We are pleased to report that both of our decommissioning sites, Oyster Creek in Lacey Township, NJ and Pilgrim in Plymouth, Massachusetts, are setting new levels of excellence in every relevant metric of performance as they drive forward with safe and efficient deconstruction of the shuttered nuclear plants.
Oyster Creek, under Site Vice President Jeff Dostal, has begun the crucially important task of reactor vessel segmentation, with GE Hitachi serving as the contractor and Nuclear Consultants International (NCI), an autonomous company tasked with the oversight authority of all safety-significant activities. Several adjunct buildings have been demolished and transformers on site are being deconstructed and removed, all to improve the station’s security profile. As buildings are being taken down, much of the furnishings and materials within them are being donated to area nonprofit organizations, schools and other civic groups. Planning is underway for de-fueling the spent fuel pool in 2021.
Oyster Creek Decommissioning Site: Reactor Containment Shield Piece Lowered Through Equipment Hatch (left); Reactor Containment Shield Staged for Cutting (right)
Shortly after Oyster Creek, Pilgrim began decommissioning activities under Site Vice President, John Moylan. The demolition of legacy structures to maintain commitments to the local community, construction of a new HI-STORM storage facility for the used nuclear fuel, containment vessel head segmentation and removal to assist the upcoming fuel loading campaign, and controlled evaporation of tens of thousands of gallons of unneeded water inventory are among the recent notable achievements of the Pilgrim Team.
Pilgrim Decommissioning Site: Reactor Containment Shield Cut in Preparation of Demolition (left); Independent Spent Fuel Storage (ISFSI) Pad Construction (right)
Both decommissioning sites have passed U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) inspections with flying colors and have earned kudos from NCI. “We are delighted to be excelling at every metric of performance at both sites, namely personnel safety, control of contamination, dose minimization and environmental protection. We are doing all of this safely and within the budget submitted to the NRC,” says Mr. Kelly Trice, President of Comprehensive Decommissioning International (CDI).
Pam Cowan, Chief Operating Officer of Holtec Decommissioning International (HDI), the NRC license holder, projects an equally positive outlook, claiming, “Our superb site security performance, experienced personnel, continuous community engagement and rigorous license compliance are deepening the confidence of our stakeholders, which includes the local communities and governmental authorities.”
“We commit to keeping local residents informed as we navigate the successful phases of our Decommissioning Program, earning their trust as an honest and truthful communicator. We are committed to keeping our decommissioning activities fully transparent at all times and sharing them with our host communities. Educating the local residents and policy makers in the art and science of decommissioning is a high priority for us. The dictionary of FAQs presented on our website is a step in that direction,” offers Joy Russell, Holtec’s Chief Communications Officer.