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) revealed uncertainty related to the source and extent of contamination onsite and the potential future migration pathways offsite and precluded the NRC staff from making a finding of no significant impact through the environmental assessment process.

The WEC’s ongoing remedial investigations under the CA with SCDHEC are being conducted in coordination with the State, not the NRC. However, the NRC staff considered these remedial investigations and associated actions in its description of the affected environment and environmental impact determinations in this draft EIS. 

Based on its environmental review, the NRC staff preliminarily recommends that the WEC’s license SNM-1107 for the operation of the CFFF be renewed for an additional 40 years. The NRC staff based its recommendation on the following: 
  • the license renewal application, which includes the environmental report and supplemental documents and the WEC’s responses to the NRC staff’s Requests for Additional Information
  • consultation with Federal, State, and Tribal agencies and input from other stakeholders
  • independent NRC staff review
  • the assessments provided in this draft EIS.

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Tuesday, September 21, 2021