NRC completes safety review of two new reactors at South Texas Project site

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has completed final safety evaluation report for the combined licenses (COL) for the proposed units 3 and 4 at the South Texas Project (STP) .

The report concludes there are no safety aspects that would preclude issuing licenses for construction and operation of the proposed reactors at the site, near Bay City, Texas.

The staff will provide the report and Final Environmental Impact Statement on the application to the Commission for the mandatory hearing phase of the licensing process. In the mandatory hearing, expected to take place later this year, the Commission will determine whether the staff’s review supports the findings necessary to issue the licenses. Following the mandatory hearing, the Commission will vote on whether to authorize the staff to issue the licenses.

STP Nuclear Operating Company submitted its COL application for Units 3 and 4 on Sept. 20, 2007, for permission to build and operate two Advanced Boiling Water Reactors (ABWR) at the site. Nuclear Innovation North America became the lead applicant on Jan. 24, 2011. The proposed reactors would be adjacent to STP’s existing Units 1 and 2. The NRC certified the 1,300-megawatt electric ABWR design in 1997. More information on the ABWR certification process is available on the NRC website.

The NRC’s Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards independently reviewed those aspects of the STP application that concern safety. The committee provided the results of its review to the Commission on Feb. 19, 2015. The NRC and the Army Corps of Engineers, Galveston District, completed the environmental review and issued the final impact statement for the proposed STP reactors in February 2011.