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committed itself to taking all the substantive and procedural steps which NEPA and Calvert Cliffs require.

For currently pending operating license cases, where these full environmental reviews are as yet incomplete and urgent power needs might be served by generation of a part of the potential output of a fully constructed but idle facility, the Commission has provided a procedure for interim, low power licensing based on a more limited environmental review which assures, however, that account is taken of relevant environmental considerations during the limited period of low power operation, and that the outcome of the full NEPA review will not be prejudiced. This procedure has the effect of permitting necessary operational tests to be conducted (thus saving a few months in the process of achieving operational readiness) and permitting some increment of needed power to be made available at an earlier time than would be the case if no licensing action were taken until completion of the detailed statement procedures which attend final licensing action.

At this time, pending review by the U.S. Court of Appeals, the Commission views the Quad Cities decision as being applicable only to the two reactor units there involved. Assuming reversal by the appellate court, interim licenses could continue to be issued. Assuming the appellate court affirms, the impact would depend on the nature of the ruling and orders pending any further review.

Question c. What effect would such delays in the licensing schedules have on regional power supply situations considered in correspondence between AEC and FPC prior to the Quad Cities order?

Answer. The Quad Cities decision has implications for those facilities which will be otherwise complete, ready for issuance of an operating license during 1972, and eligible for interim low power licensing under 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix D, prior to the completion of the full NEPA review and associated procedural steps.

By letter of October 15, 1971, the Federal Power Commission identified regions in this country where power shortages could result if nuclear power plants were not placed in operation to help meet the expected demand for electricity during the summer of 1972, and the winter of 1972–1973. The FPC identified a total of 14 nuclear power plants, ten needed in the summer of 1972 and four for the winter of 1972–1973.

By FPC's current appraisal, the period of particular need for two plants should be changed. Oconee 2 should be considered as needed in the summer of 1973 rather than the winter of 1972–1973, assuring the availability of Oconee Unit 1 and Surry Unit 1, and Kewaunee should be considered for the summer of 1973 rather than the summer of 1972 in view of the current construction schedule; moreover, FPC would add Ft. St. Vrain for the winter of 1972–1973 to the list of particularly needed plants.

In commenting on the current situation, the FPC points out that nuclear power plants, because of their generally large capacity base load characteristics, and long lead time for completion, are almost invariably of major importance to adequate and reliable power supply in their respective service areas and regions ; thus, delays in any of them which may result from the Quad Cities decision can generally be expected to be of some consequence. They express added concern if such delays should be further compounded by inability of both nuclear and fossil plants to secure water discharge permits as required from the Corps of Engineers because of any effects on the Corps and the Environmental Protection Agency resulting from the Grand River decision (Kalur v. Resor, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Civil Action 1331–71, December 22, 1971, 3 ERC 1458).

The implications of the decision in terms of delay in commercial operation for 13 ts now identified by the Federal Power Commission as critical to the power needs in various regions during the next year, assuming the decision were now applied to all facilities, are shown in Enclosure 2.

As shown by Enclosure 2, we now estimate that a minimum delay of two months in reaching commercial operation can be expected for each of the eligible plants, assuming as a result of the Quad Cities decision that interim low power licenses cannot be issued. Eight of the nine plants needed for the summer of 1972 could potentially be placed in commercial operation in time to help meet the demand assuming low power licenses could be issued. If low power licenses cannot be issued, five of the plants might possibly attain commercial operation, but the schedule is too marginal to afford a sound basis for any confidence in this regard. The remaining three cannot achieve commercial operation in time to help with the summer peak.

One of the nine plants, Surry Unit 1, like Kewaunee which was previously listed by FPC, will not be available in any event for the summer peak, as we had previously expected, Construction of Kewaunee will not be complete until about September 1972 (and it is not eligible for low power licensing prior to issuance of the final detailed statement), and our review of Surry will not be completed until mid-summer,

The plants now estimated to be needed to meet the expected demand for the winter of 1972–1973 are currently estimated to be available by that time.

It should be emphasized that our schedule estimates for licensing and startup of these plants are predicated on several important factors: (1) that the issuance of final environmental statements will not be delayed as a result of comments received or issues raised by any source; and (2) that any public hearings involving these plants will proceed on an expedited schedule.

Question d. Assuming that the lower court's opinion and order are affirmed on appeal, what effect will the decision have on post-Calvert Cliffs licensing schedules considered in AEC-FPC correspondence prior to the Quad Cities order? Please include in the response each plant which would be affected and the best estimate of the change in the licensing schedule and the impact of that change in the availability of power.

Answer. Enclosure 2 also shows the schedule for other pending operating license applications in addition to those identified by the FPC. These applications are not eligible under 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix D, for low power licensing prior to issuance of the final detailed statement. It is not presently expected that other applications would be affected by the decision.

(Enclosure 2 follows:)

ENCLOSURE 2

EVALUATION OF THE SCHEDULE FOR OPERATION OF NUCLEAR PLANTS ESTIMATED TO BE COMPLETED IN

CALENDAR YEAR 1972

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1 Construction completion defined as ready to load fuel,
2 Based on current FPC assessment.
3 Assumes applicants will request a partial power license.
4 Optimistic estimate based on minimum elapsed time to achieve commercial operation.
5 Plants identified in FPC letter of Oct. 15, 1971,
o Currently holds a license for 20 percent power.

7 Not eligible for low power license under 10 CFR 50 appendix D pending issuance of the final detailed environmental statement.

8 Estimated schedule for completion of construction slipped.

UNITED STATES ATOMIC ENERGY COMMISSION,

Washington, D.C., January 28, 1972. Hon. HENRY M. JACKSON, Chairman, Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, United States Senate.

DEAR SENATOR JACKSON : Your letter of January 14, 1972, requested that we furnish your Committee with an evaluation of the implications for nuclear power plant licensing of the Quad Cities decision by the United States District Court for the District of Columbia (Izaak Walton League of America, et al v. James Schlesinger, et al, and a companion case, Illinois v. U.S. Atomic Energy Commission, et al, civil actions 2207-71 and 2208–71, December 13, 1971), assuming that the decision is not reversed on appeal.

You noted that the Committee was particularly interested in the impact of the decision on those plants and regions identified by the Federal Power Commission as critical to the meeting of projected 1971 and 1972 electric power demands, and requested coordination of our response with the FPC.

As requested, we have coordinated our response with the FPC and are pleased to provide the enclosed information which is keyed to your three numbered questions. Although the enclosure concerns selected plants, the FPC emphasizes that delay of any plant can generally be expected to be consequential, because all nuclear power plants, given their generally large capacity, base load characteristics, and long lead times for completion, are almost invariably of major importance to adequate and reliable power supply in their respective service areas and regions. If we can be of further assistance, please let us know. Sincerely,

(Signed) JAMES R. SCHLESINGER,

Chairman. (Enclosure]

[ENCLOSURE]

Response to questions contained in January 14, 1972, letter from Senator Henry M. Jackson.

Question. Implications for the Atomic Energy Commission licensing program in general.

Answer. The Quad Cities decision enjoins the issuance of any interim testing or low power operating license for the Quad Cities units prior to completion of those procedural steps which would be associated with the preparation and issuance of a detailed statement on environmental considerations under section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, 42 USC 4321 et scq. ("NEPA"). A NEPA detailed statement is required under the Commission's rules (Appendix D to 10 CFR Part 50) as a condition precedent to issuance of any final, full power license for a nuclear power facility, including the Quad Cities units.

Those rules further provide that during the course of the ongoing full NEPA review for already completed facilities (such as Quad Cities), the Commission may authorize interim operation for limited periods, for purposes of testing or partial power output, after considering and balancing specified environmental and public interest factors (Section D of Appendix D, supra).

In further explanation of the foregoing, under AEC rules (as revised in light of the Calvert Cliffs decision) the steps associated with development and issuance of a full NEPA detailed statement for already constructed facilities involve the following: receipt of supplemental environmental information from the applicants; preparation of a draft impact statement (including the newly required benefit-cost analysis); a period for Federal and State agencies and the public to comment; preparation of a final impact statement; and, per the guidelines of the Council on Environmental Quality and our own regulations for implementation of NEPA, a period following issuance of the final statement prior to licensing action. This process, of course, takes time; but the Commission has committed itself to taking all the substantive and procedural steps which NEPA and Calvert Cliffs require.

For currently pending operating license cases, where these full environmental reviews are as yet incomplete and urgent power needs might be served by generation of a part of the potential output of fully constructed but idle facility, the Commission has provided a procedure for interim, low power licensing based on a more limited environmental review which assures, however, that account is taken of relevant environmental considerations during the limited period of low power operation, and that the outcome of the full NĒPA review will not be prejudiced. This procedure has the effect of permitting necessary operational tests to be conducted (thus saving a few months in the process of achieving operational readiness) and permitting some increment of needed power to be made available at an earlier time than would be the case if no licensing action were taken until completion of the detailed statement procedures which attend final licensing action.

At this time, the Commission views the District Court's Quad Cities decision as being applicable to the two reactor units there involved. If applied generally, the premises of that decision would preclude any interim low power licensing and delay by months the availability of any electric power from previously completed facilities.

The impact, if we were to withhold any interim low power licenses until competion of full NEPA detailed statement procedures is shown in Enclosure 2. (See preceding table, p. 673.)

Question. Implications for those nuclear generating plants receiving construction permits or operating licenses prior to January 1, 1970.

Answer. The Quad Cities decision has no effect on operating licenses issued prior to January 1, 1970. As to construction permits issued prior to January 1, 1970, the decision has implications for those facilities which will be otherwise complete, ready for issuance of an operating license, and elegible for interim low power licensing under 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix D, prior to the expected completion of the full NEPA review and associated procedural steps.

By letter of October 15, 1971, the Federal Power Commission identified certain regions in this country where power shortages could result if nuclear power plants were not placed in operation to help meet the expected demand for electricity during the summer of 1972, and the winter of 1972–1973. The FPC identified a total of 14 nuclear power plants, ten needed in the summer of 1972 and four for the winter of 1972-1973.

By FPC's current appraisal, the period of particular need for two plants should be changed. Oconee 2 should be considered as needed in the summer of 1973 rather the winter of 1972–1973, assuming the availability of Oconee Unit 1 and Surry Unit 1, and Kewaunee should be considered for the summer of 1973 rather than the summer of 1972 in view of the current construction schedule; moreover, FPC would add Ft. St. Vrain for the winter of 1972–1973 to the list of particularly needed plants.

In commenting on the current situation, the FPC points out that nuclear power plants, because of their generally large capacity, base load characteristics, and long lead times for completion, are almost invariably of major importance to adequate and reliable power supply in their respective service areas and regions ; thus, delays in any of them which may result from the Quad Cities decision can generally be expected to be of some consequence. They express added concern if such delays should be further compounded by inability of both nuclear and fossil plants to secure water discharge permits as required from the Corps of Engineers because of any effects on the Corps and Environmental Protection Agency resulting from the Grand River decision (Kalur v. Resor, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Civil Action 1331-71, December 22, 1971, 3 ERC 1458).

The implications of Quad Cities in terms of delay in commercial operation for 13 plants now identified by the Federal Power Commission as critical to the power needs in various regions during the next year, assuming the decision were now applied to all facilities, are shown in Enclosure 2.

As shown by Enclosure 2, we now estimate that a minimum delay of two months in reaching commercial operation can be expected for each of the eligible plants, assuming as a result of the Quad Cities decision that interim low power licenses cannot be issued. Eight of the nine plants needed for the summer of 1972 could potentially be placed in commercial operation in time to help meet the demand assuming low power licenses could be issued. If low power licenses cannot be issued, five of the plants might possibly attain commercial operation, but the schedule is too marginal to afford a sound basis for any confidence in this regard. The remaining three cannot achieve commercial operation in time to help with the summer peak.

One of the nine plants, Surry Unit 1, like Kewaunee which was previously listed by the FPC, will not be available in any event for the summer peak, as we had previously expected. Construction of Kewaunee will not be complete until about September 1972 (also it is not eligible for low power licensing prior to issuance of the final detailed statement), and our review of Surry will not be completed until mid-summer.

The plants now estimated to be needed to meet the expected demand for the winter of 1972-1973 are currently estimated to be available by that time.

It should be emphasized that our schedule estimates for licensing and startup of these plants are predicated on several important factors: (1) that the issuance of, final environmental statements will not be delayed as a result of comments received or issues raised by any source; and (2) that any public hearings involving these plants will proceed on an expedited schedule.

Question. Implications for those nuclear electric generating plants receiving construction permits or operating licenses since January 1, 1970.

Answer.—The five plants? which, subsequent to January 1, 1970, received an operating license, would not be affected by the decision since low power authorization would not be a consideration. Under the Commission's revised regulations for implementation of NEPA, adopted following the Calvert Cliffs decision, a full environmental review is being conducted with respect to each facility licensed for full power operation between January 1, 1970, and the effective date of the new regulations. An opportunity for a public hearing on environmental matters will be afforded with respect to these facilities. Each such facility was also subjected to a proceeding on the matter of whether the operating license should be suspended pending the full environmental review and in each instance a determination not to suspend was made. An opportunity for hearing on each such determination was afforded and in one instance (Monticello), a request for hearing by a conservation group is currently pending. Impact on operating licenses issued or to be issued subsequent to September 9, 1971, is discussed above.

The Quad Cities decision would not be expected to be a factor for construction permits issued since January 1, 1970, since construction of such facilities will not have progressed to a point of readiness for issuance of any operating license until after the full environmental review and the procedures associated with a NEPA detailed statement have been completed.

1 Monticello ; H. B. Robinson ; Point Beach Unit 1; Millstone Unit 1; Dresden Unit 3.

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