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Overview and Summary of NRC Involvement with DOE in the Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization (TWRS-P) Program

June 29, 2001

Tank Waste Remediation System Section Special Projects Branch Division of Fuel Cycle Safety and Safeguards Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguard, United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission

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ABSTRACT
In 1995, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) embarked on an effort to privatize the processing through vitrification of 54 million gallons of radioactive waste that has been stored in 177 underground storage tanks at the Hanford Site. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) provided assistance to DOE on the Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization (TWRS-P) program, with a potential transition to NRC regulatory authority at a future time. In 2000, DOE terminated the privatization approach, and decided to use more traditional contracting methods. During their reviews, NRC staff analyzed both unmitigated and mitigated consequences from potential accident scenarios at the proposed facility. NRC staff's efforts identified several key areas of uncertainty, such as melter failure modes and frequencies, that would require further study before more refined analyses could be performed. The reviews also identified several open issues, including the need for significantly more detailed design information and safety analyses, and greater defense-in-depth. In particular, the design, at the time of termination of the privatization, was found to be very preliminary and corresponded to perhaps a 15 percent level of design. This report summarizes NRC's participation in and observations on the TWRS-P program and identifies issues from the NRC's perspective.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS
ABSTRACT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iii EXECUTIVE SUMMARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ix ABBREVIATIONS AND ACRONYMS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xv GLOSSARY OF TERMS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xvii 1.0 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 2.0 Hanford and the Tank Wastes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 The Tri-Party Agreement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 DOE Program and Contracts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 DOE Regulatory Approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 NRC Involvement via the Memorandum of Understanding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Overview of this Document . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13

NRC PARTICIPATION AND ACTIVITIES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Tank Waste Remediation System Section . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Support Activities by the Center for Nuclear Waste Regulatory Analyses . . . . TWRS-P Standard Review Plan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NRC Participation in Phase IA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NRC Participation in Phase IB-1 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 16 17 22 24

3.0

NRC AREAS OF REVIEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 3.1 Organization and General Information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.1.1 Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization Organization . . . . . . . . 3.1.2 Meetings and Reports on Safety and Regulatory Activities . . . . . . . . . . 3.1.3 Inspections . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.1.4 Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Seismic and Structural Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.2.1 Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization: Part A . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.2.2 Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization: Part B-1 . . . . . . . . . . . 3.2.3 Present Status . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hazards and Safety Analyses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.3.1 Standards Approval Package (Safety Requirements Document and Hazardous Analysis Report) and Initial Safety Analysis Report . . . . . . 3.3.2 Design Safety Features Submittal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.3.3 Related Activities and Topical Meetings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.3.4 NRC Analysis and Evaluation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.3.5 Present Status of Hazards and Safety Analyses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 29 30 33 35 37 37 43 46 47 47 48 49 50 54

3.2

3.3

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TABLE OF CONTENTS (cont.)
3.4 Radiation Safety and Dose Assessment Methodology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65 3.4.1 Regulatory Limits for Occupational and Public Doses Applicable to Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.1.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.1.2 Definitions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.1.3 Limits . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.1.4 Monitoring Thresholds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Radiation Protection Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.2.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.2.2 Description of the Radiation Protection Program . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.2.3 Regulatory Basis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.2.4 Organization of the RPP for Design . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.2.5 Comparison of NRC and DOE ALARA Guidance . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.2.6 Radiation Protection Aspects from the NRC Standard Review Plan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4.2.7 Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65 65 66 68 75 75 75 77 78 81 86 87 91 93 93 93 94 94 97 97 98 99 99

3.4.2

3.5

Criticality Safety . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.5.1 Criticality Safety Program Document and Requirements . . . . . . . . . . . 3.5.2 Interim Criticality Safety Evaluations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.5.3 Uncertainties and Unresolved Nuclear Criticality Safety Issues . . . . . . 3.5.4 Conformance with NRC Regulations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Process and Chemical Safety . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.6.1 Standards Approval Package (Safety Requirements Document and Hazard Analysis Report) and Initial Safety Analysis Report . . . . . . . 3.6.2 Design Safety Features Submittal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.6.3 Related Activities and Topical Meetings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.6.4 NRC Assessment of the Present Status . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Fire Protection .............................................. 3.7.1 Standards Approval Package (Safety Requirements Document and Hazard Analysis Report) and Initial Safety Analysis Report . . . . . . 3.7.2 Topical Meeting on Fire Protection (February 1999) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.7.3 Level 1 Meeting on Fire Protection (September 1999) . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.7.4 Level 1 Meeting on Fire Protection (March 2000) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.7.5 Present Status with Reference to Point Paper . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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3.7

109 109 109 110 112 113

3.8

Explosion Protection Issues . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 3.8.1 Standards Approval Package (Safety Requirements Document and Hazard Analysis Report) and Initial Safety Analysis Report . . . . . 115 3.8.2 Design Safety Features Topical MeetingóHydrogen Control (January 1999) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115

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TABLE OF CONTENTS (cont.)
3.8.3 3.8.4 3.8.5 3.9 Explosive Hazards Topical Meeting I (August 1999) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116 Explosive Hazards Topical Meeting II (September 1999) . . . . . . . . . . 116 NRC Assessment of Present Status . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 117 119 119 119 120 120 122 123 123 123 124 127 128 131

Environmental Protection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.9.1 Environmental Impact Statement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.9.2 Standards Approval Package (Safety Requirements Document and Hazard Analysis Report) and Initial Safety Analysis Report . . . . . . 3.9.3 Design Safety Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.9.4 Related Activities and Topical Meetings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.9.5 NRC Assessment of the Present Status . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Quality Assurance and Management Measures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.10.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.10.2 DOE QA Requirements and Guidance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.10.3 NRC QA Regulations and Guidance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.10.4 Comparison of QA Regulatory Requirements and Guidance . . . . . . . 3.10.5 BNFL Inc. QA Program for TWRS-P . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.10.6 NRC Assessment of Current Status and Conclusions . . . . . . . . . . . .

3.10

4.0

NRC OBSERVATIONS AND CONCLUSIONS ON THE REGULATORY APPROACH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 133 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Programmatic Influence Upon DOE Regulatory Activities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inadequate Maintenance of Design and Authorization Basis Documents . . . . Use of a Risk-Based Approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Limited Use of NRC Regulations and Guidance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 133 135 136 138

5.0

POTENTIAL ISSUES FOR TRANSITION TO NRC REGULATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 141 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 5.8 5.9 5.10 5.11 5.12 5.13 Emergency Planning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Regulatory Authority and Classification of Radioactive Wastes . . . . . . . . . . . Safeguards and Security . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Regulation of Emissions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Co-located Worker (CLW) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Waste Ownership . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Payment for Transition to NRC Regulation and NRC Regulatory Oversight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tri-Party Agreement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DOE Stop Work Authority . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DOE Safety Oversight After Regulatory Transition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Application of NRC (10 CFR Part 2) Hearing Requests . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Contractual Obligations for Feed Delivery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Communication Plan with Stakeholders . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 141 141 142 142 142 143 143 143 143 144 144 144 144

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TABLE OF CONTENTS (cont.)
5.14 5.15 5.16 5.17 5.18 5.19 5.20 5.21 5.22 5.23 5.24 5.25 5.26 5.27 5.28 5.29 5.30 5.31 5.32 5.33 5.34 5.35 5.36 6.0 7.0 Cost Benefit of NRC Regulation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Role of the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Price-Anderson Indemnification . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Timing to Avoid Delays from Regulatory Transition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DOE Financial Interests . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Quality Assurance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Impacts on Other Hanford Site Facilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Responsibility for Occupational Safety . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tailoring of Requirements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Achievement of Adequate Safety . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Effect of Schedule Delays On Overall Risk . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Resource Allocation Across TWRS-Related Facilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Backfit/Retrofit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Scope of NRC Regulation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Location of the Regulator . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Multi-Step Licensing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Differences in 10 CFR Part 20 and 10 CFR Part 835 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Cost of Contractor Documentation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Role of DOE Orders Versus NRC Rules . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Role of National Environmental Policy Act in Regulatory Transition . . . . Role of the ACRS or ACNW in Regulatory Oversight Transition . . . . . . . . . . Impact on Future Generations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Public Input to Regulatory Decisions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 144 145 145 145 145 145 146 146 146 146 147 147 148 148 149 149 149 149 150 150 150 151 151

FUTURE ITEMS, EVENTS, AND CONCERNS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 153 MAIN REFERENCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 155

APPENDICES
APPENDIX A: SUMMARY OF ISSUES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 157 APPENDIX B: MOU BETWEEN DOE AND NRC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 199 APPENDIX C: POINT PAPER SUMMARIES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 207 APPENDIX D: DISCUSSION OF POTENTIAL ISSUES FOR REGULATORY TRANSITION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 211 APPENDIX E: LISTING OF NRC CORRESPONDENCE WITH DOE ON TWRS-P . . . . . . . 265

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Overview and Summary of NRC Involvement with DOE in the Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization Program
THE TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEM-PRIVATIZATION PROGRAM In 1995, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) embarked on an effort to privatize the processing through vitrification of 54 million gallons of radioactive waste that has been stored in 177 underground storage tanks at the Hanford Site. Under the initial phase of the Privatization plan, fixed-price waste treatment services for processing a portion of the waste was to be supplied, on leased land at the Hanford Site, by contractor-owned, contractor-operated facilities under a fixed-priced contract. DOE established a dedicated Regulatory Unit (RU) led by a Regulatory Official (RO) at the DOE Richland Operations Office with regulatory authority exclusive to the regulation of TWRSP contractors. The RO reported directly to the Manager of DOE/Richland Operations Office (RL) at a level equivalent to the DOE Program Manager for TWRS. The RU planned on following the five principles of good regulation as articulated by the NRC - independence, openness, efficiency, clarity, and reliability. The basic concept of DOEís regulatory approach at TWRS-P was that the contractor is responsible for achieving adequate safety, complying with applicable laws and regulations, and conforming with top-level safety standards and principles stipulated by DOE. Consistent with applicable laws and regulations, the contractor is required to tailor the exercise of this responsibility to the specific hazards associated with its activities, and is encouraged to do this in a cost-effective manner that applies best commercial practices. TWRS-P contractors have the responsibility to identify and recommend to DOE the set of standards, regulations, and requirements necessary to ensure adequate safety at the proposed facilities. This constitutes a risk-based, integrated safety management (ISM) process. DOEís responsibility is to execute the regulatory process, including authorization of contractor actions and confirmation that the contractor activities are performed safely and within approved limits. The authority of the RU to regulate a TWRS-P contractor is derived from the terms of the TWRS-P contract (ìregulate by the contractî). The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) provided assistance to DOE on the TWRS-P program for 3  years under a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed in January 1997. The MOU provided for NRC to acquire an understanding of the wastes and potential treatment processes, assist the DOE in performing reviews in a manner consistent with the NRCís regulatory approach for commercial nuclear facilities, and develop an effective regulatory program for the potential transition to NRC regulatory authority at a future time. In May 2000, DOE abandoned the privatization approach for cost reasons, and declared its intent to pursue a more conventional, management and operations (M&O) style contract for the design, construction, and operation of the waste treatment facilities. The M&O contractor may or may not use the designs, technologies, and approaches already developed. With this contract change, DOE also signaled its intent to self-regulate the facilities for the foreseeable future, without any schedule for transition to NRC regulatory authority. As a result of these changes, the NRC has re-evaluated its role in the program. The NRC has determined that DOEís decision to terminate the privatization contractor and pursue the M&O approach effectively ix NUREG-1747

completes the MOU by its own terms. Consequently, NRC participation has ceased. However, the NRC remains willing to discuss possible arrangements with DOE for NRC involvement in the Hanford tank waste programs in the future, under a new MOU, if there is again a need for NRC expertise and if the NRC sees benefit in such involvement, such as the potential transition to NRC regulatory authority. This report summarizes NRCís participation in and observations on the TWRS-P program, identifies potential open issues from the perspective of the NRC staff, and notes concerns with deviations from the NRCís regulatory approach. Unless otherwise noted, this report is based upon the design as it existed in June 2000. Section 1 provides more information on the program. NRC PARTICIPATION When NRC began its involvement, the TWRS-P program was initially designed to begin with a relatively small pilot plant approach and facility for early processing of the wastes. Such an approach would have allowed verification of design and technical approaches with minimal economic, programmatic, and safety risks, and would still have resulted in the processing of some of the waste materials. However, due to programmatic changes, including concerns regarding the feasibility of privately financing a short-term facility, DOE decided to pursue a much larger, full-scale facility instead of a pilot plant. This decision greatly increased the flow rates and radiochemical inventories for the proposed facility and contributed to several design basis/authorization issues encountered during the program. In carrying out its responsibilities under the MOU, NRC staff participated with DOE in technical reviews and meetings of various contractor submittals including, for example, Safety Requirements Documents (SRDs), Hazard Analysis Reports (HARs), Initial Safety Analysis Reports (ISARs), Design Safety Features (DSF) submittals, and the Firm Fixed Price (FFP) submittal. NRC staff also reviewed numerous other documents on specific features and concerns (e.g., seismic design, quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC), radiological plans, fire protection, chemical safety, etc.) and attended many safety and regulatory meetings with DOE and DOEís contractors (e.g., monthly Topical Meetings, design review meetings, etc.). Oral and written comments were provided by NRC staff to DOE as a result of these reviews and participation in these meetings. NRC staff also assisted DOE in the development of appropriate regulatory guidance and the NRC issued a final Standard Review Plan (SRP) for TWRS-P facilities for use in any future NRC regulatory oversight of the TWRS-P facilities. While participating in this program, NRC staff became fully cognizant of the waste issues, design requirements, safety, and regulation of the proposed facility, thus meeting the NRCís primary objectives of the MOU. To supplement their reviews of contractor and DOE documentation, and to gain better insights into the environmental, safety, and health (ES&H) characteristics of the proposed TWRS-P facilities, NRC staff analyzed both unmitigated and mitigated consequences from potential accident scenarios at a generic TWRS-P facility with similar characteristics and operations to those proposed by the TWRS-P contractors. The analyses used a conservative approach considered to be suitable for safety categorizations and preliminary designs. Several scenarios involving large radiochemical inventories (in tanks), flammable gases, organic ion exchange NUREG-1747 x

resin interactions, glass melters, and cold chemical effects were found to have potential accident consequences to the workers and the public of significant severity and risk (1E-2/yr to 1E-4/yr). Under such circumstances, the NRC staff concluded that accident prevention (reduced probability) and mitigation (reduced consequences) would become necessary, requiring the identification of improved design approaches and items relied on for safety. Ideally, processes and approaches proposed for tank waste processing would incorporate robust designs with redundant features. The NRC staff noted that suitable process accident prevention and mitigation methods exist that are compatible with the regulations and offer the potential for reducing process accident risk to more acceptable levels (circa 2E-6/yr). Furthermore, the NRC staff found that relatively standard nuclear industry methods (e.g., high efficiency particulate air filter systems) could be used for risk reduction; with the possible exception of the melter areas, no unique or new risk reduction methods that might require qualification appeared to be necessary. NRC staffís efforts identified several key areas of uncertainty, such as melter failure modes and frequencies, unique design features, and corrosion resistant requirements, that would require further study before more refined analyses could be performed. The insights gained from these efforts allowed the NRC staff to better understand the potential safety issues and risk control strategies associated with the TWRS-P program. Chapters 2.0 and 3.0 of this report provide more information on the NRC involvement in TWRSP and NRC assessment of several areas of review. POTENTIAL OPEN ISSUES As a result of the NRC staffís technical review of documentation and participation in meetings with DOE and the contractors, several concerns and potential open issues were identified. These include the need for significantly more detailed design information and safety analyses, and greater defense in depth. In particular, the design at the time of termination of the privatization contract was found to be very preliminary and corresponded to perhaps a 15 percent level of design. The NRC staff has identified over two-dozen significant issues and over fifty specific topics in the current design and approach that would require further efforts and analysis to achieve adequate closure; these issues are discussed further in Chapter 3.0 of this report and in Appendix A. These significant issues include both programmatic aspects of TWRS-P (e.g., maintenance of design/authorization basis, level of detail) and technical issues (e.g., large volumes of tankage and radionuclide inventories, combined chemical and radiological hazards, melter corrosion). DOE, as the current regulator, has also identified similar issues. The melters present several issues, due to their size, capacities, and surface area fluxes, all of which would become the largest for radwaste vitrification in the world. However, the experiential base, particularly from the perspective of potential ES&H concerns, is limited. Towards the end of the program, the Contractor identified the need for high nickel alloys for corrosion resistance in areas of the melter that would usually be made of more conventional materials (e.g., carbon steel) in existing vitrification facilities. This was based upon testing a one-third scale melter, but no further information was made available. The Contractor also presented analyses that implied a relatively high level of risk to the worker (circa 1E-3/yr) from a melter offgas/NOx scenario. The melter designs also have several unique attributes, including a thin gap between the cooling coils and the outer steel casing, and drainage holes. More xi NUREG-1747

information and analyses would be required to ascertain the safety ramifications if these melter designs are used by the new contractors. DOE prescribed an expedited schedule at the beginning of the program, with limited flexibility. Consequently, throughout the length of the program, the NRC and DOE staff technical reviews were held to tight schedules (typically a 2 week turnaround for a multivolume submittal) which frequently resulted in the inability to identify action items and plans, and achieve full closure on a number of the issues. Consequently, resolution of several significant design and safety issues (such as those discussed in Chapter 3.0 and Appendix A of this report) may not occur for some time. In addition, the likely impacts from further contractor changes are unclear but would likely imply more uncertainties and more design changes that, in turn, could raise more issues and the corresponding need for additional time for review and resolution prior to proceeding into construction and operation. POTENTIAL CONCERNS WITH DIFFERENCES FROM THE NRCíS REGULATORY APPROACH The working relationship between the NRC and the DOE has evolved during the program, and DOE has acknowledged the value added by the NRCís involvement. In the opinion of the NRC staff, there are several significant concerns which appear to be having a deleterious effect upon DOEís regulatory approach. These are discussed further in Chapter 4.0 of this report. The most notable of these are summarized as follows: 1. The influence of programmatic issues (including cost, schedule, and capacity) upon the regulatory review activities: Programmatic issues, including economics, arose in several regulatory and safety-related meetings, usually in conjunction with the discussions regarding safety-related components and systems, and defense-in-depth. Short schedules (typically 2 weeks) were established by DOE for reviewing large, multivolume submittals and may have impacted the depth and quality of the reviews, including the identification of safety and regulatory concerns. (DOE-Headquarters also expressed concerns about schedule pressures - see page 28.) In addition, DOEís programmatic concerns and desires emphasized higher throughputs (potentially a four-fold or larger increase) and/or additional/larger facilities to increase waste processing rates and reduce schedules and costs. Many design changes were made to accommodate this emphasis on cost and schedule. However, the safety analyses do not appear to have reviewed the potential impacts from such higher throughputs or additional/larger facilities. The emphasis also appeared to contribute to the deferral of some issues to subsequent reviews in order to maintain the schedule. Thus, the design work often continued with the potential for less than adequate consideration and closure of regulatory issues, such as ALARA (as low as reasonably achievable) (e.g., see Chapter 3.0 and Appendix A of this report). Maintenance of design/authorization basis (license): Throughout most of the design effort (about 2 years), the design and safety teams of the Contractor (BNFL Inc.) worked quasiindependently, partly because of the previously mentioned emphasis on schedule. This led to inconsistencies between the design and the safety documentation. Changes in fundamental aspects of the design occurred in this time period, potentially without adequate consideration of regulatory needs, such as inventories and source terms for the xii

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safety analyses. The design and authorization basis documents were not updated and few amendment requests were submitted to the RU. Ultimately, the RU delivered a Corrective Action Notice (CAN) on this concern in March 2000, which, in turn, led to a Corrective Action Plan (CAP) that was agreed to between the RU and the Contractor. A significant number of amendment requests were received by the RU from the Contractor after the CAN. However, by this time, most of the preliminary design activities in this phase of the program were completed and this timing of the CAN provided little room for regulatory review of the modifications and regulatory impact upon the design and design activities. Ironically, the flexible regulatory framework may have contributed to this situation; DOE postponed inspections for about a year that could have identified this situation and that could have potentially endorsed a CAP for correcting the situation. 3. The application of a risk-based approach to the development of the design without additional considerations: Risk-based analyses were used as the basis for the ISM process, which includes hazards identification, consequence estimation, and control mitigation. This is essentially a completely fluid process without a minimum level of requirements and, as practiced on TWRS-P, did not appear to adequately address unknowns, uncertainties, errors, proven practices, future plans, and experience. The ISM approach applied to TWRS-P resulted in less conservatism, reduced margins, and less defense-in-depth during the preliminary design phase - a phase when margins and conservatism would normally be relatively larger. There appeared to be more emphasis on the process, and less on the results. The Integrated Safety Management Plan (ISMP) is an iterative process which includes reassessing assumptions (e.g., of radionuclide concentrations) that can reduce a hazard below a limit into a bin with less reliability and safety requirements. Once this occurs, the scenario represents less risk with fewer safety requirements, and, again, since ISMP focuses on events with higher risk, this scenario and the underlying assumptions may be subject to less scrutiny. An unintended consequence of ISM at TWRS-P accrued from this circular logic: ISM focused on the higher risk areas by challenging assumptions; assumptions that were changed and resulted in lower consequences and risks may not have been revisited or re-evaluated as thoroughly. Thus, reduced consequence estimates may have resulted, and control strategies and equipment may not have been adequately identified. In contrast, the NRC regulatory approach applies a risk-informed, performance-based approach with defense-in-depth, appropriate levels of conservatism, and a minimum set of standards and requirements that are codified in the regulations. Limited use of NRC regulations and guidance: DOE has adopted the NRC principles of good regulation in the documents that form the basis for the TWRS-P regulatory approach. However, DOE has not adopted the use of NRC regulations and guidance for TWRS-P, such as 10 CFR Part 70 and the TWRS Standard Review Plan. Instead, standards, codes, and regulations were selected by the Contractor and approved for their use by the RU with the application of ISM.

4.

REGULATORY TRANSITION ISSUES The NRC and the DOE have previously discussed issues related to the potential regulatory transition of TWRS-P to NRC regulation in the near future. Many of these issues are summarized in Chapter 5.0 and discussed in detail in Appendix D of this report, and have been xiii NUREG-1747

discussed between the DOE and NRC over the 3-year length of the program. DOE is converting the contracts to an M&O arrangement for TWRS, which has been renamed the RPP/WTP (River Protection Project/ Waste Treatment Plant). The NRC staff believes that enabling legislation from Congress is desirable for the NRC to regulate either a privatized TWRS-P facility or an RPP/WTP and that any resulting issues are resolvable. From the viewpoint of the NRC staff, most of the regulatory issues would be addressed by the legislation that enables NRC regulatory authority over the TWRS/WTP facilities or NRC external regulation of DOE facilities, and by continued refinement and detailing of the proposed facility designs. The remaining issues relate to DOE programmatic activities and not regulation. THE FUTURE TWRS/WTP PROGRAM As previously noted, DOE has terminated the current privatization contract and approach and elected to follow an M&O contracting approach. According to the Request for Proposals (RFP), DOE plans to regulate these TWRS facilities. The specific features of the regulatory approach and the balancing of programmatic and safety issues are not identified as of this writing (December 2000). The means to follow, address, and close the design, safety, and regulatory issues identified from the NRC reviews and summarized in this report also have not been presented at this time. The RFP does include significant incentives for a contractor to reduce costs but does not mention safety as an evaluation factor. The DOE has acknowledged the value added to the program by the NRCís participation. However, the NRC has terminated its involvement with the TWRS Project and has deployed staff to other projects. The NRC has also informed DOE that it is willing to discuss possible arrangements for NRC involvement in the future, if there is again a need for NRC expertise and if the NRC sees a benefit from such involvement, such as the potential transition to NRC regulatory authority

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ABBREVIATIONS AND ACRONYMS
ACGIH ACNW ACRS AEA AIChE ALARA ALI AMSQ ANS ANSI API ARCHIE ARF ASC ASME BARCT American Council of Government and Industrial Hygienists Advisory Committee on Nuclear Waste Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards Atomic Energy Act American Institute of Chemical Engineers As Low as Reasonably Achievable Annual Limit on Intake Office of Assistant Manager for Environmental, Safety, Health, and Quality American Nuclear Society American National Standards Institute American Petroleum Institute Automated Resource for Chemical Hazard Incident Evaluation Airborne Release Fraction ALARA Subcommittee American Society of Mechanical Engineers EDG EH EIS EM EP EPA ERDF ERPG ERPP ES&H FFP FFRDC FHA FTE GAO GDP GIGO GOCO GTCC HAB HAR HAZOP HEPA HFD HLW HVAC HWMA I&C IDLH IEEE IG INEEL IROFS ISA ISAR ISM ISMP ISO ITS LAW LCAR LCO LLW LMAES LNT Emergency Diesel Generator Office of Environment, Safety, and Health/DOE Environmental Impact Statement Office of Environmental Management/DOE Environmental Protection OR Emergency Plan U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Environmental Restoration Disposal Facility Emergency Response Planning Guideline Environmental Radiation Protection Program Environment, Safety, and Health Firm Fixed Price (Contract) Federally Funded Research and Development Center Fire Hazards Analysis Full Time Equivalent General Accounting Office Gaseous Diffusion Plant Garbage-In, Garbage-Out Government-Owned, Contractor-Operated Greater than Class C Hanford Advisory Board Hazards Analysis Report Hazards Operability (method or analysis) High Efficiency Particulate Air Hanford Fire Department High Level Waste Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning Hazardous Waste Management Act Instrumentation and Control Immediate Danger to Life and Health Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Implementation Guide Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Items Relied on for Safety Integrated Safety Analysis Initial Safety Analysis Report Integrated Safety Management Integrated Safety Management Plan International Organization for Standardization Important to Safety Low Activity Waste Limited Construction Authorization Request Limiting Condition of Operation Low Level Waste Lockheed Martin Advanced Environmental Systems Linear No Threshold

Best Available Radionuclide Control Technology BAT Best Achievable Technology BDC Baseline Design Criteria BEI BNFL Engineering Inc., United Kingdom BIO Basis for Interim Operation BNFL Inc. British Nuclear Fuels Limited Inc. CAA CAN CAP CAR CBA CCB CCPS CERCLA CFR CLW CNWRA COCO DAC DBE DCS D&D DEAR DF DID DNFSB DOE DSF DST DWPF Clean Air Act Corrective Action Notice Corrective Action Plan Construction Authorization Request Cost Benefit Analysis Consumable Changeout Box Center for Chemical Process Safety Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act Code of Federal Regulations Co-Located Worker Center for Nuclear Waste Regulatory Analysis Company-Owned, Company-Operated Derived Air Concentrations Design Basis Earthquake Distributed Control System Decontamination and Decommissioning Department of Energy Acquisition Regulations Decontamination Factor Defense-in-Depth Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board United States Department of Energy Design Safety Features Double Shell Tanks Defense Waste Processing Facility

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MC&A MCCMT MI M&O MOA MOU MOX

Material Control and Accounting Miscellaneous Cold Chemicals Mix Tank Mechanical Integrity Management and Operations (contract) Memorandum of Agreement Memorandum of Understanding Mixed Oxide

SER SGI SIP SIS SNF SNM SQEP SRD SRP SRS SSC SST TAN TBD TEDE TLV TPA TRU TSD TWA TWRS TWRS-P TWRS/ WTP UBC UCNI UF WAC WDOH WPPSS WTP WVDP

NDT Nondestructive Testing NEI Nuclear Energy Institute NEPA National Environmental Policy Act NESHAPS National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants NFPA National Fire Protection Association NIOSH National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health NMSS Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards/NRC NRC U. S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission NRPB National Radiation Protection Board OAR ORP OSHA OSR PEL P&ID PPE PRA PSAR PSHA QA QAP QAPIP QC RCM RCRA Operations Authorization Request Office of River Protection/DOE Occupational Safety and Health Administration Office of Safety Regulation/DOE OR Operational Safety Requirements Permissable Exposure Levels Piping and Instrumentation Drawings Personnel Protective Equipment Probabilistic Risk Analysis OR Probabilistic Risk Assessment Preliminary Safety Analysis Report Preliminary Seismic Hazard Analysis Quality Assurance Quality Assurance Program Quality Assurance Program Implementation Plan Quality Control

Senior Expert Reviewers OR Safety Evaluation Report Safeguards Information State Implementation Plan Safety Instrumentation Systems Spent Nuclear Fuel Special Nuclear Material Suitably Qualified and Experienced Person Safety Requirements Document Standard Review Plan Savannah River Site Structures, Systems, and Components Single Shell Tanks Test Area North To Be Determined Total Effective Dose Equivalent Threshold Limit Value Tri-Party Agreement Transuranic (waste or isotopes) Treatment, Storage, and Disposal Time Weighted Average Tank Waste Remediation System Tank Waste Remediation SystemPrivatization Tank Waste Remediation System/ Waste Treatment Plant Uniform Building Code Unclassified Controlled Nuclear Information Ultrafiltration Washington Administrative Code State of Washington Department of Health Washington Public Power Supply System Waste Treatment Plant West Valley Demonstration Project

Radiological Control Manual Resource Conservation Recovery Act of 1976 RF Respirable Fraction RFP Request for Proposals RG Regulatory Guide RIPB Risk-Informed Performance Based RL Richland Operations Office/DOE RMP Risk Management Program RO Regulatory Official RPP River Protection Project/DOE OR Radiation Protection Plan RPP/WTP River Protection Project/ Waste Treatment Plant RU Regulatory Unit/DOE SAP SCR Standards Application Package OR Standards Approval Package Selective Catalytic Reduction

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GLOSSARY OF TERMS
BNFL Inc. British Nuclear Fuels Limited, Inc., the U.S. subsidiary of BNFL plc and a TWRS-P contractor for Phases IA and IB-1. Often referred to as the ìContractorî in this report. This term refers to a specific, TWRS-P contractor (usually BNFL Inc.) in this report. A high level waste vitrification plant at the Savannah River Site

ìContractorî Defensive Waste Processing Facility

Office of Environmental DOE Headquarters Office responsible for DOE Complex-wide Management environmental and waste management activities. High Level Waste A term used to describe special nuclear fuel, first-cycle special nuclear fuel processing wastes and concentrates, and (for Tank Waste Remediation System) the solid phases in the tank wastes. High level waste requires disposal in a geologic repository. A radioactive waste stream(s) comprised primarily of contaminated materials produced incidental to high level waste processing, such as spent resins, loaded filters, broken melters and equipment, and treated low activity waste. If the radiation levels are sufficiently low (generally interpreted as meeting the criteria for low level waste in 10 CFR Part 61), incidental waste may be treated and sent to disposal in near-surface facilities. A term used by DOE to describe the predominantly liquid portion of tank waste. Untreated low activity waste (LAW) is similar to high level waste in terms of environment, safety and health effects and requires geologic disposal. Treated LAW may be capable of meeting incidental waste criteria and, thus, it may be suitable for near surface disposal like low level waste. A term for radioactive wastes that pose significantly lower radiological risks and of relatively short duration, such that the wastes are generally suitable for near-surface disposal per 10 CFR Part 61. A DOE office, located adjacent to the Hanford site. This office reports to the DOE Office of Environmental Management.

Incidental Waste

Low Activity Waste

Low Level Waste

Richland Operations

River Protection Project DOE, Office of River Protectionís program for activities that protect the Columbia River. Regulatory Unit Office of Safety Regulation of the River Protection Project/Waste Treatment Plant ContractoróDOE element responsible for regulating xvii NUREG-1747

the treatment and vitrification facilities. This office reports to DOEís Richland Operations Office. Tank Waste Remedia- Refers to the private capital financed processing and vitrification tion System-Privatization facilities under the previous contracts held by BNFL Inc. and Lockheed Martin Advanced Environmental Systems. Tank Waste Remedia Referring to the processing and vitrification facilities that will be built tion System-Privatization under the new contract(s) at Hanford. /Waste Treatment Plant

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1.0 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND
1.1 HANFORD AND THE TANK WASTES

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) established the Tank Waste Remediation System (TWRS) program at the Hanford site to manage, retrieve, treat, encapsulate/immobilize, and disposition radioactive waste materials from the 177 underground waste storage tanks onsite in a safe, environmentally sound, and cost effective manner. These tanks primarily contain high level wastes (HLW) and chemical species from processing spent nuclear fuels for more than 40 years at the site (see Chapter 7.0, Main Reference 1). There are 149 single shell tanks (SSTs) and 28 double shell tanks (DSTs). There are several tank sizes but the average tank has about one million gallons of capacity. Both SSTs and DSTs are manufactured from carbon steels. However, the DSTs are newer, have more provisions for monitoring the wastes, and include an annulus for leak detection and confinement. To date, no DST has been confirmed to leak. In contrast, approximately 67 SSTs have been confirmed as leakers. The tank contents consist of mixtures of materials from some eight major processes. Some of the wastes date back to 1944. Even though the radiation levels are high (typically exceeding 100 R/hr in the tank dome spaces and through riser connections), the great majority of the waste constituents are nonradioactive and contain some 240,000 tonnes of processed chemicals. The tanks hold approximately 54 million gallons of waste and amount to over 200 million-plus curies of radioactivity, primarily from cesium and strontium but with smaller contributions from other fission products and transuranic (TRU) isotopes. Physically, the tank contents exist as liquids, sludges, salts, saltcakes, and mixtures thereof, and some tanks periodically release gas mixtures. The SSTs contain primarily sludges and saltcakes with relatively little liquids - most of the liquid phase has been removed due to concerns about potential leaks. The DSTs contain most of the liquids but also have solid phases. The wastes stored in the tanks are defined as high level waste (HLW; per 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix F) and hazardous waste (per RCRA - Resource Conservation and Recovery Act - with various codes). DOE categorizes the wastes to simplify contractual and processing approaches1. DOE uses the term LAW to denote ìLow Activity Waste.î Table 1 presents summary information on the composition of LAW. LAW is predominantly a liquid phase with soluble species such as nitrates and cesium; it may also contain up to 2 percent suspended solids or solids otherwise entrained by the waste transfers. Three envelopes of LAW have been defined; Envelope A is ìstandard,î Envelope B contains higher levels of cesium, and Envelope C contains higher levels of strontium and TRU. The contract (Footnote 1) identifies ranges for chemical and radioactive species in these LAW envelopes. LAW would come from the liquid phases of the DSTs and from solids washing operations. From a regulatory perspective, LAW is still HLW and has high radiation levels requiring handling within shielded structures. DOE identifies the solid phases as ìHLW,î defined as Envelope D. Table 2 provides summary compositional information on HLW. Envelope D contains cesium, strontium, and TRUs as the radionuclides. Metal oxides, hydroxides, nitrates, phosphates, and aluminates constitute the bulk of the chemical species. The contract (Footnote 1) provides ranges for the chemical and radioactive species in Envelope
1

See, for example, Department of Energy (U.S.) (DOE). Contract No. DE-RP-96RL13308, ìTWRS Privatization.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 1998.

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D. Envelope D is assumed to be transferred as a slurry in concentrations up to 20 percent, from the removal of solid phases from the SSTs and DSTs. The solids in the LAW envelopes would have a composition similar to Envelope D. Figure 1 provides a conceptual overview of DOEís approach to tank waste treatment. LAW envelopes would be transferred to a treatment plant. The LAW would be pretreated to separate the radionuclides (primarily cesium, strontium, technetium, and TRU, and the suspended solids) from the remainder of the waste envelope. The separated radionuclides would be stored for an interim period of several years. Pretreatment reduces the level of radioactivity in the treated LAW to levels commensurate with near-surface disposal requirements (essentially equivalent to the Class A/B/C definitions of low level waste in 10 CFR Part 61). The less radioactive, treated LAW would be vitrified and placed into stainless steel containers for long term storage or disposal at Hanford. The HLW (Envelope D) would be treated and washed using a filter or other device to separate the liquid phase from the slurry. The liquid phase would be routed to pretreatment and combined with the LAW, primarily for cesium and technetium removal. The treated HLW would be combined with the separated radionuclides from LAW processing and vitrified in an HLW melter. The HLW glass would be stored at Hanford in stainless steel canisters until subsequent disposal in an HLW repository. Table 1: Summary Information on LAW Radionuclide Composition
Maximum Ratio, Bq/mole Sodium Radionuclide Envelope A 4.8E5 6.1E4 4.4E7 7.1E6 4.3E9 1.2E6 Envelope B 4.8E5 6.1E4 4.4E7 7.1E6 2.0E10 1.2E6 Envelope C 3.0E6 3.7E5 8.0E8 7.1E6 4.3E9 4.3E6 Curies/Liter at 10 Molar Sodium Envelope A 1.3E-04 1.65E-05 1.19E-02 1.92E-03 1.16E+00 3.24E-04 Envelope B 1.3E-04 1.65E-05 1.19E-02 1.92E-03 6.00E+00 (contract max.) 3.24E-04 Envelope C 8.11E-04 1.0E-04 2.16E-01 1.92E-03 1.16E+00 1.16E-03

TRU Co-60 Sr-90 Tc-99 Cs-137 Eu-154 + Eu-155

No contribution from the suspended and entrained solids is included in this table. LAW envelopes may contain up to 2 percent solids, which are assumed to be HLW solids. The solids contribution to radiotoxicity is significant and amounts to approximately 90 percent of the unit liter dose.

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Table 2: Summary Information on HLW Radionuclide Composition (Reference 6)
Isotope H-3 C-14 Fe-55 Ni-59 Co-60 Ni-63 Se-79 Sr-90 Y-90 Nb-93m Zr-93 Ci/liter 1.30E-04 1.30E-05 (NS) (NS) 2.00E-02 (NS) (NS) 2.00E+01 (NS) (NS) (NS) Isotope Cd-115m Sn-119m Sn-121m Sn-126 Sb-124 Sb-126 Sb-126m Sb-125 Te-125m I-129 Cs-134 (NS) (NS) (NS) 3.00E-04 (NS) (NS) (NS) 6.40E-02 (NS) 5.80E-07 (NS) Ci/liter Isotope Eu-152 Eu-154 Eu-155 U-233 U-235 U-236 U-238 Np-237 Pu-238 Pu-239 Pu-240 Ci/liter 9.60E-04 1.04E-01 5.80E-02 1.80E-06 5.00E-07 (NS) (NS) 1.48E-04 7.00E-04 6.20E-03 (NS)

Tc-99
Rh-106 Pd-107 Ag-110m Cd-113m In-113m Sn-113

3.00E-02
(NS) (NS) (NS) (NS) (NS) (NS) (NS)

Cs-135
Cs-137 Ba-137m Ce-144 Pr-144 Pr-144m Pm-147 Sm-151

(NS)
2.00E+01 (NS) (NS) (NS) (NS) (NS) (NS)

Pu-241
Pu-242 Am-241 Am-242 Am-242m Am-243 Cm-242 Cm-243/244

4.40E-02
(NS) 1.80E-01 (NS) (NS) (NS) (NS) 6.00E-0

(NS) = Not Specified in the new contract. Feed concentration contains between 10 and 200 grams of unwashed solids per liter of solution. Values in the table are based upon the upper limit of 200 grams/liter, which is approximately a 20% slurry (the actual value is closer to 15 percent).

1.2

THE TRI-PARTY AGREEMENT

The Hanford Federal Facility Agreement and Consent Order (also known as the Tri-Party Agreement, or TPA)2 is a legal agreement between the DOE, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the State of Washington Department of Ecology (usually referred to as

Environmental Protection Agency (U.S.)(EPA). EPA Docket Number 1089-03-04-120; Ecology Docket Number 89-54; ìHanford Federal Facility Agreement and Consent Order.î EPA: Washington, D.C. May 15, 1989.

2

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Ecology). The legal authority for the TPA arises from Resource Conservation Recovery Act of 1976 (RCRA) and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA). The TPA contains provisions for the overall environmental management of the Hanford site, and includes provisions for the management of hazardous waste treatment, storage, and disposal (TSD) units and related permitting requirements. Consequently, the TPA incorporates provisions for TSD of the tank wastes. The TPA defines the respective roles, responsibilities, and interrelationships between the three parties. It delineates authorities, identifies enforcement provisions, and provides for dispute resolution among the parties. The TPA has an action plan for compliance that establishes milestones for the Hanford Site Cleanup. These milestones constitute a minimally acceptable level of progress. Failure to meet the milestones can result in lawsuits and fines against DOE. Currently, the most relevant milestones applicable to the tank wastes are: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. M-50-04: Start hot operations of HLW pretreatment facility by June 30, 2008. M-50-04-T01: Submit conceptual design of HLW pretreatment facility by March 31, 1998. M-50-04-T02: Initiate definitive design of pretreatment facility by November 30, 1998. M-50-04-T03: Start construction of HLW pretreatment facility by June 30, 2001. M-51-00: Complete vitrification of Hanford HLW (tank waste) by December 31, 2028. M-51-03: Initiate hot operations of the HLW vitrification facility by December 31, 2009. M-51-03-T01: Submit conceptual design of the HLW vitrification facility by December 31, 1998. M-51-03-T02: Initiate definitive design of the HLW vitrification facility by December 31, 1998. M-51-03-T04: Complete construction of the HLW vitrification facility by December 31, 2007.

10. Milestone M-61-00: Complete pretreatment and immobilization of the Hanford LAW by December 2028. These milestones make for a tight schedule. The current design would treat half the waste by circa 2050, while the DOE program desires to have all of the waste treated by 2028, a difference in processing capacity of at least a factor of four3.

3

ìWaste Management 2000,î presentations by Mike Lawrence, BNFL Inc., and Dick French, U.S. Department of Energy. March 2000. NUREG-1747 4

Figure 1: Overview of Hanford Processing Approach

Hanford Tank Waste

Sludge (Envelope D)

Supernatant (Envelopes A, B, and C)
- may contain up to 5 wt% solids

Entrained Solids

Envelopes A, B, and C after filtration

HLW Vitrification

High- Level Waste Feed

May become part of feed. (present plan is to return entrained solids to DOE)

LAW Vitrification
Precipitates + Cs/Tc

Low-Activity Waste Envelopes A, B, and C (LAW Feed)

Pre-Treatment Products from ï Cs ion exchange ï Tc ion exchange ï TRU precipitation ï Sr precipitation

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1.3

DOE PROGRAM AND CONTRACTS

DOE was pursuing a privatization initiative at Hanford for the construction and operation of contractor-owned, contractor-operated facility or facilities for treating these tank wastes and meeting the TPA milestones4. The concept was for DOE to enter into two or more firm fixedprice (FFP) contracts for the contractor(s) to build and operate a facility to treat the tank wastes according to DOE requirements. A minimum of two contractors would ensure that the government would receive the lowest price for waste TSD. The TWRS-Privatization Program was divided into two phases. Phase I was a proof-of-concept, commercial demonstration scale effort with the following objectives: 1. 2. 3. 4. Demonstrate the technical and business viability of using privatized contractors to treat Hanford tank wastes. Define and maintain adequate levels of radiological, nuclear, and process safety. Maintain environmental protection and compliance. Substantially reduce life-cycle costs and time for treating the wastes.

The original plan called for processing between 6 and 13 percent of the tank waste in a pilot/demonstration facility as Phase I, and a subsequent, larger program would process the balance of the tank wastes as Phase II. Phase I consisted of two parts. Part A consisted of a 20-month development period to establish appropriate and necessary technical, operational, regulatory, business, and financial elements. This required the privatization contractors to select safety standards and requirements, formulate integrated safety management plans, and to generate conceptual designs and initial safety analyses, all of which would require approval by DOE. The contractors worked for 16 months to develop these items and the remaining 4 months were used by DOE for evaluation. DOE awarded contracts of $27 Million (each) for Part A to two teams, one led by British Nuclear Fuels Limited Inc. (BNFL Inc.), and the other led by Lockheed Martin Advanced Environmental Systems (LMAES). The BNFL Inc. team proposed a conceptual approach based upon the following operations (Chapter 7.0, Main References 2-5): 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Strontium/TRU coprecipitation from LAW. Suspended solids/strontium/TRU removal by ultrafiltration from LAW. Two columns in series, organic ion exchange recovery of cesium from LAW. Two columns in series, organic ion exchange recovery of technetium from LAW. Optional loading of radiocesium onto crystalline silicotitanate (CST). LAW vitrification in a joule-heated melter. HLW washing and concentration by ultrafiltration. HLW vitrification in a joule-heated melter. NOx treatment by selective catalytic reduction (SCR) using anhydrous ammonia.

Department of Energy (U.S.) (DOE). RL/RU-2000-20, Rev. 0, ìRegulatory Unit Position on Important to Safety Work Authorization for the RPP-WTP Interim Design Period.î DOE: Richland, Washington. July 3, 2000.

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Some aspects of the conceptual design were more detailed than other parts. For example, each ion exchange column would enclose 3.15 cubic meters, with an aspect ratio of about 7. In use, the columns would only contain about one cubic meter of resin each, for an effective aspect ratio of about 1.5-2. The approach included four ion exchange columns for cesium removal, arranged as two trains of two columns each. The technetium arrangement was identical. The design included two HLW and three LAW melters, and around 300,000 gallons of tankage. In terms of technology, BNFL Inc. relied upon proprietary organic ion exchange resins (ìsuperligandsî) and ultrafilters for separation of the radionuclides and solids from the LAW in pretreatment. Ultrafiltration was also planned as part of the treatment of HLW. BNFL Inc. proposed a liquid-fed slurry ceramic melter with joule heating for HLW vitrification, similar to the approach used at the West Valley Demonstration Project (WVDP) in New York State for vitrifying that siteís HLW. LAW vitrification also used a joule-heated melter for the proposed facility, but it would be considerably larger than the HLW design. As an alternative, BNFL Inc. proposed storage and return of suspended solids to DOE without HLW vitrification; the cesium would be returned on CST. BNFL Inc. identified technology development in order to address unknowns about the new technologies involved. LMAES proposed a similar conceptual process approach with several variations (see Chapter 7.0, Main References 6-9): 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Suspended solids removal from LAW by centrifugation. Three columns in series, organic ion exchange recovery of cesium from LAW, regenerated by nitric acid and caustic. Three columns in series, organic ion exchange, polishing step recovery of cesium (from the effluent of the preceding step), with electrical regeneration. An inorganic, ìguardî bed for cesium removal (on the effluent of the preceding step). Optional loading of radiocesium onto CST. Removal of technetium from LAW by electroplating. Strontium and TRU removal using ozone destruction of organics followed by precipitation and centrifugation. LAW vitrification in a joule-heated melter, augmented by fired burners (based upon oxygen-propane combustion) during startup and glass pouring. HLW washing and concentration by centrifugation.

10. HLW vitrification in a cold-crucible, induction-heated melter. 11. NOx treatment using SCR and ammonia from aqueous solution.

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Each ion exchange column would be approximately 0.67 cubic meters, containing about 0.6 cubic meters of resin, with a working aspect ratio of approximately four. The approach effectively used six columns in series to remove the radioactive cesium. The design incorporated one HLW and three LAW melters, and around 200,000 gallons of tankage. In terms of technology, ion exchange technology was planned for cesium separation from LAW, using resins tested by Savannah River Site (SRS), with CST used as a guard column. Centrifuges separated suspended solids from the LAW. Cold crucible induction melting, similar to the process at La Hague (France) was planned for HLW vitrification. For LAW vitrification, LMAES proposed to use a direct fired melter, undergoing development on other types of DOE wastes. The approach planned to use electrolysis for technetium removal (by plating) and for recycling some of the ion exchange regeneration solutions. Phase I, Part A has been completed; the contractors each submitted a System Requirements Document (on standards), Hazards Analysis Report, Integrated Safety Management Plan, and Initial Safety Analysis Report. The DOE generated safety evaluation reports on the contractor submittals (Main References 10 and 11), indicating many concerns and open issues on each contractorís approach. For LMAES, the DOE review team concluded that the approach described in the ISAR would be capable of achieving subsequent authorizations for construction, operation, and deactivation, provided some 37 open issues would be resolved in the next regulatory submittal (Construction Authorization Request (CAR) ó essentially a Preliminary Safety Analysis Report (PSAR)). Of these 37 issues, development of the pretreatment technology to maturity and its subsequent safe implementation were identified as the most significant uncertainties. For BNFL Inc., the DOE review team concluded that no individual regulatory issue would prevent subsequent safety authorizations. However, the review identified 90 representative open regulatory issues that would require resolution, and the nature and number greatly challenged the reviewers to reach a consensus on the viability and sufficiency of some of the approaches the Contractor proposed to achieve and maintain adequate safety through design and management practices. In May 1998, DOE said BNFL Inc. had presented a superior plan for TWRS-P because the LMAES proposal posed an ìunacceptably high technical riskî of failure to meet DOEís cleanup goals5. In September 1998, DOE entered into a revised contract with BNFL Inc. In addition to modifying the original intent of two contractors and competition, DOE changed the program to accommodate larger production scale facilities in Phase I that would have a 30-40 year useful life. Phase I, Part B-1 involved a 24-month facility design phase that would advance the design to approximately a ì30 percent levelî and have the Contractor prepared to start construction and obtain financing6. Furthermore, in this 24-month period, DOE and BNFL Inc. were to refine the technical requirements, submit regulatory permitting applications, and finalize fixed unit prices for treated wastes. This Phase I, Part B-1 was estimated to be worth approximately $350 million, using a fixed fee type of contract. Facility construction and operation was to occur in a subsequent, planned Phase I, Part B-2. For Part B-2, the Contractor would only receive payment for waste actually processed and vitrified. This part of the effort was projected to cost DOE approximately $6.9 billion (see Footnote 4, page 22). In total, Part B was expected to
5

See, for example, The Energy Daily, May 22, 1998 and Inside Energy/with Federal Lands, May 25, 1998. U.S Department of Energy/Hanford Press Release, July 21, 1998.

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require 5-8 years for design and construction activities, and another 5-10 years for the processing of the initial, 6-13 percent of the tank waste. At the time of this writing, Phase II planned to enlarge and utilize the Phase I facilities instead of constructing and using entirely new facilities. Hence, the proposed Phase I facilities would be relatively large. This diminished the distinction between the two phases and implied that the regulatory framework for Phase I would continue into Phase II. The Phase II activities extended the waste processing time frame by another 10-30 years, depending upon the facility capacities, waste retrieval activities, and difficulties encountered. Potentially, plant operation could continue until circa 2050. DOE anticipated the total value of the Part B work to be in the $7-10 billion range7 (also see Main Reference 12). As part of the major design submittal (Main Reference 13), BNFL Inc. identified potential costs as high as $15 billion if the privatization route was continued. On May 8, 2000, DOE decided to stop the privatization initiative for Hanford tank waste primarily for economic reasons, and elected to terminate the BNFL Inc. contract (Footnotes 5-7). Project management and quality assurance concerns were also mentioned as reasons for contract termination. The program name was also changed from Tank Waste Remediation System (TWRS) to River Protection Project (RPP). While the specific details are still evolving, DOE is using a transition contractor (CH2MHILL Hanford Group) to continue the design efforts while a competitive procurement is conducted for a new contractor for completion of the design and construction of the facility. A separate, additional contract would be released for facility operations. All of these new contracts would utilize M&O (management and operations) style contracts with cost-reimbursement and incentive clauses. 1.4 DOE REGULATORY APPROACH

DOE is a self-regulating agency on nuclear safety matters. DOEís goal in proceeding with the radiological, nuclear, and process safety regulation of TWRS-P contractors is to establish a regulatory environment that will permit privatization to occur on a timely, predictable, and stable basis with attention to safety consistent with that which would accrue from regulation by an external agency8. This same policy states that DOE is patterning its regulation of TWRS-P contractors to be consistent with the NRCís regulatory approach. The Manager of the Richland Operations Office (DOE/RL) has the responsibility for safety of activities on the Hanford site. The policy and the related Memorandum of Agreement (MOA)9 established a dedicated Regulatory Unit (RU) led by a Regulatory Official (RO) at the DOE Richland Operations Office with regulatory authority exclusive to the regulation of TWRS-P contractors. The RO would report directly to the Manager of DOE/RL at a level equivalent to the DOE Program Manager for TWRS. In implementation, the RU is to follow the five principles of good regulation as

7

See Footnote 4 of this document and The Energy Daily, May 15, 2000

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL-96-25, Rev. 0, ìPolicy for Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of TWRS Privatization Contractors.î DOE: Richland, Washington. July 3, 1996. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL-96-26, Rev. 0, ìMemorandum of Agreement for the Execution of Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of TWRS Privatization Contractors.î DOE: Richland, Washington. July 3, 1996.
9

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articulated by the NRC - independence, openness, efficiency, clarity, and reliability. The RU has four organizational elements: the Standards and Requirement Group, the Activities Authorization Group, the Verification and Confirmation Group, and the Senior Technical Team. The Manager of DOE/RL also has a three-member, Senior Expert Review (SER) panel for periodic assessment of the RU and major issues. The basic concept of DOEís regulatory approach is that the contractor is responsible for achieving adequate safety, complying with applicable laws and regulations, and conforming with top-level safety standards and principles stipulated by DOE10. Consistent with applicable laws and regulations, the contractor is required to tailor the exercise of this responsibility to the specific hazards associated with its activities, and is encouraged to do this in a cost-effective manner that applies best commercial practices. TWRS-P contractors have the responsibility to identify and recommend to DOE the set of standards, regulations, and requirements necessary to ensure adequate safety. DOEís responsibility is to execute the regulatory process, including authorization of contractor actions and confirmation that the contractor activities are performed safely and within approved limits. The authority of the RU to regulate a TWRS-P contractor is derived from the terms of the TWRS-P contract (ìregulate by the contractî). In addition to the regulatory concept, the following three radiological, nuclear, and process safety related documents are incorporated into the contract: 1. 2. 3. ìDOE Process for Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of the TWRS-P Contractor,î DOE/RL-96-0003. ìTop-Level Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Principles for the TWRS-P Contractor,î DOE/RL-0006. ìProcess for Establishing a Set of Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Requirements for the TWRS-P Contractor,î DOE/RL-96-0004.

The two, nonradiological documents are: 1. 2. ìIndustrial Hygiene and Safety Regulatory Plan,î RL/REG-2000-04. ìRegulatory Unit Position on Regulation of the Contractorís Industrial Hygiene and Safety Program,î RL/REG-99-11.

The RU has further explained the regulatory process as ìbottoms up,î starting with the contractor establishing the set of standards needed to achieve safety, comply with applicable laws, achieve the DOE top-level standards and principles (DOE/RL-96-006), and follow an

10

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL-96-0005, Rev. 1, ìConcept of the DOE Regulatory Process for Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety for TWRS Privatization Contractors.î DOE: Richland, Washington. July, 1998.

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integrated safety management process (ISMP, in DOE/RL-96-0004)11. The regulator would subsequently approve the contractorís set of standards. A clear, central concept of ISM is that the contractor should tailor the design and safety requirements to the specific hazards of the activities and operations at a facility. DOE/RU policy endorses tailoring via the following process: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Identify applicable requirements. Define the scope of the work or operations to be analyzed. Analyze the hazards. Propose, analyze, select, and implement controls. Perform the work or operations (does not apply at the design stage). Assess, feedback, and improve/modify (as appropriate).

The Contractor conducted two ISMP cycles on the TWRS-P design prior to contract termination. DOE defined the following, minimum set of regulatory process elements: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. The top-level standards and principles. Standards identification (including the ISMP). DOE review and approval. Initial safety analysis and review. Construction authorization. Operating authorization. Regulatory oversight, including inspection of design, construction, or operating activities. Deactivation authorization. Independent oversight of TWRS regulation by DOE. Public information and involvement.

(Note that the contract was terminated in the design phase prior to the CAR.) The RU has published guidance, policy, and position documents to assist its staff in these regulatory elements. Of these, the CAR review guidance (Main Reference 14) would be used in a manner similar to that of a standard review plan. This guidance was used in the review of the Firm Fixed Price submittal (Chapter 7.0, Main Reference 13). The RU also established an inspection program for the Phase IB-1 activities. As of this writing, thirteen inspections were conducted over the 20-month period. DOE conducted two external assessments of the RU regulatory program and related activities. DOE, Office of Environment, Safety, and Health (EH), assessed the readiness of the RU in 199812. The EH team reviewed TWRS-P related documents and interviewed personnel from

11

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-98-21, ìRegulatory Unit Position on Implementing and Assuring Compliance with Integrated Safety Management.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 26, 1998.
12

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/EH-0569, ìAssessment of Tank Waste Remediation SystemPrivatization Regulatory Unit Readiness.î DOE: Richland, Washington. April 1998.

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the RU, DOE/RL, DOE-Headquarters, public, stakeholders, and the two Phase IA contractors. The review identified several weaknesses in the areas of management and organization, interfaces, staffing, technical standards and requirements, authorization process (contract consistency), document reviews, and inspection and enforcement. One weakness noted that the regulatory approach with two contractors resulted in two ISMP systems, different deliverable formats, and different submittal schedules. The RU subsequently developed a corrective action plan in response to these weaknesses13. The RU only disagreed with the finding of one weakness; review schedule pressures. The EH team expressed concerns about the lack of specific provisions for delaying a review schedule when it cannot be supported by the RU. The EH team noted that RU directives and DOE documentation confirm the RUís responsibilities for meeting schedules, except when the contractor information is insufficient. The EH team further stated that review schedule pressures may cause reviewers to be less thorough, may compromise safety, and may give the public the impression that production takes precedence over safety and that the RU is not fully independent. In response, the RU noted that the revised contract adequately protects both the DOE and the Contractor from delays in the schedule caused by the extension of reviews. A second external assessment of the RU and the regulatory process was conducted by the Senior Expert Reviewers (SER)14. The SER panel reviewed documents, observed RU operations, and conducted interviews with four senior officials from DOE and BNFL Inc. (there were no interviews of NRC officials). The SER report considered the performance of the RU in planning and executing a first-of-a-kind regulatory concept exemplary. The report noted concerns about the level of detail, the Topical Meeting process, the need for submittal of any proposed changes in fundamental design safety features in the same time frame as the design finalization, and NRC reviews. On the latter, the SER panel concluded that the NRC reviews do not appear to have identified significant differences between the safety requirements invoked by the RU or the NRC, but noted a significant difference in the regulatory system being developed by the NRC staff for possible application to TWRS-P (essentially 10 CFR Part 70 and NUREG-1702), as compared to the DOE/RU regulatory system or process. The Office of River Protection (ORP) was established at the Hanford site in December 1998. As directed by Congress, DOE is using ORP to focus management responsibility and accountability. ORP has assumed the former RL/TWRS role of overseeing and directing TWRS, TWRS-P, and activities related to the tank wastes. ORP reports directly to DOE Headquarters and not to DOE/RL. ORP manages the TWRS-P contract and regularly interacts with the contractors on program issues. At the time of this writing (December 2000), the RU has become part of the ORP and reports to ORP management. The RU has been renamed the Office of Safety Regulation (OSR), and the OSR is responsible for regulating the radiological, nuclear, and process safety of the facility being built to take waste currently stored in underground tanks at Hanford and process it to a glass form. From the new contract15, the

13

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-98-15, ìRegulatory Unit (RU) Readiness Assessment (DOE/EH0569) - RU Response and Corrective Actions.î DOE: Richland, Washington. July 1998.
14

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). 00-RU-0005, ìReport of an Assessment of the Regulatory Unit for the River Protection Project Privatization Contract,î Senior Expert Reviewers, September 1999.

15

Contract Number DE-AC27-01RV14136, ìBechtel National Inc.: Design, Construction, and Commissioning of the Hanford Tank Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant.î

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contractor is required to follow an integrated safety management (ISM) process, with approvals from DOE (presumably the OSR). The ORP organization also includes an ìOffice of Assistant Manager for Environmental, Safety, Health, and Qualityî (AMSQ). The actual missions and working relationships of OSR and AMSQ within the ORP are not clear at this time. For the interim design period, the authority of the RU to regulate the RPP-WTP contractor was derived from a recent memorandum16 and stated in an RU position paper17. 1.5 NRC INVOLVEMENT VIA THE MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING

DOE also considered the potential for external regulation, and entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for cooperation and mutual support, with the possibility of transitioning to NRC regulation sometime in the future Attachment B). The MOU had two main purposes: 1. 2. The DOE to acquire the capability to implement a program of nuclear safety and safeguards regulation consistent with the NRCís regulatory approach. The NRC to acquire sufficient knowledge and understanding of the physical and operational situation at the Hanford waste tanks and the processes, technology, and hazards involved in Phase I activities to enable the NRC (a) to assist DOE in performing reviews in a manner consistent with NRCís regulatory approach and (b) to be prepared to develop an effective and efficient regulatory program for the licensing of DOE contractorowned and contractor-operated facilities that will process waste at Hanford during Phase II.

Prior to the termination of the privatization contract, DOE and the NRC were negotiating a revised MOU that recognized the reuse of the Phase I facilities for Phase II and maintained the NRC role in the near-term. However, the revised MOU implied a delay in regulatory transition, if it were to occur at all. In addition, the impact of the termination of the privatized contract and the use of new M&O-style contracts would have diminished or ultimately even eliminated NRCís participation, as it is likely that DOE will self-regulate the proposed facilities without transition to independent regulation by the NRC. Consequently, the NRC has decided not to participate in the near-term but has stated it is willing to discuss possible arrangements for NRC involvement in the TWRS project in the future, if there is again a need for NRC expertise and if the NRC sees benefit in such involvement, such as the potential transition to NRC regulatory authority. 1.6 OVERVIEW OF THIS DOCUMENT

Chapter 2.0 summarizes the NRC participation and activities.

16

Huntoon, C.L., U.S. Department of Energy, memorandum to R.T. French, U.S. Department of Energy, ìMaintaining Safety and Quality through Contract Transitions.î May 23, 2000.

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-2000-20, Rev. 0 ìRegulatory Unit Position on Important to Safety Work Authorization for the RPP-WTP Interim Design Period.î DOE: Richland, Washington. July 3, 2000.

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Chapter 3.0 discusses areas of design and safety that the NRC would typically review from a potential license application on TWRS-P, and provides an assessment of the current status based upon the BNFL Inc. documentation through June, 2000. Chapter 4.0 presents NRC observations and conclusions. Chapter 5.0 summarizes potential issues for transition of TWRS-type facilities to NRC regulation. The attachments provide information on the major technical issues from the perspective of the NRC staff, point paper summaries, the DOE/NRC MOU, potential issues for regulatory transition, and an index listing of correspondence between the NRC and DOE on the program.

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2.0 NRC PARTICIPATION AND ACTIVITIES
2.1 TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEMS SECTION

In order to support the Memorandum of Understanding, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), in October, 1996, established the Tank Waste Remediation System (TWRS) Section within the Special Projects Branch of the Fuel Cycle Safety and Safeguards Division, in the Office of Nuclear Materials Safety and Safeguards. This Section had the following specific tasks: 1. 2. Provide technical support to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for activities related to the DOE TWRS privatization (TWRS-P) activities at Hanford. Develop sufficient knowledge and understanding of the physical and operational situation at the Hanford waste tanks and the processes, technologies, and hazards involved in Phase I activities to (a) assist DOE in performing reviews in a manner consistent with NRCís regulatory approach and (b) be prepared to develop an effective and efficient regulatory program for the licensing of DOE contractor-owned and contractor-operated facilities that will process Hanford wastes in Phase II. Conduct safety, safeguards, and environmental reviews concerning TWRS-P operations and processes. Review and comment on DOE regulations and guidance for the regulation of activities related to Phase I of the tank waste remediation activities at Hanford. At the request of DOE, participate as appropriate in the development of guidance for use by DOE, including guidance based upon industry standards (e.g., American Nuclear Society, American National Standards Institute, American Society of Mechanical Engineers). Review existing NRC regulations and guidance for their potential applicability to TWRS-P and its potential licensing in the future by NRC, including identification of potential modifications and additions. Identify potential differences between the DOE and NRC regulatory approaches as they apply to TWRS-P and notify DOE of these potential differences.

3. 4. 5.

6.

7.

To accomplish these tasks, the NRC recruited senior technical talent from both within and outside of the agency for the TWRS Section with experience in high level waste (HLW), HLW chemistry and processing, vitrification, Hanford, DOE, and regulatory activities. The following positions were filled: 1. 2. 3. 4. Section Leader Senior Onsite Technical Representative Senior Chemical Process Engineer Fire Protection Specialist 15 NUREG-1747

5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15.

Senior Nuclear Process Engineer Quality Assurance Specialist Structural/Construction Engineer Chemical Engineer Metallurgical Specialist/Engineer Nuclear Process Engineer Chemical/Materials Engineer Mechanical Engineer Environmental Engineer Health Physicist Licensing Assistant

The staff had an average experience of approximately 20 years. Staff would rotate into Hanford for extended time periods in order to support the DOE-Regulatory Unit (RU), equivalent to a full time position onsite. In addition, a Senior Onsite Representative was located at Hanford, in the same office area as the RU. The onsite representative interacted with the RU on a daily basis, participating in meetings and presentations involving DOE and the contractors. The remaining staff were located in the Rockville, Maryland, offices of the NRC Headquarters. This staff visited the Hanford site many times for attending meetings and presentations by DOE and the contractors. An annual average of 57 trips were made in support of the RU and the TWRS-P program. Activities included review, analysis, and comment on contractor submittals, guidance documents, procedures, RU documents, etc. Usually, several members of the NRC Headquarters staff would rotate to Hanford for TWRS-related meetings for a week each month. Several major review activities required members of the staff to remain in the Richland area for extended time periods. The staff at NRC Headquarters also communicated frequently with their DOE counterparts via phone, E-mail, and teleconferencing. NRC staff accompanied RU personnel on inspections. NRC staff reviewed NRC regulations and guidance related to TWRS-P. A standard review plan was prepared, issued, and finalized (see Section 2.3). NRC staff attended conferences and training sessions related to TWRS technical areas, such as quality assurance and hazards analysis. Several NRC staff members also visited existing HLW processing facilities in Savannah River (Defensive Waste Processing Facility), West Valley (West Valley Demonstration Project), United Kingdom (Sellafield), and France (La Hague). 2.2 SUPPORT ACTIVITIES BY THE CENTER FOR NUCLEAR WASTE REGULATORY ANALYSES

The Center for Nuclear Waste Regulatory Analyses (CNWRA) was established in 1987 as an NRC-sponsored, federally funded research and development center (FFRDC), in order to provide technical assistance and research in support of the NRC HLW program. Because of the similarities in the waste forms and processing requirements, the NRC decided to fund support work related to TWRS at the CNWRA. The CNWRA program had the following three main objectives: 1. 2. 3. Provide technical assistance to the NRC for developing a regulatory framework and associated guidance that would be used to license a TWRS-P facility. Assist the NRC in the review of contractor submittals. Develop an experience base for future activities in the program (e.g., construction and operations). 16

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In support of these main objectives, the CNWRA effort had the following tasks: 1. 2. 3. 4. Familiarization, regulatory development, and safety reviews. Preoperational reviews of pilot processing facilities. Operational reviews of pilot facilities and reviews of safety bases. Revision of the regulatory framework.

The CNWRA primarily operated under Task 1 in support of the NRC. The CNWRA produced analyses and reports on Hanford chemistry, risk/safety analyses, waste solidification, and process experience. This included participation in site visits to operating vitrification facilities at Savannah River, La Hague (France), and Sellafield (United Kingdom). The CNWRA analyzed consequence criteria, potential doses and risks, and issues, such as fires, explosion, and radiolysis. The CNWRA also assessed TWRS-P chemistry and processes, including several reports on the tank wastes, vitrification, separations, and a spreadsheet model of pretreatment processes. 2.3 TWRS-P STANDARD REVIEW PLAN

As part of its activities, the NRC has published the NUREG-1702, ìStandard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for the Tank Waste Remediation System Privatization (TWRS-P) Projectî (Chapter 7.0, Main Reference 15). This provides NRC guidance for the review and evaluation of health, safety, and environmental protection in applications for licenses for remediation of radioactive tank waste at Hanford. The guidance is also applicable to the review and evaluation of proposed amendments and license renewal applications. Specific filing requirements for license applications and for issuance of such licenses are in 10 CFR Part 70, "Domestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material," as revised18. Although 10 CFR Part 70, as revised, does not specifically include a TWRS-P facility in 10 CFR 70.60, ìApplicability,î the regulation specifies applicable facilities which include, ìany other activity that the Commission determines could significantly affect public health and safety.î The principal purpose of the Standard Review Plan (SRP) is to ensure the quality and uniformity of staff reviews and to present a well-defined base from which to evaluate proposed changes in the scope, level of detail, and acceptance criteria of reviews. The SRP also should be used as the basis for the review of requests by licensees for changes in their licenses. Thus, the SRP, at any point in time, can provide a basis for the review of proposed new or renewal applications, and amendments to existing licenses, as well as modifications to the SRP resulting from new NRC requirements and licensee initiatives. Another important purpose of the SRP is to make information about regulatory reviews widely available and to improve communication and understanding of the staff review process. Because the SRP describes the scope, level of detail, and acceptance criteria for reviewers, it can serve as regulatory guidance for applicants who need to determine what information should be presented in a license application.

18

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.), Washington, D.C. ìDomestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material (10 CFR Part 70).î Federal Register: Vol. 64, No. 146. pp. 41338ñ41357. July 30, 1999.

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The responsibility of the staff in the review of a license application, renewal application, or license amendment for a TWRS-P facility is to determine that there is reasonable assurance that the facility can and will be operated in a manner that will not be inimical to the common defense and security, and will provide reasonable protection of the health and safety of workers and the public, and the environment. To carry out this responsibility, the staff evaluates information provided by an applicant and through independent assessments determines that the applicant has demonstrated a reasonable safety program that is in accordance with regulatory requirements. To facilitate carrying out this responsibility, the SRP clearly states and identifies those standards, criteria, and bases that the staff should use in reaching licensing decisions. The staff believes that a TWRS-P facility is an activity that could significantly affect public health and safety. This belief is due to the presence of multi-kilogram quantities of special nuclear material (SNM) (slightly enriched uranium and plutonium), kilocurie quantities of transuranics (TRUs), megacurie quantities of fission products, and numerous chemical species in the wastes, and the need for a large plant with relatively high flow rates, large inventories, numerous process steps, and energetic operations. Application of the specific technologies and equipment in a highly radioactive environment would be new and at a magnitude beyond any other applications and without significant pilot plant testing, thus increasing the unknowns and uncertainties. The melters would become the largest of their respective types in the world and have unique features. Therefore, if the NRC became the regulator, it would plan to invoke the requirements found in Subpart H of 10 CFR Part 70 for this type of facility. As such, 10 CFR Part 70, as revised, requires that an applicant submit a complete description of the safety program for the possession and use of SNM to show how compliance with the applicable requirements will be accomplished. The Safety Program Description must be sufficiently detailed to permit the staff to obtain reasonable assurance that the facility is designed and will be operated without undue risk to the health and safety of workers or the public. Prior to submission of the program description, an applicant should have analyzed the facility in sufficient detail to conclude that it is designed and can be operated safely. The Safety Program Description is the principal document with which the applicant provides the information needed by staff to understand the basis for conclusion. When reviewed and approved by the staff, and incorporated in the NRC license by reference, the Safety Program Description, in its entirety and in its parts, is the safety basis on which the license is issued and may not be changed except through the process defined in 10 CFR 70.72. The requirements in 10 CFR Part 70 specify, in general terms, the information to be supplied in a Safety Program Description. The specific information to be submitted by an applicant and evaluated by staff is identified in this SRP. Prospective applicants should study the topic areas treated in this document (generally, chapter headings) and the sections within each topic area, specifically the sections headed "Areas of Review" and "Acceptance Criteria." A license application should contain a Safety Program Description that addresses all the topics in the Table of Contents of this SRP, in the same order as presented in this document. In this SRP, information is provided to assist the licensing staff and the applicant in understanding the underlying objective of the regulatory requirements, the relationships among NRC requirements, the licensing process, the major guidance documents NRC staff has prepared for licensing facilities under 10 CFR Part 70, and the details of the staff review process set out in individual SRP sections. Analyses by the staff are intended to provide regulatory confirmation of reasonable assurance of safe design and operation. A staff NUREG-1747 18

determination of reasonable assurance leads to a decision to issue or renew a license or to approve an amendment. In the case of a staff determination of inadequate description or commitments, the staff should inform the applicant of what is needed and the basis upon which the determination was made. The "Acceptance Criteria" delineated in this SRP are intended to communicate the underlying objectives but not to represent the only means of satisfying that objective. An applicant should tailor its safety program to the features of its particular facility. If approaches different from the SRP are chosen, the applicant should identify the portions of its application that differ from the design approaches and acceptance criteria of the SRP and evaluate how the proposed alternatives provide an acceptable method of complying with the Commission's regulations. The staff retains the responsibility to make an independent determination of the adequacy of what is proposed. The major topics addressed within the Safety Program Description of a facility license application are addressed in separate SRP chapters, as follows: ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Chapter 1: General Information Chapter 2: Organization and Administration Chapter 3: Integrated Safety Analysis Chapter 4: Radiation Safety Chapter 5: Nuclear Criticality Safety Chapter 6: Chemical Safety Chapter 7: Fire Protection Chapter 8: Emergency Management Chapter 9: Environmental Protection Chapter 10: Decommissioning Chapter 11: Management Measures Chapter 12: Plant Systems

The applicantís integrated safety analysis (ISA) is the central focus for the selection of design and operational safety measures and the management control systems that assure the availability and reliability of those measures. It is the ISA that provides a comprehensive evaluation and presentation, useful to both the applicant and the NRC, of the distribution of risk among the many activities ongoing at the TWRS-P facility. The NRC expects to be able to use the ISA summary to focus its resources on the dominant risks of facility design and operation and the safety controls and assurances necessary to ensure that those controls remain available and reliable. Accordingly, staff reviewers should conduct a coordinated review of the ISA summary and focus on the portions of the summary that are applicable to each of the technical areas treated in the chapters of the SRP. The acceptance criteria in each of the SRP chapters are the criteria that apply to the dominant risks of operation. The applicant has the opportunity to justify lesser criteria for those design and operational features that can be shown to represent lesser risk than the accident or failure sequences that pose the dominant risks. While recognizing the fundamental importance of the ISA to understanding the risk at a facility, certain SRP chapters are less dependent on ISA outcomes than others. The chapters concerning radiation safety, environmental protection, emergency management, and decommissioning, for example, contain acceptance criteria that are set primarily by existing regulations and have not been affected by issuing the revision to 10 CFR Part 70. Finally, for 19 NUREG-1747

new facilities (that have not already been designed, built, licensed, and operated), certain baseline design criteria have been specified in 10 CFR 70.64, ìRequirements for New Facilities or New Processes at Existing Facilities.î These criteria identify safety considerations that an applicant must address in its facility design. The ISA for the complete facility design may indicate when reduced levels of assurance may be acceptable. Each chapter in the SRP includes sections, which are described below in general terms. A more detailed description of the application of the baseline design criteria is given in the discussion of Section 4, "Acceptance Criteria," below. Section 1., PURPOSE OF REVIEW: This section is a brief statement of the purpose for and objectives of reviewing the subject areas. It emphasizes the staffís evaluation of the ways the applicant can achieve identified performance objectives and ensures through the review that the applicant has used a multi-disciplinary, systems-oriented approach to establishing designs, controls, and procedures within individual technical areas. Section 2., RESPONSIBILITY FOR REVIEW: This section identifies the organization and individuals by function, within NRC, responsible for evaluating the subject or functional area covered by the SRP. If reviewers with expertise in other areas are to participate in the evaluation, they are identified by function. In general, the Licensing Project Manager has responsibility for the total review product, a safety evaluation report for an application. However, an identified technical specialist should have primary responsibility for a particular review topic, usually an SRP chapter. One or more specialists may have supporting responsibility. In most situations the review is performed by a team of specialist reviewers including the lead reviewer for the ISA and the project manager. Although they individually perform their review tasks, the reviews are extensively coordinated and integrated to ensure consistency in approach and to ensure risk-informed reviews. The project manager oversees and directs the coordination of the reviewers. The reviewersí immediate line management has the responsibility to ensure that an adequate review is performed by qualified reviewers. Section 3., AREAS OF REVIEW: This section describes the topics, functions, systems, structures, equipment, and components, analyses, data, or other information that should be reviewed as part of that particular subject area of the license application. Because the section identifies information to be reviewed in evaluating the adequacy of the application, it identifies the acceptable content of an applicant's submittal in the areas discussed. The areas of review identified in this section obviate the need for a separate Standard Format and Content Guide. The topics identified in this section also set the content of the next two sections of the SRP. Both Section 4, "Acceptance Criteria," and Section 5, "Review Procedures," should address, in the same order, the topics set forth in this section as areas to be reviewed. This section also identifies the information needed or the review expected from other NRC individuals to permit the individual charged with primary review responsibility to complete the review. Section 4., ACCEPTANCE CRITERIA: This section contains a statement of the applicable NRC criteria based on regulatory requirements, and the bases for determining the acceptability of the applicant's commitments relative to the design, programs, or functions within the scope of the particular SRP section. Technical bases consist of specific criteria such as NRC regulations, regulatory guides, NUREG reports, industry codes and standards, and branch technical positions. To the extent practicable, the acceptance criteria identify, as objectively or NUREG-1747 20

quantitatively as is feasible, specific criteria and other technical bases that are to be satisfied. The acceptance criteria (including branch technical positions or other information) present positions and approaches that are acceptable to the staff. They are not considered the only acceptable positions or approaches. Others may be proposed by an applicant. It is NRC's intent that the SRP present acceptance criteria for each technical function area (e.g., nuclear criticality safety, fire safety, radiation safety), and for the management measures (e.g., quality assurance, maintenance, audits and assessments), that allow an applicant to provide a level of protection commensurate with the accident risk inherent in the process activities proposed. For example, at process stations (or for an entire process or sub-process) for which the inherent risk to workers, the public, or the environment is demonstrably small, the applicant needs to provide only those design and operating controls which assure that small risk. The key element in the regulatory transaction involving presentation by an applicant, and review and approval by the NRC, is an adequate demonstration of acceptable control of risk by the applicant, which then supports a competent and informed review by NRC staff. The starting point for the applicant's demonstration of acceptable control of risk is the ISA. The applicant's ISA summary (described in and reviewed under Chapter 3 of this SRP) is the primary supporting rationale for the safety level of design and operational features. There are, however, design and operational features and management controls that may be required independent of the ISA results presented by an applicant. This is to meet the requirements of 10 CFR 70.64 for new facilities or new processes at existing facilities, or, for all facilities, other NRC requirements such as 10 CFR Parts 20 and 51. The level of detail presented in the ISA summary and in other parts of the application represents the safety basis committed to by the applicant, and it is that basis that is subject to the provisions of 10 CFR Part 70, as revised, regarding changes that a licensee may make to the facility without prior NRC approval. NRC should find an application acceptable if an applicant commits to the design features and management measures defined by the acceptance criteria within this SRP. The criteria in this SRP represent the design features or management measures that support an NRC finding of reasonable assurance of adequate protection, independent of any ISA findings or conclusions that could lead to NRC approval of reduced levels of assurance for certain design features or management measures where the associated risk does not warrant the same high level of assurance. An applicant for license renewal or an amendment for an existing facility responding to the requirements of 10 CFR Part 70, may propose structures, systems, and components (SSC) or management measures that meet less stringent acceptance criteria than described in the SRP based on supporting analyses from the applicantís ISA. The ISA may be used to justify a reduced level of assurance for particular items relied on for safety, that are associated with lesser risk accident sequences, as defined by the applicantís analysis of likelihood and consequences pursuant to 10 CFR Part 70, as revised. The SRP criteria shown in this SRP apply to those SSC and management measures that are involved in the higher risk accident sequences as defined in Part 70, as revised. For proposed new facilities or amendments for new processes proposed at existing facilities, the acceptance criteria described in the SRP apply for design purposes and should be addressed in the applicantís licensing submittal for all SSC and management measures and that sectionís requirement to comply with the baseline design criteria (BDCs) of Part 70, as revised. The BDCs are consistent with risk-informed regulation, in that, for new processes or 21 NUREG-1747

new facilities, NRC recognizes that good engineering practice dictates certain minimum requirements be applied as design and safety considerations, generally independent of the riskbased information ultimately obtained through the ISA. However, the applicant may use the ISA summary to justify reduced criteria for some SSC and management measures consistent with an ISA summary for a facility final design. Proposed reductions in the level of assurance should be considered by the NRC staff and, if accepted, should also constitute compliance with the BDCs. Section 5., REVIEW PROCEDURES: This section describes how the review should be performed. It describes procedures that the reviewer should follow to achieve an acceptable scope and depth of review and to obtain reasonable assurance that the applicant has provided appropriate commitments to ensure that it will operate the facility safely. This includes identifying licensee commitments to verify and could include directing the reviewer to coordinate with others having review responsibilities for other portions of the application than that assigned to the reviewer. This section should provide whatever procedural guidance is necessary to evaluate the applicant's level of achievement of the acceptance criteria. Section 6., EVALUATION FINDINGS: This section presents the type of positive conclusion that is sought for the particular review area to support a decision to grant a license or amendment. The review must be adequate to permit the reviewer to support this conclusion. For each section, a conclusion of this type should be included in the staff's Safety Evaluation Report (SER) in which the staff publishes the results of its review. The SER should also contain a description of the review, including aspects of the review that received special emphasis; matters that were modified by the applicant during the review; matters that require additional information or will be resolved in the future; aspects where the plant's design or the applicant's proposals deviate from the criteria in the SRP; and the bases for any deviations from the SRP or proposed exemptions from the regulations. Staff reviews may be documented in the form of draft SERs that identify open issues requiring resolution before the staff can make a positive finding in favor of the license issuance or amendment. Section 7., REFERENCES: This section lists references that should be consulted in the review process. However, they may not always be relevant to the review, depending on the action and approaches proposed by the applicant. 2.4 NRC PARTICIPATION IN PHASE IA

NRC staff have participated in various reviews of the TWRS-P program. Under Phase IA, the staff reviewed the following major documents from each of the two contractor teams (BNFL Inc. and Lockheed Martin Advanced Environmental Systems (LMAES); see Chapter 7.0 for main reference for citations): 1. 2. 3. 4. Hazards Analysis Report (HAR) - 1997. Standards Requirements Document (SRD) - 1997. Integrated Safety Management Plan (ISMP) - 1997. Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) - 1998.

NUREG-1747

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Numerous open items or items requiring additional information and clarification were identified by the NRCís review of these documents. Focusing on BNFL Inc. (because of its selection by DOE for continuing into Phase IB - see Section 1.3), a total of 409 comments were generated by the NRC review of these documents, and were subsequently identified and sent to DOE in interagency letters. DOE subsequently forwarded most of these comments to the Contractor for informational purposes. The NRC staff developed and maintained databases to track the issues from the reviews of the SRD and ISAR. The NRC staff identified some 245 comments as being open from the perspective of the NRC as a potential regulator of the facility. From the point of view of the NRC staff, the most significant issues were found to be the following19: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Incompleteness of the description and documentation. Key unit operational and process information not included. Inadequate configuration management and documentation organization. Exclusion of safety analyses for the facility workers. Inadequate design class description and SSC categorization. Limited analysis of non-process accidents and external events. Lack of conservatism, particularly at this early stage of design.

The DOE review reached similar conclusions. DOE divided its comments of the ISAR into the following four main categories in March 1998 (see Chapter 7.0, Main Reference 10): 1. Adequate Safety Basis Not Demonstrated: There were 25 issues relating to the adequacy of the proposed facilityís safety basis. Resolution was to be required during the first 6 months of Phase IB-1. Inadequate Classification of SSCís: There were seven issues to ensure that the ISMP described in the Contract and in the BNFL Inc. ISMP (plan) were implemented. Resolution was to be required during the first 6 months of Phase IB-1. Incomplete or Conflicting Elements of the Authorization Basis: There were 30 issues that showed incomplete, inadequate assessments and attention to detail. Resolution of these items would be required prior to the submittal of the Construction Authorization Request (CAR). Incomplete Design or Operational Information: There were 28 issues related to the limited information available in the Phase IA (conceptual) design stage. Resolution of these items would be required prior to the submittal of the CAR.

2.

3.

4.

19

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, October 17, 1997.

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2.5

NRC PARTICIPATION IN PHASE IB-1

DOE selected BNFL Inc. as the sole contractor for Phase IB-1 due to concerns about the status of technology development in the LMAES proposal. Phase IB-1 focused on addressing the main issues from Phase IA and extending the level of design from the preliminary conceptual design level of 3-5 percent to around 25-30 percent. DOE identified the HAR, SRD, and the ISAR submitted in Phase IA as the authorization basis for the continuing design efforts. The NRC staff participated in major reviews of the following (see Chapter 7.0, main reference section for report citations): 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. The Design Safety Features (DSF) submittal (four volumes, Spring, 1999). Topical Meetings and their associated reports (essentially monthly). Other Technical Reports (e.g., the RPP - Radiation Protection Plan, QAPIP - Quality Assurance Program Implementation Plan). Periodic Design Reviews. April 24, 2000, submittal (Firm Fixed Price submittal).

Most of the NRC staff comments on these Part B-1 documents mirror the ISAR comments, and are discussed further in Sections 3.1-3.10 and Appendix A. A large fraction of these comments center around the lack of detail and supporting information on safety-related issues, potentially uneven amounts of redundant equipment and backup systems, and inadequate maintenance of the design/authorization basis. From the perspective of the NRC staff and based upon subsequent NRC reviews of the additional information and documents generated so far in Phase IB-1, a significant number of the original, specific comments (about 100) tracked in the databases remained open. A list of potential critical issues was forwarded to the RU20. One large database was subsequently developed for tracking the issues. For this report, these issues have been updated and condensed into a form that are largely design independent and have been placed in Attachment A. DOE opted to discuss several of these issues with the Contractor via the ìTopical Meetingî process (see Section 3.1). Most of these meetings had at least one NRC representative in attendance. DOE subsequently decided to close many of these issues by deferring them to the future review of the CAR/Preliminary Safety Analysis Report instead of keeping them open in an Action Plan or SER. DOE/RU anticipates a long list of issues from the CAR review activities21. Thus, as of this writing, potentially significant and safety-related issues remain open. Review areas of major involvement have included the following: ! Organization and general information.

20

Leach, M.N., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, ìPotential Critical Technical Issues For Construction Authorization Resolution,î January 21, 2000.
21

Hoadley, D.A., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Note to File, ìMinutes of March 16, 2000 Teleconference with DOE/RU,î March 21, 2000.

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! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

Seismic and structural considerations. Hazards and safety analyses. Radiation safety and dose assessment methodology. Criticality safety. Process and chemical safety. Fire protection. Explosion protection. Environmental protection. Quality assurance (QA) and management measures.

These are discussed in more detail in Chapter 3.0. A common concern of the reviews of the NRC staff is the potential lack of conservatism and margin in many of these areas. Thus, if the facility is designed right at a limit in a particular area, it may be significantly restricted for future changes and modifications such as increased capacities or unforeseen changes in the wastes and chemistries. In addition, the design and safety limits are derived from the ISMP. For TWRS-P, ISMP has invoked a circular logic that can magnify the impact of changes, particularly when a scenario consequence result slightly exceeds a limit. ISMP is an iterative process which includes reassessing assumptions (e.g., of radionuclide concentrations) that can reduce a hazard below a limit into a bin with less reliability and safety requirements. Once this occurs, the scenario represents less risk with fewer safety requirements, and, since ISMP focuses on events with higher risk, this scenario and the underlying assumptions may be subject to less scrutiny. The NRC staff participated with the RU in inspections of Contractor activities and programs. The NRC staff members provided input to the RU inspection teams on the following programs: Personnel Training and Qualification, Design Process, as low as reasonably achievable/RPP, QA, and Employee Concerns. These inspections identified a number of design, QA, and project management issues requiring BNFL Inc. actions, including procedure compliance, design basis documentation, corrective actions, and document control, which are further discussed in the relevant parts of Chapter 3.0. The NRC staff has also provided input on guidance and regulatory documents to DOE and the RU, and commented on issues that have arisen. Appendix C contains summaries of Point Papers generated by the NRC. Appendix E provides a listing of correspondence with the DOE. Several major guidance and regulatory items reviewed by the NRC staff have included the Limited Construction Authorization Request (LCAR) Review Guidance, the CAR Review Guidance, the co-located worker issue, and risk and regulatory comparisons. The latter two items are discussed further in Chapter 4.0. The NRC has conducted independent assessments and analyses, including the following: 1. 2. 3. 4. The Standard Review Plan (SRP - NUREG-1702) was developed, issued as a draft for public comment, and issued in final form (see Section 2.3). Point/Position Papers on QA, process safety, fire, and materials aspects (Appendix C). Information papers on radiation protection. CNWRA analyses and reports include: 25 NUREG-1747

A. B. C. D. E. F. G. H. I. J.

"Survey of Solidification Process Technologies," April 1998. "Process Hazards and Safety Issues for TWRS-P." Vol. 1óLow activity waste Feed Makeup, Solidification, and Offgas Treatment, July 1999. Vol. 2 - Auxiliary Support Systems and Process Control Systems, August 1999. HLW Chemistry Manual. Chemistry of TWRS Waste Pretreatment and Technology Report. PRETREAT Spreadsheet Model for TWRS Pretreatment Flowsheet. Glass Melt Chemistry and Product Qualification Report (in progress). Chemical Simulation of TWRS Pretreatment Process (in progress). ìClassification of Process Systems Used in the Tank Waste Remediation SystemPrivatization Design,î June 2000.

The TWRS-P facility represents a radiochemical facility with a relatively large radionuclide inventory. Table 3 compares the potential radionuclide inventories at TWRS-P locations (calculated from Tables 1 and 2) with selected radionuclide quantities at a nuclear power plant (calculated from the Radiological Characteristics Database22); the TWRS facility is likely to handle comparable quantities of radioactive cesium, strontium, and technetium in significantly more mobile physical and chemical forms (e.g., as nitrates and aqueous solutions), as compared to ceramic oxide fuels in power reactors. In addition, while a reactor has more energy for potentially energetic scenarios during operations, including scenarios with delays of hours and days before the radionuclide release occurs, the TWRS-P facility has more stored chemical energy for prompt potential events directly involving the radionuclides in their mobile forms. Consequently, the TWRS/Waste Treatment Plant may have some requirements that are more similar to reactor facilities than to commercial fuel fabrication facilities.

22

U.S. Department of Energy, (U.S.) (DOE). ìRadiological Characteristics Database.î DOE: Richland, Washington. 1995.

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Table 3: Comparison of Curie Quantities between TWRS-P and a Commercial Reactor
1,000 MWe Nominal Reactor (PWR, in curies) Radionuclide Bounding for TWRS-P Facility (curies) LAW Tanks, 100Kgal (Env. B) 8.6E6 (2.3E6) 1,000 (727) 6,300 (4,500) 8,700; 70 from solution (8,700; 49 from solution) HLW Tanks, 100Kgal 1.1E6 (7.57E06) 1,700 (11,400) 1.2E6 (7.57E06) 17,200 (87,000) Cs Product, 1Kgal 1.32E6 (no change) (0) (0) (0) Cs Resin Column, 100 liters 72,000 (no change) (0) (0) (0) CST Column 30,000 MWD/MTIHM Core, 1 yr cooled 9.2E6 SNF Dry Cask, 5 yr cooled 1E6 60,000 MWD/MTIHM Core, 1 yr cooled 1.8E7 SNF DRY Cask, 5 yr cooled 1.9E6

Cs-137

3E5 (no change) 0 0 0

Tc-99 Sr-90 TRU

1,200 6.6E6 1.3E7

140 7.2E5 1.2E6

2,200 1.2E7 2E7

260 1.3E6 1.8E6

Note: Reactor core nominally contains 100 MTIHM and SNF cask nominally contains 12 MTIHM. PWR values calculated using the Radiological Characteristics Database from Footnote 22. TWRS-P values calculated from Tables 1 and 2 for the original contract, with 5 percent and 10 percent suspended solids for the LAW and HLW respectively. The values in parentheses are calculated from the new contract, using 2 percent and 20 percent as the suspended solids concentrations for LAW and HLW respectively. The HLW has not been washed. Non-TRU, LAW values do not include the solids contribution; for the new contract, inclusion of the solids contribution would respectively add 7.6E5, 1.1E3, and 7.6E5 curies to the cesium, technetium, and strontium values. Recent discussions have not included CST columns.

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3.0 NRC AREAS OF REVIEW
3.1 ORGANIZATION AND GENERAL INFORMATION
3.1.1 TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEM-PRIVATIZATION ORGANIZATION The BNFL Inc. team was approximately 550 people at its peak, with some additional support from outside contractors and consultants. Approximately 50 key personnel from BEI (BNFL Engineering Incorporated, United Kingdom) were in lead positions. The organizationís management functions were adopted from the British Nuclear Fuels Limited parent company. These functions were characterized as the ìTWRS-P Business Model.î A total of eight key business processes were identified:
Business Process Management and Administration Corporate policies Strategies Quality Program Resources Human Resources Training Customer Service DOE Interface and Controls Client (DOE) Commitment Tracking Change Control Stakeholder Interface Procurement Local Purchase Plant and Equipment Service Contracts Main Subcontracts (R&D) Finance and Accounts Control of Funds Financial Audit Financial Risk Financial Delegation Project Management Schedules Costs Value Engineering Options Project Meeting Structure Project Risk Management Design and Engineering Engineering Design Process Environmental Safety and Health Procedures and Processes Technical Risk Management Construction Operations (To be developed) Responsibility Project Manager General Manager Quality Assurance Manager Human Resources Manager

General Manager DOE Client Interface

Procurement Manager

Financial Manager

Project Manager

Engineering Manager Environmental Safety and Health Manager

Operations Manager

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Each business process performed in accordance with established methods. The hierarchy of instruction was as follows: general instructions were included in Procedures, with details in Codes of Practice. Other direction was provided by Design Guides, sometimes called Desktop Guides. Procedures, Codes of Practice, and Design Guides were not submitted for U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) review but, as part of inspection accompaniments with the RU, some Contractor documents and procedures were compared with activities for consistency. Some disconnects were observed, apparently due to the relative fast schedule of the program and the rapid aggregation of the project team from multiple locations. Performance of some management functions (ìbusiness processesî) such as Corporate Policy & Strategy, Finance & Accounts, DOE Interface, Schedule & Costs, and Operations were transparent to NRC technical reviewers. Performance of other management functions was visible to NRC technical reviewers because these departments had active roles in many of the design and safety submittals that were reviewed (Safety Requirements Document [SRD], Hazards Analysis Report [HAR], Integrated Safety Management Plan [ISMP], etc.) and presentations (Design Reviews and Topical Meetings) that were attended. However, it was not clear that environmental, safety, and health (ES&H) and quality assurance (QA) functions were sufficiently independent and had the authority to ensure that their issues were adequately addressed. Specific examples of these points are discussed in Sections 3.1.3 and 3.10. 3.1.2 MEETINGS AND REPORTS ON SAFETY AND REGULATORY ACTIVITIES The NRC was not fully involved with and did not comment on all meetings and reports. During Phase I, Part A, there were three main deliverable packages for addressing safety and regulatory concerns; these were the Standards Application Package (SAP) ( consisting of the SRD and the HAR), the ISMP, and the Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR). No revisions were made to these documents and a final version reconciled to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and NRC comments was not issued in Part A. The SRD was revised twice in late 1998 and the HAR was to be revised in the Fall of 2000 (both in Part B-1 of Phase I). In addition, the organization of the documents and references was difficult to follow; for example, the ISAR referred to a Technical Report which in turn referenced three binders of poorly organized, handwritten material. The Part B-1 Contract only identified two main deliverables for regulatory and safety purposes: (1) the Design Safety Features (DSF), also called the six month submittal and (2) the Construction Authorization Request (CAR), which would include the Preliminary Safety Analysis Report (PSAR), at 26 months into the Contract. The NRC and the DOE/Regulatory Unit (RU) also looked at the Firm Fixed Price (FFP), 20-month submittal for informational purposes about the design and approach. The FFP was not intended to address safety and regulatory concerns. The DSF submittal only represented examples that were not part of the design process. Thus, the FFP submittal represented the first formal update of the design and safety features since the ISAR, a period of 2 years. The FFP submittal itself was really a collection of reports. Integration between these multiple reports was not a clear process. Consequently, revisions addressing comments and concerns were not produced in a timely manner, and there were significant time periods between these documents during which there was no contractually required safety information. As a result of the limited number of safety deliverables in Part B, the Design Review process was instituted by the DOE/RU as part of their approach towards project oversight. The NUREG-1747 30

objectives of the design review process were to (a) verify fulfillment of the TWRS-P contract requirement to review the evolving design, (b) ensure that safety-related design aspects were integrated between Contractor engineering disciplines, (c) develop a clear understanding of evolving safety-related design aspects, and (d) provide a reasonable expectation that the CAR would be acceptable. Design reviews were performed primarily as a ìstatus meetingî as the discipline engineers exchanged information, and NRC reviewers attended as many as possible. DOE and NRC staff members participated in design reviews as observers and not as reviewers. The quality of the NRC-observed design reviews was variable. On the positive side, minutes and action items were kept and assembled for later review in the library. However, on the negative side, greater rigor, meeting focus, and conduct would seem to be needed. Documents were usually provided to the meeting attendees at the beginning of the meeting, which did not allow for adequate review time. The documents/handouts usually consisted of just the overheads for the presentation, without a formal report with revision numbers. No revision changes and written notes/rationale were apparent in the presentations, although these were sometimes mentioned verbally. There appeared to be an emphasis for avoiding action items, using terms such as ìdesign refinementî for items that would seem more like actual action items. It was not clear how action items were tracked, particularly between interrelated design activities and reviews. Although not required, there was little apparent involvement of personnel from the Contractorís safety organizations. The design teams frequently appeared to be working separately from the safety reviewers, without consideration of the design/authorization basis, safety, and the SRD. In some meetings, over half of the questions are asked by DOE/RU and NRC personnel. Finally, design reviews and documentation were not formally reviewed and commented upon by either DOE or the NRC. Only general feedback was provided by DOE to the Contractor. Topical Meetings were instituted by the RU in Phase IB, in an effort to keep informed of progress and potentially bring closure to the many issues that had been raised during Phase IA. The Topical Meetings were held every month. The results of a Topical Report on the issue were generally submitted in advance of the meeting. After one of the early meetings, an agreement was made to hold a pre-topical meeting approximately 2 weeks prior to the Topical Meeting to ensure that the level of detail in the presentation was satisfactory. An effort was made to have at least two NRC reviewers at each topical meeting. While there were many letter-type Topical and other reports generated for the Topical Meetings, it was not clear how these documents inter-related with each other and would be incorporated into safety analysis reports. A clear route to closure was not apparent. The NRC communicated to the DOE-RU its concerns regarding closure of issues23. In particular, the NRC noted the RU was focusing on the Contractor demonstrating an understanding of the standards identification process (see Section 1.4) and the Contractorís implementation of this process, while the NRC concentrated on determining whether or not the Contractorís approach to safety incorporated appropriate levels of conservatism as well as whether the design approaches could later prove to pose potentially unacceptable levels of risk. The NRC further commented that the RU and the Contractor would benefit from closing issues in the near term and well before the CAR; otherwise, the deferrals may increase the time and costs associated with the review of the

23

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, June 25, 1999.

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CAR. The RU identified the following, thirteen significant, unresolved issues from the Topical Meetings24: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. Criticality control. Explosion hazards (hydrogen). Fire protection. Design safety features (unmitigated definition, source terms, uncertainties, etc.). Dose assessment. Emergency response plan. Seismic analysis and criteria. Technology development and plans. Explosion hazards (non-hydrogen). Iodine-129 evaluation. Cesium storage tank cooling. Seismic PRA dose consequence. ISM cycle I.

At the request of the DOE/Office of River Protection (ORP), the RU reviewed the FFP submittal with assistance from NRC staff25. While noting the FFP submittal was not intended as a safety deliverable and that some additional design information exists outside of the FFP document, the review determined that the facility and process design information fell far short of the information required for the CAR. Significant additional design information would be needed, including further development of the design and information on safety equipment. The following, short list of items were presented: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Limited identification of items relied on for safety (IROFS). Control logic and diagrams not provided. System descriptions were at a summary level, and codes and standards were not identified for most structures, systems, and components, (SSCs). Materials of construction were not identified for most SSCs. Process information focused on normal operationsóinformation for startup, shutdown, offnormal, and fault conditions was not provided. Operating parameters (temperature, flow rates, pressures, etc.) were not routinely included for routine operations and not mentioned for startup, shutdown, offnormal, and fault conditions. Information was rarely provided for system pressure, pressure drops, instantaneous flow rates, and specific gravity (this information would be needed to assess tanks and the adequacy of line/pump sizes, etc.).

24

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M. Bullock, BNFL Inc., March 24, 2000. Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to R. French, U.S. Department of Energy, May 25, 2000.

25

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32

8. 9.

The description focuses on operability with little attention to safety issues. Information regarding analysis and the validation/verification of software for structural and seismic considerations was not provided.

10. Important-to-safety (ITS) areas of the design are not complete or do not have the detail to support safety analyses (CAR/PSAR). 11. The levels of conservatism and the design margins are not mentioned for operations or safety parameters. The RU subsequently provided this information to the Contractor and included a more detailed report by review area26. 3.1.3 INSPECTIONS NRC reviewers also participated in several inspections which were conducted by the DOE/RU: these included inspections of BNFL Inc.ís Employee Concerns Program, Training and Qualification Program (two inspections), Quality Assurance Program (two inspections), and Design Process. One of the earliest inspections was of the Employee Concerns Program. Inspectors found the program to be in place, but no formal concerns had been voiced. An inspection of the Contractorís Training and Qualification Program was conducted early in the project. The Contractor was hiring staff at the time of the inspection. Training and Qualification procedures were only recently issued, but appeared to be functioning. It was determined that the Contractorís staff was qualified for their positions and responsibilities. Two important program weaknesses were identified: (1) the positions of Training Manager and Training Specialist were not filled at the time of the inspection; and (2) the Contractorís program for position-specific training was not fully developed. The second inspection of the Training and Qualification program confirmed that deficiencies in management and position-specific training still remained. An inspection of the design process and authorization basis was initially scheduled in the Spring of 1999, then postponed by the RU because of concerns that the Contractor would do poorly as the authorization basis was not being followed nor maintained. Subsequently, the postponed inspection was canceled - again, over RU concerns that the Contractor would not pass the inspection. The Contractor design process was inspected in January, 2000. Three (3) areas of Findings were identified during the inspection: (1) examples where the Contractor had not followed procedures; (2) procedures did not address or consider testability or inspectability in the design; (3) the Quality Assurance organization was not effectively reviewing the design program. Limited QA overview of the design process and continued instances of procedural noncompliance were causes for concern. These and continuing concerns about the management of the authorization and design basis resulted in a Corrective Action Notice (CAN) and conference in March, 2000. A highly interactive QA organization that self-identified

26

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to P. Strawbridge, BNFL Inc., June 2, 2000.

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problems, such as the procedure noncompliance issues identified in this inspection, coupled with a robust corrective action program, were two elements required to assure the development of a safe design and maintain the authorization basis. DOE/RU and the Contractor recognized deficiencies in QA, and conducted several selfassessments, including a Root Cause Analysis. This was viewed as a weakness in Project/Management, and not simply a QA problem. Some of the deficiencies include a failure to follow procedures, lack of knowledge of requirements, failure to implement inspection programs, inadequate documentation of design activities, and deficient design or contract technical and standards bases. The failures noted were program/project implementation (management) problems, which would be detected during inspections. DOE/RU issued a CAN27 on March 14, 2000, and held a public meeting in March 2000. Contractual and regulatory documents specify that changes in facility design will either be consistent with the existing authorization basis or the authorization basis will be revised based upon a determination of the potential impacts of the proposed changes. The RU determined that, to the contrary, the Contractor had neither established nor implemented a program or process to ensure that the authorization basis was maintained current with respect to the facility design. In short, the facility design was proceeding without consideration of the authorization basis and safety issues. This condition existed throughout Part B1 of the TWRS-P project, from contract award (August 1998) through two inspections (October and November 1999) through several meetings with the Contractor until the CAN was issued. The RU and the Contractor held several other meetings and the RU ultimately accepted the Corrective Action Plan (CAP)28. The RU had also planned an inspection on the self-assessment and the CAP29. However, the contract termination resulted in the indefinite rescheduling of the inspection and CAP30. The DOE/RU regulatory program has a significant amount of flexibility and discretion for regulatory decisions and actions. This allowed the postponement and subsequent cancellation of an inspection that would have resulted in a corrective action notice a year earlier than when it actually was issued, and, as a result, most of the design activities occurred outside of the authorization basis and SRD. The RU subsequently received a large number of authorization basis amendment requests (ABARs) in the last 3 months of the contract. The CAN was not issued until 1 month before the FFP. If the CAN had been issued a year earlier, there would be more confidence that the design is within the authorization basis. In the NRC regulatory regime, it is unlikely that such an inspection would have been postponed and then canceled if the licensee was known to be outside their design basis.

27

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M. Bullock, BNFL Inc., March 14, 2000. Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M. Bullock, BNFL Inc., April 25, 2000. Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M. Bullock, BNFL Inc. March 27, 2000. Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to P. Strawbridge, BNFL Inc., July 26, 2000.

28

29

30

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34

3.1.4 SUMMARY The Contractor organization experienced rapid growth during Phase IA and Phase IB-1. Adherence to procedures and protocols, and integration of program activities and documentation (authorization basis) were not fully developed. The emphasis on schedule and cost may be contributing to these concerns. In the near term, this is unlikely to change because of new contracts and new contractors.

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3.0 NRC AREAS OF REVIEW
3.2 SEISMIC AND STRUCTURAL CONSIDERATIONS
3.2.1 TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEM-PRIVATIZATION: PART A The privatization concept developed by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for the Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization (TWRS-P) project set forth the contractual requirements for the two contractors in Part A, and was expanded on in a series of four toplevel documents. These were known as DOE/RL-96-003, -004, -005 and -006. Briefly these documents addressed the following topics for the two contractors, LMAES and BNFL Inc.31 -003: the DOE Regulatory Process for TWRS-P -004: Process for Establishing a Set of Standards and Requests -005: Concept of the Regulatory Process for TWRS -006: Top-Level Principles Based upon these documents, it was the responsibility of each contractor to devise a pretreatment process, a vitrification process and all the auxiliary and supporting processes, and the plant design so that the treatment of the tank wastes would result in a product that will meet the acceptance criteria for high level waste disposal. The hazards specific to each of the contractorsí processing activities were to be identified and evaluated for their impact on the safety on each of their proposed facilities throughout its lifetime. The DOE privatization concept included the execution of an integrated safety management system that would consider the hazards, the consequences of failures, and the mitigation elements that would be provided in the facility design and operation. Each contractor, based on implementing these four top-level documents, was to identify and recommend for DOE approval, a set of safety standards that the contractors would certify that, if properly implemented, would result in adequate safety, compliance with applicable laws and legal requirements, and conformance to the DOEstipulated top-level safety standards and principles. For the NRC, the elements of the defined regulatory process with the most importance to the NRC at this stage of the project were the Standards Approval, the Initial Safety Evaluation, and the Construction Authorization Request (CAR). These elements in a final form would reflect similar aspects that the NRC would consider in a preliminary safety analysis report (PSAR) that would be submitted by an applicant for a license prior to NRC authorizing construction of a facility. In this instance however, DOE was interacting with the contractor (or applicant) in the conceptual design and preliminary design phases. These represent a much earlier stage of involvement than the NRC would normally be engaged in. DOE, in this situation as being responsible for the cost of the facility as well as safety, was motivated to be involved in the entire developmental process for this oneof-a-kind facility. The Standards Approval was a step in the Part A contract procedures to allow for DOE review, evaluation and subsequent approval, if warranted, of each of the contractorsí proposed set of radiological, nuclear, and process safety standards and requirements, as each contractor defined in their Safety Requirements Document (SRD). In addition, each contractor was to
31

Note that while there were two contractors involved in the work under Part A, all specific comments relative to this part are based only on the submittal by BNFL Inc. since the other contractor LMAES, did not proceed to Part B.

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provide a standards-based integrated safety management program that was to be documented in an Integrated Safety Management Plan (ISMP). DOE required that the SRD document all requirements of applicable laws and regulations, conform to the -0006 top-level document, and that the set of standards and requirements identified by a contractor was generated by the standards process defined in the -0004 top-level DOE document using the appropriate level of expertise. The SRD was also to reflect the fact that all hazards associated with the proposed facility and its operation have been appropriately addressed. The ISMP, developed as a portion of the Standards Approval process, was specified by DOE to include the planning elements of the implementation plans required by DOE regulations, particularly 10 CFR Part 830 addressing Nuclear Safety Management. DOE required that the contractorës selected safety management process documented in the ISMP be standards and requirements base, and that it be appropriately tailored to the hazards associated with the contractorís proposed facility, its operation and its deactivation. The only specific guidance provided by DOE that could be considered as a yardstick against which the level of safety of each of the proposed facilities could be judged consisted of the radiological Dose Standards Above Normal Background for individuals. These consisted of a breakdown for individuals in various categories, under various event scenarios, with varying estimated probabilities of occurrence that were provided in terms of numerical dose values, except for two types of individuals (the worker and co-located worker) impacted by the unlikely events and the highly unlikely events. The dose limits for these two cases were to be provided by the contractors as reflected by their proposed design. These standards were provided by DOE in the -0006 top-level document with the statement that the use of the standards does not provide a blanket waiver to safety regulations that apply to DOE activities, but are additional considerations that must be addressed by each of the contractors. The BNFL Inc. initial SRD submittal (September 26, 1997) that was reviewed identified two types of standards along with the source of the standards as follows. Standards used to specify certain objectives that must be achieved, or in other words performance objectives, were identified as ìsafety criteria.î It was noted that these standards usually are made up of laws and regulation requirements. Standards that are a prescriptive method for achieving a certain objective were identified as those standards that are industry consensus codes or standards such as American Society for Testing and Materials standards. The initial submittal also indicated that the consequential hazards for the facility consisted of those that were chemical and/or radiological in nature. It was also indicated that the hazard analysis would identify the need for accident prevention controls or mitigation controls in order to meet the performance goals. The mitigation controls were noted as being either engineered or administrative with a preference for engineered mitigation features. With respect to the engineering and design of these mitigation features, BNFL Inc., as a result of the process hazards analysis, elected to identify two classes of structures, systems and components - Design Class 1 and Design Class II. Design Class I was designated for those structures, systems, and components (SSCs) where structural controls were indicated from the preliminary accident analyses as being necessary to protect the public from seismic-induced failure of the high level waste (HLW) receipt tanks. The Design Class II SSC category based on the preliminary accident analyses indicated that the workers needed to be protected from the following list of accidents: NUREG-1747 38

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Failure of the HLW feed receipt tank. Self-boiling of the cesium product. Cesium ion exchange column fire. Melter failure. Cesium product storage overpressure or canister drop.

BNFL Inc. noted that engineered features required to prevent or mitigate these accidents and the resulting hazards would be provided in the facility. The engineered features were envisioned to consist of those elements providing confinement for the process cells, the ventilation system for the process cells and the cell ventilation stack. Other potential Design Class II elements included certain radiation monitors, instrumentation and controls including interlock logic devices controlling entry into high radiation areas, isolation devices relied on for maintaining ventilation confinement control of radioactive material, and shielding in certain areas. This information was presented by BNFL Inc. as constituting the ìsafety criteriaî standards. The consensus codes and standards were the next portions of the Standard Approval process and provided a more usable set of standards for the seismic, civil and structure technical discipline subject area. BNFL Inc. stated that the intent of the design process was to use consensus codes and standards that are recognized, and accepted. Design documents would be based on DOE guidance, and US and United Kingdom commercial nuclear and chemical industry practices for designing SSCs. In cases where no consensus code or standard exists, BNFL Inc. indicated an ad hoc standard will be developed. At the time of the submittal of the initial SRD, the need for any such ad hoc standards had not been identified. For the seismic, civil and structural discipline areas, BNFL Inc. relied heavily on the consensus codes and standards used in the commercial US nuclear power industry along with standards and guides that have been developed and incorporated into the DOE organizational hierarchy. In addition, guidance documents used by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) in the licensing of commercial power reactors were also listed within the SRD. Design loads resulting from natural phenomena were provided in tabular forms for each design class, i.e. for Design Class I and Design Class II SSCs. The main document referenced in these tables was DOE-STD-1020-94 with Change No. 1, 1996, ìNatural Phenomena Hazards Design and Evaluation Criteria for Department of Energy Facilities.î Additionally, DOE-STD 1021-93 with Change No. 1, 1996, ìNatural Phenomena Hazards Performance Categorization Guidelines for Structures, Systems and Componentsî was referenced, and for straight wind loads and snow loads the references were to ASCE 7-95, ìMinimum Design Loads for Buildings and Other Structures,î American Society of Civil Engineers. Tornado loads and tornado missiles were noted as not applicable for the Hanford Site for any design class of structure, however a wind generated missile was to be considered for Design Class I structures. Subordinate to these referenced documents were the implementing codes and standards that were identified for both design classes. The basis for the seismic loads for Design Class I was noted to be a previous report for the Hanford site that had been encompassed for application to all facilities at the Hanford site. This was known as the ìGeomatrix Report (1996)î which had the title of, ìProbabilistic Seismic Hazard Analysis DOE Hanford Site, Washington,î WHC-SDW236A-T1-002, Rev. 1. Based on this document BNFL, Inc. indicated that an equal-hazards response spectra for a peak horizontal ground acceleration of 0.24g at 33 Hz and a peak vertical ground acceleration of 0.16g at 50 Hz was appropriate for the facility. A graphical representation of these spectra was provided for the case of 5 percent damping. The codes and 39 NUREG-1747

standards referenced for Design Class I included ASCE 4-86, ìSeismic Analysis of SafetyRelated Nuclear Structures;î ACI 349-90, ìCode Requirements for Nuclear Safety-Related Concrete Structures;î AISC N690-95, ìSpecification for the Design, Fabrication and Erection of Steel Safety-Related Structures for Nuclear Facilities;î and UBC-94, ìUniform Building Code.î The basis for the seismic loads for Design Class II was identified as the Uniform Building Code, UBC-94, for Zone 2B and an Importance Factor of 1.0. The reinforced concrete design was to follow ACI 318-95, ìBuilding Code Requirements for Structural Concrete,î and the structural steel design was to follow AISC-89(ASD), ìSpecification for Structural Steel Buildings-Allowable Stress Design(ASD).î NRC comments in this technical area were provided to the DOE/Regulatory Unit (RU) as part of the NRC Comments on the BNFL Inc. Standards Approval Package, transmitted on 10/17/97 and 10/30/97. The following items in the category of hazards and codes/standards were addressed and identified as requiring additional information: 1. Natural events and the related hazards that are beyond the design basis should be included in the hazards analysis and the appropriate mitigative measures identified as needed should be identified and discussed. Basis of probability of occurrence for design precipitation intensities relative to the length of meteorological data at the Hanford Site needs to be provided. The Hazards Analysis Report (HAR) indicated that tornados would not be considered based on the low annual probability of occurrence (once every 100,000 years) and the low wind speed that would be less than the straight wind speeds. This event is still categorized as a Frequency 1 event per Table 3-3 of the HAR. In addition, besides the wind velocities associated with a tornado, there are rotational velocities and differential pressures that can be potentially dangerous for closed structures and those with controlled pressure differentials for contamination control. The basis for ignoring all effects of tornados, even though the tornados may be less intense than a maximum tornado, should be justified further. The HAR indicates that the return period for the design basis earthquake is approximately 2000 years. The basis for the peak horizontal ground acceleration being 0.24 g for this return period needs to be provided. Based on the DOE top-level documents this is an unlikely event. There should be information provided regarding the consideration and treatment of seismic events in the extremely unlikely category of seismic events which have a return period from10,000 to 1,000,000 years. The SRD was noted to reference numerous commercial nuclear power plant standards, portions of which may be inappropriate, or conflicting for TWRS-P application. The allencompassing references to such standards should be re-examined and the specifics identified. The use of non-US consensus codes and standards should be compared to the associated US codes and standards. The development, adoption, and use of ad hoc standards should be clearly prescribed in a documented procedure.

2. 3.

4.

5.

6.

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7.

References in several locations in the document to the Uniform Building Codes (UBC) does not identify the year of the UBC, or identifies an old version of the UBC. These issues should be clarified with references corrected to the current UBC edition. The safety classification system of the SSCs into the ìdesign classesî relative to the hazards and the consequences does not appear to be consistent.

8.

As noted by the RU in a letter to NRC, dated 12/5/97, these items were already addressed by RU questions to BNFL Inc., or provided information for additional questions the RU asked of BNFL Inc. The RU considered Item 6 to be editorial, but NRC disagreed with that position. While BNFL Inc. provided the RU additional information in response to some of the above issues as well as others, the RUís Evaluation Report of the BNFL Inc. SRD (RL/REG-98-01, March 1998) identified issues in this technical discipline area requiring resolution prior to commencement of preliminary design as well as others requiring resolution prior to construction authorization. With respect to hazards, the top-level Safety Criteria 4.1-3, 4.1-4 and 4.3-3 were identified as only addressing the effect of natural phenomena and hazards, but not all categories of potential hazards. The evaluation identified that Safety Criteria 4.1-3 and 4.1-4 also established seismic design criteria for which BNFL Inc. had not provided an adequate safety basis, and the criteria only addressed Design Class I and Design Class II SSCs and not all SSCs important to safety. The design classification system as proposed by BNFL, Inc. was identified as being inadequate and requiring changes that BNFL Inc. had described in a letter, dated 2/19/98. Correction of these deficiencies was required by the RU prior to the commencement of preliminary design. With regard to the site description and its impact on design, the RUís evaluation stated that adequate justification was needed to support the BNFL, Inc. hazards approach for natural phenomena hazards design criteria, and this should be more than that described in the HAR. The RU stated that BNFL Inc. did not provide an adequate or sufficiently detailed safety basis to support the selection of a 0.24 g horizontal acceleration earthquake with a 2000-year return period. The RU noted that these were issues that are commonly resolved during preliminary design, but essential to resolve prior to construction; hence, it was required that these be resolved prior to construction authorization. With respect to codes/standards, the RU determined that the implementing codes and standards were adequate as subordinate standards. The NRC had noted that two of the referenced standards were currently outdated by a later edition and recommended that ACI 349-97 and UBC-97 be the referenced standards. This was not reflected in the RU safety evaluation report. Another key element within Part A of the DOE contract was the development, by each of the contractors, of an Initial Safety Assessment (ISA) for the proposed TWRS-P facility. DOE, as part of the contract with its contractors, required that the ISA provide the following elements (the NRC also believed these elements to be relevant for its technical safety review and support to the DOE RU): 1. 2. 3. An adequate description of the site, the design of the proposed facility and the operation. A description of the hazards, the potential design-basis events and the analysis of those potential events. Preliminary acceptance criteria.

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4. 5. 6.

Identification and description of SSCs important to safety and the basis for the classification. Evaluations of the proposed design for constructability, operability, reliability, maintainability and inspectability. An Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) that defines the projected safety basis for the facility in terms of physical design, SSCs with prescribed safety functions, the operating modes and conditions, along with representative events of off-normal internal events, and external events. The results of representative safety analyses considering uncertainties should describe how the facility will meet the SRD requirements as well as how the prescribed dose limits are met.

The BNFL Inc. ISA submittal (January 12, 1998) was reviewed in the technical area of seismic, civil, and structural areas, and a series of comments/questions were developed. In some cases the subject of the issue represented a broader focus that these technical disciplines whereas in other cases the issue was unique to these disciplines. NRC comments in this technical area were provided to the DOE RU in a letter, dated 2/6/98, in support of their review process. A total of ten comments/questions resulted from the NRC review in these particular technical disciplines. These can be broadly identified as issues related to the design safety classes/categories, to external events (both natural and man-induced), and to the availability of information on various buildings and their function in the complex and the hazards they may pose. The consolidated issues addressed the following topics 1. Three design classes are noted in the ISAR with Design Class I and II being for the protection of the public and workers respectively, however all the credible scenarios which can change the required safety classification do not appear to have been considered. All potential events considered are not identified in the ISAR and those considered incredible are not identified nor is the basis for such a classification provided. Design Class II SSCs appear to be treated differently in the SRD and the ISAR relative to external events. Other adjacent sites and facilities hazards are not always considered. Specific design criteria were questioned regarding the basis of the criteria.

2. 3. 4. 5.

As noted by the RU in a letter to the NRC, dated 2/26/98, the comments were already encompassed by RU comments/questions to BNFL Inc. or revisions were being made to those items, or a new comment/question was being sent to BNFL Inc. The RU noted that three of the original NRC comments were determined to not address information that DOE believed was needed at this stage of the design development process, so they were not considered further. The RU Initial Safety Evaluation Report of the BNFL Inc. ISA (Main Reference 10) identified issues in this technical discipline as requiring resolution. The issues for the entire facility as a result of the ISA were grouped into four categories as follows: (1) adequate safety basis not demonstrated, (2) inadequate classification of SSCs, (3) incomplete or conflicting elements of the authorization basis, and (4) incomplete design or operational information. The schedule for resolution was identified in terms of three distinct time frames as follows: during the first six NUREG-1747 42

months of the preliminary design (Part B-1), during the PSAR stage, and prior to the submittal of the Construction Authorization Request. The RU stated that the justification for the use as a design basis earthquake of an event with a peak horizontal ground acceleration of 0.24g, with a return period of 2000 years, had not been derived or provided based on a comprehensive hazard/consequence analysis. Further, it was noted that there was a need to identify and justify how natural phenomena hazard design requirements apply to SSCs and their safety functions. The use of specific editions of codes and standards as well as specific provisions were identified by the RU regarding tornados, site precipitation flooding, and assigned importance factors. The lack of any site-specific geotechnical investigation results was also identified and there was a stated need for the facility structural classifications to be defined. The RU identified these items for resolution within 6 months after the preliminary design is initiated. As a result of work underway in the NRC in 1998 to revise 10 CFR Part 70, which was ultimately expected to be the regulation the TWRS-P facility would have to comply with if the private owner-operator were to be licensed by NRC, an Issue Paper was developed and provided to the RU. The paper, ìConsideration of the Seismic Events for Integrated Seismic Analysis of Hanford Tank Waste Remediation System,î dated 6/29/98, discussed recently issued consensus standards and guidance that could be considered as the baseline minimum set of seismic criteria. 3.2.2. TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEM-PRIVATIZATION: PART B-1 When Part B-1 of the contract between DOE and BNFL Inc. began, revisions were being made by BNFL Inc. to the previous documents in response to the issues identified. A series of topics that identified specific high-interest issues judged to be key issues needing technical resolution were scheduled. In this discipline area, the identified topic was ìseismic;î however, before the first scheduled Topical Meeting was held there were several pre-meetings. NRC staff attended such a meeting on 11/6/98 where the topic of discussion focused on BNFL Inc.ís request to obtain concurrence from the RU on the peak ground acceleration value for the seismic analyses of the required SSCs. The basis for the BNFL, Inc. proposed design basis earthquake of 0.24g peak horizontal ground acceleration was identified as DOE-STD-1020-94, with Change No. 1, 1996, and a report addressing the entire Hanford site entitled, ìProbabilistic Seismic Hazard Analysis, DOE Hanford Site, Washington,î WHC-SD-W236A-TI-002, 2/14/94 through Rev. 1A, 10/8/96, 02, by Geomatrix Consultants, Inc. Issues that were identified included the fact that it was not clear that new data and new concepts on the seismicity of the area may be available since the time the Geomatrix report was developed, whether distant events could be more dominant in some frequencies than nearby events, the impact on response of reflected energies from a bowl/basin effect for the Hanford site, the extent of the peer reviews conducted on the Geomatrix report, and the level of BNFL Inc. review/validation of the report to conclude that it can be applied to the TWRS-P facility. As a result of meeting on 11/6/98, BNFL Inc. submitted additional information on 11/19/98 for use in the Seismic Topical pre-meeting that was held on 12/6/98. NRC provided comments to the RU (12/11/98) after a review of the additional BNFL Inc. information. The key issues that had been identified included the following:

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1.

The submittal is a much broader request for approvals than just the horizontal peak ground acceleration value. It also included the response spectra and a document outlining the seismic design approach. Noted that the submittal seemed to contain conflicting information regarding the Design Basis Earthquake and the Performance Categories of DOE-STD-1020-94, and the return period of 2,000 years. While mentioned in the submittal, it was unclear how the seismic analysis and design of SSCs in other than Performance Category 3 were to be addressed.

2.

3.

On December 14, 1998, a Topical Meeting was held on the subject of the TWRS-P peak ground acceleration in order to discuss the basis for the derived value. However because the pre-meeting discussion had included related topics, the RU asked BNFL Inc. to address the relationship of the 2000 year return design basis earthquake to the extremely unlikely events and the consequences that must be met for the project when considering the Radiation Exposure Standards for Workers (i.e., these must be addressed for events with return periods from 10,000 to 1,000,000 years). As a result of the meeting there were several key items left for resolution: 1. The current validity of the Geomatrix Report for use on TWRS-P must be developed including addressing basin effects, site specific attenuation data, uncertainty, and peer review. The use of the DOE series of standards related to DOE-STD-1020-94. The dip in certain frequencies of the proposed horizontal ground response spectra for 0.24 g; d.) The basis for the statement that there was a 5 percent chance of building collapse for a beyond Design Basis Earthquake.

2. 3.

Target dates for additional information were established by the RU and BNFL Inc. for February 1999 for all items except a May 1999 date was set for the availability of a document entitled, ìSeismic Design Approach/Criteria.î NRC comments on the Topical Meeting were contained in an NRC Memorandum dated 2/2/99 that reiterated these major outstanding issues. A meeting was held on January 7, 1999 as a follow-up meeting to the December 14, 1998 Seismic Topical Meeting to focus on the Geomatrix Report and the questions that arose from the review of the report by the RU and its consultants. A list of questions the RU had developed prior to the Seismic Topical Meeting that remained unanswered as well as additional questions developed from the Seismic Topical Meeting were the focus of this meeting. The more important issues included the following: 1. 2. 3. Relationship of geologic structure to the historical seismicity. Comparison of attenuation relationships used for subduction-zone earthquakes to the empirical database in the range of distances to the site. Method of scaling peak accelerations for subduction-zone earthquakes for the site-specific response analyses. 44

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4.

Comparison of input parameters for the probabilistic seismic hazard analysis to the US Geological Survey (Frankel, 1996 ) values.

Most of the issues were satisfactorily resolved in the meeting. However there was a list of nine additional issues/questions that remained. These were provided to BNFL Inc. by the RU in the meeting minutes issued, dated 2/1/99. At the meeting it was agreed that BNFL Inc. would provide the answers to the additional issues on 2/28/99 in a report. The key items in this list included the following: justification for the weighting factors used for the various fault models in the Preliminary Seismic Hazard Analysis (PSHA) logic tree relative to the geological characteristics should be provided and there should be some sensitivity calculations to demonstrate the impact of weighting factors on the peak ground acceleration value as well as the response spectra. On March 18, 1999, BNFL Inc. transmitted a package of seismic documents to the RU with the statement that the four enclosures adequately addressed all the comments and questions raised by the RU and provided an acceptable basis for the design basis earthquake being a peak horizontal ground acceleration of 0.26g. A request for approval of that value was requested. The four enclosures were as follows: 1. 2. 3. 4. ìTWRS-P Facility Design Basis Earthquake-Peak Ground Acceleration, Seismic Response Spectra, and Seismic Design Approach,î Rev. 1, 3/17/99. îApplicability of DOE Documents to the Design of TWRS-P Facility for Natural Phenomena Hazards,î Rev. 0, 3/17/99. ìValidation of the Geomatrix Hanford Seismic Report for Use on the TWRS Privatization Project,î Rev. 0, 3/17/99. ìApproach for Ensuring Compliance with the TWRS-P Radiation Exposure Standards under Earthquake Conditions,î Rev. 0, 3/17/99.

The NRC reviewed these documents and provided comments to the RU in a letter dated 5/10/99. The comments consisted of 10 items related to Enclosures 2 and 4. NRC summarized the comments in the transmittal letter by stating the following, ì...whether or not the adoption of a 2,000 year return period for the seismic design basis event will result in a TWRSP facility that will meet the DOE radiation exposure standards for this project has yet to be demonstrated.î Additionally it was stated that, ì...while Enclosure 4 to BNFL Inc.ís submittal presents and proposes the use of a methodology that might be applicable for such a demonstration, the details for its execution and the source for the needed data to conduct such an analysis have yet to be determined. Consequently, the possibility remains that some SSCs might have to be designed to a seismic level (i.e., peak ground acceleration) above 0.26g, or that changes in the stress allowables or load factors might have to be made to provide reasonable assurances that allowable exposure levels (dose limits) will not be exceeded with a frequency of occurrence per year equal to or greater than one in one million.î The RU in a May 14, 1999, letter to BNFL Inc. described a conditional acceptance of the peak horizontal ground acceleration at 0.26g that stipulated that their enclosed concerns must be satisfactorily resolved.

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BNFL Inc. presented a seismic probabilistic risk analysis (PRA) approach at the Topical Meeting in October 1999. This was comprised of several models on different failure modes and releases. Extensive use was made of fragility curves and ìsmall leak before breakî arguments, for both civil structures (e.g., cells) and equipment (e.g., tanks). The median dose result (50 percent) for collocated workers corresponded to the SRD limit of 25 rem with a frequency of 1E6/yr. However, the analysis indicated the facility would survive and have functioning prevention and mitigation features with earthquakes considerably stronger than 0.26 g. Upon questioning, BNFL Inc. indicated that input values had been assumed to illustrate and refine the methodology. Actual data and design values would be used after several months of further model development and with actual design parameters and features (i.e., once finalized - after the Firm Fixed Price submittal). 3.2.3 PRESENT STATUS At the time of the contract cancellation by DOE, the issue related to the seismic area of review was the acceptability of the exact PRA methodology that would be used and the validity of the input data, in order to substantiate that the dose limits for the extremely unlikely events will not be exceeded. The criteria and methodology that will be used for the civil and structural design are outlined in the project documents and are considered to be acceptable once there is agreement on the safety classifications of SSCs. The site specific geotechnical data were provided in the last BNFL Inc. submittal prior to contract cancellation; however the NRC was not provided a copy of that specific material. The NRC has no information regarding DOE acceptance of that geotechnical information and its impact on the soil and structural foundation designs. In addition, the NRC does not have any information on the compatibility of current and near-term site activities with the proposed design or plans from the new, Management & Operations contracts.

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3.0 NRC AREAS OF REVIEW
3.3 HAZARDS AND SAFETY ANALYSES (ISA/ISM)
3.3.1 STANDARDS APPROVAL PACKAGE (SAFETY REQUIREMENTS DOCUMENT AND HAZARDS ANALYSIS REPORT) AND INITIAL SAFETY ANALYSIS REPORT The Safety Requirements Document (SRD) and Hazards Analysis Report (HAR) arrived from BNFL Inc. in September 1997 and identified numerous process and chemical safety scenarios (many with both radiological and chemical consequences) using a preliminary hazardsoperability (HAZOP) method. HAZOP reviewers with expertise in similar types of plants and processes were used to bridge areas of incomplete information because the preliminary design was still undergoing development and, as such, many open areas existed. The HAZOP used an American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) risk matrix (a binning approach) to assist with identifying those potential scenarios that posed a sufficient risk (i.e., consideration of both frequency and consequence) to warrant quantitative risk analysis and the consideration of safety controls. In general, the list included many entries of a benign nature that obscured some of the more hazardous conditions at the proposed facility. In addition, the expert review panel inadvertently included the effects of mitigation in some of their assessment, and, consequently, the frequency and consequence bins for some events were underestimated. Thus, potential items relied on for safety (IROFS) were overlooked. From these reviews, the following comments were raised in the hazards and safety analysis area: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Incomplete process and hazard descriptions. Inconsistency of unmitigated and mitigated analyses. Emphasis on active instead of passive mitigation and control. Organization of documents and information. Inconsistencies in hazards identification, structures, systems, and components (SSC) categorization, and design classes. Relative lack of quantification. Presence of large tanks and inventories. Limited consideration of offnormal and unanticipated events, and interactions.

The actual comments may be found in the staffís SRD/HAR comment transmittal letter32. BNFL Inc.ís Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) was dated January 12, 1998. The ISAR represented a more detailed design as compared to the SRD/HAR package. The ISAR advanced the design and presented quantitative analyses on several process and chemical safety scenarios, including tank failures, crystalline silicotitanate (CST) powder dispersion, ion
Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, October 17, 1997.
32

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NUREG-1747

exchange resin fires, glass spill, anhydrous ammonia leaks, and a nitric acid spill. However, the level of the design corresponded to a preliminary, conceptual level, identified as circa ì2-3% of designî by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the Contractor. From the perspective of safety reviews and regulation, the ISAR did not contain sufficient information for addressing many of the concerns and issues. Furthermore, the input values and methods used appeared to be nonrepresentative and would underestimate the potential consequences. From the ISAR review, the NRC staff raised the following comments and questions in the process and chemical safety arena: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Lack of conservatism. Inconsistency of unmitigated and mitigated analyses. Emphasis on active instead of passive mitigation and control. Organization of documents and information. Inconsistencies in hazards identification, SSC categorization, and design classes. Relative lack of quantification. Presence of large tanks and inventories. Limited consideration of offnormal and unanticipated events, and interactions.

The actual, detailed comments may be found in the NRC staffís ISAR comment transmittal letter33. 3.3.2 DESIGN SAFETY FEATURES SUBMITTAL The Design Safety Features (DSF) submittal from BNFL Inc. consisted of two parts. Part 1 discussed general features used to address general hazards and concerns. In essence, this part presented the practical interpretation of the codes and standards from the SRD. ìStandardî chemical process industry approaches would be used unless radiological limits were shown to be exceeded. Part 2 discussed and analyzed 10 examples in more detail, including loss of confinement events with both radiological and chemical consequences. The 10 examples were: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. Hydrogen generation in the high level waste storage vessels. Loss of cooling to the cesium storage vessel. Load drop of a pretreatment pump (out of cell). High level waste melter feed line failure. Cooling water contamination. Sample carrier breakout. Low activity waste pipe break. Receipt vessel rupture. Activity backflow. Nitric acid handling.

The following, main comments and questions were raised by the NRC staff regarding safety analyses from the DSF review:

33

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, February 6, 1998.

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Concerns about adequate margin, conservatism, and defense-in-depth resulting in potential under-estimation of consequences and IROFSs. Relative lack of information, details, specificity, and numerical values on many features. Design basis not identified vis-a-vis ìbest basis.î Uneven approach to dose methodology including the handling of unmitigated events. Use of optimistic design assumptions and reliabilities. Uncertainties and inconsistencies not addressed. Validation and justification of data, assumption, and models.

The actual comments may be found in the NRC staffís DSF comment transmittal letter34. The DSF constituted an example of approaches for safety analyses and did not represent an actual design or safety document. 3.3.3 RELATED ACTIVITIES AND TOPICAL MEETINGS

The DSF submittal and related subjects were discussed at the Topical Meeting that was held in Hanford on March 27, 1999. The lack of detail was noted on the design and many of the proposed safety features. The April 1999 Topical Meeting presented the dose methodology to be used in the Contractorís integrated safety management (ISM) process. Many questions were raised and there were concerns about the limited documentation, the relevance of the Sellafield database, source term calculations, and the incorporation of decontamination factors in unmitigated analyses. Subsequent Topical Meetings and reports used parameters with fluctuating parameters and values, often without explanation and justification. For example, the October 1999 Topical Meeting used values that were just selected as examples, without any stated basis or criteria for selection. The November 1999 Topical Meeting discussed the ISM Cycle 1 results while the May 2000 Topical Meeting discussed the ISM Cycle 2 results. Both ISM cycles were not based on the design existing at their respective times. The Firm Fixed Price (FFP) submittal did not contain any hazards or safety analyses because DOE and the Contractor had intended it to be a design basis type of document, suitable for supporting cost and safety analyses but not necessarily including them. However, the NRC staff participated with DOE in the review of the FFP submittal from the perspective of it supporting the Construction Authorization Request/Preliminary Safety Analysis Report (CAR/PSAR). The NRC staff agreed with DOE that the facility and process design information provided in the FFP falls far short of the level of information required to support the CAR/PSAR (see Section 2.5).

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, March 18, 1999.

34

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3.3.4

NRC ANALYSIS AND EVALUATION

The NRC staff used generic and conceptual process approaches proposed by DOE contractors to analyze potential risks from process and materials aspects at potential TWRS-P facilities (Chapter 7.0, Main References 18 and 19). These analyses identified the following areas of concern: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Radiochemical inventories. Process efficacy. Organic ion exchange resin/nitrate interactions. CST drying. Organic materials . Radiolysis. High temperature operations. Nonradioactive chemical effects upon radiochemical processing.

Several of these areas of concern involved events that could be analyzed at this early stage of design using a conservative bounding approach suitable for an initial assessment of risk, determination of relative importance, and the preliminary categorization of SSCs and identification of controls. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff used parameters from the privatization contracts (Chapter 7.0, Main References 20 and 21) to estimate inventories and assess materials at risk. NRC and DOE accident handbooks (Main References 22 and 23) outlined several scenarios (e.g., spray leak, tank rupture) with suggested values for release parameters (e.g., atmospheric release fractions, respirable fractions); the staff primarily selected bounding values as these were recommended by the handbooks for preliminary accident analyses on conceptual designs. Dispersion calculations focused on the receptor at 100 meters as this is a typical distance to a member of the public in NRC licensee analyses, and it approximately corresponds to the likely distance from a surface release to the facility fenceline at the proposed, TWRS/Waste Treatment Plant (WTP) location on the Hanford site. The calculations assumed a breathing rate corresponding to light activity. This allowed the determination of dose consequences from these various scenarios. The NRC staff estimated risk using the LNT (linear no threshold) model for dose consequences, without any modification in the risk factor for acute doses above 10 rem. Frequencies were based upon published values in the literature (see Chapter 7.0, Main References 18 and 19). Table 4 summarizes potential consequences from unmitigated events, and Table 5 lists potential mitigating controls and their beneficial impacts. All of the accidents listed in Table 4 have potential consequences exceeding the thresholds and guidelines in regulations, including the revised 10 CFR Part 70, referred to as the ìNew Part 70" in Tables 4 and 5. Many of the events have frequencies in the 1E-2 to 1E-4 range and would be considered to reside in the ìunlikelyî probability bin. Using the U.S. national average for workplace fatalities of 4.8E-5/yr (see Main Reference 18) for comparison, ten process scenarios exceed that national average (at 100 meters). The total estimated, unmitigated risk from a generic, TWRS/WTP facility at 100 meters due to these incidents involving radionuclides is approximately 2.4E-2/yr, some 500 times larger than the U.S. workplace average risk. For contrast and comparison, Table 6 displays additional risk NUREG-1747 50

comparisons, and shows that the U.S. average background radiation dose dominates individual public radiological risk (at 1.8E-4/yr). Table 6 also lists the average risk due to cancer (2E-3/yr - see Main Reference 18). By comparison, the potential unmitigated risk from these process accidents at a TWRS/WTP facility exceeds the background dose risk by two orders of magnitude and the average cancer risk by a factor of ten. Four accident scenarios involving two forms of melter failure, and two forms of resin interactions dominate the risk by accounting for 90 percent of the total. A large portion of the risk from the two melter accident scenarios accrues from rapid thermal volatilization and dispersal of the aqueous cold cap from a catastrophic release of the high temperature, molten glass. Limited experimental data and experience are available for these melter failure scenarios. If these melter and resin accidents are effectively prevented and/or mitigated, the TWRS-P risk decreases to around 1.4E-3/yr, a level commensurate with the risk associated with occupational exposure limits, but still some 10 times greater than the risk due to average background exposure to radiation. Several accident scenarios involving tank failures or deflagrations also exhibit the potential for very high doses. In the case of chemical storage tank failure, the potential ammonia and nitric acid releases would result in irreversible, deterministic health effects around the TWRS-P facility and its environs, and would render the facility uninhabitable for operating and control purposes. If liquid anhydrous ammonia were used, the affected area could extend out beyond a mile. Thus, prevention and mitigation are required to minimize the impact of these chemical effects upon radioactive materials. The NRC staff investigated the availability of controls for reducing the risks. Fortunately, relatively simple and effective, prevention and mitigation methods are available, and Table 5 displays this situation. Prevention and mitigation methods reduce the total risk to the receptor at 100 meters from the TWRS-P facility to about 2.5E-6/yr. This result is about 5 percent of the average occupational risk and around 1.4 percent of the risk due to the average background dose. Incorporation of prevention and mitigation controls is likely to be acceptable to the revised Part 70, although further analysis may be necessary for the melter failure scenarios. Consequently, the preventative and mitigating design features are likely to become controls and items relied upon for safety, and potential examples are discussed as follows: 1. Low Activity Waste (LAW) and High Level Waste (HLW) Tank Leak Events: Prevention could be accomplished by high quality tanks and components, with 100 percent weld inspection and leak testing, and inventory controls. The tanks and the ullage ventilation system (including the first high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter bank) could become the primary mitigative control. The second ullage ventilation system HEPA filter bank and the cell, with its ventilation system and (single-stage) HEPA filter bank and sump, could constitute likely secondary controls. In order to meet defense in depth requirements, the area outside the cell (usually an access or operating corridor) and its ventilation system, and a short exhaust stack represent probable tertiary controls. Specific level and spill detection instrumentation and alarms may also be identified as controls. Ideally, the inventory of liquid LAW and HLW in the TWRS-P facility should be minimized, perhaps by some form of an inventory limit (e.g., such as a potential limiting conditions of operation (LCO)). A specific design might include several smaller tanks (instead of one large one), of which one or more are maintained empty as a dedicated spare(s) in case of a leak in a full tank. The requirement for a spare tank or spare tank capacity could become a requirement (perhaps another potential LCO).

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2.

Cesium Tank Events: Prevention could be accomplished by high quality tanks and components, with 100 percent weld inspection and leak testing, and inventory controls. The cesium product tank(s) and the ullage ventilation system (including the first HEPA filter bank) are likely to become the primary control. The second ullage ventilation system HEPA filter bank and the cell, with its ventilation system and (single-stage) HEPA filter bank and sump, constitute probable secondary controls. In order to meet defense in depth requirements, the area outside the cell (usually an access or operating corridor) and its ventilation system, and a short exhaust stack represent likely tertiary controls. If these are (physically) the same items relied upon for safety by the LAW and HLW tanks, then an analysis should be performed demonstrating no deleterious effects upon the safety functions from the different tank systems and their events. Specific level and spill detection instrumentation and alarms could also be identified as controls. Ideally, the inventory of liquid cesium solution in the TWRS-P facility should be minimized or even eliminated, perhaps with an inventory limit (a potential LCO). It is also possible to add a requirement for conversion of the cesium into a solid, such as loading onto CST. A specific design might include several smaller tanks (instead of one large one), of which one or more are maintained empty as a dedicated spare(s) in case of a leak in a full tank. The spare tank or spare capacity could also become a requirement (e.g., another potential LCO). The cesium solution in the tank requires cooling to prevent temperature increases and, ultimately, avoid solution boiling. Thus, the cooling means and its backup potentially become items relied upon for safety. This includes the separate cooling coils or jackets (zones), the cooling sources (usually cooling water, with process and firewater backup), the pumps or means of recirculation, the piping, and redundant flow/temperature instrumentation. Interruption of cooling is likely to become an LCO, and the respective temperatures (of the tank and cooling means) Operational Safety Requirements (OSRs). If it could be demonstrated by calculation or experimentation that a tank design is adequately cooled by passive means under all credible conditions, then this would reduce the number of items relied upon for safety.

3.

Ion Exchange Column Events: Different controls can be used to provide adequate assurances of safety with the ion exchange columns. Preventative controls rely upon cooling, detection, and dilution/dispersal of the reacting resin mass. Resin performance improves with lower feed solution temperatures (20-25oC or lower); cooler temperatures also reduce the probability of resin degradation reactions. The cooling means, heat exchanger, and temperature indicators are likely to become items relied upon for safety. The column itself is likely to be a preventative control, because it confines a significant amount of radioactivity (i.e., once loaded - to avoid a loss of confinement) and the design may incorporate specific design features to cool or separate the resin bed and prevent runaway resin reactions. If mitigation relies upon an enclosure around the columns, venting to the cell; then the enclosure, vents/relief valves, rupture disks, and the ventilation systems (both the process/vessel ullage [2 HEPA banks in series] and cell [1 HEPA bank]) become the primary controls. Analyses should be performed to verify no cross effects upon other vessels on the same vent header from potential fumes caused by the degradation reactions; if such effects are discovered, then the resin columns should have their own ventilation system. In order to meet defense-in-depth requirements, the area outside the cell (usually an access or operating corridor) and its ventilation system, and a

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short exhaust stack represent potential secondary mitigating controls. Specific level and spill detection instrumentation and alarms could also be identified as controls. 4. Tank Deflagration Events: These probably require the same items relied upon for safety as with the tank leak events. Hydrogen and flammable gas detection systems constitute additional potential controls. Redundant exhaust fans, supply air fans, or nitrogen blanket systems may be warranted as controls if more refined calculations or experimental results indicate higher evolution rates for flammable gases. CST Drying Events: Prevention could use OSRs on the CST drying. Temperature and humidity instrumentation are likely to become the primary controls, with temperature and humidity endpoints determined by experimental testing. The CST canister drying enclosure and its filtered vent represent the first potential mitigating control but, in the absence of a specific design, are not credited with any source amelioration. The cell and its ventilation system (including two HEPA filter banks) likely become the secondary control; the first HEPA filter bank is assumed to be rendered ineffective by the deflagration. In order to meet defense-in-depth requirements, the area outside the cell (usually an access or operating corridor) and its ventilation system, and a short exhaust stack represent probable tertiary controls. Melter Events: Prevention could rely upon melter instrumentation and controls to detect maloperation and terminate the radioactive feed to the melter and replace it with process water (to maintain the cold cap), and terminate operations prior to melter release or failure. The proposed design had an inner gap with unspecified instrumentation; melter electrical and thermal sensors would become the probable controls. In the absence of a specific design and details, these are not credited with source prevention and reduction in this generic analysis by the NRC staff. The melter, its enclosure and its filtered vent would likely represent the first potential mitigating control but, in the absence of a specific design, are not credited with any source amelioration. The cell and its ventilation system (including two HEPA filter banks) would probably become the primary control. In order to meet defense-in-depth requirements, the area outside the cell (usually an access or operating corridor) and its ventilation system, the melter offgas system, and a short exhaust stack represent likely secondary controls. Chemical Events: Prevention would use high quality tanks and components with 100 percent weld inspection, and leak testing, and a generous (conservative) corrosion allowance. Prevention also could use an enclosure (with a spill basin) for the reduction of weather effects (including diurnal thermal cycles) upon both the components and the chemicals of concern (principally ammonia and nitric acid). Leak detection sensors and a water spray/deluge system probably constitute the primary mitigative method. Exhaust fans (on the enclosure) activated by a separate sensor system denote a likely secondary mitigative method. The third mitigative method locates the cold chemical storage tank area away from the facility and preferably near a cooling pond or its equivalent. Potential catastrophic releases of chemicals may affect the operability of the TWRS-P facility, rendering the area uninhabitable for a period of time (possibly as long as several hours). Consequently, additional safety requirements may be needed for control room air, breathing air (self contained breathing apparatus), and/or the ability of the TWRS process to operate and shutdown automatically without human assistance.

5.

6.

7.

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The average worker and cancer risks presented in Table 6 include contributions from all sources, such as industrial accidents, environmental chemical exposures, and other nonradiological contributors. Therefore, acceptable limits for potential contributions from radiological risks associated with process hazards of TWRS-P are likely to be lower, perhaps a few percent of these averages. This preliminary analysis suggests this is indeed the case for a TWRS-P facility design incorporating standard nuclear industry prevention and mitigation techniques; the estimated risk with prevention and mitigation features is 5 percent of the average occupational risk and 0.1 percent of the average, public cancer risk. This is consistent with discussions in the literature (Reference 18). From this review of a generic facility, the NRC staff concluded that safety controls (IROFS) would be needed at the proposed TWRS/WTP facility to meet likely risk goals, and that, with the possible exception of the melter areas, no unusual or special controls with unique characteristics would be necessary. More information is needed on the melter designs before specific control strategies can be postulated and evaluated. In general, designs proposed by the contractors do not consider prevention and controls and only incorporate one mitigating means to overcome failures. The designs do not include important auxiliary effects in the analyses, such as common mode failures, operability, recoverability, and plant habitability for operators, and means for controlling these effects. Obviously, DOE and its contractors will include experimental testing as part of the program leading to the design, construction, and operation of the TWRS-P facility. Few appropriate safety related parameters, such as failure rates, modes, and release fractions, are available for HLW processing and vitrification facilities. It would be beneficial if the measurement of such safety parameters could be included in the DOE and contractor programs. 3.3.5 PRESENT STATUS OF HAZARDS AND SAFETY ANALYSES An ISM Cycle 3 was originally planned for late Summer of 2000, based upon the FFP design from the April 26, 2000, submittal. However, this is unlikely to occur due to the contract termination and the selection of new contractors. It should be noted that many of the original questions and comments raised in the SRD, ISAR, DSF, FFP, and other reviews remain without adequate closure. These include the following: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Incomplete process and hazard descriptions and a relative lack of information, details, specificity, and numerical values on many features, including IROFSs. Concerns about adequate margin, conservatism, and defense-in-depth resulting in potential under-estimation of consequences and IROFSs. Design basis not identified vis-a-vis ìbest basis,î average, or median. Uneven approach to dose methodology including the handling of unmitigated events. Inconsistency of unmitigated and mitigated analyses.

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Table 4: Summary of Unmitigated Events at the Generic TWRS Facility
Unmitigated Consequence Impact, Receptor at 100 meters, rem 3,000-6,300 6,000-12,000 25,000 Part 70 Consequence Category Estimated Frequency (uncontrolled), Event/yr Likelihood (probability) Bin Unmitigated Impact, Risk, yr-1

Event

LAW Tank Failure HLW Tank Failure Cesium Tank - Loss of Cooling/ Boiling (1,000 gal) Cesium Tank Failure, 1,000 gal Basis Cesium Loaded Resin/Nitrate Interaction Cesium Eluting, Resin/Nitrate Interaction H2 Deflag./ LAW Heel

High High High

2E-5 2E-5 1E-6

Unlikely Unlikely Highly Unlikely

3E-5 to 6E-5 6E-5 to 1.2E-4 1.25E-5

55

High

2E-5

Unlikely

5.5E-7

1,400

High

1E-3

Unlikely

7E-4 (3% of total, unmitigated risk) 1.7E-3 (7% of total, unmitigated risk) 1E-4

3,400

High

1E-3

Unlikely

20,000

High

1E-5

Unlikely

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Table 4: Summary of Unmitigated Events at the Generic TWRS Facility (continued)
Unmitigated Consequence Impact, Receptor at 100 meters, rem 38,000 2,500 Part 70 Consequence Category Estimated Frequency (uncontrolled), Event/yr Likelihood (probability) Bin Unmitigated Impact, Risk, yr-1

Event

H2 Deflag/ HLW Heel H2 Deflag/ Cesium Tank Heel H2/LAW Tank Deflag/low H2 H2/LAW Tank Deflag/high H2 H2/HLW Tank Deflag/high H2 CST Drying/ H2 Deflag

High High

1E-5 1E-5

Unlikely Unlikely

1.9E-4 1.2E-5

2,300 115,000 216,000 48,000

High High High High

1E-5 1E-6 1E-6 1E-5

Unlikely Highly Unlikely Highly Unlikely Unlikely

1.15E-5 6E-5 1.1E-4 2.4E-4 (1% of total, unmitigated risk)

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Table 4: Summary of Unmitigated Events at the Generic TWRS Facility (continued)
Unmitigated Consequence Impact, Receptor at 100 meters, rem 14,500 Part 70 Consequence Category Estimated Frequency (uncontrolled), Event/yr Likelihood (probability) Bin Unmitigated Impact, Risk, yr-1

Event

Melter/Canister Failure, Cold Cap Dispersal Melter/Steam Explosion Chemical Ammonia Tank Failure Chemical Nitric Acid Tank Failure

High

1E-3

Unlikely

7.3E-3 (30% of total, unmitigated risk) 1.3E-2 (54% of total, unmitigated risk) (not applicable)

26,000

High

1E-3

Unlikely

> ERPG-3

High

1E-5

Unlikely

> ERPG-3

High

1E-5

Unlikely

(not applicable)

Total, unmitigated risk = 2.4E-2/yr

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Table 5: Summary of the Impact of Potential Controls at the Generic TWRS Facility
Potential Controls/Items Relied Upon For Safety 1. Tank 2. cell/HEPA 3. Enclosure/sump 4. Spare tank 1. Tank 2. cell/HEPA 3. Enclosure/sump 4. Spare tank 1. cell/vent./2 HEPA 2. emerg. cooling 1. 3. 4. 5. Tank 2. cell/vent. Enclosure/sump Spare tank Cs as solid Potential Mitigated Consequence to Receptor at 100 meters, rem 3-6 Mitigated Consequence Category Intermediate Mitigated Likelihood (Probability) 2E-6 Likely Acceptable per New Part 70? Yes Mitigated Risk, year-1 3E-9 to 6E-9 6E-9 to 1.2E-8 1.3E-8

Event

LAW Tank Failure HLW Tank Failure Cs Tank LOCA, Boiling/1,000 gal Cs Tank Failure, 1,000 gal

6-12

Intermediate

2E-6

Yes

25 (first HEPA fails due to moisture) 0.1

Intermediate to High Low

1E-6

Yes

2E-6

Yes

1E-10

Cs Resin, Loaded Cs Resin, Elution H2 Deflag/ LAW Tank Heel

1. Enclosure 2. Cell/vent/HEPA 1. Enclosure 2. Cell/vent/HEPA 1. Gas/vent./2 HEPA 2. Cell/vent 3. Sensor/N2 inject

1.4 3.4 20 (first HEPA rendered ineffective)

Low Low Intermediate

1E-4 1E-4 1E-6

Yes Yes Yes

7E-8 1.7E-7 (7% of total) 1E-8

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Table 5: Summary of the Impact of Potential Controls at the Generic TWRS Facility (continued)
Potential Controls/Items Relied Upon For Safety 1. Gas/vent./2 HEPA 2. Cell/vent 3. Sensor/N2 inject 1. Gas/vent./2 HEPA 2. Cell/vent 3. Sensor/N2 inject 1. Gas/vent./2 HEPA 2. Cell/vent 3. Sensor/N2 inject 1. Gas/vent./2 HEPA 2. Cell/vent 3. Sensor/N2 inject 1. Gas/vent./2 HEPA 2. Cell/vent 3. Sensor/N2 inject Potential Mitigated Consequence to Receptor at 100 meters, rem 38 (first HEPA rendered ineffective) 2.5 (first HEPA rendered ineffective) 2.3 (first HEPA rendered ineffective) 115 (first HEPA rendered ineffective) 216 (first HEPA rendered ineffective) Mitigated Consequence Category Intermediate Mitigated Likelihood (Probability) 1E-6 Likely Acceptable per New Part 70? Yes Mitigated Risk, year-1 2E-8

Event

H2 Deflag/ HLW Tank Heel H2 Deflag/ Cs Tank Heel H2 LAW Tank Deflag/ Low H2 H2/LAW Tank Deflag/ High H2 H2/HLW Tank Deflag/ High H2

Low

1E-6

Yes

1.3E-9

Low

1E-6

Yes

1.2E-9

High

1E-6

Yes

6E-8

High

1E-6

Yes

1.1E-7 (4.3% of total)

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Table 5: Summary of the Impact of Potential Controls at the Generic TWRS Facility (continued)
Potential Controls/Items Relied Upon For Safety 1. Cell/vent/2 HEPA 2. Enclosure 1. Cell/vent/2 HEPA 2. Instrumentation 1. Cell/vent/2 HEPA 2. Instrumentation Potential Mitigated Consequence to Receptor at 100 meters, rem 48 (first HEPA rendered ineffective) 15 (first HEPA rendered ineffective due to heat) 26 (first HEPA rendered ineffective due to blast and heat) < ERPG-1 Mitigated Consequence Category High Mitigated Likelihood (Probability) 1E-6 Likely Acceptable per New Part 70? Yes Mitigated Risk, year-1 2.4E-8

Event

CST Drying/ H2 Deflag Melter/Canister/ Cap Dispersal Melter/Steam Explosion

Intermediate

1E-4

Further Analysis Necessary Further Analysis Necessary

7.5E-7 (30% of Total) 1.3E-6 (51% of Total) (0)

Intermediate to High

1E-4

Ammonia Tank Failure Nitric Acid Tank Failure

1. Tank 2. Enclosure 3. Detect/Sprays 1. Tank 2. Enclosure 3. Detect/Sprays

Low

1E-6

Yes

< ERPG-1

Low

1E-6

Yes

(0)

Total mitigated risk = 2.5E-6/yr

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Table 6: Different Sources of Risk Limits
Risk Source/Basis Dose Equivalent, Rem Worker Limits Part 20, Worker Limit Part 20, Typical ALARA Value U.S. Worker Average, All Causes 5 0.31 (-) 1 1 (-) Public Limits Part 20, Public Limit Part 20, D&D and Part 61, Public Limits 0.1 0.025 1 1 Typical Public Values U.S. Average Background Background Difference between Denver and U.S. Average Average U.S. Public Cancer Fatality Rate Average Public Dose from Commercial Nuclear Plant 0.350 0.500 1 1 1.8E-4 2.5E-4 5E-5 1.3E-5 2E-3 1.2E-4 4.8E-5 Frequency, yr-1 Risk, yr-1

(NA) <0.001

(NA) 1

2E-3 < 5E-7

Note: Radiological comparisons assume Linear No Threshold (LNT) theory, with risk factors of 2,500 rem/fatality for workers and 2,000 rem/fatality for members of the public. These rates are kept constant, and not reduced for higher acute doses (e.g., 1,000 rem/fatality for individual, acute doses over 10 rem).

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6. 7. 8. 9.

Use of optimistic design assumptions and reliabilities. Uncertainties and inconsistencies not addressed. Selection, validation and justification of data, assumption, and models. Emphasis on active instead of passive mitigation and control.

10. Organization of documents and information. 11. Inconsistencies in hazards identification, SSC categorization, and design classes 12. Relative lack of quantification. 13. Presence of large tanks and inventories. 14. Limited consideration of offnormal and unanticipated events, and interactions. In addition, the ISM process itself is used as a risk-based approach, without consideration of a basal set of codes, standards, minimum performance requirements, or basic design criteria. Numerical results are being used in absolute terms for comparisons with dose and frequency limits. No consideration of uncertainties by either analysis or statistics (e.g., 90th percentile) has been included in the work to date - the emphasis has been on expected, ìbest basis,î or median (50th percentile). This expresses greater credibility in the capability of current modeling techniques, the quality of the available parameters, and the level of detail available in the design (currently at a circa 15 percent level) than appears warranted at this time. As a result, it raises doubts that defense-in-depth is adequately followed and that the IROFSs are fully identified with this approach. The ISM approach as followed at TWRS-P does not appear to be consistent with the NRCís risk-informed, performance-based approach. NRC analyses indicate significant radioactive and chemical inventories at the proposed facility that translate into potentially high levels of risk unless prevention and mitigation methods are used to address accident scenarios. This implies that a significant number of IROFSs will be needed. Potential IROFSs include those typical for fuel cycle facilities such as HEPA filter banks. NRC analyses also show a significant distance effect. Thus, analyses conducted using NRC-like approaches of 100 meters or so to a public receptor (the facility fence line) result in higher estimated consequences and more IROFSs as compared to the DOE approach of using the Hanford siteís security perimeter. The latter corresponds to distances of 11,000 to 15,000 meters and reduces the consequences by 100-1000 (due to dilution), resulting in fewer IROFSs. Given that personnel are currently onsite that would be considered as members of the public under NRC guidance and that future site conditions will shrink the security perimeter, a distance much shorter than the 11,000-15,000 range would seem to be needed for estimating potential consequences to the public. Furthermore, changes in the contracting approach may significantly affect the design and hazard analyses. There will now be a minimum of three contractors or contractor teams involved (interim, design and construction, and operations). Thus, it is not clear how the expertise on design, technology, and safety will be transferred from one contractor organization NUREG-1747 62

to the other. The new contractors also may not have to follow the existing design and approach, and therefore, some or all of the preceding hazards analyses may no longer be relevant. The proposed new contract will incorporate significant incentive clauses for capital cost reductions. It remains to be seen how these will be balanced vis-a-vis operating requirements and safety issues.

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3.0 NRC AREAS OF REVIEW
3.4 RADIATION SAFETY AND DOSE ASSESSMENT METHODOLOGY
3.4.1 REGULATORY LIMITS FOR OCCUPATIONAL AND PUBLIC DOSES APPLICABLE TO TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEM-PRIVATIZATION

This chapter presents a comparison of regulatory approach, dose limits, and monitoring thresholds stated in 10 CFR Part 20, ìStandards for Protection Against Radiation,î and 10 CFR Part 835, ìOccupational Radiation Protection.î 3.4.1.1 INTRODUCTION

The purpose of this chapter is to discuss the similarities and differences between 10 CFR Part 20, ìStandards for Protection Against Radiationî (which affects U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) licensees), and 10 CFR Part 835, ìOccupational Radiation Protection,î (which affects U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) facilities), and provide a basis for future activities should a transition to regulatory oversight by the NRC take place at some future time. Such a transition could affect certain aspects of the contractorís Radiation Control Program. The chapter also explains some of the regulatory philosophy of the DOE Regulatory Unit (RU) that is responsible for oversight of the TWRS-P contractor and how this philosophy may differ from that of the NRC. It should be understood at the outset that the NRC and DOE numerical dose limits are identical for individuals who receive occupational dose, and another set of identical limits applies to members of the public. However, differences exist between 10 CFR Part 20 and 10 CFR Part 835 with respect to definitions of the conditions under which monitoring is required and how persons and situations are classified in terms of the type of monitoring performed. Misunderstandings may sometimes arise through the usage of terms that are not defined in the regulations, but which are similar to, or have the appearance of formal definitions. These include worker, radiation worker, radiological worker (defined in Part 835 but not in Part 20), and occupationally exposed, among others. Tables are provided that list and compare the definitions contained in the two Parts. A discussion is undertaken of Occupational Dose Limits and Limits for Members of the Public as stated in Parts 20 and 835; it will be seen that the limits are nearly identical. A comparison of Monitoring Thresholds mandated by Parts 20 and 835 is also presented. The Radiological Exposure Standards Above Normal Background for the TWRS-P Project are derived from 10 CFR Part 835 and the DOE/Regulatory Unit (RU) Top Level Standards, and for this reason do not have a directly corresponding regulation in Part 20 with which to compare. These standards are discussed in Section 3.4.1.3. For the TWRS-P facility, in addition to the categories of general employee and radiological worker (defined in Part 835) and member of the public (defined in both Parts), a third category known as the co-located worker (CLW) has been defined within the ìTop-Level Radiological,

65

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Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Principles for TWRS Privatization Contractors,î DOE/RL-96-0006, Revision 1, July 1998. The CLW is defined in Section 3.4.1.6, Glossary, as the following: An individual within the Hanford Site, beyond the Contractor-controlled area, performing work for or in conjunction with DOE or utilizing other Hanford Site facilities. 3.4.1.2 DEFINITIONS

3.4.1.2.1 MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC Definitions related to members of the public are listed in alphabetical sequence in Table 7. From the NRC (10 CFR Part 20) perspective, an individual who is outside a licensed facilityís restricted area would normally be considered a member of the public.35 In contrast, an individual outside a controlled area as defined in 10 CFR Part 835 may be either a member of the public or a CLW, although the concept of CLW is not defined for all DOE facilities, and as stated above, is not contained in 10 CFR Part 835. If such an individual is employed in a neighboring facility where he or she is subject to receiving an occupational dose, that individual may be considered to be a CLW relative to the Contractorís facility, according to DOE. Otherwise, that individual may fall into one of three other categories discussed below under ìIndividuals Subject to Occupational Dose.î Although both 10 CFR Part 20 and 10 CFR Part 835 contain regulations governing dose limits to members of the public, and although the definitions of ìmember of the publicî are similar in both, the regulatory language differs in several respects. Part 20 of 10 CFR provides limits for members of the public in general, while 10 CFR Part 835 provides limits only for those members of the public entering a controlled area. Note that ìcontrolled areaî is defined in 10 CFR Part 835 differently from 10 CFR Part 20, and that the definition of a ìrestricted areaî in 10 CFR Part 20 is very close to that of a ìcontrolled areaî in 10 CFR Part 835, although the 10 CFR Part 20 definition of a ìrestricted areaî has no direct parallel in 10 CFR Part 835. The dose limits associated with these definitions are provided in Section 3.4.1.3. 3.4.1.2.2 INDIVIDUALS SUBJECT TO OCCUPATIONAL DOSE LIMITS While the definitions of ìmember of the publicî are similar in both 10 CFR Part 20 and 10 CFR Part 835, a comparison of the regulations pertaining to occupational dose is not as clear. The definitions in each Part differ with respect to individuals employed as workers in a facility that utilizes radioactive material. This section discusses the contrasting definitions and regulatory approaches of 10 CFR Parts 20 and 835 with respect to occupational dose. Table 8 lists the definitions in alphabetical order and clearly shows where a definition in 10 CFR Part 20 has no equivalent in 10 CFR Part 835, and vice-versa. Because terms related to ìradiation areaî are contained in the definitions of Table 8, Section 3.4.1.2.3 provides definitions of such terms in Table 9.

35

An exception would be if an individual normally permitted to receive an occupational dose utilizes radioactive materials from the licensed facility outside its restricted area, but under the control of the licensee.

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Table 7: Definitions Related to ìMember of the Publicî
TERM Controlled Area Part 20 Definitions Controlled area means an area, outside of a restricted area but inside the site boundary, access to which can be limited by the licensee for any reason. Member of the public means any individual except when that individual is receiving an occupational dose. Public dose means the dose received by a member of the public from exposure to radiation or radioactive material released by a licensee, or to any other source of radiation under the control of a licensee. Public dose does not include occupational dose or doses received from background radiation, from any medical administration the individual has received, from exposure to individuals administered radioactive material and released in accordance with ß35.75, or from voluntary participation in medical research programs. Restricted area means an area, access to which is limited by the licensee for the purpose of protecting individuals against undue risks from exposure to radiation and radioactive materials. Restricted area does not include areas used as residential quarters, but separate rooms in a residential building may be set apart as a restricted area. Site boundary means that line beyond which the land or property is not owned, leased, or otherwise controlled by the licensee. Unrestricted area means an area, access to which is neither limited nor controlled by the licensee. Part 835 Definitions Controlled area means any area to which access is managed by or for DOE to protect individuals from exposure to radiation and/or radioactive material. Member of the public means an individual who is not a general employee. An individual is not a ìmember of the publicî during any period in which the individual receives an occupational dose. (no corresponding definition)

Member of the Public

Public Dose

Restricted Area

(no corresponding definition)

Site Boundary

(no corresponding definition)

Unrestricted Area

(no corresponding definition)

To summarize, the 10 CFR Part 20 regulations distinguish only between a ìmember of the publicî (discussed above) and an individual who receives an ìoccupational dose.î An individual may receive an occupational dose from radioactive materials present in the facility where the work is performed without being directly employed by that facility. In contrast, under the regulations in 10 CFR Part 835, an individual may be a ìmember of the public,î an individual receiving an ìoccupational dose,î a ìgeneral employee,î or a ìradiological worker.î An individual need not be a general employee or a radiological worker in order to receive an occupational dose. As with the 10 CFR Part 20 regulations, an individual may receive an occupational dose from radioactive materials present in the facility where the work is performed without being directly employed by that facility. A person may receive an occupational dose even though he or she is not a radiological worker. The occupational dose limits are the same in both Parts. However, for the TWRS-P facility, a set of dose limits has been established for a series of ìevent probability ranges,î as described in RL/REG-98-18, Revision 0, ìRegulatory Unit Position on Radiological Safety for Hanford Co67 NUREG-1747

Located Workers,î September 16, 1998, Exhibit 1: Table 2-1, ìRadiological Exposure Standards Above Normal Background.î Numerical limits are discussed in Section 3.4.1.3. In accordance with DOE/RL-96-0006, individuals designated as CLWs are permitted to accrue occupational doses that are greater than that permitted for members of the public. 3.4.1.2.3 RADIATION AREA, HIGH RADIATION AREA, VERY HIGH RADIATION AREA The previous section provided definitions of terms related to ìoccupational dose.î Some of the terms contained in the definitions in Table 8 require explanation. Table 9 in this section provides definitions of terms related to ìradiation areaî as defined in Table 8. 3.4.1.2.4 CONTAMINATION AND RADIOACTIVE MATERIAL Table 10 in this section captures additional definitions relevant to radiological protection contained in 10 CFR Part 20 and 10 CFR Part 835 regulations. These terms are listed because they are related to the means by which occupational radiation doses might be encountered in facilities utilizing radioactive materials. It also serves to point out some of the other differences in the two sets of regulations. Both Parts provide definitions of ìAirborne Radioactivity Area,î but the remaining terms are defined only in Part 835. 3.4.1.2.5 DEFINITIONS OF TERMS RELATED TO DOSE AND DOSE EQUIVALENT The definitions contained in this section are provided to remind the reader of the technical terminology that describes how dose is measured. Specific terms have been assigned to differentiate the type of measurement to be quantified. A thorough understanding of these terms is not required in order to appreciate the differences in 10 CFR Part 20 versus 10 CFR Part 835 radiological protection standards. In Table 11, the definitions are given in a hierarchical format with each definition building on its antecedent. Note that in 10 CFR Parts 20 and 835 there are small differences in the way these definitions are phrased, but that they are equivalent in all other respects. 3.4.1.3 LIMITS

Table 12 provides a comparison of the limits set by 10 CFR Part 20 and 10 CFR Part 835. Note that the two sets of limits are effectively the same. As indicated in Table 12, the annual dose limit for members of the public is the same in both Parts, namely 0.1 rem (0.001 sievert). As stated previously, 10 CFR Part 835 is concerned only with those members of the public who enter a controlled area, while Part 20 covers any member of the public. Part 20 of 10 CFR also provides a limit of 0.002 rem (0.02 millisievert) in any one hour for the dose in an unrestricted area. There is no corresponding definition in 10 CFR Part 835. Note that while 10 CFR Part 835 is concerned with members of the public who enter a controlled area (as defined in 10 CFR Part 835), the situation is not analogous to 10 CFR Part 20, since 10 CFR Part 20 concerns members of the public outside any restricted area (as defined in 10 CFR Part 20).

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Table 8: Definitions Related to ìOccupational Doseî

TERM Controlled Area

Part 20 Definitions Controlled area means an area, outside of a restricted area but inside the site boundary, access to which can be limited by the licensee for any reason. (no corresponding definition)

Part 835 Definitions Controlled area means any area to which access is managed by or for DOE to protect individuals from exposure to radiation and/or radioactive material. General employee means an individual who is either a DOE or DOE contractor employee; an employee of a subcontractor to a DOE contractor; or an individual who performs work for or in conjunction with DOE or utilizes DOE facilities. Occupational dose means an individual's ionizing radiation dose (external and internal) as a result of that individual's work assignment. Occupational dose does not include doses received as a medical patient or doses resulting from background radiation or participation as a subject in medical research programs.

General Employee

Occupational Dose

Occupational dose means the dose received by an individual in the course of employment in which the individual's assigned duties involve exposure to radiation or to radioactive material from licensed and unlicensed sources of radiation, whether in the possession of the licensee or other person. Occupational dose does not include dose received from background radiation, from any medical administration the individual has received, from exposure to individuals administered radioactive material and released in accordance with ß35.75, from voluntary participation in medical research programs, or as a member of the public. (no corresponding definition)

Radiological Area

Radiological area means any area within a controlled area defined in this section as a ìradiation area,'' ìhigh radiation area,'' ìvery high radiation area,'' ìcontamination area,'' ìhigh contamination area,'' or ìairborne radioactivity area.'' Radiological worker means a general employee whose job assignment involves operation of radiation producing devices or working with radioactive materials, or who is likely to be routinely occupationally exposed above 0.1 rem (0.001 sievert) per year total effective dose equivalent. (no corresponding definition)

Radiological Worker

(no corresponding definition)

Restricted Area

Restricted area means an area, access to which is limited by the licensee for the purpose of protecting individuals against undue risks from exposure to radiation and radioactive materials. Restricted area does not include areas used as residential quarters, but separate rooms in a residential building may be set apart as a restricted area. Site boundary means that line beyond which the land or property is not owned, leased, or otherwise controlled by the licensee. Unrestricted area means an area, access to which is neither limited nor controlled by the licensee.

Site Boundary

(no corresponding definition)

Unrestricted Area

(no corresponding definition)

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Table 9: Definitions Related to ìRadiation Areaî
TERM Radiation Area Part 20 Definitions Radiation area means an area, accessible to individuals, in which radiation levels could result in an individual receiving a dose equivalent in excess of 0.005 rem (0.05 mSv) in 1 hour at 30 centimeters from the radiation source or from any surface that the radiation penetrates. High radiation area means an area, accessible to individuals, in which radiation levels from radiation sources external to the body could result in an individual receiving a dose equivalent in excess of 0.1 rem (1 mSv) in 1 hour at 30 centimeters from the radiation source or 30 centimeters from any surface that the radiation penetrates. Very high radiation area means an area, accessible to individuals, in which radiation levels from radiation sources external to the body could result in an individual receiving an absorbed dose in excess of 500 rads (5 grays) in 1 hour at 1 meter from a radiation source or 1 meter from any surface that the radiation penetrates. (Note: At very high doses received at high dose rates, units of absorbed dose (e.g., rads and grays) are appropriate, rather than units of dose equivalent (e.g., rems and sieverts)). Part 835 Definitions Radiation area means any area accessible to individuals in which radiation levels could result in an individual receiving a deep dose equivalent in excess of 0.005 rem (0.05 millisievert) in 1 hour at 30 centimeters from the source or from any surface that the radiation penetrates. High radiation area means any area, accessible to individuals, in which radiation levels could result in an individual receiving a deep dose equivalent in excess of 0.1 rem (0.001 sievert) in 1 hour at 30 centimeters from the radiation source or from any surface that the radiation penetrates.

High Radiation Area

Very High Radiation Area

Very high radiation area means any area accessible to individuals in which radiation levels could result in an individual receiving an absorbed dose in excess of 500 rads (5 grays) in one hour at 1 meter from a radiation source or from any surface that the radiation penetrates.

Table 10: Definitions Related to ìContaminationî and ìRadioactive Materialî
TERM Airborne Radioactivity Area Part 20 Definitions Airborne radioactivity area means a room, enclosure, or area in which airborne radioactive materials, composed wholly or partly of licensed material, exist in concentrations -- (1) In excess of the derived air concentrations (DACs) specified in Appendix B, to ßß20.1001 - 20.2401, or (2) To such a degree that an individual present in the area without respiratory protective equipment could exceed, during the hours an individual is present in a week, an intake of 0.6 percent of the annual limit on intake (ALI) or 12 DAC-hours. Part 835 Definitions Airborne radioactivity area means any area, accessible to individuals, where: (1) The concentration of airborne radioactivity, above natural background, exceeds or is likely to exceed the derived air concentration (DAC) values listed in Appendix A or Appendix C of this part; or (2) An individual present in the area without respiratory protection could receive an intake exceeding 12 DAC-hours in a week. Contamination area means any area, accessible to individuals, where removable surface contamination levels exceed or are likely to exceed the removable surface contamination values specified in Appendix D of this part, but do not exceed 100 times those values. High contamination area means any area, accessible to individuals, where removable surface contamination levels exceed or are likely to exceed 100 times the removable surface contamination values specified in Appendix D of this part. Radioactive material area means any area within a controlled area, accessible to individuals, in which items or containers of radioactive material exist and the total activity of radioactive material exceeds the applicable values provided in Appendix E of this part.

Contamination (no corresponding definition) Area

High (no corresponding definition) Contamination Area

Radioactive Material Area

(no corresponding definition)

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Table 11: Definitions Related to ìDoseî

TERM Dose

Part 20 Definition Dose or radiation dose is a generic term that means absorbed dose, dose equivalent, effective dose equivalent, committed dose equivalent, committed effective dose equivalent, or total effective dose equivalent, as defined in other paragraphs of this section. Dose equivalent (HT) means the product of the absorbed dose in tissue, quality factor, and all other necessary modifying factors at the location of interest. The units of dose equivalent are the rem and sievert (Sv). Effective dose equivalent (HE) is the sum of the products of the dose equivalent to the organ or tissue (HT) and the weighting factors (wT) applicable to each of the body organs or tissues that are irradiated (HE = / wT HT).

Part 835 Definitions Dose is a general term for absorbed dose, dose equivalent, effective dose equivalent, committed dose equivalent, committed effective dose equivalent, or total effective dose equivalent as defined in this part.

Dose Equivalent HT

Dose equivalent (H) means the product of absorbed dose (D) in rad (or gray) in tissue, a quality factor (Q), and other modifying factors (N). Dose equivalent is expressed in units of rem (or sievert) (1 rem = 0.01 sievert). Effective dose equivalent (HE) means the summation of the products of the dose equivalent received by specified tissues of the body (HT) and the appropriate weighting factor (wT)--that is, HE = / wT HT. It includes the dose from radiation sources internal and/or external to the body. For purposes of compliance with this part, deep dose equivalent to the whole body may be used as effective dose equivalent for external exposures. The effective dose equivalent is expressed in units of rem (or sievert). Committed dose equivalent (HT,50) means the dose equivalent calculated to be received by a tissue or organ over a 50-year period after the intake of a radionuclide into the body. It does not include contributions from radiation sources external to the body. Committed dose equivalent is expressed in units of rem (or sievert). Committed effective dose equivalent (HE,50) means the sum of the committed dose equivalents to various tissues in the body (HT,50), each multiplied by the appropriate weighting factor (wT)--that is, HE,50 = / wT HT,50. Committed effective dose equivalent is expressed in units of rem (or sievert). Total effective dose equivalent (TEDE) means the sum of the effective dose equivalent (for external exposures) and the committed effective dose equivalent (for internal exposures).

Effective Dose Equivalent HE

Committed Dose Equivalent HT,50

Committed dose equivalent (HT,50) means the dose equivalent to organs or tissues of reference (T) that will be received from an intake of radioactive material by an individual during the 50-year period following the intake.

Committed Effective Dose Equivalent HE,50 Total Effective Dose Equivalent TEDE

Committed effective dose equivalent (HE,50) is the sum of the products of the weighting factors applicable to each of the body organs or tissues that are irradiated and the committed dose equivalent to these organs or tissues. Total Effective Dose Equivalent (TEDE) means the sum of the deep-dose equivalent (for external exposures) and the committed effective dose equivalent (for internal exposures).

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Table 12: Occupational Dose Limits and Limits for Members of the Public

Category Occupational (Total Effective Dose Equivalent and Organ or Tissue)

Part 20 Dose Limits (1) An annual limit, which is the more limiting of: (i) The total effective dose equivalent being equal to 5 rems (0.05 Sv); or (ii) The sum of the deep-dose equivalent and the committed dose equivalent to any individual organ or tissue other than the lens of the eye being equal to 50 rems (0.5 Sv). (2) The annual limits to the lens of the eye, to the skin, and to the extremities, which are: (i) A lens dose equivalent of 15 rems (0.15 Sv), and (ii) A shallow-dose equivalent of 50 rems (0.50 Sv) to the skin or to any extremity.

Part 835 Dose Limits (1) A total effective dose equivalent of 5 rems (0.05 sievert); (2) The sum of the deep dose equivalent for external exposures and the committed dose equivalent to any organ or tissue other than the lens of the eye of 50 rems (0.5 sievert);

Occupational (Lens of Eye, Skin, Extremities)

(3) A lens of the eye dose equivalent of 15 rems (0.15 sievert); and (4) A shallow dose equivalent of 50 rems (0.5 sievert) to the skin or to any extremity.

Public

0.1 rem (1 millisievert) 0.002 rem (0.02 millisievert) in any one hour for the dose in an unrestricted area

0.1 rem (0.001 sievert) (no corresponding definition)

A more detailed explanation of the dose limits applied to members of the public and to individuals subject to occupational dose, which includes CLWs, needs to include a review of the four event probability ranges, as described in RL/REG-98-18, Revision 0, ìRegulatory Unit Position on Radiological Safety for Hanford Co-Located Workers.î These are reproduced here as Table 13, Radiological Exposure Standards Above Normal Background. Table 13 specifies four event probability ranges addressing normal operation and credible accident conditions. General guidelines and frequencies listed for the four event probability ranges are: 1. Normal events are typical of normal facility operations expected to occur regularly in the course of facility operations; the associated frequency of occurrence during the lifetime of the facility is 1 or more per year. As defined in Table 13, a general guideline for this event probability is that normal modes of operating the facility systems should provide adequate protection of health and safety. 2. Anticipated events are characterized as minor incidents and upsets of moderate frequency that may occur once or more during the lifetime of the facility; the associated probability range is 1x10-2 to <1 per year. As defined in Table 13, a general guideline for this event probability range is that the facility should be capable of returning to operation without extensive corrective action or repair. 3. Unlikely events are characterized as more severe incidents that are not expected, but may occur, during the lifetime of the facility; the associated probability range is 1x10-4 to 1x10-2 NUREG-1747 72

per year. As defined in Table 13, a general guideline for this event probability range is that the facility should be capable of returning to operation following potentially extensive corrective action or repair, as necessary. 4. Extremely unlikely events are characterized as events that are not expected to occur during the lifetime of the facility, but are postulated because their consequences would include the potential for the release of significant amounts of radioactive material; the associated probability range is 1x10-6 to 1x10-4 per year. As defined in Table 13, a general guideline for this event probability range is that facility damage may preclude returning to operation. Note that a probability of occurrence of 1x10-2 per year is equivalent to a frequency of one occurrence in 100 years; 1x10-4 per year equates to one in 10,000 years; and 1x10-6 per year equates to one in 1,000,000 years. These time periods are also known as recurrence intervals. The additional category of worker has implications with regard to the design and construction of structures, systems, and components (SSCs) of the TWRS-P facility, but does not establish a different set of radiation exposure standards (limits) or a different threshold for monitoring these workers. As may be observed by review of Table 13, for all categories of events, the limits are the same for facility workers and for co-located workers (with the exception that facility workers are subject to the additional limits of ≤ 50 rem/yr to any organ, the skin, or extremity, and ≤ 15 rem/yr to the lens of the eye). The benefit of using the co-located worker category is that it allows the TWRS-P facility to treat these workers as individuals subject to occupational dose, rather than as members of the public under accident conditions. Therefore, in the design and construction of TWRS-P facility SSCs, the ìoffsiteî consequences (i.e., the radiation doses to individuals beyond the boundaries of the TWRS-P facility) are permitted to be greater for the nearby co-located workers than would be the case if these personnel were considered to be members of the public For the category of normal events, which have a frequency of occurrence of one or more per year, and are considered to have the lowest consequence in terms of harm, co-located workers will seldom, if ever, receive any additional radiation exposure from the TWRS-P facility. However, operation under non-normal conditions, i.e., with releases above ALARA (as low as reasonably achievable) levels, may add to the exposure received by co-located workers. It should be noted that co-located workers will continue to be subject to the same limits as the worker, so that any exposure received due to operation of TWRS-P (under non-normal conditions) is added to that received from the duties performed in the facility in which their occupational exposure is normally received. DOE regulations pertaining to occupational radiation protection (Part 835) provide some specificity beyond that found in NRC regulations (Part 20), due to the inclusion of certain definitions in Part 835, including those for ìgeneral employeeî and ìradiological worker.î

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Table 13: Radiological Exposure Standards Above Normal Background

Description

Estimated Frequency of Occurrence f (yr -1 )

General Guidelines

Worker

Co-Located Worker

Public

>0.1 Normal Events: Events that occur regularly in the course of facility operation (e.g., normal facility operations); including routine and preventive maintenance activities. Anticipated Events: 10 -2 <f < 10 -1 Events of moderate frequency that may occur once or more during the life of a facility (e.g., minor incidents and upsets). Unlikely Events: Events that are not expected, but may occur during the lifetime of a facility (e.g., more severe incidents). Extremely Unlikely Events: Events that are not expected to occur during the life of the facility but are postulated because their consequences would include the potential for the release of significant amounts of radioactive material. Location of Receptor 10 -4 <f < 10 -2

Normal modes of operating facility systems should provide adequate protection of health and safety.

< 5 rem/yr < 50 rem/yr any organ, skin, or extremity < 15 rem/yr lens of eye < 1.0 rem/yr ALARA design objective per 10CFR835.1002 (b) (1)

< 5 rem/yr < 1.0 rem/yr ALARA design objective per 10 CFR 835.1002(b)(1)

The facility should be < 5 rem/event (2,3) capable of returning to 1.0 rem/event design action threshold (4) operation without extensive corrective action or repair.

< 5 rem/event (2, 3) 1.0 rem/event design action threshold (4)

< 10 mrem/yr (airborne pathway) < 100 mrem/yr (all sources) < 100 mrem/yr (public in the controlled area) < 25 mrem/yr (radioactive waste) < 100 mrem/event (3)

The facility should be < 25 rem/ event (2,3) capable of returning to operation following potentially extensive corrective action or repair, as necessary. Facility damage may preclude returning to operation. < 25 rem/ event (2,3)

< 25 rem/event (2, 3) < 5 rem/event (3)

10 -6 <f < 10 -4

< 25 rem/event (2,3) < 25 rem/event < 5 rem/event target (3) < 300 rem/event to thyroid

Within the BNFL TWRS-P Controlled Area Boundary, including 241-AP-106

The most limiting location at or beyond the BNFL TWRS-P Controlled Area Boundary

The most limiting location along the near river bank/Hwy 240 /southern boundary

_______________ (1) In addition to meeting the listed design objective of 10 CFR 835.1002(b), the inhalation of radioactive material by workers and co-located workers under normal conditions is kept ALARA through the control of airborne radioactivity as described in 10 CFR 835.1002(c). In addition to meeting the listed worker and co-located worker exposure standards for accidents, the Worker Accident Risk Goal is satisfied through the calculation of the risk from accidents with accident prevention and mitigation features added as necessary to meet the Goal. In addition to meeting the listed exposure standards for accidents, BNFL Inc.ís approach to accident mitigation is to evaluate accident consequences to ensure that the calculated exposures are far enough below standards to account for uncertainties in the analysis and to provide for sufficient design margin and operational flexibility. When a calculated accident exposure exceeds this threshold, then appropriate actions are taken. These include carrying out a less bounding (i.e., more realistic) evaluation to show that the accident consequences will be below the threshold or evaluating additional safeguards for cost-effectiveness and/or feasibility. This threshold is not a limit; it does not require the implementation of additional preventive or mitigative features if they are not both cost-effective and feasible.

(2)

(3)

(4)

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The importance of these additional definitions in the regulation of the TWRS-P facility is explained in RL/REG-98-18, Revision 0, ìRegulatory Unit Position on Radiological Safety for Hanford Co-Located Workers.î This document points out that a person can be occupationally exposed even though he or she is not a radiological worker. A document which explains the use of the categories of ìFacility Worker,î ìCo-Located Worker,î and ìPublicî is BNFL-5193-RES-01, Rev. 0, August 28, 1997, ìRadiological and Nuclear Exposure Standards for Facility and Co-Located Workers.î These terms are defined in Section 3.4.1.3, ìDevelopment of the BNFL Approach to Compliance with Table 1 of DOE/RL-96-0006." 3.4.1.4 MONITORING THRESHOLDS

Generally speaking, the NRC requires monitoring of adults likely to receive in excess of 10 percent of the occupational dose limits, while the DOE requires monitoring of adults likely to receive in excess of 2 percent of the occupational dose limits. For whole body exposure, these equate to 500 mrem and 100 mrem, respectively. Table 14, ìMonitoring Thresholds,î provides information from 10 CFR Part 20 and 10 CFR Part 835 relevant to the monitoring of individuals subject to occupational dose and members of the public. These Parts also contain information about monitoring exposure to minors and declared pregnant women (in 10 CFR Part 20) or declared pregnant workers (in 10 CFR Part 835). 3.4.2 RADIATION PROTECTION PROGRAM This section presents a comparison of regulatory requirements and guidance of the NRC and the DOE with regard to the criteria for Radiation Protection Programs as described in 10 CFR Part 20, Standards for Protection Against Radiation and 10 CFR Part 835, Occupational Radiation Protection. 3.4.2.1 INTRODUCTION Should a transition to regulatory oversight by the NRC take place at some future time, certain aspects of the contractorís Radiation Control Program could be affected. The objectives of this section are to: 1. Describe the contractorís Radiation Protection Program (RPP) and the regulatory basis for requiring its use. 2. Provide an explanation of differences in the regulatory approach of the two agencies with respect to this programmatic requirement. 3. Identify, insofar as possible, the extent to which the Contractorís RPP would be affected by a transition to NRC regulatory authority.

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Table 14: Monitoring Thresholds
Section in 10 CFR: Part 20 10 CFR 20.1502 Conditions requiring individual monitoring of external and internal occupational dose. Each licensee shall monitor exposures to radiation and radioactive material at levels sufficient to demonstrate compliance with the occupational dose limits of this part. As a minimum -External (a) Each licensee shall monitor occupational exposure to radiation from licensed and unlicensed radiation sources under the control of the licensee and shall supply and require the use of individual monitoring devices by-(1) Adults likely to receive, in 1 year from sources external to the body, a dose in excess of 10 percent of the limits in ß20.1201(a), (2) Minors likely to receive, in 1 year, from radiation sources external to the body, a deep dose equivalent in excess of 0.1 rem (1 mSv), a lens dose equivalent in excess of 0.15 rem (1.5 mSv), or a shallow dose equivalent to the skin or to the extremities in excess of 0.5 rem (5 mSv); (3) Declared pregnant women likely to receive during the entire pregnancy, from radiation sources external to the body, a deep dose equivalent in excess of 0.1 rem (1 mSv);2 and (4) Individuals entering a high or very high radiation area. ___________________________ 2 All of the occupational doses in ß20.1201 continue to be applicable to the declared pregnant worker as long as the embryo/fetus dose limit is not Part 835 10 CFR 835.402 Individual monitoring.

(no corresponding text)

(a) For the purpose of monitoring individual exposures to external radiation, personnel dosimeters shall be provided to and used by: (1) Radiological workers who, under typical conditions, are likely to receive one or more of the following: (i) An effective dose equivalent to the whole body of 0.1 rem (0.001 sievert) or more in a year; (ii) A shallow dose equivalent to the skin or to any extremity of 5 rems (0.05 sievert) or more in a year; (iii) A lens of the eye dose equivalent of 1.5 rems (0.015 sievert) or more in a year; (2) Declared pregnant workers who are likely to receive from external sources a dose equivalent to the embryo/fetus in excess of 10 percent of the limit at Sec. 835.206(a); (3) Occupationally exposed minors likely to receive a dose in excess of 50 percent of the applicable limits at Sec. 835.207 in a year from external sources; (4) Members of the public entering a controlled area likely to receive a dose in excess of 50 percent of the limit at Sec. 835.208 in a year from external sources; and (5) Individuals entering a high or very high radiation area.

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Section in 10 CFR: exceeded. Internal

Part 20

Part 835

(b) Each licensee shall monitor the occupational intake of radioactive material by and assess the committed effective dose equivalent to -(1) Adults likely to receive, in 1 year, an intake in excess of 10 percent of the applicable ALI(s) in Table 1, Columns 1 and 2, of Appendix B to ßß20.1001-20.2400; [see note in last row of this table] (2) Minors likely to receive, in 1 year, a committed effective dose equivalent in excess of 0.1 rem (1 mSv); and (3) Declared pregnant women likely to receive, during the entire pregnancy, a committed effective dose equivalent in excess of 0.1 rem (1 mSv). (no corresponding text)

(c) For the purpose of monitoring individual exposures to internal radiation, internal dosimetry programs (including routine bioassay programs) shall be conducted for: (1) Radiological workers who, under typical conditions, are likely to receive a committed effective dose equivalent of 0.1 rem (0.001 sievert) or more from all occupational radionuclide intakes in a year; (2) Declared pregnant workers likely to receive an intake or intakes resulting in a dose equivalent to the embryo/fetus in excess of 10 percent of the limit stated at Sec. 835.206(a); (3) Occupationally exposed minors who are likely to receive a dose in excess of 50 percent of the applicable limit stated at Sec. 835.207 from all radionuclide intakes in a year; or (4) Members of the public entering a controlled area likely to receive a dose in excess of 50 percent of the limit stated at Sec. 835.208 from all radionuclide intakes in a year.

[Note: 1 ALI = 5 rem, or 5000 mrem for whole body exposure; therefore 10% of the limit (1 ALI) = 500 mrem; also 1 ALI = 50 rem, or 50 000 mrem for the maximally exposed organ; therefore 10% of the limit (1 ALI) = 5 rem = 5000 mrem]

Table 14: Monitoring Thresholds
(Continued)

The acronym RPP is sometimes used to refer to both ìRiver Protection Projectî and to ìRadiation Protection Program;î however, in this section, it will be used only in the latter sense, i.e., to refer to the Radiation Protection Program. 3.4.2.2 DESCRIPTION OF THE RADIATION PROTECTION PROGRAM A document prepared by the former contractor (BNFL Inc.) entitled ìRadiation Protection Program for Designî (BNFL-TWP-SER-003) is the radiation program document for achieving compliance with the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 835, ìOccupational Radiation 77 NUREG-1747

Protection.î As of November 15, 1999, BNFL Inc. had submitted the third revision to this document to the DOE-RU. In a letter from BNFL Inc. to the RU dated January 31, 2000, BNFL Inc. indicated its intention to submit Revision 4 of this document, to be known as the RPP for Design and Limited Construction, on or before May 1, 2000. This was subsequently delayed to June 30, 2000. Upon submittal, it was subjected to an acceptance review by the RU, which rejected it for a number of inadequacies. The Introduction to BNFL-TWP-SER-003 provides the following description of the RPP: The RPP is developed and submitted for regulatory approval in stages corresponding to the status of the [TWRS-P] Project. This initial RPP submittal describes the plans and measures for achieving compliance with the requirements of 10 CFR [Part] 835 that are applicable to the [TWRS-P] Facility design phase. No radiological source term will exist to cause personnel exposures during the design phase; however, decisions made during the design phase will affect exposures during facility operations and deactivation. 3.4.2.3 REGULATORY BASIS

In contrast to 10 CFR Part 20, the regulations in 10 CFR 835.101 are very prescriptive with respect to the requirement for a radiation protection program. While both agencies require the implementation of an RPP, the DOE includes more stringent requirements such as the following: 1. 10 CFR 835.101(a) requires approval by DOE. 2. 10 CFR 835.101(b) gives authority to DOE to direct or make modifications to a RPP. 3. 10 CFR 835.101(e) requires the RPP to address, but not necessarily be limited to, each requirement in Part 835. The NRC requires the development, documentation, and implementation of a radiation protection program by its licensees (10 CFR 20.1101(a)), but the regulation does not require the licensee to submit this document for approval by the Agency, and does not give the NRC the direct authority to require modifications of the RPP. The relevant sections of 10 CFR 20.1101 and 10 CFR 835.101 are provided in Table 15. This table indicates that there are few corresponding sections in the two Parts. There are similarities between 10 CFR 20.1101(a) and 10 CFR 835.101(a) and also between 10 CFR 20.1101(c) and 10 CFR 835.101(g), but, otherwise, the two regulations are quite different. The related recordkeeping requirements of 10 CFR 20.2102 have some similarities to portions of 10 CFR 835.701 and 10 CFR 835.704, as shown in Table 16.

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Table 15: Radiation Protection Plan Requirements
Part 20 Subpart B - Radiation Protection Programs 10 CFR 20.1101 Radiation protection programs (a) Each licensee shall develop, document, and implement a radiation protection program commensurate with the scope and extent of licensed activities and sufficient to ensure compliance with the provisions of this part. (See 10 CFR20.2102 for record- keeping requirements relating to these programs.) (b) The licensee shall use, to the extent practical, procedures and engineering controls based upon sound radiation protection principles to achieve occupational doses and doses to members of the public that are as low as is reasonably achievable (ALARA). (no corresponding regulation) (no corresponding regulation) Part 835 Subpart B - Management and Administrative Requirements 10 CFR 835.101 Radiation protection programs (a) A DOE activity shall be conducted in compliance with a documented radiation protection program (RPP) as approved by the DOE.

(no corresponding regulation)

(b) The DOE may direct or make modifications to a RPP. (c) The content of each RPP shall be commensurate with the nature of the activities performed and shall include formal plans and measures for applying the as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) process to occupational exposure. (d) The RPP shall specify the existing and/or anticipated operational tasks that are intended to be within the scope of the RPP. Except as provided in Sec. 835.101(h), any task outside the scope of a RPP shall not be initiated until an update of the RPP is approved by DOE. (e) The content of the RPP shall address, but shall not necessarily be limited to, each requirement in this part. (f) The RPP shall include plans, schedules, and other measures for achieving compliance with regulations of this part. Unless otherwise specified in this part, compliance with amendments to this part shall be achieved no later than 180 days following approval of the revised RPP by DOE. Compliance with the requirements of Sec. 835.402(d) for radiobio- assay program accreditation shall be achieved no later than January 1, 2002. (g) An update of the RPP shall be submitted to DOE: (1) Whenever a change or an addition to the RPP is made; (2) Prior to the initiation of a task not within the scope of the RPP; or (3) Within 180 days of the effective date of any modifications to this part. (h) Changes, additions, or updates to the RPP may become effective without prior Department approval only if the changes do not decrease the effectiveness of the RPP and the RPP, as changed, continues to meet the requirements of this part. Proposed changes that decrease the effectiveness of the RPP shall not be implemented without submittal to and approval by the Department. (i) An initial RPP or an update shall be considered approved 180 days after its submission unless rejected by DOE at an earlier date.

(no corresponding regulation)

(no corresponding regulation) (no corresponding regulation)

(c) The licensee shall periodically (at least annually) review the radiation protection program content and implementation. (no corresponding regulation)

(no corresponding regulation)

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Table 16: Recordkeeping Requirements
Part 20 Subpart L - Records 10 CFR 20.2102 Records of Radiation Protection programs (a) Each licensee shall maintain records of the radiation protection program, including: (1) The provisions of the program; and (2) Audits and other reviews of program content and implementation. (b) The licensee shall retain the records required by paragraph (a)(1) of this section until the Commission terminates each pertinent license requiring the record. The licensee shall retain the records required by paragraph (a)(2) of this section for 3 years after the record is made. Subpart H - Records 10 CFR 835.701 General Provisions (a) Records shall be maintained to document compliance with this part and with radiation protection programs required by 10 CFR 835.101. (b) Unless otherwise specified in this subpart, records shall be retained until final disposition is authorized by DOE. Part 835

10 CFR 835.704 Administrative records (no corresponding regulation) (b) Actions taken to maintain occupational exposures as low as reasonably achievable, including the actions required for this purpose by Sec. 835.101, as well as facility design and control actions required by Secs. 835.1001, 835.1002, and 835.1003, shall be documented. (c) Records shall be maintained to document the results of internal audits and other reviews of program content and implementation.

See 10 CFR 20.2102(a)(2), above.

As stated previously, the 10 CFR Part 20 (NRC) requirements for an applicantís or licenseeís RPP are less prescriptive than the 10 CFR Part 835 (DOE) requirements. If regulatory authority for the TWRS-P Project were to transition from DOE to NRC, in the process of replacing references to DOE and 10 CFR Part 835 with references to NRC and 10 CFR Parts 20 and 70, the contractor may want to use the opportunity to remove requirements that are not part of the NRC regulations. This could be problematical, given that changes that are judged to reduce the effectiveness of the RPP may not be acceptable. If the NRC were to assume regulatory authority at an early stage, i.e., prior to construction and/or operation, the content and format of the RPP would be reviewed in the context of a Preliminary/Final Safety Analysis Report (or equivalent), in accordance with the NRCís Standard Review Plan (SRP - see Section 3.4.2.6). In any case, the contractorís RPP would be reviewed within the scope of the NRCís inspection program to determine whether it is in compliance with 10 CFR 20.1101a, ìRadiation protection programs,î which states: Each licensee shall develop, document, and implement a radiation protection program commensurate with the scope and extent of licensed activities and sufficient to ensure compliance with the provisions of this part. For the TWRS-P facility, in addition to the categories of general employee and radiological worker (defined in Part 835) and member of the public (defined both in Part 835 and in Part 20), a third category known as the co-located worker (CLW), has been defined within the ìTop-Level Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Principles for TWRS Privatization NUREG-1747 80

Contractors,î DOE/RL-96-0006, Revision 1, July 1998. Within this document, the co-located worker is defined in Section 6.0, Glossary, as the following: An individual within the Hanford Site, beyond the Contractor-controlled area, performing work for or in conjunction with DOE or utilizing other Hanford Site facilities. The co-located worker is referenced in the Introduction to Section IV of the DOE Implementation Guide G-10 CFR 835/B2, ìOccupational ALARA Programî (DOE 1994), which states: This section gives the basic guidelines for conducting an operational ALARA program. It includes the requirements and guidance for developing, implementing, and documenting the program to reduce doses to workers and "co-located workers" to levels that are ALARA. Currently no plans exist regarding the change in status, if any, of the CLW category if a transition to NRC regulatory authority were to occur. 3.4.2.4. ORGANIZATION OF THE RPP FOR DESIGN The first four sections of the RPP are the ìIntroduction,î ìRPP Document Organization,î ìPurpose,î and ìApplicability.î Most of the relevant information in these sections has been summarized in the introduction to this section (3.4.2). The major content of the RPP is contained in RPP Section 5, which addresses ìÖ each functional element of 10 CFR Part 835 applicable during the RPP-WTP design phaseî (Section 5.0, Paragraph 4). RPP Section 5.1 covers ìMaintenance of the RPP.î Sections 5.2, 5.3, and 5.4 discuss Audits, Management of Records, and Training, respectively, which are required to demonstrate compliance with 10 CFR Part 835. RPP Section 5.5, ìBNFL Inc. Application of ALARA to the RPP-WTP Facility Design,î is comprised of 14 subsections that are intended to describe how the contractor will apply ALARA to the facility design. Two of the fourteen RPP subsections were deemed inapplicable to the design phase: 5.5.4, ìRadiological Performance Goals/Indicators,î and 5.5.13, ìRadiological Work/Experiment Planning.î RPP Subsections 5.5.1 through 5.5.14 are summarized in Table 17. These are based on the essential elements in Section IV of the DOE Implementation Guide G-10 CFR 835/B2, ìOccupational ALARA Programî (DOE 1994). The essential element numbers are shown in boldface type below the corresponding subsection numbers. The first paragraph of RPP Section 5.5 states ìthe form and content of this section of the RPP is consistent withî the DOE Implementation Guide. The information in this Implementation Guide is similar to that found in NRC Regulatory Guides 8.8 and 8.10. Although a comprehensive intercomparison of regulatory guidance is not the intention of this summary, the following chapter provides an indication of similarities and differences of approach between the NRC and DOE.

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The RPP for Design concludes with a Bibliography (Section 6.0) and an Appendix of nearly 40 pages that lists in a tabular format each section of Part 835 and its requirements, accompanied by the BNFL Inc. Plans and Measures for Achieving Compliance. If a particular section of Part 835 is not applicable at the design stage, or if no actual requirement is stated, this is so indicated in the table. Most plans and measures are described by reference to the appropriate part of the text of the RPP. Table 17: Summary of Application of ALARA to the Facility Design
RPP Section 5.5. 5.5.1. (1)* 5.5.2. (2) Section Title Summary of Section Contents

BNFL Inc. Application of ALARA to the Facility Design ALARA Policy/ Management Commitment Organization and Responsibilities Policy is to conduct radiological operations in a manner that ensures the health and safety of all employees, subcontractors, and the general public. Project General Manager Project Manager Project Engineering Manager Project Quality Assurance Manager Project Operations Manager (Design Phase) Project Safety and Regulatory Programs Manager Project Safety Committee ALARA Subcommittee (ASC) ìAdministrative Control Levels,î are described in DOE Implementation Guide G-10 CFR Part 835/B2, ìOccupational ALARA Programî (DOE 1994) in relation to occupational exposure and are, therefore, not applicable to this RPP. This RPP reflects the design phase of the Project only. Radiological Performance Goals/Indicators are not applicable to this RPP.

5.5.3. (3) 5.5.4. (4) 5.5.5. (5) 5.5.6. (6) 5.5.7. (7)

Administrative Control Levels Radiological Performance Goals/ Indicators ALARA Training

Specific technical training (including ALARA training) shall be planned, scheduled, provided, documented, and maintained for personnel in their respective technical disciplines as defined by position descriptions and specific work assignments. A training matrix shall be maintained for defining and tracking training requirements. Plans and procedures for ALARA shall be commensurate with the activities authorized to be performed under this RPP. Perform internal audits of all functional elements of the radiological control program. Such audits shall ensure that each functional element, including ALARA, is audited formally no less frequently than every 3 years.

Plans and Procedures Internal Assessments/ Audits

*Numbers in boldface type refer to the corresponding essential elements in DOE IG G-10 CFR Part 835/B2, Occupational ALARA Program

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Table 17: Summary of Application of ALARA to the Facility Design (continued)
RPP Section 5.5.8. (8) 5.5.8.1. Section Title Summary of Section Contents

Optimization Methodology Process Description Applied Value of Protection for Optimization It is not expected that cost benefit analysis (CBA) will be used as the primary driver in every ALARA decision. CBA is viewed as one of the inputs in an ALARA analysis, and depending on the particulars of the situation (the formality and degree of quantitative analysis should reflect the scale and type of problem under consideration), CBA may not be required in order to arrive at an appropriate decision. A key input parameter for CBA is the value of the person-rem detriment. BNFL Inc. policy is based on the United Kingdom National Radiation Protection Board (NRPB) guidance, together with an adjustment for United States commercial and DOE practices.

5.5.8.2.

5.5.9. (9) 5.5.9.1. 5.5.9.2. 5.5.10.

ALARA Design Process Overview Hierarchy of Protection ALARA Design Criteria The ALARA design process applied in all stages of design. Experience has shown that the greatest potential for significant dose savings at the lowest cost is achieved at the earliest stages of design. ALARA design process uses a hierarchy of controls giving priority to those controls that are most effective. ALARA design criteria applied throughout the design of the facility: 5.5.10.1. Primary method - physical design features (e.g., confinement, ventilation, remote handling, and shielding). 5.5.10.2. Administrative controls - employed only as supplemental methods to control radiation exposure. 5.5.10.3. Physical design features for specific activities demonstrated to be impractical - use administrative controls. 5.5.10.4. Optimization methods (i.e., cost benefit analyses) - to assure that occupational exposure is maintained ALARA in developing and justifying facility design and physical controls. (Not used, or documented in all ALARA decisions.) 5.5.10.5. Design objective, under normal condition - avoid releases of airborne radioactive materials to the workplace atmosphere. 5.5.10.6. Confinement and ventilation - control the inhalation of airborne radioactive material by workers to levels that are ALARA. 5.5.10.7. Design or modification of a facility and the selection of materials - include features that facilitate operations, maintenance, decontamination, and decommissioning. 5.5.10.8. Combination of physical design features and administrative controls - provide that anticipated occupational dose not exceed limits in 10 CFR 835.202; ALARA process is utilized for personnel exposures to ionizing radiation. 5.5.10.9. Design objective for external sources of radiation in areas of continuous occupancy (2,000 hours per year) - maintain exposure levels below average of 0.5 mrem per hour and as far below this average as is reasonably achievable. 5.5.10.10 Design objectives where occupancy differs from the above (e.g., less than 2,000 hours per year) - ALARA and less than 20 percent of the applicable standards in 10 CFR 835.20.

*Numbers in boldface type refer to the corresponding essential elements in DOE IG G-10 CFR Part 835/B2, Occupational ALARA Program

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Table 17: Summary of Application of ALARA to the Facility Design (continued)
RPP Section 5.5.11. Section Title ALARA Design Process Components Baseline Design Proposal Identification of Alternatives Summary of Section Contents ALARA design process described in procedures and codes of practice approved by Project management. ALARA design process consists of: completion of a baseline design proposal; identification, evaluation of alternatives for baseline case doses; ALARA assessments; formal ALARA reviews; final decision process; incorporate changes into design; ALARA documentation. Baseline design proposal is a proposed facility, or portion of the facility, that meets the criteria outlined in Section 5.5.10, ALARA Design Criteria. For each radiation exposure scenario evaluated during ALARA process, alternatives are generated for later evaluation - ensures alternatives are considered systematically and consistently.  Substitution or minimization of source terms affecting personnel dose  Increased reliability of processes and equipment  Increasing distance and shielding to the source term  Increasing effectiveness of engineered controls  Decreasing the need for exposure  Decreasing exposure time  Modification of the facility layout or process flow. ALARA design assessments are conducted and documented for each part of the design. The following phases or components of the design should be assessed by the designer, either individually or in combination, with involvement by a radiological engineer, as appropriate:  Process  Operation and maintenance philosophy  Plant layout (to include adequate provisions for access and egress to controlled areas, and adequacy of plant monitoring)  Cell layouts  Source minimization  Contamination control  Individual shield items (e.g., glovebox shielding, shield doors, shield windows)  Bulk shielding (walls, ceilings, and floors)  Construction/installation  Design aspects of operation  Design aspects of decommissioning. ALARA assessment normally conducted during site selection. but site has been pre-selected by DOE. Estimate of the dose resulting from each design alternative and the associated cost are needed for ALARA assessment. More than one alternative applied to an exposure situation may provide equivalent ALARA benefit - consider operational experience of existing plants if reasonable to do so. In the general case, in ALARA assessments consider any design modification where:  Reducing dose might result in an increase of a conventional hazard (e.g., risk of injury from collision with equipment).  Result is greater design, construction, operating, or decommissioning costs.  Difficulties in building, operating, or decommissioning the plant are increased. The creation of an additional hazard does not necessarily eliminate selection of an alternative under consideration.

5.5.11.1. 5.5.11.2.

5.5.11.3.

ALARA Design Assessments

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Table 17: Summary of Application of ALARA to the Facility Design (continued)
RPP Section 5.5.11.4. Section Title ALARA Design Reviews Summary of Section Contents Formal reviews to look for improvements required to demonstrate ALARA compliance and to record ALARA decisions. ALARA reviews also can be used to record where dose reduction has been achieved by the use of "good engineering practices." Reviews should use appropriate checklists to ensure consistency; shall be conducted by personnel not involved directly in producing the design. The outcome of the reviews will record the key ALARA decisions made in each design stage. More than one alternative may be proposed that achieves ALARA objective. ALARA Subcomittee (ASC) will select the optimum alternative. ASC provides recommendation(s) through Plant Safety Committee to Project Manager for consideration and approval. Contested issues should be clearly identified, characterized, and negotiated between ASC and Project Manager. May require General Manager to make final decision. Following a decision to incorporate the ALARA changes into the design; the changes will be implemented using authorized design change control procedures. All records pertaining to the ALARA design review process including formal ALARA design reviews, cost/benefit reviews, design process audits, and assessments that include ALARA shall be retained in accordance with BNFL Inc. records retention procedures. Because this RPP submittal is for design work only, no element of radiological work or experiment planning need be addressed at this time. BNFL Inc. shall generate and retain all records necessary to demonstrate compliance with 10 CFR 835.1001. These records include ALARA training records, formal ALARA design reviews, cost/benefit reviews, design process audits, and assessments that include ALARA.

5.5.11.5.

Consensus Approval

5.5.11.6.

Incorporate Changes into Design ALARA Documentation Radiological Work/Experiment Planning Records

5.5.12. 5.5.13. (10) 5.5.14. (11)

*Numbers in boldface type refer to the corresponding essential elements in DOE IG G-10 CFR 10 CFR 835/B2, Occupational ALARA Program

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3.4.2.5. COMPARISON OF NRC AND DOE ALARA GUIDANCE Section 5.5, Paragraph 1 of the RPP for Design, Rev. 3, states "the form and content of this section of the PP [protection program (i.e., RPP)] is consistent with DOE Implementation Guide (IG) G-10 CFR Part 835/B2Ö," which was issued in November 1994. It was based on the thencurrent (1993) version of 10 CFR Part 835. Following the 1998 revisions to 10 CFR Part 835, the IG was updated and renumbered as DOE G 441.1-2, which was released on March 17, 1999. However, the contractor may chose to use the latest revision or to continue using the old version. If the contractor chooses to use the old version, it must ascertain that continued use of that version does not conflict with the current (1998) version of 10 CFR Part 835; in other words, compliance with the current law is required. It is also necessary for the contractor to ensure that use of the older version does not reduce the effectiveness of the RPP. At the time this summary was being prepared, the contractor had not conveyed any decision to DOE regarding the use of the revised IG.36 There are many differences between the NRC Regulatory Guides (RG) and the 1994 version of the DOE Implementation Guide (IG). The approaches are similar, as would be expected given the similarities in 10 CFR Parts 20 and 835, and given that the development of the ALARA philosophy, under the auspices of the International Commission on Radiological Protection, has served as a common resource for guidance developed by both the NRC and DOE. The Introduction to NRC RG 8.8 states that ì[t]his guide provides information relevant to attaining goals and objectives for planning, designing, constructing, operating, and decommissioning a light-water reactor nuclear power station Öî to achieve ALARA. In contrast, RG 8.10, besides applying to all specific licensees, ìÖdescribes an operating philosophy that the NRC staff believes all specific licensees should follow to keep occupational exposures to radiation Ö[ALARA].î The DOE IG on ALARA applies to all radiological activities within DOE and its various facilities and also takes into account other hazards (e.g., chemical) that workers may encounter. Because RG 8.10 applies to all specific licensees, it is the most directly comparable to the DOE IG. Some topics not covered specifically in RG 8.10 are presented in RG 8.8; however, some material in the DOE IG is not specifically dealt with in either NRC RG. Although RG 8.8 applies specifically to light-water reactor nuclear power stations, the ALARA principles described in it are not exclusive to that type of facility. Section IV of Implementation Guide G-10 CFR Part 835/B2 provides ìthe basic guidelines for conducting an operational ALARA program.î It lists 11 "Öëessential elementsí that shall be incorporated into an acceptable occupational ALARA program.î There are parallels to this guidance in NRC RGs 8.8 and 8.10. Table 18 lists these to the extent that comparable concepts can be identified. While a direct comparison of the DOE and NRC guidance documents is somewhat limited by the considerable difference in styles in which they are written, the 11 essential elements are as follows. The information in parentheses indicates the primary source of the requirements: DOE's "Radiological Control Manual" (RCM), with the associated numbers denoting the article numbers, and 10 CFR Part 835. 1. Management Commitment: Establish commitment and participation of all line management and all levels of the work force to the ALARA policy (RCM 121);

36

Per e-mail from Jeanie Polehn, DOE-RU, 3/16/00.

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2. Assignment of Responsibilities: Assign specific responsibilities to line management and workers involved in implementing the ALARA program; 3. Administrative Control Levels (RCM 211.2 and 211.4): Establish a challenging level of administrative control that is more restrictive than the DOE RCM Administrative Control Level of 2,000 mrem per year; 4. Radiological Performance Goals (RCM 121.9, 132.1 and 133): Establish, approve, and review quarterly a program of radiological performance goals; 5. ALARA Training: Require the attendance of managers and workers involved with any aspect of radiological operations (RCM 651-654); 6. Plans and Procedures: Set up formal plans and procedures to attain and maintain occupational exposures ALARA (10 CFR 835.101(c)); 7. Internal Audits/Assessments: Conduct comprehensive internal reviews, audits, and evaluations periodically and report the results to the highest levels of site management (10 CFR 835.102); 8. Optimization Methodology: Use methods of optimization to assure that occupational exposure is maintained ALARA when developing and justifying the facility design and physical controls during the design of new facilities or major modification of old facilities (10 CFR 835.1002(a)); 9. Radiological Design Review: Ensure the integration of appropriate methods and considerations during the design phase to maintain occupational exposures ALARA during subsequent construction, modification, and operation of the equipment or facility (10 CFR 835.1001(a)); 10. Radiological Work/Experiment Planning: Integrate measures and controls to maintain occupational exposures ALARA for specific operations and experiments; and 11. Records: Maintain documents that demonstrate compliance and that the program is adequately carried out (10 CFR 835.704(b) and RCM 711-713). 3.4.2.6. RADIATION PROTECTION ASPECTS FROM THE NRC STANDARD REVIEW PLAN

NUREG-1702, ìStandard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for the Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization (TWRS-P) Project,î (Main Reference 15) provides guidance for the review and evaluation of health, safety, and environmental protection in applications for licenses to possess and use special nuclear material (SNM) during the remediation of radioactive tank waste at Hanford. The guidance is also applicable to the review and evaluation of proposed amendments and license renewal applications. Specific filing requirements for license applications and for issuance of such licenses are in 10 CFR Part 70, "Domestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material."

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Table 18: Comparison of DOE Implementation Guide G-10 CFR Part 835/B-2 and NRC Regulatory Guide 8.10
DOE IG G-10 CFR Part 835/B-2 Essential Element (Number) Title / Narrative Description (1) Management Commitment Establish commitment and participation of all line management and all levels of the work force to the ALARA policy (RCM 121) (2) Assignment of Responsibilities Assign specific responsibilities to line management and workers involved in implementing the ALARA program (3) Administrative Control Levels Establish a challenging level of administrative control that is more restrictive than the DOE RCM Administrative Control Level of 2,000 mrem per year (4) Radiological Performance Goals Establish, approve, and review quarterly a program of radiological performance goals; (5) ALARA Training Require the attendance of managers and workers involved with any aspect of radiological operations (6) Plans and Procedures Set up formal plans and procedures to attain and maintain occupational exposures ALARA (7) Internal Audits/Assessments Conduct comprehensive internal reviews, audits, and evaluations periodically and report the results to the highest levels of site management NRC RG 8.10 or 8.8 Regulatory Position37 8.10 C.1.a.

NRC Regulatory Position Description (where available) Note: most are paraphrased Plant personnel should be made aware of managementís commitment to keep occupational exposures ALARA. Program for Maintaining Station Personnel Radiation Doses ALARA.

8.8 C.1.a.

8.10 C.1.c.

Ensure well-supervised radiation protection capability with welldefined responsibilities. Organization, Personnel, and Responsibilities.

8.8 C.1.b.

No direct comparison

A similar goal is sought under 8.10.C.1.f. (Modifications to procedures/equipment/facilities should be made where they will substantially reduce exposures at a reasonable cost) and under 8.10.C.2.b. (Periodically review procedures to identify how exposures can be reduced). The DOE IG requires a radiological performance goal program, to be reviewed quarterly. RG 8.8 C.1.b(1)(a)-(e) discusses a corporate program with specific objectives and periodic review.

No direct comparison

8.10 C.1.d. 8.8 C.1.c. 8.10 C.1.e., C.1.f., C.2.b. 8.10 C.1.b.

Plant workers receive sufficient training. Discusses who should receive training, and to what extent; also retraining; minimum content. RSO should be given sufficient authority; Modifications to reduce exposures should be made; RSO & staff look for ways to reduce exposure. Periodically perform a formal audit to determine how exposure might be lowered.

37

R.G. 8.10 is listed first because it is the more general and, therefore, more directly comparable to the DOE IG.

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Table 18: Comparison of DOE Implementation Guide G-10 CFR Part 835/B-2 and NRC Regulatory Guide 8.10 (continued)
DOE IG G-10 CFR 835/B-2 Essential Element (Number) Title / Narrative Description (8) Optimization Methodology Use methods of optimization to assure that occupational exposure is maintained ALARA when developing and justifying the facility design and physical controls during the design of new facilities or major modification of old facilities (9) Radiological Design Review Ensure the integration of appropriate methods and considerations during the design phase to maintain occupational exposures ALARA during subsequent construction, modification, and operation of the equipment or facility (10) Radiological Work/Experiment Planning Integrate measures and controls to maintain occupational exposures ALARA for specific operations and experiments (11) Records Maintain documents that demonstrate compliance and that the program is adequately carried out NRC RG 8.10 or 8.8 Regulatory Position37

NRC Regulatory Position Description (where available) Note: most are paraphrased

No direct comparison

The DOE IG indicates optimization methodology shall be used per 10 CFR 835.1002(a) and refers to a formally documented optimization methodology for certain sites. No identical NRC requirement. Modifications to reduce exposures should be made.

8.10 C.1.f.

8.8 C.1.d

Review of New or Modified Designs and Equipment Selection.

8.8.C.3.a. & b.

The DOE IG specifies a formal ALARA review should be carried out, while the NRC RG 8.8. C.3.a. & b. provide similar guidance, though less prescriptive.

No direct comparison

RG 8.8 C.3 discusses recordkeeping within a radiation protection program, but is less prescriptive than the DOE IG.

The purposes of the SRP are to: 1. Ensure the quality and uniformity of staff reviews. 2. Present a well-defined base from which to evaluate proposed changes in the scope, level of detail, and acceptance criteria of reviews. 3. Serve as the basis for the review of requests by licensees for changes in their licenses. Thus, the SRP, at any point in time, can provide a basis for the review of proposed new or renewal applications and amendments to existing licenses, as well as modifications to the SRP resulting from new NRC requirements and licensee initiatives.

37

R.G. 8.10 is listed first because it is the more general and, therefore, more directly comparable to the DOE IG .

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The responsibility of the staff in review of license application, renewal application, or license amendment for a TWRS-P facility is to determine that: 1. There is reasonable assurance that the facility can and will be operated in a manner that will not be inimical to the common defense and security. 2. The facility will provide reasonable protection of the health and safety of workers, the public, and the environment. To carry out this responsibility, the staff: 1. Evaluates information provided by an applicant. 2. Determines, through independent assessments, that the applicant has demonstrated a reasonable safety program that is in accordance with regulatory requirements. To facilitate carrying out this responsibility, the SRP clearly states and identifies those standards, criteria, and bases that the staff should use in reaching licensing decisions. Although 10 CFR Part 70, as revised38, does not specifically include a TWRS-P facility in its list of activities requiring the inclusion of requirements found in Subpart H of 10 CFR Part 70, the staff believes that a TWRS-P facility is an activity that could significantly affect public health and safety and, therefore, plans to invoke the requirements found in Subpart H for this type of facility. As such, NRC requirements in 10 CFR Part 70, as revised, require that an applicant submit a complete description of the safety program for the possession and use of SNM to show how compliance with the applicable requirements will be accomplished. The requirements in 10 CFR Part 70 specify, in general terms, the information to be supplied in a Safety Program Description. The specific information to be submitted by an applicant and evaluated by staff is identified in the SRP. A license application should contain a Safety Program Description that addresses all the topics in the ìTable of Contentsî of the SRP. The applicantís, or licenseeís, Radiation Safety Program and Radiation Safety Design Features are covered in Chapters 4.1 and 4.2 of NUREG-1702, respectively. These chapters contain specific information concerning what constitutes an acceptable Radiation Protection Program, from the perspective of the NRC. The 11 essential elements of the DOE G-10 CFR Part 835/B2, shown in Table 18, are not expressly cited in the SRP; however, the guidance contains provisions for the review of ALARA considerations (at the design stage, during operations, and for modifications), organizational relationships and personnel qualifications, and training. These are also covered in both the DOE IG and the NRC RGs. The remaining items in Table 3.4.2.4 would all be considered parts of a good radiation protection program, as evidenced by the similarities to guidance found in the NRC RGs 8.8 and 8.10. These items would not be explicitly covered by the SRP-mandated review, but this should not be considered as a justification for eliminating any existing elements of the RPP and, therefore, possibly reducing its effectiveness.

38

This reference is to the draft revision to 10 CFR Part 70, subject to on-going dialogue. The SRP uses sidebars to indicate additional references to the draft version of 10 CFR Part 70.

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3.4.2.7.

SUMMARY

This summary has provided a discussion of the RPP for the Tank Waste Remediation SystemPrivatization Project, concentrating on differences in regulatory requirements and guidance of DOE and the NRC. At the time this summary was being prepared, the contractor had not yet produced an acceptable version of the RPP for Design and Limited Construction; therefore, this discussion has focused on Rev. 3, the RPP for Design. It was noted that the NRC requires the development, documentation, and implementation of an RPP by its licensees (10 CFR 20.1101(a)), but it does not require the licensee to submit this document for approval by the Agency and does not give it the direct authority to require modifications of the RPP. By way of contrast, the regulations in 10 CFR 835.101 are very prescriptive with respect to the requirement for an RPP. While both agencies require the implementation of an RPP, the DOE includes more stringent requirements such as approval by DOE, authority of DOE to direct or make modifications to an RPP, and the requirement that the RPP must address each requirement in 10 CFR Part 835. This summary also included comparisons of the guidance documents issued by the two agencies that are intended to assist the regulated entities in understanding and complying with its regulations (10 CFR Parts 20 and 835). As noted in Section 3.4.2.5, direct comparison of the DOE and NRC guidance documents is somewhat limited by the difference in styles in which they are written, as well as the difference in orientation (e.g., types of facilities, regulatory basis) and emphasis (as shown in Table 18). The DOE IG G-10 CFR Part 835/B2 lists 11 ìessential elementsî that are required for an acceptable occupational ALARA program. The NRC RGs are not so specific. The TWRS-P facility would be subject to review in accordance with the NRCís SRP, NUREG1702, if there were a transition of regulatory authority from DOE to the NRC. Section 3.4.2.6 indicates how the SRP would relate to the contractorís RPP. It was stated there that the SRP, at any point in time, can provide a basis for the review of proposed new or renewal applications, and amendments to existing licenses, as well as modifications to the SRP resulting from new NRC requirements and licensee initiatives. This does not necessarily imply that an existing facility would be required to make modifications as transition to NRC regulatory authority takes place. However, if regulated by the NRC, future modifications and license renewal applications would likely be reviewed using the SRP.

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3.0 AREAS OF REVIEW
3.5 CRITICALITY SAFETY
3.5.1 CRITICALITY SAFETY PROGRAM DOCUMENT AND REQUIREMENTS

The umbrella Nuclear Criticality Safety program document, ìCriticality Safety Program for the River Protection ProjectñWaste Treatment Plant, PL-W375-NS00001, Revision 1" provides an overall description of the Nuclear Criticality Safety program. The intent of this program document is to implement the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Top-Level requirement in DOE/RL-96-0006: ìThe facility shall be designed and operated in a manner that prevents nuclear criticality.î While the document adheres to good practices generally accepted in the criticality safety community as well as the guidance provided by American National Standard Institute/American Nuclear Society (ANSI/ANS) 8.1,î Nuclear Criticality Safety in Operations with Fissionable Materials outside Reactors,î and ANSI/ANS-8.19, ìAdministrative Practices for Nuclear Criticality Safety,î it lacks sufficient detail with respect to implementation of the Nuclear Criticality Safety Program and the controls to be used at the proposed new waste treatment facility. There is a commitment to adhere to the Double Contingency Principle. Section 5.1 of PL-W375-NS00001states, ìProcess designs shall incorporate sufficient factors of safety to require at least two unlikely, independent, and concurrent changes in process conditions before a criticality accident is possible.î The document goes on to say that Double Contingency protection can be provided by either the control of two independent process parameters (which is the preferred approach, when practical, to prevent common-mode failure) OR by a system of multiple controls on a single parameter. Depending on the specifics of the situation, multiple controls on a single parameter may not be sufficient to demonstrate double contingency to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). Appendix 1 identifies work which will need to be completed to resolve open technical issues. These issues include parametric studies of keff for worst case waste mixtures as opposed to the Pu-water mixture discussed in the Initial Safety Analysis Report, study fissile material overconcentration accidents in the melter, study criticality parameters for the low activity waste process train, study solids settling in process vessels, and study boiling and drying-out of waste due to excess temperature. The River Protection Project-Waste Treatment Plant (RPP-WTP) has committed to initiate these activities prior to the submittal of the Preliminary Safety Analysis Report and complete these activities prior to submission of the Final Safety Analysis Report. However, some of these technical issues may be difficult to resolve. It is essential to identify any technical issues that could potentially delay start-up of the facility as early in the process as possible to allow for adequate time to study and resolve such issues. 3.5.2 INTERIM CRITICALITY SAFETY EVALUATIONS

Based on the interim criticality evaluations submitted, BNFL Inc. developed its nuclear criticality safety program by bounding keff for nearly dry waste solids with a maximum plutonium content. This approach relies upon providing controls on the feed and analyzing the process to ensure that no normal operations or process upsets could result in formation of a critical mass. As in the Criticality Safety Program document, double contingency is required but is permitted by either the control of two independent process parameters (which is the preferred approach, 93 NUREG-1747

when practical, to prevent common-mode failure) OR by a system of multiple controls on a single parameter. As indicated above, multiple controls on a single parameter may not be sufficient to demonstrate double contingency to the NRC. Additionally, there is not sufficient detail to determine how double contingency will be applied to the processes nor is it clear that all potential concentration mechanisms (e.g. preferential settling of specific isotopes) have been evaluated. In the evaluations reviewed, BNFL Inc. has relied upon concentration limits for special nuclear material as provided for in their contract with DOE as an upper boundary for criticality analyses, despite the fact that there are waste forms within the Hanford tank waste that may be above those limits. The criticality values are from the Carter Handbook that is widely used in the DOE complex. However, these have not undergone rigorous validation. The NRC uses ANSI/ANS 8.1 and other ANS standards that have undergone rigorous validation as detailed in Regulatory Guide 3.71. Also, BNFL Inc. has committed to only one criticality safety alarm in each area requiring alarms which is inconsistent with 10 CFR Part 70 requirements which requires that ìcoverage of all areas shall be provided by two detectors.î This is one situation where the NRC guidance is more restrictive than the ANSI standard which allows coverage by one detector. There are processes or potential processes and operations that could occur at the facility that have not been discussed in any criticality safety evaluations such as solvent extraction and precipitation of solids which could have significant safety concerns, especially with the uncertainties in the waste stream. 3.5.3 UNCERTAINTIES AND UNRESOLVED NUCLEAR CRITICALITY SAFETY ISSUES

In addition to the unresolved technical issues that are identified in the nuclear criticality safety (NCS) program document, there are additional technical items identified in the limited number of criticality safety evaluations submitted to the NRC, such as studying the possibility of solids precipitation from the mixing of fissile streams, verifying the maximum density of solids and verifying the maximum fissile concentration in the glass product. A major point of concern is the large amount of uncertainty in the waste tank feed material. It seems extremely difficult to determine the ìworst-case ì conditions for analysis when there is so much question as to the make-up of the input waste stream. Especially when considering the possibility of build-up on resin (such as ion exchange) filters and processes like solvent extraction and precipitation where fissile material could reach potentially high concentrations, great variability in the input waste stream could lead to large differences in process conditions. 3.5.4 CONFORMANCE WITH NRC REGULATIONS

Based on the criticality safety program document and criticality safety analyses provided, more information would be required to determine the overall conformance with NRC regulations. With the exception of the issues addressed above involving meeting the double contingency principle and the issue of dual coverage with respect to criticality alarms (this would require either an exemption or facility changes should the NRC ever assume regulatory authority), it is not possible to determine the state of conformance with NRC regulations for the proposed new vitrification facility. Much more detail about the design of the facility and processes would be required by the NRC to make this assessment. Use of the ANSI/ANS 8.1 subcritical limits is endorsed by the NRC as stated in Regulatory Guide 3.71 and is preferable the approach NUREG-1747 94

chosen by BNFL Inc. to use safe concentration limits as established by the Carter Handbook. Additionally, good practices like using engineered controls like safe geometry process vessels and defense-in-depth should be practiced. Based on the information provided, conformance with NRC regulations would certainly be possible, especially if NRC regulations were considered in the early stages of design of the facility and processes. More detail about implementation of the criticality program and specifics with regard to items that would be relied upon for criticality safety and risk estimates would be required to fully assess the state of safety and compliance with respect to applicable NRC criticality safety regulations.

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3.0 AREAS OF REVIEW
3.6 PROCESS AND CHEMICAL SAFETY
3.6.1 STANDARDS APPROVAL PACKAGE (SAFETY REQUIREMENTS DOCUMENT AND HAZARDS ANALYSIS REPORT) AND INITIAL SAFETY ANALYSIS REPORT

The BNFL Inc. Safety Requirements Document (SRD) and Hazards Analysis Report (HAR) arrived in September 1997 and identified numerous process and chemical safety scenarios (many with both radiological and chemical consequences) using a preliminary hazard and operability (HAZOP) method. The Contractor used reviewers with expertise in similar types of plants and processes to bridge areas of incomplete information because the preliminary design was still undergoing development and, as such, many open areas existed. The HAZOP used an American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) risk matrix (a binning approach) to assist with identifying those potential scenarios that posed a sufficient risk (i.e., consideration of both frequency and consequence) to warrant quantitative risk analysis and the consideration of safety controls. In general, the list included many entries of a benign nature that obscured some of the more hazardous conditions at the proposed facility. In addition, the expert review panel inadvertently included the effects of mitigation in some of their assessments, and, consequently, the frequency and consequence bins for some events were underestimated. Thus, potential items relied on for safety (IROFS) were overlooked. From these reviews, the following issues were identified in the process and chemical safety area: 1. Incomplete process and hazard descriptions. 2. Inconsistency of unmitigated and mitigated analyses in the HAR and fault schedules. 3. Emphasis on active instead of passive mitigation and control. 4. Little information on the chemical storage areas. 5. No consideration of chemical effects due to ammonia, several resin reactions, and nitrogen oxides. 6. Inconsistencies in hazards identification, structures, systems, and components (SSC) categorization, and design classes. 7. Relative lack of quantification. 8. Presence of large tanks and inventories. 9. Limited consideration of offnormal and unanticipated events, and interactions. The actual comments may be found in the SRD/HAR comment transmittal letter (see Footnote 18 on page 39). The Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) was dated January 12, 1998. The ISAR represented a more detailed design as compared to the SRD/HAR package. The ISAR advanced the design and presented quantitative analyses on several process and chemical safety scenarios, 97 NUREG-1747

including tank failures, crystalline silicotitanate powder dispersion, ion exchange resin fires, glass spill, anhydrous ammonia leaks, and a nitric acid spill. However, the level of the design corresponded to a preliminary conceptual to adequately address many of the concerns and issues. Furthermore, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staffís analyses indicated the input values and methods used appeared to be nonrepresentative and could underestimate the potential consequences. For example, the temperature for the vapor calculations and the chemical inventories (particularly nitric acid) at risk appeared to be low. The following comments and issues were raised in the process and chemical safety arena as a result of the ISAR review: 1. Lack of detailed process information and chemical interaction data. 2. Lack of conservatism. 3. Inconsistency of unmitigated and mitigated analyses. 4. Emphasis on active instead of passive mitigation and control. 5. Little information on chemical storage areas. 6. No IROFSís identified for chemical concerns. 7. Inconsistencies in hazards identification, SSC categorization, and design classes. 8. Relative lack of quantification. 9. Presence of large tanks and inventories. 10. Limited consideration of offnormal and unanticipated events, and interactions. The actual comments may be found in the ISAR comment transmittal letter (see Footnote 19 on page 40). 3.6.2 DESIGN SAFETY FEATURES SUBMITTAL

The BNFL Inc. Design Safety Features (DSF) submittal consisted of two parts. Part 1 discussed general features used to address general hazards and concerns. In essence, this part presented the practical interpretation of the codes and standards from the SRD. ìStandardî chemical process industry approaches would be used unless radiological limits were shown to be exceeded. Part 2 discussed and analyzed ten examples in more detail, including loss of confinement events with both radiological and chemical consequences. The following comments and questions were raised in the process and chemical safety arena from the DSF review: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Lack of detailed process information and chemical interaction data. Lack of conservatism and consideration of uncertainties. Consideration of corrosion and materials. Juxtaposition of mitigated and unmitigated analyses. Inconsistencies in the analyses.

The actual comments may be found in the DSF comment transmittal letter (see Footnote 34 on page 64). The DSF constituted an example of approaches for safety analyses and did not represent an actual design or safety document.

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3.6.3

RELATED ACTIVITIES AND TOPICAL MEETINGS

The DSF submittal and related subjects were discussed at the Topical Meeting in Richland on March 27, 1999. A follow-up item from the meeting was the U.S. Department of Energy/Regulatory Unit (DOE/RU) recommendation that the Contractor develop an acceptable approach to the treatment of chemical hazards that is consistent with the treatment of radiological hazards, as required by the contract. During a teleconference call, the Contractor stated its intent to use standard commercial practice and process industry standards for chemical safety. It was also indicated that a subcontractor would completely construct the cold chemical storage area(s). The Contractor subsequently submitted a position paper to the RU proposing to relax some of the SRD criteria that would have required the quantitative evaluation of essentially all chemicals at the proposed facility in order to achieve cost savings. The RU did not accept that position39. The Contractor maintained that there were essentially no IROFSs related to chemical safety. The April 2000 Topical Meeting also discussed chemical safety. This meeting generated many issues which are discussed in the next section. Summarizing, the Contractor stated they were following the standard, chemical process industry approach to design and safety, and from their analyses for TWRS-P, this could correspond to worker risk levels of circa 1E-3/yr. It was noted by NRC staff present at the meeting that this could be two orders of magnitude greater than the estimated worker radiological risk at the proposed facility. DOE appeared to be cognizant of the disparity. However, because the DOE/RU regulates by the contract using the approved SRD and the SRD incorporates chemical process industry standards, the RU appeared to be willing to acquiesce to a much higher level of risk from chemical events than from radioactive events. 3.6.4 NRC ASSESSMENT OF THE PRESENT STATUS

The NRC staff developed a point paper on the process safety issues associated with the proposed facility (see Section 3.3 of Chapter 3.0 and Chapter 7.0, Main References 18 and 19). This paper indicated IROFS would likely be needed to reduce the chemical risks to levels commensurate with NRC regulations in 10 CFR Part 70 and to meet the SRP guidance. For example, controls would be needed to maintain plant habitability during potential releases of volatile species (e.g., NOx and ammonia). Other issues from the point paper, the Topical Meeting, and the Topical Meeting documentation include the following general comments and observations: 1. Level of Detail in the Analysis: Several times in the analyses and at the April 2000 Topical Meeting, it was stated that a robust design consistent with chemical industry standards would be used. However, few specific details were presented to substantiate this approach. Limited information was presented on the pneumatic transport system (for glass formers) and its potential hazards. Furthermore, it was mentioned at the Topical Meeting that piping and instrumentation drawings (P&IDs) were not available for the chemical handling area (note, however, that a limited number of process flow diagrams were included in the FFP [Firm Fixed Price] submittal of 4/24/00). It would be

39

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M. Bullock, BNFL Inc., December 7, 1999. Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M. Bullock, BNFL Inc., December 22, 1999.

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anticipated that the Contractor would provide and use more specific information based upon actual designs and diagrams for the safety analyses. 2. Incomplete and Uneven Application of HAZOP Process: The Contractor does not appear to have conducted a complete HAZOP study of the chemical safety area. In addition, the presence of working components and mitigating controls appears to have been assumed (e.g., the static mixers and different sized connectors) for operational control purposes, which has lead to a lack of identification of potential controls for safety purposes. For example, successful operation of the inline mixers depends upon the pumping mechanisms, flowmeters, other sensors, motor-operated valve/air valves, and control systems. Inappropriate Focus on Routine Operations: The majority of the conditions focus on routine or near routine conditions - sometimes there are areas where SSCs are assumed to work but are omitted from further analysis(e.g., see the previous comment on the inline mixers). Offnormal and accident conditions are not well covered; for example, the plugging of pipes and misfeeds do not appear to have been given adequate consideration. Storage facilities such as these involve considerable operator involvement and activities, with frequent deliveries, and potential misfeeds would likely be anticipated events (e.g., potentially annually). The Contractorís proposed approach of reliance upon different types of hose connectors is likely to become a manual, administrative control because most supply trucks carry multiple connectors of different types. The relative lack of sampling and instrumentation on the chemical compositions allows these misfeeds to propagate through the facility. At least three possible misfeed combinations stand out as having potentially significant hazardous outcomes, and it would be expected that these would be analyzed and discussed in more detail in the report: a. Sugar (a white powder) is mistakenly added to the silo holding silica (also a white powder). This misfeed could double or triple the amount of sugar added to the melter, resulting in a loss of redox control and large discharges of NOx and hydrocarbons to the offgas systems. b. The full strength nitric acid is sent into the plant and contacts the ion exchange resins, resulting in a resin fire and release. c. The concentrated nitric acid is added to the concentrated caustic tank - or vice versa. This would likely overheat the tank contents from the vigorous acid/base neutralization reactions, leading to fuming (NOx) and possibly rupture of the tank (i.e., more NOx if the nitric acid tank is involved). 4. Lack of Consideration of Improved Safety Margins: The Contractor does not appear to have considered simple controls that have the potential to cost effectively address and reduce the risk of some chemical concerns and greatly improve safety margins. For example, inline pH probes would provide immediate feedback of the presence or absence of acids and bases and could be used - in conjunction with density or conductivity measurements - to prevent the unplanned mixing of reactive chemicals.

3.

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5.

Approach of Chemical Industry Standards: The Contractor indicates the design approach is based upon chemical industry standards. However, as presented, the Contractorís approach does not appear to be consistent with AIChE guidelines for chemical process safety, which generally follow an as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) like approach for chemicals. For example, the AIChE/Center for Chemical Process Safety (CCPS) Guidelines for Engineering Design for Process Safety (New York, 1993) discusses in detail inherently safer plants for continuing the improvement of the good safety record of the chemical and petrochemical industries (see Chapter 2, for example). These same guidelines emphasize multiple safety layers (redundancy). Neither ìinherently saferî nor ìmultiple safety layersî are evident in the proposed design. Often, the process industry uses a risk matrix that identifies (either qualitatively or quantitatively) the consequences and frequencies of potential events, with the identification of controls to reduce risk as appropriate. This was actually initiated by the Contractor in the original HAR (in 1997), but does not appear to have been pursued further. In addition, best handling practices from the chemical industry, which generally emphasize precautions and redundancy (e.g., for nitric acid), do not appear to have been consulted. Potential High Level of Risk: As presented, the proposed approach has a potential, chemical/process risk level two or more orders of magnitude greater than the radiological risk and one order of magnitude greater than standard worker risk. This appears excessively high. For example, there exists a potential for a multiple fatality accident with a frequency of circa 1E-3/yr from the failure of the LAW off-gas line during a seismic event. This is a potentially significant change from the HAR which dismissed this type of accident as ìincredibleî (i.e., implied to be less than 1E-6/yr). Potential Inconsistency with NRC Draft Regulations and Guidance: The NRC has issued a standard review plan (SRP) for tank waste remediation system (TWRS) facilities as NUREG-1702, in final form. This identifies a target frequency of 1E-5/yr for accidents of high consequences, and a target frequency range of 1E-2/yr to 1E-5/yr for accidents with intermediate consequences. The application of ALARA (for chemical in addition to radiological events) is implied. Draft NUREG-1520, ìStandard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for a Fuel Cycle Facility,î and draft NUREG-1701, ìStandard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for the Atomic Vapor Laser Isotope (AVLIS) Facility,î have similar guidance. The revision of 10 CFR Part 70 states that accidents with potential high consequences should be rendered highly unlikely by the application of controls (i.e., IROFS), while accidents with potential intermediate consequences should be reduced to unlikely frequencies by the application of controls. Again, the application of ALARA is implied for both radiological and chemical scenarios. High consequences and intermediate consequences refer to potential accidents involving radioactive materials, chemicals evolved by radioactive materials, and chemicals that impact the safe handling of radioactive materials. It would appear that the Contractors handling of some of these potential accidents at a TWRSPrivatization (TWRS-P) facility may not be consistent with the NRC approach. As an example, the release mentioned in Comment #6 would be categorized as a high consequence event and controls would be required to reduce its likelihood if the facility were licensed by NRC.

6.

7.

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8.

Specific Chemical Characteristics: Specific characteristics of certain chemicals and their associated potential hazards do not appear to have been considered. Chemical compatibility, commingling, storage, handling and other potentially hazardous issues need to be addressed more completely. As cited below, appropriately conservative scenarios and their preventative measures need further assessment: a. Interactions between concentrated nitric acid and concentrated sodium hydroxide. b. Process safety and control - example in report of inadvertent transfer of concentrated nitric acid into cesium ion exchange columns. c. Sucrose-related dust explosions. d. Ammonia release. e. NOx emissions from the LAW melter offgas treatment system. f. Seismic analysis results. g. Design basis event definition. h. Construction, laboratory, and maintenance chemicals. i. Start-up simulants. In addition, industry has codes and practices for handling many of these chemicals which would be expected to influence the design of chemical handling areas; for example: Piping - American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) B31.3 Category M Fluid Service. Acid Storage - ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code (B&PVC) Section VIII. Material - ìMaterials of Construction for Nitric Acidî ed. by Monitz and Pollock (National Association of Corrosion Engineers, 1986) is a good reference. Safety Instrumentation Systems (SIS) - American National Standards Institute/Instrument Society of American (ANSI/ISA) S84.01-1996 and Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers-603. US NRC, ìChemical Process Safety at Fuel Cycle Facilities,î NUREG-1601. US NRC, ìGuidance on Management Controls/Quality Assurance Requirements for Operations, Chemical Safety, and Fire Protection for Fuel Cycle Facilities,î Federal Register, Vol. 54, No. 53, March 21, 1989, pages 11590-11598.

9. Management Measures and Corrosion: It is not clear if the Contractor has adequately considered management measures (including surveillance and maintenance), particularly for chronic effects such as corrosion/erosion. The Contractor stated in the April 2000 NUREG-1747 102

Topical Meeting documentation that standard process industry approaches will be followed. However, the AIChE ìGuidelinesî (referenced previously; page 162 et seq) note that corrosion is a major problem in the process industries, with 31 percent of failures due to general corrosion, 24 percent due to stress corrosion cracking, and 10 percent due to pitting. Thus, the stated, process industry-like approach is unlikely to avoid corrosion failures, and it would seem that the Mechanical Integrity (MI) (ref: 2.3.2.8, page 6) is a little bit sketchy. A complete MI covers more than just procedures, maintenance, quality assurance and training. The contractor might want to review the 29 CFR 1910.119 (j) to see what other elements need to be included in the MI program. 10. Environmental Conditions: The analyses for the Topical Meeting used various environmental conditions in some of the considerations. It is not clear if these are adequately representative of the Hanford site. For example, the nitric acid dispersion calculations use a temperature of 95oF, while the building designs in the related 20-month FFP submittal use 113oF (and a -23oF for the minimum) for equipment exposed to the weather. It is not even clear if the 113oF adequately represents the solar effect at the Hanford site. However, the use of the lower temperature (95oF) is likely to underestimate chemical evaporation rates and effects. 11. Inline Mixers: It is unusual to use inline mixing for dilution and potential mixing reactions with significant enthalpies and in a batch mode (e.g., acid-base interactions). Also, inline mixers place considerable emphasis upon the successful operation of the pumping mechanisms, flowmeters, other sensors, MOV/air valves, and control systems for adequate metering and mixing. These other systems do not appear to have been adequately identified, considered, and analyzed by the Contractor. 12. Reliance upon Administrative Controls: The design approach appears to rely extensively on operator actions to prevent or mitigate the effects of chemical hazards. Examples include the sequential dilutions and the evacuation procedures. The normally accepted practice and NRC regulatory emphasis are minimization of the reliance upon administrative controls. 13. Distributed Control System (DCS): The DCS is used to control the filling of numerous tanks and other important functions such as mixing. Conceivably, the DCS can be considered as part of a safety system (safety instrumented system - SIS). It would seem that ANSI/ISA S84.01-1996 ìApplication of Safety Instrumented Systems for the Process Industries,î IEEE-603, or another standard for safety system controls should be considered as applicable to the design of the chemical storage areas. 14. Delivery Schedule and Traffic: It was mentioned during the Topical Meeting that deliveries would be almost continuous during the daylight shift (almost a tank truck every hour). From the presentation, offloading would occur at least 75 percent of the dayshift time for the chemical storage area near the Pretreatment Building and at least 90 percent of the time for the glass formers storage facility. It is not clear if the safety analyses and control strategies have adequately evaluated the potential impact from these frequent deliveries, such as the increased frequencies and inventories for spills and major accidents, and the necessary design and management measures. For example, a tank truck might contain 5,000 gallons of nitric acid in addition to the plantís inventory, and part of the delivery time would be outside the diked areas. This is not currently considered. A truck accident does not appear to have been analyzed. Standard design features for offloading reactive chemicals such as 103 NUREG-1747

diked/capture basins and an enclosure with water sprays do not appear to be included in the design. It would be anticipated that a future revision will address these oversights. The staff has also developed specific comments on the chemical safety approach at the proposed facility based upon the April 2000 Topical meeting and its supporting documentation. Document citations refer to: Department of Energy (U.S.) (DOE). RTP-W375-SA-00010, Rev. A, ìWaste Treatment Plant Chemical Hazards,î Draft Report Review Comments by Janet Ledbetter Ferrill and Jim Scott/Div. 01. DOE: Richland, Washington. April 19, 2000. The specific comments and observations are as follows: 15. Adequacy of Chemical-Only Controls in a Radiochemical Facility: According to Section 2. on ìChemical Hazard Methodology,î the "chemical-only " control strategies and standards are based on best industry practice and not on calculated risk. It is not clear if any particular industry or other vitrification facility has been used as precedence for determining these practices. As noted in the text, DOE Regulatory Guide 1.78 for control room habitability during a hazardous chemical release was published 26 years ago (June 1974) and the NUREGs are nuclear based. Other current practice is to prepare Risk Management Program (RMP) per U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidance. It would be anticipated that control strategies would have to address some radiological concerns at the plant caused by chemicals such as plumes/habitability, fires, and misfeeds based upon some form of integrated safety analysis and perception issues. A high-profile radiochemical facility like TWRS-P would be unlikely to accept the accident risk of the process industries even in its chemical handling areas. 16. Properties and Concerns of Ammonia: Ammonia is the number one chemical involved in accidents reported under the EPAís risk management program for high risk industries. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) immediate danger to life and health (IDLH) and Emergency Response Planning Guideline-3 (ERPG) values for ammonia are 300 ppm and 1000 ppm, respectively. In Section 3.3 of the report (page 23) it is stated that 43 lb/hr of ammonia will be going to the selective catalytic reduction unit for NOx abatement. A break in the ammonia supply line to NOx abatement system could, therefore, result in a release of around 16.5 cfm of ammonia gas (at room temperature), and would require about 55,000 cfm of air to adequately dilute the ammonia to below the IDLH value of 300 ppm. This accident scenario, which could constitute a significant toxicological hazard to the facility worker, has not been considered in the Waste Treatment Plant Chemical Hazards report. 17. Properties and Concerns of Cerium (IV) Nitrate: This chemical arrives as a liquid and is extremely corrosive to stainless steels (it chemically machines the surfaces at rates approaching several mils per hour). It is also a strong oxidizer of organic materials. It is not clear if the Contractor has considered all of these properties, particularly the impact of residual concentrations of cerium (IV) as it is transferred through stainless steel piping to waste management. Also, the means for introducing the cerium (IV) solution into the cell area is not clearly explained, and temporary connections may be necessary.

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18. Properties and Concerns of Permanganate: It is not clear if the Contractor appreciates the properties of this chemical. In particular, all permanganate solutions decompose at slow but significant rates, and leave a fine coating of manganese dioxide that is difficult to remove. Permanganate solutions can violently react with organic materials and accelerate the aging and embrittlement of elastomers and seals (e.g., in pumps and seals). 19. Properties of Peroxide: The Contractor recognizes peroxide as a strong oxidizer. However, explosive catalytic decomposition can occur if typical peroxide concentrations (30-50 vol%) are introduced to surfaces or solutions containing transition metals (e.g., rust, iron, nickel, manganese). Industrial experience has shown this to be capable of rupturing pipes. Residual concentrations will also attack and embrittle elastomers and seals (e.g., in pump areas). The means for introducing the peroxide solution into the cell area is not clearly explained, and temporary connections may be necessary. 20. Carbon Dioxide: The proposed facility would use large quantities of carbon dioxide (for surface decontamination), and has a relatively large tank containing liquid CO2. However, potential incidents involving this material, such as asphyxiation, do not appear to have been seriously considered in the analyses. It would seem that CO2 or breathing air monitors of some type might be needed and could be identified as safety controls. 21. Concerns about Silica & Zircon Sand: There are several inconsistencies with regards to the ìAcute Toxicî and ìChronic Toxicî data for Silica and Zircon Sand, as shown in Tables 4 and 8 of the document. Table 4 a) Silica acute and chronic toxic data needs to be the same as that of zircon sand as presented in Table 8. The rationale is that it is a known significant health hazard per NIOSH and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). b) Zircon sand acute and chronic toxic data is listed as NA in Table 4. This needs to be replaced with the data presented in Table 8 for zircon sand. Table 8 a) Silica acute toxic data needs to read same as that for zircon sand. 22. Concerns about a 20,000 Gallon Leak of 12.2 M Nitric Acid or 19 M Sodium Hydroxide: Table 1 of the Waste Treatment Plant Chemical Hazards report states that there will be 20,000 gallons each of concentrated nitric acid (12.2 M) and sodium hydroxide (19 M) on site. Given that both chemicals are hazardous and very reactive, the report needs to discuss in detail: (I) the rationale for using these very large onsite inventories in the proposed BNFL Inc. design, and (II) the emergency plans for a 20,000 gallon leak of either of these chemicals due to a leak in the discharge piping for these chemicals. Prudent design in accordance with AIChE guidance (essentially a chemical version of the ALARA principle) would dictate that provisions should be made to promptly empty the contents of the tank into temporary holding vessels and, as far as possible, the piping should be designed to eliminate the possibility of a large leak, for example, by using a top entering 105 NUREG-1747

tank discharge route and eliminating the bottom discharge from the tank as depicted in the Figure in Appendix A. Other process industry standards (AIChE, American Petroleum Institute, ANSI) would likely require vacuum and over-pressure protection, venting, NOx abatement on the vent(s), and management measures (coding and inspections). These standards would likely apply to other tanks in the facility as well. 23. Ambiguities in the Nitric Acid Scenario: There are inconsistencies and ambiguities. For modeling the nitric acid spill, a 5,000 gallon quantity of 12.2 M nitric acid is used. However, Table 1 cites up to 20,000 gallons present onsite and only one tank is identified. The basis for the selection of the worst case temperature of 95oF and meteorological conditions for dispersion of 1m/s is not stated. Other points of needed clarification include the EPICODE input data and other model parameters selected for the equation on page 43, including the partial vapor pressure of nitric acid at a weight percent of 61.1 percent and at 95oF. Per the last sentence, paragraph 5, page 43 - "The partial pressure of nitric acid only must be used in the above equation, or the source term will be overestimated." It is not clear if this overestimation is stipulated in or caused by the use of EPICODE. 24. Model Selection, Validation, and Comparisons: No copy of EPICODE (commercially available) was supplied to verify calculations for modeling worst-case scenario. There was insufficient model input data provided in the report to confirm or compare the EPICODE model results using a similar model, ARCHIE, which is a program initially developed in 1989 and available on the EPA public domain website. This program uses hydrazine instead of water as the reference liquid. It would be beneficial to include the rationale for using the EPICODE model instead of or in addition to one of the other EPA chemical release programs such as ALOHA, SLAB, ARCHIE or TSCREEN for various release scenarios. For example, EPICODE is a modeling and simulation emergency release program acceptable to DOE and EPA; ARCHIE also considers fire and explosion hazards, which are not fully presented in this report. It is not clear that the Gaussian dispersion formulas used to calculate the dispersed volatilized chemical concentration downwind from the spill are a better representation for this particular site and chemical (nitric acid). Some model references reviewed include: a. ALOHA and ARCHIE: A Comparison, Mary Evans, Report No. HAZMAT 93-2, April 1993, Modeling and Simulation Studies Branch, Hazardous Materials Response and Assessment Division, Office of Ocean Resources Conservation and Assessment, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Seattle, Washington 98115. b. ARCHIE Model, U.S. EPA Region 7 Website. c. Atmospheric Dispersion Modeling Resources, Second Edition, Emergency Management Advisory Committee, Subcommittee on Consequence Assessment and Protective Action, U.S. DOE. March 1995. 25. Rationale for Only Analyzing Nitric Acid Spills: Nitric acid is the only chemical modeled in an emergency release scenario. It would seem that other chemicals, such as sodium hydroxide and ammonia, might also pose concerns. It would be helpful to have the basis stated for concluding that 12.2 M nitric acid was determined to be the only chemical with appreciable volatility.

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26. Heat Tracing of Nitric Acid Equipment and Lines: All the tanks/associated piping in the Process Description section (3.1.1 through 3.1.5), except the 12.2 M nitric acid tank, have heat tracing and insulation for freeze protection. Some basis would be anticipated to support this. 27. Nitric Acid Coaxial Piping - (Ref: 3.1.1, page 8): The report states that ìpiping outside the berm will be coaxial pipingî to protect personnel from being exposed to nitric acid. It is advisable to look at the pressure side of acid piping inside the berm to ensure that no personnel will be exposed to the acid accidentally. Sometimes the piping inside the berm may be close enough to personnel outside the berm to present a potential hazard in the event of an acid leak. 28. Completeness of Interaction Matrix: The matrix of possible interactions of between different chemicals (page 29) does not include the interactions between utilities (steam and water, especially steam) and chemicals. Steam is used to provide heat to the urea unit (3.3.1, page 24) and the Cs HNO3 recovery system (pages 33-34). It may not be a bad idea to consider the possible interactions between steam and the chemicals. For the sake of completeness, the interaction matrix may be expanded to include chemicals, materials of construction, utilities, operator(s), energy source, and others (air/water/land). 29. Stack Release Concentrations: It would seem that the postulated NOx release coming out of the stack at approximately 2000-3000 ppm exceeds the 100 ppm IDLH at the stack and quite possibly at the ground. Not knowing the height of the stack, flow rate, etc., of the system, it would not be reasonable to give a rough order estimate on the ground level NOx. However, BNFL Inc. definitely needs to address this issue by modeling, surrogate testing, and also possibly looking at other similar facilities to determine the ground level concentrations and emergency response procedures. Simply cutting off the feed does not seem to be an adequate response or control strategy. 30. Pneumatic Transfer Systems for Glass Former Powders: The Contractor intends to use a dense-phase pneumatic transfer system for the transport of the glass former powders. Due to the higher operating pressures involved (typically around 50 psig), a leak in the piping, such as at a coupling or a diverter valve, can result in an intense spray of dust into the immediate environment. Furthermore, the dust from some of the powders is hazardous. For example, silica (a major ingredient of the glass formers) is carcinogenic and has an OSHA Permissable Exposure Levels (PEL) (respirable fraction) and American Council of Government and Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) threshold limit value (respirable fraction) of 100 micrograms/m3 (this is less than 0.1 ppm). Consequently, it would be anticipated that a leak scenario involving this system would be explored to ensure that worker safety is not compromised. 31. Other Pneumatic Transfer System Features: There are other design safety considerations for these systems, including the following: a. Pipe couplings and hangers need to be designed to withstand pressure surges of two to three times the normal operating pressure. Such surges are normally encountered in dense-phase pneumatic transport systems and can induce significant, hammer-like stresses. 107 NUREG-1747

b. Pneumatic transport systems are prolific generators of static electricity and the design must incorporate measures that prevent or mitigate potential accidents initiated by static charges. c. There are likely to be ASME code requirements and stamps for many of the components in the system (e.g., vessels). 32. Multiple Uses for Some Components: Some lines and components will be used to mix and/or feed different chemicals at different times. It is not clear if an adequate analysis has been performed to address the potential, inadvertent mixing of incompatible chemicals in these lines and components. For example, on different occasions, the MCCMT (Miscellaneous Cold Chemicals Mix Tank) will be used for the preparation and addition of sugar shimming solutions and decontamination chemicals (e.g., usually nitric acid based in TWRS-P - see Section 3.3.3 of the report). Since the preparation of chemicals in the MCCMT will be a manually controlled operation subject to human factors in addition to component failures, the Contractorís design may be vulnerable to the inadvertent generation of copious quantities of NOx from the unplanned mixing of these chemicals. It would be anticipated that such scenarios would be analyzed and the appropriate controls identified. As an aside, this was the reason that the addition of nitric acid to the shim tank was restricted at West Valley Demonstration Project even though the tank was vented to a venturi scrubber. 33. Diesel Fuel Concerns: Large quantities of diesel fuel will be stored and handled at the facility. It would be anticipated that there would be a discussion of the safe handling of this fuel.

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3.0 AREAS OF REVIEW
3.7 FIRE PROTECTION
3.7.1 STANDARDS APPROVAL PACKAGE (SAFETY REQUIREMENTS DOCUMENT AND HAZARDS ANALYSIS REPORT) AND INITIAL SAFETY ANALYSIS REPORT

Although there were fire protection comments generated during the Standards Approval Package (SAP) and the Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) reviews, most of these comments were concerned with clarifications or omission of details. The design had not yet progressed to a point were an actual description of fire protection systems could be developed and reviewed against our existing review criteria. From these reviews, comments and questions were raised concerning: 1. Discounting of fire in the hazard analysis due to non-conservative assumptions regarding combustible loading. 2. Failure to reference specific applicable subsections in National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Codes in the ìtailoring process.î 3. Need to determine a minimum fire resistance for fire barriers. 4. Need to designate building construction type as per NFPA 220. 5. Manual fire fighting requirements and coordination with the Hanford Fire Department. 6. Need to properly consider heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) filter fire in hazards analysis. 7. Need to commit to specific NFPA standards. The actual comments may be found in the comment transmittal letters40. Most of these concerns were resolved through the upcoming Topical and Level 1 Meetings on fire protection and the documentation provided to support those meetings. 3.7.2 TOPICAL MEETING ON FIRE PROTECTION (FEBRUARY 1999)

The first detailed information provided by BNFL on fire protection was provided in the ìTransmittal of Information for the February Topical Meeting41.î This letter was written as a response to U.S. Department of Energy/Regulatory Unit (DOE/RU) comments in their Initial
40

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, October 17, 1997. Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, February 6, 1998.
41

Edwards letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, February 09, 2000.

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Safety Evaluation Report and described elements of the Tank Waste Remediation SystemPrivatization (TWRS-P) fire safety program in more detail than was provided in the ISAR and SAP submittals. In this submittal information was provided regarding: 1. A description of the TWRS-P fire protection program. 2. TWRS-P Facility Design and Layout Configuration. 3. Life Safety Features. 4. Fire Protection System. 5. Fire Protection Personnel. 6. Fire Hazards Analysis - Methodology and Assumptions. 7. Analysis to Achieve a Safe State. 8. Seismic/Fire Interactions. 9. Applicability of Codes and Standards. 10. Fire Resistance of Fire Area Boundaries. 11. Structural Steel Fireproofing. 12. Fire Doors, Ducts, Dampers, and Penetration Seals. 13. Employment of Automatic Suppression Systems. 14. Filter Plenum Fire Protection. 15. Compliance with Standards for Flammable Gases. 16. Fire Safety Features for Mechanical/Electrical Systems Areas. 17. Baseline Needs Assessment. The information provided closed many of the concerns of both NRC and the RU. Concerns that remained unresolved or came about as result of the submittal were: 1. 2. 3. 4. Interfacing with the Hanford Fire Department and the Need for an Onsite Fire Brigade. Extent of Fireproofing of Structural Steel. Extent of Employment of Sprinkler Systems. Filter Plenum Protection.

A revised version of the February 9 submittal was submitted to the RU on March 4, 1999. This version clarified some of the responses to address RU concerns, however, it did not resolve the NRC concerns listed above. 3.7.3 LEVEL 1 MEETING ON FIRE PROTECTION (SEPTEMBER 1999)

The next meeting on fire protection involving the NRC staff was the first Level 1 Meeting held on September 29, 1999 at BNFL Inc. in Richland, Washington. In regard to interfacing with the Hanford Fire Department, no definitive decision had been made as yet. As presently planned, the TWRS-P project will use a baseline needs assessment based on the results of the Fire Hazards Analysis (FHA) which will be reconciled with the capabilities of the Hanford Fire Department (HFD). A question arose about training of facility staff in use of fire extinguishers. BNFL Inc. indicated that only selected operations people would be trained and that there was no plan at present to rely on facility personnel for fighting incipient fires. The meeting minutes specified that fire-exposed structural steel that supports a fire barrier (wall, floor, ceiling) will be fireproofed to maintain the fire-resistance integrity of the building. BNFL inc. also stated that their approach would be consistent with NFPA 220, the NRC criteria, NUREG-1747 110

although it might not be consistent with the Uniform Building Codes (UBC) (the DOE criteria). During the meeting, however, the possibility of not fire-proofing structural steel in areas of low combustible loading was also discussed. This type of approach would not meet either DOE or NRC criteria. A letter42 providing comments on the Explosive Hazards I and II topical meetings also contained a short description of the NRC criteria for building construction and expressed concern about the stated BNFL Inc position regarding fire proofing of structural steel. The use of sprinklers was discussed at length between the RU and BNFL Inc. Most of the discussion was centered around the desire of the RU (and NRC) for BNFL Inc. to establish a definitive set of criteria for use of sprinklers in a given area. BNFL Inc. replied that they would rely on the FHA and judgement because of the uniqueness of every different fire area in terms of type and distribution of combustibles, heat release rates, ventilation, etc. Some tentative guidance that BNFL Inc. provided included the following consensus reached by the project fire protection engineers: 1. C5 Areas: High potential for contamination areas having low fireloading. It was the understanding of the RU and NRC that BNFL Inc. did not want to provide sprinklers or steel fire-proofing in some C5 areas. 2. C2 Areas: Low potential for contamination areas having anticipated in-situ and transient combustibles. These areas would likely be sprinklered. 3. C3 Areas: Moderate contamination areas with varying degrees of combustible loading and safety significance. Sprinklers are expected to be used selectively in these areas with justifications provided where sprinklers are not used. This guidance, in the opinion of the RU and the NRC staff, appeared to leave too much uncertainty to alleviate the concern about sprinkler coverage. Water spray protection for filter plenums was not discussed in detail during the meeting. It was mentioned that the high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters would be canister type rather than the U.S. rectangular-type filters, and in the opinion of BNFL Inc., not as likely to burn. Also, there was discussion of providing automatic water sprays with an optical detector to signal the control valve. BNFL Inc. said that the issue was still being considered and did not wish to make a commitment. BNFL Inc. also used the meeting to back-off somewhat on their earlier commitment to provide a seismic supply and standpipe system. BNFL is considering the use of a mobile source such as a tanker truck and pumper. The RU noted that the Hanford Fire Department tanker trucks are used primarily for brush fires and are not kept filled in the winter. NRC staff expect resolution of this issue without significant interaction with BNFL Inc.

42

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, November 4, 1999.

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3.7.4

LEVEL 1 MEETING ON FIRE PROTECTION (MARCH 2000)

As of the last Level 1 Meeting in fire protection in March 2000, there were three issues in fire protection of primary interest to the RU and NRC staffs. These issues are structural classification of the process buildings, structural steel fire proofing, and protection of the final HEPA filters from the effects of fires. The RU also identified confinement system integrity as a fire protection issue. However, since this issue involves basic design of the ventilation system, NRC staff would prefer to make this issue a plant systems/radiation protection issue for the time being. In regard to the process building construction type issue, BNFL proposes a construction type which would not meet the NRC requirements for Type I construction as per NFPA 220 nor the fire resistive construction types required by a strict interpretation of the UBC. The RU has commented to BNFL Inc.43 that a justification for the selection of a nonfire resistive construction type would have to include identification and analysis of building areas with unusual or concentrated hazards, bounding fuel packages, and critical structural members whose failure due to fires could structurally undermine a significant portion of the facility. The analysis would also be expected to address any fire protection administrative controls, such as transient combustibles and vehicle access to the proximity of process buildings (e.g., control of exterior fire exposure hazards), which are relied on. The NRC stated44 to the RU that the staff was in agreement with the RU criteria for resolution of this concern. The steel fire proofing issue is related to the construction type issue. I f fire resistance of outside walls is not required, fireproofing of structural steel for these walls would not be required. In addition, BNFL Inc. wishes to avoid fireproofing of structural steel in areas of low combustible loading. The RU has commented to BNFL (Footnote 43) that the RU continues to expect that TWRS-P structural fire proofing will meet the requirement of the Uniform Building Code. The RU also expects that any type of equivalency analysis will demonstrate that there are no fire hazards that present a potential threat to structural steel integrity. The NRC stated (Footnote 44) to the RU that NRC staff was in agreement with their comments and added two additional points: 1. Lack of steel protection based on intended use would severely limit any future modifications for use of that area, and 2. Lack of fire suppression capability along with lack of steel protection in the same area makes administrative control of combustibles the only defense measure and makes the fire protection in the area a potential vulnerability that would be identified in a Fire Hazards Analysis (FHA)/Integrated Safety Analysis (ISA). BNFL Inc. stated in the fire protection level I meeting that no water sprays would employed in filter plenums based on the superior qualifications of the circular filters to be used. Both NRC and DOE fire protection criteria call for water spray protection in the final filter bank of the

43 44

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M. Bullock, BNFL Inc., May 03, 2000. Tokar, M., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, June 05, 2000.

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confinement system. At this time the RU (May 03, 2000 - Footnote 43) is requesting clarification on the BNFL Inc. position. 3.7.5 PRESENT STATUS WITH REFERENCE TO POINT PAPER

Other fire protection issues that appear to be moving toward resolution but will require more detailed information are listed below. Some, but not all, of these issues are discussed in the TWRS-P Fire Safety Point Paper45. 1. Emergency lighting - Emergency lighting was addressed in the Part b-1 deliverable and described as ìnot important to safety.î No engineering evaluations were provided to address safety significance and operating requirements for emergency lighting. 2. Fire detection and alarms - Fire detection and alarms were addressed in the Part b-1 deliverable and it was stated that they would be designed in accordance with NFPA 72. Universal coverage appears to be provided but information on the types of detectors to be placed in various areas was not provided. 3. Fire water pump design - A conceptual drawing of fire pump placement and plumbing was provided in the Part b-1 deliverable. Commitments were made to follow NFPA 20 and 24. Fire suppression demand calculation and details of pump plumbing will need to be provided. 4. Seismic water supply - No details provided as yet. A tanker truck and pumper have been initially discussed. 5. Baseline needs for manual fire fighting and coordination with Hanford Fire Department: A baseline needs assessment will be required for the Construction Authorization Request (CAR) but will need more of the plant design to be completed. Discussions have taken place with the Hanford Fire Department but a formal interface is awaiting contract resolution between DOE and the project. Based on discussion with BNFL Inc. all of these issues were expected to be resolved at the time of the CAR submittal. Other potential issues that were discussed in the Fire Safety Point Paper but appear to be resolved include: 1. 2. 3. 4. Fire area boundaries. Treatment of combustibles in FHA. Spurious actuations and circuit protection. Penetration seals.

In the Issues Close Out Topical Meeting of June 27, 2000, BNFL Inc. identified three issues in fire protection as being open issues:

45

Leach, M.N., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, March 02, 2000.

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1. Use of Automatic Sprinklers. 2. Structural Steel Fireproofing. 3. Hanford Fire Department Interface. BNFL Inc. claimed closure in the area of automatic sprinklers because of the basic consensus between the project and RU described in the meeting minutes from the March Level 1 Meeting; that is, for areas other than C5 areas, the project may omit sprinklers only with FHA justification and RU approval and a preliminary FHA will be performed on selected parts of the Pretreatment Building to demonstrate the projects philosophy on sprinkler coverage. The NRC agrees that based on the BNFL Inc. commitments, this issue may be considered closed. In regard to structural fireproofing, the project still believes that verbatim compliance with the UBC (and due to similar requirements, the NRC standard review plan) is not warranted by the hazards. The architects are preparing an equivalency evaluation for review by the RU. Based on this, the NRC would not consider the issue closed until the equivalency proposal has been reviewed and approved. Although technical interface issues were discussed with the Hanford Fire Marshal on May 10, 2000, the interface is on hold pending contract resolution between DOE and the project. The NRC would not consider this issue closed until a contract has been completed between the HFD and the project. The NRC staff considers water sprays in filter plenums to still be an open issue although this was not addressed by BNFL Inc.

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3.0 AREAS OF REVIEW
3.8 EXPLOSION PROTECTION ISSUES
3.8.1 STANDARDS APPROVAL PACKAGE (SAFETY REQUIREMENTS DOCUMENT AND HAZARDS ANALYSIS REPORT) AND INITIAL SAFETY ANALYSIS REPORT

Although there were numerous fire protection comments generated during the Standards approval Package (SAP) and the Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) reviews, most of these comments were concerned with clarifications or omission of details. The design had not yet progressed to a point were an actual description of explosion control systems could be developed and reviewed against our existing review criteria. From these reviews comments and questions were raised concerning: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Flammable Gases in waste receipt tanks. Presence of ammonium nitrates and organic vapors in melter effluents. Buildup of ammonium nitrate in offgas system ducts and filters. Capacity and reliability of passive hydrogen venting system. Monitoring of hydrogen and other flammable gases.

The actual comments may be found in the comment transmittal letters (Footnote 40). 3.8.2 DESIGN SAFETY FEATURES TOPICAL MEETINGóHYDROGEN CONTROL (JANUARY 1999)

The first relatively comprehensive treatment of the hydrogen control problem was presented at the Topical Meeting on hydrogen control as the first example of design safety features. BNFL Inc. presented calculations of hydrogen generation rates that the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff questioned as possibly unconservative46,47. The proposed means of keeping the hydrogen within acceptable limits if active ventilation should fail was a passive ventilation system relying on the density differences between air and hydrogen as well as the thermal gradient between the vessel and the cell. Hydrogen monitoring was recommended for only a short time during initial plant operations. This approach was also questioned in the February and March 1999 comment letters. The NRC staff directed its contractor, the Center for Nuclear Waste Regulatory Analyses (CNWRA), to provide an independent calculation of hydrogen generation rates and indicate areas of significant uncertainty. CNWRA responded with the report îReview of BNFL Inc. Design Safety Features Deliverable: Hydrogen Control in High Level Waste Storage Tanks48.î In this report, CNWRA showed that a rate of hydrogen

46

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, ìReview of Hydrogen and Explosion Information Presented at the Topical Meeting on January 29, 1999." February 12, 1999.
47

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, ìComments Concerning BNFL Inc.ís Design Safety Features Submital.î March 18, 1999.
48

Center for Nuclear Waste Regulatory Analyses (CNWRA). CNWRA 99-001, Rev 1, ìReview of BNFL Inc. Design Safety Features Deliverable: Hydrogen Control in High Level Waste Storage Tanks.î CNWRA: San Antonio, Texas. April 1999.

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generation over three times that calculated by BNFL Inc. could be calculated using equally valid inventory assumptions as those used by BNFL Inc. Even greater rates could be determined by taking into account uncertainty in parameters and off normal process conditions. Because the successful operation of the passive ventilation system was sensitive to hydrogen generation rates, the results of the CNWRA studies raised considerable concern in the NRC staff and the RU about the reliability and adequacy of the passive ventilation system. 3.8.3 EXPLOSIVE HAZARDS TOPICAL MEETING I (AUGUST 1999)

BNFL Inc. reevaluated the explosion hazard due to radiolytic hydrogen generation as well as other possible sources and prepared reports for two topical meetings, Explosive Hazards I and II, which were held in August and September 1999, respectively. The August Topical Meeting (Explosive Hazards I) addressed hazards from melter steam explosions, explosions from nitrate organic reactions in the melter offgas system, over pressurization of an ion-exchange column, ammonium nitrate explosion in the offgas system, and a sugar dust explosion in the feed preparation vessel. Although none of these events were considered credible by BNFL Inc., all of these event were left as potential issues by NRC and the U.S. Department of Energy/Regulatory Unit (DOE/RU) pending further information and analysis49. A resubmittal of the August 1999 topical report in March 2000 and information from design review meetings alleviated some of the NRC concerns about steam explosions, nitrate-organic reactions, and sugar dust explosions50. NRC staff present concerns about steam explosions are primarily the potential for a refractory failure allowing molten glass to contact water in the cooling jacket. Potential explosions caused by the contact of water and the cold cap were addressed by the BNFL Inc. responses to RU comments. Also, the BNFL Inc. process does not appear to be as vulnerable to radiological releases from organic-nitrate and sugar explosions as originally determined from the first submittal, although some questions still remain. Potential explosions from ammonium nitrate formation and over pressurization of the ion exchange column are still considered as open issues. 3.8.4 EXPLOSIVE HAZARDS TOPICAL MEETING II (SEPTEMBER 1999)

The September Topical Meeting (Explosive Hazards II) was concerned with the potential for explosion of hydrogen gas in approximately 40 process tanks. At this time an active ventilation system for hydrogen build-up was proposed to take the place of the passive release system that was proposed earlier, probably for a single tank. This active system consisted of an air extract system with two 100 percent fans and one 100 percent backup fan. Process air is used for dilution during normal operation. An air vent system is provided for loss of offsite power (with loss of process air) conditions. Although the staff considered this design a significant improvement over the passive system, there were concerns from the presentation and report (Footnote 49). These concerns included:

49

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, ìNRC and CNWRA Comments on the Explosive Hazards Topical Meetings I and II.î November 4, 1999.
50

Tokar, M., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, ìNRC Response to March 23, 2000 Letter Concerning the Resubmittal of the August and September 1999 Topical Meeting Reports on Explosive Hazards.î April 27, 2000.

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Hazard evaluations based on normal operating conditions rather than off normal. Rupture of vessel vent jumper was not considered in hazard evaluation. Loss of ability to maintain pressure control in vessel vent system was not considered. Large surges in offgas were not considered. The worse case detonation scenario was not properly evaluated.

A review of the resubmittal in February 2000 also led to a re-evaluation of the open issues. The NRC staff concluded that rupture of the vessel vent jumper and loss of ability to maintain pressure control can probably be nearly eliminated by an expanded set of performance requirements on the system. The other concerns remain however. 3.8.5 NRC ASSESSMENT OF PRESENT STATUS

In regard to radiolytic hydrogen explosions, the point paper (Footnote 45) accurately reflects the status of the hydrogen control system. An issue that was not resolved at the explosive hazard topical meetings was the need for monitoring. This issue was addressed at the June 2000 Topical Meeting on Close Out of Open Issues. BNFL Inc. has argued that air flow monitoring meets the requirement in Section 3-4.1 of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 69, ìInstrumentation shall be provided to monitor the control of the concentration of combustible components.î The NRC staff agrees with this argument. BNFL Inc. also argued that the concentration of hydrogen would always be below the measurement threshold of normally used monitoring instruments except in the case of system failure; which BNFL Inc. has calculated to be incredible. Unfortunately, BNFL Inc. did not provide any calculations to show what the range and probability distribution of hydrogen concentrations would be under normal operating and expected off normal conditions could be. When the project provides these calculations and the RU accepts the reliability of the active venting system, this issue should be closed. The point paper also discusses sugar dust as another significant potential source of an explosion. However, the addition of inerting agents to granular sugar before itís pneumatically conveyed to the feed hopper and the use of gravity feed to the melter feed preparation vessel are expected to preclude likely explosion scenarios. The project has not yet addressed the selection of codes and fire protection measures nor has it evaluated the potential for and consequences of a vehicle accident in the sugar storage area (Footnote 50). Ammonium nitrate formation and organic vapors were addressed briefly in the point paper under fire protection for filter plenums. The technology as presented by BNFL Inc. appears capable of preventing explosive buildups in the offgas system and this should probably be the strategy as opposed to using fire protection methods as discussed in the point paper. Steam explosions in the melter and over pressure in the ion exchange column were not considered to be fire protection issues and were not addressed in the point paper.

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3.0 AREAS OF REVIEW
3.9 ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
3.9.1 ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has published an environmental impact statement (EIS) on Tank Waste Remediation Systems (TWRS)51. This EIS identified as the preferred alternative the phased implementation approach (Phase I/II), with separations and treatment in external facilities. Vitrification is identified for immobilizing both the low activity waste (LAW) and high level waste (HLW). The EIS analyzed impacts and accident scenarios for the proposed facilities with the intent of enveloping any specific designs and process approaches that would be developed by the TWRS-Privatization (TWRS-P) program. Scenarios involving spray leaks were identified as having the potential for the most significant effects. The NRC staff did not review the EIS as part of its involvement. 3.9.2 STANDARDS APPROVAL PACKAGE (SAFETY REQUIREMENTS DOCUMENT AND HAZARDS ANALYSIS REPORT) AND INITIAL SAFETY ANALYSIS REPORT

The standards criteria in Section 5.3, ìEnvironmental Radiation Protection,î of Volume II of the Safety Requirements Document (SRD) outlines the Contractorís approach for the environmental protection (EP) program. Although the safety criteria (SC) defines the limits of the EP program, this material does not appear to be well supported throughout the remainder of the SRD package (Reference 3). For example, environmental monitoring is committed to (SRD criteria 9.5-1 and 9.5-2) but not described in relation to the anticipated plant operations. In addition, the SRD and Hazards Analysis Report (HAR) inconsistently commit to protection of the environment and frequently limit EP in terms of the worker and the public. Other major comments included: 1. Consistency and integration of environmental submittals with respect to other submittals and with the regulatory agencies (DOE/Regulatory Unit (RU), DOE Richland Operations Office (RL), DOE Office of Environment, Safety and Health (EH), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the State of Washington). 2. Application of safety categorizations for EP (i.e., structures, systems, and components (SSCs) that prevent or minimize environmental contamination). 3. Assessment of incidents for discharges to the vadose zone. 4. No clear identification of effluent and emission points on the site plan and facility information. 5. Description of offgas emissions and controls, including the effect from the emergency offgas system and iodine-129 removal systems.

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/EIS-0189, ìTank Waste Remediation System, Hanford Site, Richland, Washington, Final Environmental Impact Statement.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 30, 1996.

51

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The Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) provided little additional detail on the EP approach. It does refer to a separate ìEnvironmental Reportî by the Contractor that presents a broad overview of monitoring and mitigation approaches. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) comments (see Footnote 19 on page 40) noted that detail is not provided on such items as media to be sampled, sampling locations, sampling frequencies, methodologies, quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC), action levels for elevated measurements or other components that might be expected in an EP program (e.g., see the standard review plan Reference 15). Furthermore, the ISAR focused on impacts to the workers, the co-located workers, and the public, and did not include an assessment of the effects upon the environment (e.g., from accidents). Thus, it was not clear if adequate protection of the environment is achieved by SSCs that protect the health and safety of the public (Reference 5 óthe ISARóSection 3.3.6, page 3-35). Similar NRC comments were submitted later52 requesting information on how environmental protection was supported by the implementing codes and standards listed in the (SRD) and updated Integrated Safety Management Plan (ISMP). 3.9.3 DESIGN SAFETY FEATURES

The Design Safety Features (DSF) submittal did not discuss EP in any significant detail. 3.9.4 RELATED ACTIVITIES AND TOPICAL MEETINGS

The Contractor was working with the EPA Regional Office, Washington Department of Ecology, and Washington Department of Health on environmental topics and permitting issues . The work required for permit applications started in 1998. Test results and modeling efforts were required for such essential items as melter offgas and vessel vent streams. Additional NRC comments on Contractor responses were submitted to the DOE/RU53. Many of the comments dealt with compliance with the Washington Administrative Code (WAC), and there was an initial view that compliance with the WAC was limited to air discharges. The facility design was such that no radioactive liquid discharges were to be made because all radioactive liquids were to be routed through the existing Effluent Treatment Facility. A BNFL Inc. letter forwarded standards identified for safety criteria54. A second set of NRC comments on the Contractor Environmental Radiological Protection Program (ERPP) and its

52

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, ìNRC TWRS Section Comments on BNFLís Revised SRD and ISMP.î July 23, 1998.
53

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, ìU.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commissionís Comments on BNFLís Tank Waste Remediation Systems Safety Criteria for Environmental Radiological Protection Program and for Environmental Radiological Monitoring.î December 31, 1998.
54

Edwards, BNFL Inc. letter to D.C. Gibbs, Department of Energy, RE ERPP. January 18, 1999

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revision were submitted to the DOE/RU55. The DOE/RU disposition of the comments were forwarded to NRC on March 17, 1999.56 NRC reviewers felt that as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) criteria from the WAC was the correct citation, since 10 CFR Part 835 refers to ALARA only in the context of an occupational radiation protection program. In addition, there are no environmental requirements in 10 CFR Part 835. However, DOE/RU felt that 10 CFR Part 835 was adequate. The correct citation for Best Available Radionuclide Control Technology (BARCT) for air emissions is WAC 246.247.120, Appendix B. For DOE sites, the major Federal law regulating air emissions is the Clean Air Act (CAA). The requirements for obtaining permits is to ensure that any emissions of listed hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), including radionuclides, comply with the National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAPS), Section 112. The emission limits are given in State Implementation Plans (SIPs). NRC reviewers pointed out that even though DOE intended to use the existing monitoring network to collect air samples during construction and operation, the Contractor needed to conduct environmental surveillance to demonstrate compliance with the ERPP. Other clarifications were required regarding the concepts of ìgroundwater protectionî versus ìgroundwater monitoring.î The TWRS-P facility was to be operated under the Resource Conservative Recovery Act of 1976 (RCRA) as a Treatment Storage and Disposal (TSD) facility, and groundwater monitoring was to be addressed as part of RCRA permit requirements. NRC reviewers felt that although International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001, which was selected by the Contractor for groundwater monitoring, provided a sound management plan framework, specific codes and standards would need to be identified. NRC reviewers pointed out that sections of the WAC related to solid/hazardous wastes should have been included in the regulatory basis, since the state of Washington had regulatory authority under RCRA. The TWRS-P facility was to be added to an existing site-wide RCRA permit. Other issues associated with environmental radiation protection include such topics as mixed waste (which involves dual regulation), pollution prevention, waste minimization, and contamination control. DOE/RU responses and NRC comments can be grouped into the following categories: (1) compliance demonstration, operating procedures, and administrative procedures; and (2) American National Standards Institute (ANSI)/ISO-14001 as an adequate implementing standard.

55

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, îU.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Comments on BNFLís Tank Waste Remediation Systems Safety Criteria for Environmental Radiological Protection Program and for Environmental Radiological Monitoring.î February 11,

1999.
56

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to R.C. Pierson, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, March 17, 1999.

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The TWRS-P Contractor had started submitting permit applications at the time of the termination. These were generally based upon the design as it existed in late calendar year 2000. Significantly, the approach intends to store failed melters (i.e., melters removed from service due to refractory age, etc., but not necessarily failed as a breach) during the operational phase of the facility, followed by near-surface disposal during the decommissioning period. The NRC staff did not review the specific details of this approach. However, based upon meetings in the Spring of 2000, the approach relies upon movement of intact melters in overpacks, with total weights of several hundred tonnes. Some vitrified waste materials would remain within the failed melters. For the failed HLW melter, the great majority of the vitrified waste would have to be removed in order to meet near-surface disposal requirements. It was not clear how this could be accomplished for a melter without bottom drains. 3.9.5 NRC ASSESSMENT OF THE PRESENT STATUS

The NRC staff concludes that considerable effort and specificity remain to be done in this environmental area. This should be achievable concurrent with the advancement of the design

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3.0 AREAS OF REVIEW
3.10 QUALITY ASSURANCE AND MANAGEMENT MEASURES
3.10.1 INTRODUCTION

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has responsibility for the regulatory oversight of the Hanford Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization (TWRS-P) contract. Should that responsibility be transferred to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) at some future time, the responsibility for oversight of the TWRS-P quality assurance (QA) program for items relied on for safety (IROFS) would be part of the overall responsibility transferred. The application of QA to TWRS-P is a fairly complex subject, and the transfer of the QA regulatory oversight will also be complex. The complexities stem from the facts that: 1. DOE has regulations and guidance for QA that govern its facilities, and NRC has its own regulations and guidance for QA for NRC-licensed facilities. 2. The nuclear industry (represented by the American Nuclear Society) standard for QA, American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) NQA-1, ìQuality Assurance Requirements for Nuclear Facility Applications,î57 undergoes continual change. 3. NRCís regulations and guidance for QA and safety management measures for facilities licensed under 10 CFR Part 70 are currently being revised to address IROFS and a safety analysis. This chapter discusses the DOE and NRC requirements for QA for TWRS-P and clarifies the status of the regulatory approach that has been taken. 3.10.2 DOE QA REQUIREMENTS AND GUIDANCE

The QA of DOE nuclear facilities such as TWRS-P is currently regulated by the DOE QA rule58. By letter of September 8, 1998 (D. Clark Gibbs to Maurice J. Bullock), DOE informed BNFL Inc. (the DOE TWRS-P contractor) that: ìThe Contractorís processes necessary to implement ISM (Integrated Safety Management) are . . . subject to, and the RU (DOEís Regulatory Unit) will evaluate them against, the requirements of the QA rule.î DOE has issued a generic guide59 for implementing its QA rule that provides guidance as to what DOE considers an acceptable QA program. This guide includes many references. Before the references, the guide states that ìThe following references provide acceptable methods for implementing many of the requirements of 10 CFR 830.120.... No single reference fully meets

57

ASME NQA-1 is a consensus American National Standard issued every 3 years (with annual updates) by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 830, ìNuclear Safety Management,î includes the U.S. Department of Energy Quality Assurance rule, (10 CFR 830.120, ìQuality Assurance Requirementsî).
59 58

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE G 830.120, Draft, ìImplementation Guide for Use with 10 CFR Part 830.120 and DOE Order 5700.6C, Quality Assurance.î September 1997.

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all of the requirements. The principles, recommended approaches, and applications contained in these references may be used in conjunction with 10 CFR 830.120...to develop an effective management system to achieve quality.î One of the references listed in the generic DOE guide is ASME NQA-1-1994. ASME NQA-1-1994 has incorporated the ASME NQA Standard requirements of the previous editions of ASME NQA-1 and ASME NQA-260 into a single document: Part I of ASME NQA-1-1994 contains the prior ASME NQA-1 Standard requirements and Part II contains the prior ASME NQA-2 Standard requirements. Part III of ASME NQA-1-1994 contains the ASME NQA Standard guidance. In addition, DOE has issued a specific guidance document for its QA reviewers to use when reviewing TWRS-P QA programs.61 This guidance was based on the principles in the DOE QA rule and its generic guidance document. This TWRS-P specific guidance document was used by DOE and DOE contractor personnel when reviewing the BNFL Inc. QA program description. 3.10.3 NRC QA REGULATIONS AND GUIDANCE

Prior to this year, NRC regulations for domestic licensing of special nuclear material (SNM) require QA only for licensees who possess and use SNM in a plutonium processing and fuel fabrication plant.62 However, a near-criticality incident at a low enriched uranium fuel fabrication facility prompted the NRC to review its safety regulations for applicants/licensees that possess and process large quantities of SNM.63 As a result of this review the NRC staff recognized the need to revise its regulatory base for these licensees, particularly for organizations such as those that possess and process a critical mass of SNM. Therefore, the NRC has approved rulemaking64 to amend 10 CFR Part 70, ìDomestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î QA and management measures are addressed for wider application in the revision to 10 CFR Part 70. The NRC QA regulatory requirements for domestic licensing of SNM apply to 10 CFR Part 70 SNM applicants/licensees authorized to possess and process a critical mass of SNM. Additional baseline design criteria (requirements) are included for new facilities such as the planned TWRS-P facility (if and when applicable) and for new processes at existing facilities.

60

American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). NQA-2, ìQuality Assurance Requirements for Nuclear Facility Applications, An American National Standard.î ASME: 1994.
61

Department of Energy (U.S)(DOE). RL/REG-96-01, Revision 0, ìGuidance for Review of TWRS Privatization Contractor Initial Quality Assurance Program.î DOE: Richland, Washington. October 1996. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 70, ìDomestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material,î (specifically 10 CFR 70.22, ìContent of Applications,î and its footnote reference to Appendix B of 10 CFR Part 50.)
63 62

The results of this review are documented in: Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). NUREG-1324, ìProposed Method for Regulating Major Materials Licensees.î NRC: Washington, D.C. February 1992.
64

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC) . SECY-99-147, ìProposed RulemakingóRevised Requirements for the Domestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î NRC: Washington, D.C. June 2, 1998. This is available on the web at http://www.nrc.gov/NRC/COMMISSION/SECYS/secy1999-147/1999-147scy.html.

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The revised 10 CFR Part 7065 indicates that QA is a part or subset of management measures as indicated in the 10 CFR 70.4 definition: Management measures means the functions performed by the licensee, generally on a continuing basis, that are applied to items relied on for safety, to ensure the itmes (sic) are available and reliable to perform their functions when needed. Management measures include configuration management, maintenance, training and qualifications, procedures, audits and assessments, incident investigations, records management, and other quality assurance elements. (Emphasis added.) The following requirement regarding management measures in 10 CFR 70.62, ìSafety Program and Integrated Safety Analysis,î is from the revised 10 CFR Part 70: (d) Management measures. Each applicant or licensee shall establish management measures (including configuration management, maintenance, training and qualifications, procedures, audits and assessments, incident investigations, records management, and other quality assurance elements) to provide continuing assurance of compliance with the performance requirements of ß70.61. The measures applied to a particular engineered or administrative control or control system may be commensurate with the reduction of the risk attributable to that control or control system. The management measures shall ensure that engineered and administrative controls and control systems that are identified as items relied on for safety pursuant to ß70.61(e) of this Part are designed, implemented, and maintained, as necessary, to ensure they are available and reliable to perform their function when needed, in the context of compliance with the performance requirements of ß70.61 of this Part. The baseline design criteria in the revised 10 CFR Part 70 address management measures in the following manner: ß70.64 Requirements for new facilities or new processes at existing facilities. (a) Baseline design criteria. Each prospective applicant or licensee shall address the following baseline design criteria in the design of new facilities. Each existing licensee shall address the following baseline design criteria in the design of new processes at existing facilities that require a license amendment under ß70.72. The baseline design criteria must be applied to the design of new facilities and new processes, but do not require retrofits to existing facilities or existing processes (e.g., those housing or adjacent to the new process); however, all facilities and processes must comply with the performance requirements in ß70.61. Licensees shall maintain the application of these criteria unless the evaluation performed pursuant to paragraph (c) of this section demonstrates that a given item is not relied on for safety or does not require adherence to the specified criteria. (1) Quality standards and records. The design must be developed and implemented in accordance with management measures (including configuration management, maintenance, training and qualifications, procedures, audits and assessments, incident investigations, records management, and other quality assurance elements) to provide adequate assurance that items relied on for safety will be available and reliable to perform

65

Attachment 1 to the proposed rule noted in the previous footnote.

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their function when needed. Appropriate records of these items must be maintained by or under the control of the licensee throughout the life of the facility. The requirement that each applicant for a new 10 CFR Part 70 license must include a description of its management measures is specified in the following section of the latest draft of 10 CFR Part 70: ß70.65 Additional content of applications. (a) In addition to the contents required by ß70.22, each application (for a new Part 70 license) must include a description of the applicantís safety program established under ß70.62, including the integrated safety analysis summary and a description of the management measures (including configuration management, maintenance, training and qualifications, procedures, audits and assessments, incident investigations, records management, and other quality assurance elements). From the above, it is obvious that each applicant for a new 10 CFR Part 70 license must: 1. Establish management measures (including configuration management, maintenance, training and qualifications, procedures, audits and assessments, incident investigations, records management, and other quality assurance elements) to provide continuing assurance of compliance with the performance requirements; and 2. Develop and implement the facility design in accordance with management measures (including configuration management, maintenance, training and qualifications, procedures, audits and assessments, incident investigations, records management, and other quality assurance elements) to provide adequate assurance that items relied on for safety will be available and reliable to perform their function when needed. The NRC QA regulatory requirements in the revised 10 CFR Part 70 regulation (quoted above) are very general and nonprescriptive. Therefore, to aid the staffís efforts in any technical review of a license application that might be received in the future under the revised 10 CFR Part 70, the NRC staff has drafted or completed several different Standard Review Plans (SRPs) for different types of fuel facilities. For example, an SRP with QA regulatory guidance for NRC reviewers to use when reviewing the TWRS-P 10 CFR Part 70 license application has been completed and released to the public as NUREG-1702.66 Chapter 11 of NUREG-1702 addresses Management Measures, and Section 11.3 addresses QA. In line with the NRC concepts of maintaining safety, reducing unnecessary regulatory burden, improving public confidence, and increasing efficiency and effectiveness of NRC processes, Section 11.3 of NUREG-1702 relies heavily on the industry QA standard, ASME NQA-1-1994. While ASME NQA-1-1994 has separate sections for ìrequirementsî and ìguidance,ì NRCís licensing requirements are existent solely in the agencyís regulations. Guidance on how the NRCís regulatory requirements are to be implemented is provided in separate documents such as SRPs, regulatory guides, etc. From an NRC regulatory perspective, none of the parts of

66

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). NUREG-1702, Final Report, ìStandard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for the Tank Waste Remediation System Privatization (TWRS-P) Project.î NRC: Washington, D.C. March 2000.

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ASME NQA-1 would constitute requirements, i.e., would have the force of law, unless they were incorporated specifically into the applicable regulation (10 CFR Part 70). This is not apt to happen. Subsection 11.3.5.1, ìAcceptance Review,î of NUREG-1702 shows that the applicantís/licenseeís commitment to implement and maintain its QA program in conformance with the applicable ASME NQA Standard requirements of Parts I and II of ASME NQA-1-1994 or equivalent should satisfy the acceptance review criteria. Further, Subsection 11.3.5.2, ìSafety Evaluation,î of NUREG-1702 gives the applicant/licensee the option of: 1. Committing to implement and maintain its QA program in conformance with the applicable ASME NQA Standard requirements of Parts I and II of ASME NQA-1-1994 or equivalent and addressing a relatively short list of regulatory review criteria under the headings of (1) organization, (2) QA function, and (3) provisions for continuing QA - OR 2. Not committing to meet the applicable ASME NQA Standard requirements in Parts I and II of ASME NQA-1-1994 but, rather, addressing the same three regulatory review criteria noted above plus a relatively long list (15+ pages) of additional regulatory review criteria as well. The staff believes that proper implementation of a QA program developed under either Option 1 or Option 2 as allowed in Subsection 11.3.5.2 of NUREG-1702 would meet NRCís QA regulatory requirements in the revised 10 CFR Part 70 and would provide reasonable assurance that the TWRS-P items relied on for safety will perform satisfactorily in service without undue risk to the health and safety of the public or to the environment. 3.10.4 COMPARISON OF QA REGULATORY REQUIREMENTS AND GUIDANCE

The QA regulatory requirements in both NRCís proposed 10 CFR Part 70 and in DOEís QA rule provide for flexibility in the approaches that may be taken to meet the regulations. Although organized and worded differently, the QA regulatory requirements of NRCís revised 10 CFR Part 70 and DOEís QA rule and the corresponding guidance are not inconsistent. As noted above, NRCís revised 10 CFR Part 70 simply requires that each applicant or licensee establish management measures (including configuration management, maintenance, training and qualifications, procedures, audits and assessments, incident investigations, records management, and other quality assurance elements) to provide continuing assurance of compliance with the performance requirements. Correspondingly, in addition to providing many more detailed QA requirements that correspond to NRC QA guidance, DOEís QA rule requires that (management of) a contractor responsible for a DOE nuclear facility develop, implement, and maintain a QA program acceptable to DOE; that the facility design incorporate applicable requirements and design bases; and that the adequacy of design products be verified or validated. 127 NUREG-1747

Although there are many similarities between the DOE and NRC QA requirements and guidance, a QA program could still be developed that meets the QA requirements and guidance of one organization but does not meet the QA requirements and guidance of the other organization. For example, DOEís QA rule requires ìassessmentsî while NRCís guidance refers to ìaudits.î The relationship between assessments and audits is not well defined. Items like this are not expected to be significant issues/problems for TWRS-P because the BNFL Inc. QA program description that the RU approves as meeting DOE QA regulatory requirements, and that BNFL, Inc. implements, is expected to also meet NRCís proposed QA regulatory requirements and guidance. 3.10.5 BNFL INC. QA PROGRAM FOR TWRS-P

BNFL Inc. first submitted a description of its QA program to DOE on November 6, 1996.67 The NRC provided preliminary comments to DOE regarding that BNFL Inc. submittal on November 20, 1996,68 but DOE had provided its comments on that submittal prior to receipt/review of the NRC comments.69 BNFL Inc. submitted Revision 2 of the description of its QA program to DOE on February 7, 1997,70 indicating that the revision provided ìthe agreed upon dispositionî of a number of listed items. On February 12, 1997, DOE approved Revision 2 ìas the BNFL Quality Assurance Program for Part A activities.î71 In Revision 3 of BNFL-5193-QAP-01 dated March 27, 1998, BNFL Inc. changed the title of the document from ìQuality Assurance Programî to ìQuality Assurance Program and Implementation Plan.î72 Revision 3 was a major rewrite of the TWRS-P QA program. It described the BNFL Inc. QA program for activities up to the start of construction and, as the title indicates, the BNFL Inc. plan for implementing its QA program. The NRC provided detailed comments to DOE regarding Revision 3 of the (now-called) Quality Assurance Program Implementation Plan (QAPIP) in a letter dated April 3, 1998.73

67

Bullock, M.J., BNFL Inc., letter to P. Rasmussen, U.S. Department of Energy, with attachment, ìBNFL-5193-QAP-01, Revision 0, Quality Assurance Program, November 8, 1996.î November 6, 1996.
68

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to T.R. Sheridan, U.S. Department of Energy, November 20, 1996. Sheridan, T.R., U.S. Depatment of Enegy and C. Bell, U.S. Department of Energy, fax to R. Pierson, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and J. Spraul, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, November 20, 1996.
70 69

Bullock, M.J., BNFL Inc., letter to T. R. Sheridan, U.S. Department of Energy, with attachment ìBNFL-5193-QAP-01, Revision 2, Quality Assurance Program, February 7, 1997.î February 7, 1997.
71

Sheridan, T.R., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M.J. Bullock, BNFL Inc., February 12, 1997.

72

Bullock, M.J., BNFL Inc., letter to T. R. Sheridan, U.S. Department of Energy, with attachment ìBNFL-5193-QAP-01, Revision 3, Quality Assurance Program, March 27, 1998.î March 27, 1998.
73

Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, April 3, 1998.

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On April 30, 1998, the NRC staff QA reviewer participated in a DOE-BNFL Inc. meeting at which an April 22, 1998, draft Revision 4 of the BNFL Inc. QAPIP was discussed. The NRC comments regarding Revision 3 of the QAPIP were generally included in the discussion. The meeting resulted in a second draft of Revision 4 of the BNFL Inc. QAPIP dated May 4, 1998. The final version of Revision 4 was submitted to DOE by BNFL Inc. on May 15, 1998.74 It is dated May 1998. In Revision 4 of its QAPIP, BNFL Inc. states: ìthe implementation and maintenance of the QAP (Quality Assurance Program) shall comply with the applicable elements of . . . Quality Assurance Requirements for Nuclear Facility Applications (ASME NQA-1 1994a) . . . .î BNFL Inc.ís QAPIP also addresses the regulatory review criteria under the headings of (1) organization, (2) QA function, and (3) provisions for continuing QA specified in Section 11.3 of NUREG-1702. In addition, Revision 4 of the BNFL Inc. QAPIP also addresses the majority of the longer list of additional regulatory review criteria in the Appendix of Section 11.3 of NUREG-1702 as well. DOE evaluated the May 1998 final version of Revision 4 of the BNFL Inc. QAPIP for TWRS-P using the DOE documents listed in Footnotes 2, 3, and 5. On June 2, 1998, DOE approved the May 1998 final version of Revision 4 of the BNFL Inc. QAPIP for TWRS-P subject to the following two conditions:75 1. ìThe implementing documents and procedures...required prior to start of preliminary design, detailed design, and procurement, shall be issued before the start of those respective phases of project activity.î 2. ìBNFL shall implement the (QA program)...as approved by the RU,...up to the start of construction.î On May 27, 1999, BNFL Inc. submitted its proposed Revision 5 (as Revision 4a) to its QAPIP,76 reflecting its annual update of the document and describing its QA program and commitments up to the start of construction. NRC staff comments on the submittal were sent to the RU on June 22, 1999.77 They were forwarded by the RU to BNFL Inc. on July 1, 1999,78 as an enclosure to the letter that stated: ìThese comments (as is customary for such NRC transmittals) are in the public record and are being provided to you for information purposes.

Bullock, M.J., BNFL Inc., letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy and P. Rasmussen, U.S. Department of Energy, with enclosure ìBNFL-5193-QAP-01, Revision 4, Quality Assurance Program and Implementation Plan, May 1998.î May 15, 1998.
75

74

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M.J. Bullock, BNFL Inc., with enclosure ìDOE Regulatory Unit Evaluation Report of the BNFL Inc. Quality Assurance Program and Implementation Plan, May 1998.î June 2, 1998.
76

Burrows, C., BNFL Inc., letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, with enclosure ìBNFL-5193-QAP-01, Revision 4A, Quality Assurance Program and Implementation Plan, May 26, 1999.î May 27, 1999. Pierson, R.C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C.Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, June 22, 1999.
78 77

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M.J. Lawrence, BNFL Inc., July 1, 1999.

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The Regulatory Unitís comments on the QAPIP, which will include consideration of the NRC comments, will be transmitted separately.î The RU transmitted its comments on the proposed Revision 5 to the BNFL Inc. QAPIP as an enclosure to its letter of July 12, 1999.79 The letter states: ìThe RU will use the BNFL response to the comments to complete an Evaluation Report as the basis for approval or disapproval of the QAPIP.î An enclosure to a letter from the RU to the NRC80 shows the RU disposition of the NRC comments. Of the 29 technical NRC comments, 22 were provided to BNFL as RU comments, one was provided to BNFL Inc. after modification following clarification by BNFL Inc., three were considered to be equivalent to some other RU comment, and the remaining three were transmitted only by DOEís July 1, 1999, letter referred to above. Acceptable justification for not including these last three NRC technical QA comments as RU comments was given in DOEís July 14 letter. All 12 NRC editorial comments were provided to BNFL Inc. as RU comments. Thus, the BNFL Inc. response to the RU comments also addressed the NRC comments except as noted. Revision 5 of the BNFL, Inc. QAPIP was approved by the RU and issued on April 4, 2000. In June 2000, BNFL, Inc. submitted a proposed revision to address construction as well as design. The RU was planning to review this document in July 2000. Revision 5 of the BNFL, Inc. QAPIP generally meets NRC QA regulatory requirements for safety of activities under 10 CFR 70. However, three issues regarding adequacy of the interpretation, application or implementation of the QAPIP should be resolved as early in the TWRS-P project as possible. These issues are discussed in detail in Attachment A.19 through A.20 to this report. 1. BNFL Inc. has not adequately identified its commitments or interpretations related to the applicability of specific NQA-1 requirements, either as full and explicit commitments to NQA1, nor have exceptions to and applicability of the provisions of the document been identified. Implementing procedures for NQA-1 requirements appear not to have been fully and completely developed, and there is no explicit commitment to the records storage and software requirements of NQA-1. 2. The appropriate and adequate implementation by all major team members and subcontractors of QA requirements should be verified prior to or early in the project design activities in order to preclude extensive avoidable retrofits for design, procurement or other project activities. 3. A complete safety categorization of the structures, systems and components (SSCs) has not been fully developed by BNFL Inc. or provided to DOE. Without a list of all SSCs for

79 80

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M.J. Lawrence, BNFL Inc., July 12, 1999.

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to R.C. Pierson, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, July 14, 1999.

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each of the safety categories, a logical and systematic graded QA program cannot be developed. 3.10.6 NRC ASSESSMENT OF CURRENT STATUS AND CONCLUSIONS

BNFL Inc. QA commitments that the RU approved as meeting DOE QA regulatory requirements up to the start of construction, generally meet NRCís QA regulatory requirements and guidance. Therefore, the NRC staff concludes that the BNFL Inc. QA commitments for TWRS-P, when properly implemented, can meet the NRC QA regulatory requirements of the revised 10 CFR Part 70 and the NRC QA regulatory guidance in NUREG-1702. Consequently, the staff concludes that the transition of TWRS-P from DOE to NRC regulation and oversight should be relatively smooth in the area of QA.

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4.0 NRC OBSERVATION AND CONCLUSIONS ON THE REGULATORY APPROACH
The basic concept of the U.S. Department of Energyís (DOEís) regulatory approach is that the contractor is responsible for achieving adequate safety, complying with applicable laws and regulations, and conforming with top-level safety standards and principles stipulated by DOE. Consistent with applicable laws and regulations, the contractor is required to tailor the exercise of this responsibility to the specific hazards associated with its activities, and is encouraged to do this in a cost-effective manner that applies best commercial practices. The Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization (TWRS-P) contractors have the responsibility to identify and recommend to DOE the set of standards, regulations, and requirements necessary to ensure adequate safety. DOEís responsibility is to execute the regulatory process, including authorization of contractor actions and confirmation that the contractor activities are performed safely and within approved limits. The authority of the RU to regulate a TWRS-P contractor is derived from the terms of the TWRS-P contract (ìregulate by the contractî). Section 1.4 provides more information on the DOE regulatory approach and supporting documents. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff has participated with DOE in the TWRSP program for 3  years. NRC staff have observed interactions between DOE and the contractors and the practical effects from the implementation of the regulatory approach. Many of these observations have already been discussed with DOE81. An overriding concern has been the way all activities have been and continue to be driven by programmatic concerns, including cost and schedule. Ironically, this emphasis has allowed some areas of the design and safety analyses, such as identification of items relied on for safety (IROFS), to remain relatively nonspecific after the 4 years of design efforts by the Contractor. 4.1 PROGRAMMATIC INFLUENCE UPON DOE REGULATORY ACTIVITIES

The Regulatory Unit (RU) is part of the DOE Richland Operations Office (RL) and reports to the manager of RL (i.e, at the time of contract termination in June 2000). The RL organization reports to DOE/Environmental Restoration and Waste Management (EM) in Washington, D.C. Initially, the DOE manager for TWRS-P also reported to RL. In 1998 the DOE Office of River Protection (ORP) was created to handle the management of TWRS and related activities, including TWRS-P. ORP directly reports to DOE-EM with matrix activities to RL. ORP manages and administers the TWRS-P contracts. Thus, the RU and the ORP are both parts of the DOE-EM organization and influence is unavoidable. As noted by a DOE external review of the RU (see Footnote 12, page 28), true regulatory independence may not be achieved by the current approach. Finally, RL is a party to the Tri-Party Agreement (TPA), which emphasizes schedules with milestones for remediation of the Hanford site (see Chapter 1.0). This has the unintended consequence of emphasizing schedule for the RUóìIn the context of contract-

81

Leach, M.N., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to D.C. Gibbs, U.S. Department of Energy, ìPotential Critical Technical Issues for Construction Authorization Resolution,î January 21, 2000.

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based regulation, the regulator has an incentive to conduct the necessary regulatory activities in such a manner that the project schedule is not unduly delayed.82î The DOE approach regulates by incorporating top level standards and requirements into the TWRS-P contracts. Thus, the RU regulates ìby the contract.î The TWRS-P contract (Main Reference 21) contained many milestones, interactions, and deliverables for program purposes and reviews, but only three for regulatory purposes: the Design Safety Features (DSF), the Topical Meetings, and the Construction Authorization Request (CAR). In addition, the RU made numerous statements that they could only regulate to the contract and frequently referred to the schedule of deliverables it contained. The actual program contract officers for DOE are in the ORP, and the Contractors appear to focus more on feedback from the program side than from the RU/regulatory side. DOE has encouraged the Contractor to pursue an approach with a large processing facility containing several melters (the largest proposed melters for radwaste use in the world), close to two million gallons of liquids, and potentially tens of megacuries of activity. This emphasis on a much larger facility accrues from program issues and TPA commitments. Regulatory and safety issues associated with a much larger facility do not appear to have been considered. In contrast, the approaches at Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF) and the West Valley Demonstration Project (WVDP) used several years of melter testing and extensive experimental studies and pilot plant testing. The concept of a smaller pilot facility was abandoned during Phase IA at Hanford. Given the many unknowns associated with the different wastes at Hanford, it would seem an emphasis on the large facility could encounter numerous problems during the processing of actual waste that could be better addressed in a pilot scale facility. Further evidence of programmatic influence upon the regulatory activities are found in the review schedules. The reviews of significant deliverables would sometimes overlap or conflict. Frequently, the DOE and/or RU would only allocate a very short, limited time for conducting significant reviews of major deliverables. A typical review time would be 2 or 3 weeks for multivolume submittals and is insufficient for adequate review. For example, the RU allowed two weeks for the review of the Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) in 1998 and, even though it was given adequate notice, did not appear to actively consider additional NRC comments submitted after the 2-week period. The Firm Fixed Price (FFP) submittal totaled seven boxes (of interest for design and safetyósome 25,000 pages); the active review lasted about 3 weeks. The review letter from the RU was signed out inside of 1 month and consisted of only four pages83. Sometimes cost and schedule issues also influenced regulatory operations, including reviews. Terms such as ìcost effective,î ìreturn on investment,î and ìimpact to scheduleî would frequently arise in reports and at meetings discussing safety and regulatory matters. For example, there was a discussion at the June, 2000 Topical Meeting about the relative costs of
82

Gibbs, D. Clark. <d_c_clark_gibbs@rl.gov> to W.J. Pasciak, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, ìFormer Regulatory Transition Plan,î with attachment ìRL/REG-99-01, Issues Related to the Potential Regulatory

Transition of TWRS-Pî November 1998. (December 15, 1998).
Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, memorandum to R.T. French, U.S. Department of Energy, ìREG:RAG/00-RU-0395, Review of BNFL Inc. (BNFL) Part B-1 Facility and Process Design Deliverables by the Office of Safety Regulation (RU),î May 25, 2000.
83

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ventilation controls and instrumentation. On many occasions, there was an implication that regulatory reviews were not allowed to impact cost and schedule. Finally, as already noted, the DOE has terminated the TWRS-P contract and is transitioning to a Management and Operations (M&O) contract for TWRS. Few of the recent decisions and activities on the contracts have actually mentioned safety (see the ORP website via www.hanford.gov). The Request for Procurement mentions regulation by DOE but offers incentives of 20-30 percent for cost savings; no incentives for safety are mentioned. 4.2 INADEQUATE MAINTENANCE OF DESIGN AND AUTHORIZATION BASIS DOCUMENTS

Throughout most of the design effort (about 2 years), the design and safety teams of the Contractor have worked quasi-independently. The design and authorization basis documents have not been updated (prior to contract termination, the plan was to issue updates in late 2000) and amendment requests have only recently started to be received from the Contractor. Changes in fundamental aspects of the design have occurred in this time period without regulatory review. This was formally noted after contract termination84 although the changes were made about 18 months earlier. DOE subsequently approved these changes after a qualitative evaluation85. The contractor has selected and proposed standards and regulations for TWRS-P, which have subsequently been approved by the RU. These, combined with the design, became the ìauthorization basis.î A formal change process has been identified for the standards and regulations. However, in practice, it was not clear if these standards and changes are being adequately maintained and updated by both the regulator and the Contractor, and if they are being adequately complied with by the design teams and reviewers. For example, during Part B-1, an inspection of the authorization basis was twice postponed because it was known the Contractor was not following procedures and maintaining the design/authorization basis, and would not pass the inspection. While a corrective action conference was ultimately conducted (see Section 3.1), this occurred much later in March 2000ósome 19 months after the start of Part B-1. As a further example, in response to an NRC inquiry about revision dates for the Safety Requirements Document (SRD), the DOE advised that its version of the SRD was not a controlled copy and is updated by revised pages rather than a complete document (see Footnote 20 on page 41). In a recent design review on ìPretreatment Ion Exchange Systemsî in June 2000, the discussion indicated that the design and the design team had not considered the standards and requirements in the authorization basisóthis was overlooked by the design

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to P.O. Strawbridge, BNFL Inc., ìContract Number DE-AC27-96RL13308 - Regulatory Unit (RU) Partial Approval of Authorization Basis Amendment Request (ABAR), ABAR-W37500-00014, Rev. 0, Part A Hazard Analysis Report (HAR) Significant and Bounding Hazard Evaluation and Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) Fundamental Aspects of Design,î 00-RU-0455. July 6, 2000.
85

84

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to P.O. Strawbridge, BNFL Inc., ìContract Number DE-AC27-96RL13308 - Regulatory Unit (RU) Approval of Authorization Basis Amendment Request, ABAR-W375-00-00014, Rev. 0, Part A HAR Significant and Bounding Hazard Evaluation and ISAR Fundamental Aspects of Design,î 00-RU-0529. August 10, 2000.

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review report86. In contrast, the NRC uses a formal process with public participation to codify regulations and establish guidance and licenses. For changes and deviations in the standards used or proposed by licensees, the NRC would conduct a comprehensive review of the application and documentation incorporating the change. The DOE and the RU frequently accept the standards and regulations proposed by the contractor with a limited independent review of its applicability to the proposed design. It is not clear if DOE is independently assessing the designís compliance with the selected standards and authorization basis. The burden is placed upon the TWRS regulator to analyze and approve or disapprove the standard. The NRC would conduct a thorough review of any applicant/licensee from NRC requirements and/or NRC-endorsed industry codes and standards. More of the burden is placed upon the license applicant. Significant changes might require NRC reviews considerably longer (up to a year or more) than some of those observed during this program and would be based on a more complete level of design. The design and authorization basisóthe license basisóare spread over several different documents of differing vintages and designs. Changes, including modifications in approach, are not always well documented or substantiated. For example, the FFP contract is more detailed than the ISAR, yet it lacks some features (e.g., some tanks and pumps) and adds others (e.g., an extra ion exchange column), without explanation. Various capacities are mentioned in other documents (i.e., 1x, 2x, and 4x flow rates) without a clear explanation of the bases for some portions of the proposed facility and equipment handling much greater quantities of materials and activity. The authorization basis has not been well defined in quantitative parameters, including the flow rate level. This has important ramifications for the safety reviewsóobviously a scenario with a release at a 4x flow rate is likely to have a greater consequence than one at a 1x flow rate, and this may influence severity levels and safety controls. 4.3 USE OF A RISK-BASED APPROACH

The use of a risk-based approach to the design and risk-based analyses were used as the basis for the Integrated Safety Management (ISM) process, which includes hazards identification, consequence estimation, and control mitigation with limited additional considerations. This is essentially a completely fluid process without a basal level of requirements and, as presently practiced, does not consider unknowns, uncertainties, errors, proven practices, future plans, and experience. As practiced in TWRS-P, there appears to be more emphasis on the process and less on the results. The ISM approach at TWRS-P is a circular process (see Section 1.4). A clear, central concept of ISM is that the contractor should tailor the design and safety requirements to the specific hazards of the activities and operations at a facility. DOE/RU policy endorses tailoring via the following process: 1. Identify applicable requirements. 2. Define the scope of the work or operations to be analyzed.

Gilbert, R.A., U.S. Department of Energy, memorandum to Regulatory Unit Staff, U.S. Department of Energy, ìDesign Review ReportóApril-June 2000 Design Reviews,î August 4, 2000.

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3. 4. 5. 6.

Analyze the hazards. Propose, analyze, select, and implement controls. Perform the work or operations (does not apply at the design stage). Assess, feedback, and improve/modify (as appropriate).

As the ISM reviews cycle, the concept is for the safety controls to become tailored to the hazards. However, an unintended consequence of this approach is the potential elimination of margins, conservatism, and defense-in-depth in the design and safety bases because minimal requirements are not incorporated. This can obscure minimum standards and performance requirements commonly found to be effective from experience and lessons-learned. In addition, as the ISM ìcycles,î assumptions about source terms, releases, etc., are challenged and may be reduced. In practice, the assumption can sufficiently reduce consequences to place a scenario(s) into less severe categories. Since the ISM approach focuses on the higher risk scenarios, once a scenarioís consequence is reduced, the assumptions may not be revisited. Without a minimal level of requirements, this circular logic may result in fewer safety controls and more risk from the proposed facility. The preliminary nature of the design and Part B-1 further compounds these concerns as more conservatism would seem to be needed when less design information is available. DOE has also experienced difficulty communicating the ISM approach to the contractors. For comparison, the NRC uses a risk-informed, performancebased approach with defense-in-depth, appropriate levels of conservatism, and a minimum set of standards and requirements that are codified in the regulations. The TWRS-P regulatory approach has requirements for reviewing conservatism and defensein- depth (DID - see CAR guidance in Chapter 7.0, Main Reference 14). DOE most recently has expressed concerns about too much conservatism, in public statements on the FFP submittal87. In regards to the same FFP submittal, DOE has also noticed the level of conservatism and design margins are not mentioned and had concerns about spares and redundant equipment and instrumentation. These concerns about conservatism and redundancies are further elaborated upon in a more detailed letter88. As the ISM has been practiced, most high severity scenarios have just two safety control approaches. The DOE and RU acknowledge that there are unknowns and uncertainties associated with the program and these should be considered in the reviews of submittals. However, as a practical matter, little effort has been given into defining this further and only limited feedback has been provided to or received from the contractors. At the present time, the focus continues to be upon best-basis and average conditions for many of the analyses. The use of average conditions without addressing uncertainties and incorporating reasonable conservatism and DID is not likely to be acceptable to the NRC. Furthermore, there does not appear to be a realization of future effects. These include site changes (e.g., other privatization initiatives, relaxation of security) and facility effects (e.g., higher flow rates desired, wear and aging of structures, systems, components (SSCs), erosion/corrosion effects, process changes).

87 88

Inside Energy, May 15, 2000.

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to P.O. Strawbridge, BNFL, Inc., ìRegulatory Unit (RU) Review of the BNFL Inc. Part B-1 Facility and Process Design Deliverables, (FFP Submittal),î 00-RU-418. June 2, 2000.

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The RU expects the facility design to be consistent with a risk level of circa 1E-5/yr to the worker and circa 1E-6/yr to the public. At face value, these are approximately comparable to the NRC policy statements on risk and lower than the risk levels implied by the new 10 CFR Part 70. However, the public doses are estimated at a minimum distance of the site boundary (12 km to the receptor) and, sometimes, further. Nonconservative values are used for input data. The application of ALARA (as low as reasonably achievable) to the design appears limited. The RU has allowed the use of a chemical safety standard that increases the potential risk and allows the existence of a relatively high probability, high consequence event. The NRC would likely ask for more substantiation of the values and approaches used with appropriate levels of conservatism and redundancy. The lack of a clear approach contributes to confusion regarding the level of conservatism, particularly for a preliminary design. Using the NRC SRP for TWRS (NUREG-1702) as a guide, it is unlikely that the current design would have adequate conservatism and DID if it were undergoing a licensing process with the NRC. 4.4 LIMITED USE OF NRC REGULATIONS AND GUIDANCE

The DOE regulation of TWRS-P primarily uses documents and guidance written by DOE and its contractors specific to Hanford and the tank wastes (see Section 1.3). Limited use is made of NRC guidance and regulations apart from the principles of good regulation. For example, the NRC has revised its 10 CFR Part 70 regulations which would be used if the TWRS-P were to transition to NRC regulation. The NRC has published in final form a standard review plan for TWRS-P facilities (Main Reference 15). These can be used for either one-step (combined construction and operating) or two-step (construction first, followed by a separate operating submittal) licensing. However, the TWRS/River Protection Project does not plan to use either in the regulation of these facilities. In addition, there is a desire to avoid nuclear reactor-related regulations, guidance, codes, and standards, without fully evaluating the applicability and appropriateness of these reactor areas of review. Given the highly radioactive nature of the materials that would be in the proposed TWRS-P facility, it would seem that some reactor regulations and guidance might be applicable. There are also differences in the NRC approach. While the NRC does not usually participate in discussions and meetings with potential licensees at a preliminary design level, it occasionally does (e.g., the proposed mixed oxide fuel facility). The NRC does not develop standards via a contractual, licensee developed process. The NRC process for developing regulations invites stakeholder participation (e.g., the recent 10 CFR Part 70 revisions) and, once the regulations are developed, approved and promulgated, the NRC expects all of the affected licensees to abide by the regulatory requirements. The related guidance might include values or methods for determining source terms and release fractions, an area where there have been significant variations in TWRS-Pófor example, the RU initially suggested the use of lower radionuclide concentrations after encouraging the contractor to go with higher ones. The NRC generally does not develop customized regulations and standards for each licensee. This approach helps to maintain consistency in regulatory and safety matters. Unlike many other DOE programs, there did not appear to be any routine reports (monthly, quarterly, or annual) that definitively discussed the current design, safety features, and the evolution thereof. The standard approach of issuing a draft followed by a final version (after comment resolution) a few months later has not been followed for major reports. For example, NUREG-1747 138

the FFP submittal represented the first complete design ìreportî after the ISAR, corresponding to a chronological spacing of some 28 months. Revisions and updates of major deliverables are not timely; the first SRD revision occurred one year after the initial version, and a revised Hazards Analysis Report will occur 3 years after the original version. Similar communication issues exist with Safety Analysis Reportsóthe time period between the ISAR and the CAR/Preliminary Safety Analysis Report will be at least 3 years. The RU has closed items from previous reviews after discussions with the contractor. However, it is not clear if these are actually closed in the usual sense of the word (i.e., fully addressed now) or adequately addressed in an SER-like (safety evaluation report) method. Frequently, ìclosureî is used to denote agreement on an approach to address the issue, not necessarily closure itself. Sometimes a clear course of action or a commitment by the contractor is not apparent. The DOE program managers in ORP did not appear to actively communicate with the RU on a routine basis and at a functional level. The NRC has found that clear documentation, communication, and tracking are beneficial for regulatory reviews. DOE has used subcontractors extensively for reviews. For example, approximately 50 percent of the RU budget is due to subcontractors. Relatively few people in the DOE/RU/contractor environment appeared to have a background compatible with greenfield design and regulation of a new process and facility. The subcontractors have performed significant roles in the reviews for large submittals and have developed and written guidance. At times, DOE has performed more in an oversight role over their subcontractors than in some of the reviews. In contrast, the NRC tends to rely less on subcontractors.

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5.0 POTENTIAL ISSUES FOR TRANSITION TO U.S. NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION REGULATION
The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) have previously discussed issues related to the potential regulatory transition of Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization (TWRS-P) to NRC regulation in the near future. Many of these issues are summarized in Main Reference 17 and have been discussed between the DOE and NRC over the 3 year length of the program. DOE is converting the contracts to an Management and Operations (M&O) arrangement for TWRS, which has been renamed the River Protection Project-Waste Treatment Plant (RPP-WTP). The NRC staff believes that enabling legislation from Congress is required for the NRC to regulate either a privatized TWRS-P facility or an RPP-WTP, and that any resulting issues are resolvable. From the viewpoint of the NRC staff, most of the issues would be addressed by the legislation that enables NRC regulatory authority over the TWRS/WTP facilities or NRC external regulation of DOE facilities, and by continued refinement and detailing of the proposed facility designs. The remaining issues relate to DOE programmatic activities and not regulation. The following sections summarize the issues and the preliminary assessment of the NRC staff; Attachment D provides a discussion of the issues in more detail. 5.1 EMERGENCY PLANNING

The TWRS-P Contractor defined an approach in accordance with DOE guidance. There were several issues related to the integration of the TWRS-P emergency plan (EP) with the Hanford site EPs and organizations (e.g., the Hanford Fire Department) which were being worked upon at the time of contract termination. It is anticipated that the transition and subsequent new M&O contractors will address these integration issues. From the point of view of the NRC staff, if NRC were to regulate the RPP-WTP facility, it would be expected that the integration issues will be fully resolved, communication and responsibilities will be clearly defined, and the WTP facility EP manager will have the authority to direct the Hanford site EP as necessary based upon the integrated safety analysis (ISA). 5.2 REGULATORY AUTHORITY AND CLASSIFICATION OF RADIOACTIVE WASTES

As designed by the Contractor, the TWRS-P facility would have generated vitrified low activity waste (LAW) and facility wastes, such as failed melters and high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters. Long term storage of these wastes was planned at the Hanford site. If the decision were made for disposal at the Hanford site, existing waste management and disposal areas would be used, subject to the wastes meeting the applicable disposal unitís waste acceptance criteria. These disposal facilities are regulated by DOE for radioactive components and by the State of Washington for hazardous constituents. If the NRC were to regulate RPPWTP, the vitrified LAW and facility wastes would be regulated by the NRC for their radioactive components while they are located at the facility. The NRC would likely designate the vitrified LAW and facility wastes as incidental wastes, i.e., incidental to high level waste (HLW) processing. After the contractor has returned the wastes to DOE, regulation of the radioactive component would revert to DOE provided incidental waste criteria are met. The NRC and DOE have discussed the handling of incidental wastes and criteria several times on other HLW programs; basically, the incidental waste was considered to be suitable for near-surface 141 NUREG-1747

disposal if 10 CFR Part 61 criteria for low level waste (LLW) are met. RPP-WTP incidental wastes are likely to meet those criteria, and hence, the issue should be easily resolved. 5.3 SAFEGUARDS AND SECURITY

The physical protection requirements for various classifications of nuclear materials are very similar between the DOE and the NRC. Both recognize the differences in the quantities and attractiveness characteristics of the materials in the application of the requirements. In addition, for special nuclear material (SNM) at a TWRS facility, the facility design (multiple confinement layers and cells), the dilute concentrations of SNM, and the highly radioactive nature of the matrix (waste) containing the SNM contribute to its physical protection. DOE has categorized the tank materials as waste and removed it from the safeguards program. The NRC believes that operations at the proposed TWRS facilities and wastes from specific tanks may result in the accumulation or de facto separation of SNM, and, thus, might require safeguards. Consequently, the NRC has the position that the issue should be revisited once the design is further along (say at the Construction Authorization Request/Preliminary Safety Analysis Report (CAR/PSAR) stage) and when more operating details are available (for example, at the Operations Authorization Request stage). Given the similarity between NRC and DOE safeguards requirements, the NRC does not see this as a significant issue. 5.4 REGULATION OF EMISSIONS

Under the current regulatory approach, air emissions from the facility are regulated by the State of Washington. If the NRC were to assume regulatory authority for TWRS/WTP, the NRC would regulate portions of air emissions. Since there is precedence for this approach (both the State and NRC regulate emissions at the Siemens facility), the NRC staff does not view it as a significant issue. 5.5 CO-LOCATED WORKER

Section 3.4.2 presents more information on the co-located worker (CLW). In summary, the DOE is using the concept of CLW for the proposed TWRS/WTP facilities; essentially the CLW is allowed the same dose and risk limits as the workers and all members of the public, visitors, etc., to the site are considered ìgeneral employeesî and are allowed to accumulate occupational exposure. For TWRS-P, DOE plans to use a large portion of the Hanford site for this purpose, which typically results in minimum distances to members of the public (i.e., with lower dose and risk limits) of approximately 10 miles. In contrast, the NRC focuses on the concept of ìcontrolled areaî by the facility operator; at NRC facilities, this is usually associated with a fence although the controlled area can extend beyond the fence and even beyond the site boundary. Thus, the NRC approach usually corresponds to a shorter distance (usually 100-200 meters) to the public for accident analysis purposes, which can translate into more items relied on for safety (IROFS). However, the key concept is the TWRS/WTP operatorís authority to exercise control over the Hanford site emergency plans; if such authority is granted by DOE to the TWRS/WTP operator, then the ìcontrolled areaî concept may be satisfied, and the issue is moot. In addition, the dose limits require comparison. Under the TWRS-P/privatization regulatory program, the dose limits were 25 rem for the worker, CLW, and the public for highly unlikely events (the public had a target dose goal of 5 rem). In DOE, highly unlikely corresponds to the NUREG-1747 142

frequency range of 1E-4/yr to 1E-6/yr. From the perspective of the NRC staff, the revised 10 CFR Part 70 and standard review plan (SRP) have a worker dose limit of 100 rem and a public dose limit of 25 rem for high consequence events, and corresponding limits of 25 rem and 5 rem for intermediate consequence events. High consequence events are to be rendered highly unlikely (1E-5/yr or less in frequency) by safety controls, and intermediate consequence events are to be rendered unlikely (in the 1E-2/yr to 1E-5/yr frequency range) by safety controls. Thus, at face value, the DOE limits are more restrictive although the fuel cycle SRP89 does allow grading of the frequency limit in inverse proportion to the magnitude of the consequences and this could result in the limits overlapping. Again, the NRC staff considers this to be a resolvable issue. As an aside, the NRC notes the DOE regulatory approach should consider future site changes planned that are likely to reduce the distances to the public for accident evaluation purposes (see Issue A.13 in Attachment A). 5.6 WASTE OWNERSHIP

As part of the privatization contracts, DOE retained ownership of the waste materials. Part 70 of 10 CFR does not require transfer of ownership. Thus, assuming the new contract(s) still require ownership of the wastes by DOE, the NRC staff do not believe there is an issue. 5.7 PAYMENT FOR TRANSITION TO NRC REGULATION AND NRC REGULATORY OVERSIGHT

NRC involvement in TWRS-P has been funded via a line item in the budget. Future regulation of a TWRS/WTP facility by the NRC would require legislation that would also identify the funding mechanism, be it by line items, fee collection, DOE payments, or a combination thereof. It is anticipated that the NRC regulatory costs would be a small fraction of the actual DOE expenditures to the contractors on the tank waste programs. The NRC staff does not see this as a significant issue. 5.8 TRI-PARTY AGREEMENT

DOE is a party to the Tri-Party Agreement (TPA) and is responsible for TPA commitments. The NRC staff would expect the NRC to remain a non-party to the TPA consistent with other regulators (e.g., Defense Nuclear Facilities Board (DNFSB), Washington Department of Health (WDOH)). The NRC staff does not see this as a significant issue. 5.9 DOE STOP WORK AUTHORITY

The DOE currently has stop work authority for safety concerns under the contract. The NRC staff anticipates both the NRC and DOE would have stop work authority for safety concerns if regulatory transition occurred, and the staff does not consider this to be a significant issue.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). NUREG-1520, ìDraft Standard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for a Fuel Cycle Facility.î NRC: Washington, D.C. 2000.

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5.10

DOE SAFETY OVERSIGHT AFTER REGULATORY TRANSITION

The DOE currently is the regulator for the proposed TWRS/WTP activities. After transition, the NRC would be the regulator. The NRC staff anticipates the DOE would want to perform some safety oversight activities in a manner analogous to a corporate headquarters unit providing oversight to an operating facility. The NRC staff does not consider this to be a significant issue, 5.11 APPLICATION OF NRC (10 CFR PART 2) HEARING REQUESTS

The potential regulation of the proposed TWRS/WTP facilities by the NRC would probably invoke the NRC Rules of Practice (i.e., 10 CFR Part 2), which allow for public hearings. Hearings require scheduling and can take time. However, licensing under 10 CFR Part 70 would focus hearings on more specific issues and be relatively expeditious. In addition, legislation authorizing NRC regulation of TWRS/WTP might dictate a schedule for hearings. Furthermore, if the facility is well along into construction or even starting operations at the time of transition to NRC regulation, a certification process (for existing facilities) may be more appropriate. Certification would allow the activities at the plant to continue while the hearings and other reviews are completed. Consequently, whether the route is licensing, Congressional mandate, or certification, the NRC staff does not foresee a significant schedule impact from the hearing process, and, thus, does not consider this to be a significant issue. 5.12 CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS FOR FEED DELIVERY

DOE will continue to deliver radioactive feed material to the Contractor. Presumably, DOE will agree to abide by the direction of the NRC-regulated Contractor as to the rate and characteristics of this feed material. The NRC staff expects there will be specifications and safety requirements for the wastes and the plant operations. If the wastes cannot be blended, then an amendment process could be pursued by the licensee (an amendment process has already been implemented at the gaseous diffusion plants (GDPs). This is not an issue for regulatory transition. 5.13 COMMUNICATION PLAN WITH STAKEHOLDERS

The NRC anticipates that the existing DOE communication plans (e.g., with the Hanford Advisory Board) would continue during and after transition to NRC regulation, as they are separate from the regulatory processes. In addition, the NRC also maintains public communication and openness as part of its regulatory practices. Therefore, the NRC staff does not consider this a significant issue. 5.14 COST BENEFIT OF NRC REGULATION

The NRC staff considers NRC regulation of TWRS/WTP facilities to be a national policy issue and not decided by cost/benefit analyses. The NRC staff does not consider this a transition issue.

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5.15

ROLE OF THE DEFENSE NUCLEAR FACILITIES SAFETY BOARD

The NRC has determined that legislative authority is required for it to regulate TWRS/WTP facilities. As part of such legislation, the NRC staff anticipates that regulatory roles will be clearly defined and based upon precedent at the enrichment and spent nuclear fuel (SNF) storage facilities that the NRC regulates at DOE sites; the staff does not expect a role for dual NRC/DNFSB oversight of TWRS/WTP. The NRC staff does not consider this an issue. 5.16 PRICE-ANDERSON INDEMNIFICATION

The NRC anticipates the legislation enabling NRC regulation will define any Price-Anderson indemnification requirements. The NRC staff does not consider this an issue. 5.17 TIMING TO AVOID DELAYS FROM REGULATORY TRANSITION

DOE wishes to select the timing for transition so as to reduce the potential for disruption to a minimum. Some timing considerations tend to conflict. In programmatic terms, it would be beneficial for DOE that transition occurs sometime after full and confirmed operation so that it could be assured that the plant meets its specifications. On the other hand, to minimize potential retrofit changes in meeting NRCís regulatory expectations, it might be preferable to make the transition as soon as possible. (This can also be accomplished by resolving all regulatory differences prior to construction and transitioning later.) The NRC staff believes that there are three alternatives for the timing of regulatory transition: 1) immediately, 2) overlapping, or parallel, regulatory transition process during design, or 3) regulatory transition during operations. Alternatives one and two correspond to licensing of the vitrification plant, for which rules and guidance already exist. Alternative 3 represents a certification route. The NRC staff believes the legislation establishing NRC regulation of TWRS/WTP will define the timing for transition. 5.18 DOE FINANCIAL INTERESTS

DOE has expressed concerns about protecting its financial interests in the vitrification facility. DOE has already invested several hundred million dollars in the Phase I activities. The completion of the design and construction activities in Phase I may amount to another $4 Billion. Thus, DOE has considerable financial interests in the program. The NRC has no financial interests to protect. The NRC staff does not consider this a regulatory transition issue. 5.19 QUALITY ASSURANCE

The DOE TWRS Quality Assurance (QA) program requirements and the TWRS-P contractorís DOE-approved QA programs may need to be modified in order to facilitate the transition to NRC regulation. The NRC staff believes the differences in QA requirements are small and the adequacy of the QA program really depends upon its implementation. The NRC staff does not consider this a significant transition issue.

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5.20

IMPACTS ON OTHER HANFORD SITE FACILITIES

DOE is concerned that there may be impacts upon non-TWRS/WTP facilities at Hanford after regulatory transition to the NRC. The technical impacts to non-TWRS-P facilities of TWRS-P regulatory transition would have to be identified, evaluated, and addressed on an individual basis as such issues arise. Coordinating the transition to external regulation of the tank farm storage and vitrification facilities will likely reduce the impacts to the non-vitrification portion of the tank farms, which is the non-TWRS/WTP facility most susceptible to these impacts. The NRC staff does not consider this an issue for regulatory transition. 5.21 RESPONSIBILITY FOR OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY

For its facilities, DOE has regulatory authority for occupational safety. For NRC licensed facilities, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has such authority. If the TWRS/WTP transitioned to NRC regulatory oversight, OSHA may assume regulatory authority for occupational safety. The NRC staff anticipates that the enabling legislation for NRC regulation would clearly define the responsibilities. 5.22 TAILORING OF REQUIREMENTS

The NRC and DOE use different approaches for the tailoring of requirements for safe mission performance. This issue concerns the different approaches used by DOE and NRC for establishing requirements for achieving adequate safety and reconciliation of any differences in the approaches to facilitate seamless transition from DOE to NRC regulation, should transition occur at a future date. As discussed in more detail in Attachment D, even though the DOE approach to establishing requirements is somewhat different that the NRC approach, the requirements resulting from either approach will likely achieve adequate safety, and significant reconciliation may not be necessary. The NRC staff believes this issue is not significant and disappears if regulatory transition occurs in the near-term. 5.23 ACHIEVEMENT OF ADEQUATE SAFETY

DOE and NRC conclusions on achievement of adequate safety may be different and need reconciliation to facilitate possible future transition of the TWRS/WTP project to NRC regulation. The DOE regulatory approach for TWRS-P safety (radiological, nuclear, and process) places on the TWRS-P Contractor the responsibility to achieve (a) adequate safety for the workers and the public (b) comply with applicable laws and legal requirements, and (c) conform to DOE stipulated top-level safety standards and principles.90 Within this regulatory framework, the TWRS-P Contractor identifies the work needed, evaluates the associated hazards, selects appropriate standards, and justifies the adequacy of the selected standards.91 The NRC has expressed the following concerns about the process for TWRS-P:

90

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-97-10, Rev. 1, ìRadiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of TWRS Privatization Contractors Regulatory Plan.î January 1998.
91

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL-96-0004, Rev. 0, ìProcess for Establishing a Set of Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Requirements for TWRS Privatization.î February 1996.

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1. Safety requirements were proposed and conditionally approved during the pre-conceptual design phase of the facility. This attempt to reach judgment on adequate safety was performed prior to the majority of design information being available. 2. For both regulatory processes, the determination of adequate safety is somewhat subject to engineering judgment, and as such, should transition occur, additional requirements and potential backfits could be needed. The NRC staff believe this is a technical issue that requires additional design effort by the contractors. 5.24 EFFECT OF SCHEDULE DELAYS ON THE OVERALL RISK

DOE has expressed interest in balancing the risks posed by continued operation of the tanks with the risks posed by operation of the vitrification plant, regardless of the regulatory framework, as a way of avoiding schedule delays. In theory, the requirements could be different (and less) against a baseline of an existing hazard which could be reduced by the operation of the facility. From the viewpoint of DOE, early startup, high availability, and high capacity operation of the vitrification plant could serve to reduce the risks posed by the tanks, even if regulatory requirements on the vitrification plant were relaxed. NRC requirements have been established to minimize risks of operation of a facility relative to a baseline of no-operation, even though NRC can consider balancing risks within a facility. However, NRC operates to codified regulations (10 CFR Part 70) and, while provision for risk benefits and balancing can be made via the risk-informed, performance-based approach, it can be difficult to manage and balance the different risks on a quantitative basis with limited information on the design and safety features of the TWRS/WTP facility. Regulatory requirements could be administered with recognition of the real risks from the degrading tanks as baseline risks. The NRC staff anticipates that the scope of NRC regulationóthe TWRS/WTP facilities, tank farms, other Hanford facilitiesówill be defined in the enabling legislation. A single regulatory entity offers consistency and the potential to consider total risks from tank waste management. However, absent specific design and quantitative analysis, it is not possible to assess balancing total risk for the tank waste/HLW related systems at Hanford and achieving adequate assurances of safety is likely to be based upon individual facility analyses. 5.25 RESOURCE ALLOCATION ACROSS TWRS-RELATED FACILITIES

DOE has expressed concerns about balancing the resources available for the safety features of the TWRS/WTP (the vitrification facilities in particular) across the entire TWRS complex. The NRC is concerned with adequate assurances of safety for the workers, the public, and the environment. Once safety and regulatory requirements are met for TWRS/WTP, resource allocation is an internal DOE matter. The NRC staff expects the scope of NRC regulation to be defined in the enabling legislation.

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5.26

BACKFIT/RETROFIT

Changes may be required as the TWRS/WTP facility transitions to NRC regulation. The TWRS/WTP facility could be subjected to new or modified requirements imposed by NRC if regulatory transition occurs. These new or modified requirements may require that the TWRS/WTP facility be modified. Terms such as ìbackfitî and ìretrofitî are commonly used to describe modifications that are made in response to new or modified requirements. The NRC anticipates that some backfits/retrofits may be necessary upon transition of the TWRS/WTP to NRC regulatory authority. However, the NRC staff expects these to be minor because the facilities would represent new design and construction with complete documentation and the NRC has participated with DOE and their contractors in Phase IA and Phase IB-1 of the program. Regulatory transition of other TWRS activities might involve older facilities with less documentation and could result in more significant requirements. 5.27 SCOPE OF NRC REGULATION

DOE has discussed the scope of NRC regulation, including facilities beyond the immediate TWRS/WTP facilities. Cases exist or will exist on DOE sites where NRC regulates one facility and DOE regulates other facilities, although these have much simpler interfaces than at TWRS. The TMI-2 Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation (at the DOE Idaho Site) is an example of a case where NRC will license and regulate a new facility that will receive waste from an existing facility, specifically the Test Area North (TAN) facility. In this case, DOE regulates current TAN facility spent fuel pool storage operations and will regulate dry storage cask loading operations performed at the TAN facility. NRC regulation will begin when the fuel leaves the TAN facility boundary in an approved transportation cask.92 In another case, at the Portsmouth and Paducah GDPs, certain operations have been certified by NRC while others remain under DOE control. This shared site arrangement required that regulatory boundaries be established to ensure a clear understanding of responsibilities for regulatory oversight and the rules governing particular portions of the plants.93 The NRC staff anticipates that the scope of NRC regulationóthe TWRS/WTP facilities, tank farms, other Hanford facilitiesówill be defined in the enabling legislation. A single regulatory entity offers consistency and the potential to consider total risks from tank waste management. However, absent specific design and quantitative analysis, it is not possible to assess balancing total risk for the tank waste/HLW related systems at Hanford and achieving adequate assurances of safety is likely to be based upon individual facility analyses.

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). Section 1.2, Rev. 0, ìLicense Application for the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory Three Mile Island Unit Two Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation, DOE Idaho Operation Office.î DOE: Washington, D.C. October 1996. Buhl, A.R., T. Murley, G. Edgar and D. Silverman. ìNRC Regulation of DOE Facilities.î Nuclear News, p. 32. May 1997.
93

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5.28

LOCATION OF THE REGULATOR

DOE believes the regulator should be located near the Hanford site. The NRC staff anticipates that NRC regulation of TWRS/WTP facilities would involve some staff FTEs (full time equivalents) at the Hanford site, some staff FTEs at the Region IV Office, and some staff FTEs at NRC Headquarters. The actual numbers would be determined by Congress via the enabling legislation and the scope of NRC regulation it requires. 5.29 MULTI-STEP LICENSING

The program for TWRS/WTP is split into several phases, and a multi-step licensing process may be more appropriate. The revised 10 CFR Part 70 allows multi-step licensing. An amendment process would allow the constructed TWRS/WTP facility the opportunity to obtain approval for changes, different flow capacities, and different radionuclide inventories. This is not an issue. 5.30 DIFFERENCES IN 10 CFR PART 20 AND 10 CFR PART 835

DOE believes differences in 10 CFR Part 20 and 10 CFR Part 835 need to be understood and reconciled to the extent necessary. For the most part, DOE and NRC radiation protection regulations are similar, bur a few significant differences exist. The most notable difference is that requirements found in 10 CFR Part 20 are more comprehensive that the 10 CFR Part 835 requirements, but where differences in dose values exist, the DOE requirements are usually more conservative. Both agencies also agreed that the key to developing a 10 CFR Part 20 compliant Radiation Protection Program (RPP) lies in the details of the implementation of the Safety Requirements Document (SRD) Safety Criteria for radiation protection. The TWRS-P Contractor had not developed the implementation details. It was expected that the level of detail needed to better evaluate compliance with 10 CFR Part 20 would become available at the PSAR stage when the TWRS-P Contractor would have submitted a revised RPP for construction. It is expected that a similar approach will be taken by the new contractors working under M&O arrangements. The NRC staff does not consider this a transition issue. 5.31 COST OF CONTRACTOR DOCUMENTATION

DOE expects there may be some costs associated with changing documentation to meet NRC expectations after regulatory transition. Regulation by the NRC may require additional documentation, different formats, more specificity, or additional analyses. It would be expected that if the TWRS/WTP contractors were in compliance with the DOE regulatory framework at the time of transition to NRC regulation, the costs for revision of new plant documents (all of which would likely be available in electronic formats) would be small. Given the use of M&O contracts, DOE would fund these documentation requirements and changes. The NRC staff does not consider this a significant transition issue.

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5.32

THE ROLE OF DOE ORDERS VERSUS NRC RULES

DOE is concerned that there may be misunderstandings regarding the applicability and enforceability of DOE Orders and their relationship with DOE rules. In the transition of regulatory oversight from DOE to the NRC for the GDPs, the NRC presumed that the GDPs were required to strictly comply with DOE Orders. However, that was not the case. Thus, the role of DOE Orders in the conduct of DOE business requires clarification. The term ìOrderî or more precisely, ìSafety Orderî is a misnomer and leads one to a basic misconception in understanding the DOE regulatory process. The terminology problems can be exacerbated because the NRC regulatory structure also includes the term ìOrderî but it is used in the more conventional sense. NRC Orders have the force of law and are issued to licensees as mandatory requirements. Contrary to what the term ìOrderî implies, DOE Safety Orders are not, on their own, legal requirements and are not necessarily mandatory. Order-related lessons learned from the GDP transition are not generally applicable to TWRS. DOE Order compliance was specifically excluded from the TWRS-P contract.94 Both the DOE and NRC have been involved in developing the TWRS-P regulatory (Integrated Safety Management Plan [ISMP] and SRD) and design (ISA and Safety Analysis Report [SAR]) bases. The regulatory basis for the new contracts has not been defined yet. The NRC staff does not consider this an issue. 5.33 THE ROLE OF NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT IN REGULATORY TRANSITION

DOE believes the potential effects of National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) need to be considered for regulatory transition. Since the TWRS/WTP project is a major Federal action, DOE has prepared an environmental impact statement (EIS). The EIS considers the actual cleanup activities and operations of the TWRS-P facilities and includes its construction, operation, and decontamination and decommissioning activities. The NRC staff does not consider this an issue because of the existing NEPA coverage and the similarities between the two agencies in their approaches to NEPA 5.34 ROLE OF THE ACRS OR ACNW IN REGULATORY OVERSIGHT TRANSITION

DOE is concerned by the potential effects of the Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS) and/or the Advisory Committee on Nuclear Waste (ACNW) on the transition of TWRS/WTP regulation from DOE to NRC. The ACNW would likely take an interest in the transition of regulatory responsibility associated with TWRS-P. A review of ACNW reports from July 1996 to the present suggests that a typical ACNW recommendation would be expected within 3 months of an initial presentation of the issue to the Committee. Some issues, that were not time sensitive, were not concluded for up

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE) Rev. 1 ìRadiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of TWRS Privatization Contractors,î Regulatory Plan. DOE: Richland, Washington. January 1998.

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to a year, while reports on other issues were released within 1 week of the presentation to the Committee. Records of recent meetings suggest that ACNW involvement in the TWRS-P regulatory oversight transition process would not result in any delays. ACNW participation in the process would occur in parallel with other transition/licensing activities. The NRC staff does not consider this to be a significant issue because no delays are anticipated. 5.35 IMPACT ON FUTURE GENERATIONS

DOE is interested if there would be any impacts from regulatory transition upon future generations and resources. The premise for the TWRS-P vitrification plant is that it will take waste, process it, and return a stable vitrified waste form for stable, long-term storage and disposal. By doing so, DOE intends to remediate the Hanford waste tanks and, eventually, in the mid-21st Century,95 return the land to beneficial us as it was prior to 1940. Future generations in the latter half of the 21st Century would benefit by greater land resources than are available now. External regulation of DOE facilities, including TWRS/WTP facilities, is expected to improve the safety and protection of workers, the public, and the environment. This can only have a positive effect upon the future. The NRC staff does not see this as an issue for regulatory transition. 5.36 PUBLIC INPUT TO REGULATORY DECISIONS

DOE is concerned that regulatory decisions may not continue to be open to the public and public input after transition of regulation to the NRC. The transfer of TWRS-P to NRC regulatory oversight would result in the NRC licensing or certifying the TWRS-P Contractorís facility. In any licensing action, NRC is required to obtain public participation under 10 CFR Part 2, the Rules of Practice. In this process, the interaction is more formal and judicially governed than in the DOE case. NRC generally conducts interactions with the licensee in the public domain to the maximum extent possible. The ongoing pre-licensing activities on the mixed oxide project are a good example. The NRC staff does not consider this an issue as NRC practices and procedures usually result in more openness with the public than DOE regulatory actions.

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The Tri-Party Agreement specifies complete clean-up of tank wastes by 2028, following which time the tanks themselves and all appurtenances would require decontamination and decommissioning and disposal.

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6.0 FUTURE ITEMS, EVENTS, AND CONCERNS
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has stated its intention to maintain the schedule as it transitions to the new contractor and Management and Operations (M&O) contracting arrangement. The original schedule at the time of this writing was (December 2000): RPP: LCAR: Seismic Issues: ISMP: HAR: SRD: CAR: Radiation Protection Program for Design, Construction, and Operation. Limited Construction Authorization Request - due at the end of June 2000. Subject of the Topical Meeting, end of July 2000. Integrated Safety Management Plan - revision due at the end of August 2000. Hazards Analysis Report - revision due at the end of September 2000. Standards Requirement Document - revision due at the end of October 2000. Construction Authorization Request - due early February 2001.

No revised schedule for these regulatory events is currently available.

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7.0 Main References
1. Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL). PNL-10773, ìHanford Tank Cleanup: A Guide to Understanding the Technical Issues.î Third Printing, (Gephart, R.E. and R.E. Lundgren). PNL: Richland, Washington. February 1997. BNFL Inc. BNFL-5193-HAR-01, Rev. 0, ìHazards Analysis Report (HAR).î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. 1997. BNFL Inc. BNFL-5193-SRD-01, Rev. 0, ìSafety Requirements Document (SRD).î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. September 26, 1997. BNFL Inc. BNFL-5193-ISP-01, Rev. 4, ìIntegrated Safety Management Plan (ISMP).î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. 1998. BNFL Inc. BNFL-5193-ISAR-01, Rev. 0, ìInitial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR).î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. 1998. Lockheed Martin Advanced Environmental Systems (LMAES). TWRS-P-CD-08, Rev. 0, ìSafety Requirements Document (SRD).î LMAES: Richland, Washington. July 22, 1997. Lockheed Martin Advanced Environmental Systems (LMAES). TWRS-P-CD-010, Rev. 2, ìHazards Analysis Report (HAR).î LMAES: Richland, Washington. January 23, 1998. Lockheed Martin Advanced Environmental Systems (LMAES). TWRS-P-CD-065, Rev. 1, ìLMAES ISMP, in Reference 6 and Safety Requirements Document Report.î January 23, 1998; and TWRS-P-CD-09, Rev. 2, ìIntegrated Safety Management Plan (ISMP).î January 23, 1998. LMAES: Richland, Washington. Lockheed Martin Advanced Environmental Systems (LMAES). TWRS-P-CD-061, Rev. 0, ìInitial Safety Assessment Packageî and TWRS-P-CD-016, Rev. 0 ìInitial Safety Assessment Report.î LMAES: Richland, Washington. January 1998. U.S. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-98-09, Revision 0, ìDOE Regulatory Unit: Initial Safety Evaluation Report of the BNFL Inc. Initial Safety Assessment.î DOE: Richland, Washington. March 1998. U.S. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-98-10, Revision 0, ìDOE Regulatory Unit: Initial Safety Evaluation Report of the LMAES ISA Package.î DOE: Richland, Washington. March 1998. K.D. DeTienne and A.D. Edmonson, ìGovernment Fair Cost Estimate River Protection Project - Privatization, Phase I, Part B,î Rev. 0, April 2000

2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

7.

8.

9.

10.

11.

12.

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BNFL Inc. ìFirm Fixed Price Submittal: Part B-1 Facility and Process Design Deliverables; Deliverables B-1-14, B-1-15, B-1-16, and B-1-17 on Current Facility and Process Design.î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. April 25, 2000. U.S. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-99-05, Rev. 2, ìGuidance for the Review of the TWRS-P Construction Authorization Request (CAR).î DOE: Richland, Washington. January 2000. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). NUREG-1702, Final Report, ìStandard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for the Tank Waste Remediation System Privatization (TWRS-P) Project.î NRC: Washington, D.C. March 2000. BNFL Inc. ìDesign Safety Features, RPT-W375-RU00001, Rev. 0,, Contract DE-AC0696RL13308.î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. February 24, 1999. U.S. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-99-01, Draft, ìIssues Related to the Potential Regulatory Transition of TWRS-P.î DOE: Richland, Washington. November 1998. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). ìProcess Safety of Proposed Tank Waste Remediation Systems (TWRS),î (Murray, A.P., M.N. Baker, L.W. Chang, and M.S. Srinivasan). NRC: Washington, D.C. May 1999. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). ìMaterials Considerations of Proposed Tank Waste Remediation Systems (TWRS),î (Srinivasan, M., A.P. Murray, and M.N. Baker). NRC: Washington, D.C. March 2000. U.S. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). Contract Number DE-AC06-RL13308, ìTWRS Privatization.î DOE: Richland, Washington. September 9, 1996. U.S. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). Contract Number DE-RP06-96RL13308, ìTWRS Privatization.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 1998. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). NUREG/CR-6410, ìNuclear Fuel Cycle Facility Accident Analysis Handbook.î NRC: Washington, D.C. March 1998. U.S. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). HDBK-3010-94, ìAirborne Release Fractions/Rates And Respirable Fractions For Nonreactor Nuclear Facilities,î Volumes 1 and 2. DOE: Richland, Washington. December 1994.

14.

15.

16. 17.

18.

19.

20. 21. 22. 23.

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APPENDIX A
SUMMARY OF ISSUES
Unresolved from the NRC perspective as of June 1, 2000. A1. LEVEL OF DETAIL

Statement of the Issue The documents describe the proposed facility, buildings, processes, and operations at an early stage of design, nominally 14 percent according to the Contractor (the basis for identifying this level of design has not been provided). However, the descriptions are frequently general and there are many places where the information is labeled as ìTBDî (to be determined) or to be determined by future program activities. Items relied on for safety (IROFS) are not consistently identified and described in these reports. The integrated safety management process appears to be at a preliminary draft stage. Specific Example(s) The Firm Fixed Price (FFP) contract contains numerous equipment lists and data sheets that do not specify either the materials, construction requirements, or the safety significance. The FFP system descriptions likewise do not identify the IROFS and their performance requirements for many systems. U.S. Department of Energy Position The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) believes the facility and process design information in the FFP submittal falls far short of the information required for the Preliminary Safety Analysis Report (PSAR). ìSignificant additional design information is requiredî (May 25, 2000 letter to DOE/Office of River Protection [DOE/ORP] from the Regulatory Unit [RU]). U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Concerns The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) would expect an application to focus on the salient design features and their safety implications, and their required performance requirements for IROFS. While this does not necessarily correspond to a set percentage of design or design level, sufficient information would be anticipated to allow the verification of the calculations and conclusions, and the identification of safety parameters. This would subsequently allow the determination of adequate assurances of safety. NRC Evaluation and Assessment At the present time, it would appear that the information lacks the level of detail that the NRC would normally anticipate in an application (e.g., see the standard review plan (SRP) (NUREG1702)), and, as such, it would be unlikely that the NRC would accept such a document as an application from a potential licensee. Given the magnitude of the safety information requirements, the frequent design changes, and the ongoing DOE contractual changes, it is unlikely that the detailed safety information will be available for sometime. 157 NUREG-1747

A2.

REASONABLE CONSERVATISM AND ADEQUATE ASSURANCES OF SAFETY

Statement of the Issue Many of the calculations presented to date appear to be based upon best bases or some form of average/mean values that represent actual process design points. Based upon a review of the FFP submittal, some of these best basis values may be an order of magnitude or more, lower than values allowed by the contract. Specific Example(s) The FFP contains two mass balances that indicate feed concentrations one order of magnitude lower for cesium-137 and other radionuclides, as compared to the upper bound of the contract range. Sodium values are in the 3M range as compared to a 10M upper bound in the contract. There are many systems with single point failure modes in the proposed design (e.g., single pumps in the evaporators) that would require shut down and drainage of the lines/vessels prior to maintenance. DOE Position In the May 25, 2000, letter from the RU to ORP, DOE states, ìThe level of conservatism and design margins are not mentioned for operations or safety parameters.î However, DOE has challenged the contractor about conservatism in design in prior Topical Meetings and related discussions. NRC Concerns The usual approach followed in licensing commercial nuclear facilities incorporates conservatism and margins into design activities so that flexibility is maintained and adequate levels of safety are assured. In addition, the usual engineering practice is to compensate for less design detail and more uncertainty by increasing the degree of conservatism in the safety analyses. Furthermore, the emphasis on cost (see item 6) has resulted in the (nonconservative) reduction of building footprints and cell sizes (i.e., the Contractor has assumed that this will reduce the program cost). However, this is likely to have unintended consequences that may actually increase costs (e.g., via maintenance); for example, multiple repositioning of manipulators during a task because of the tight space. Standard NRC guidance, such as the SRP and the Risk-Informed, Performance Based (RIPB) approach, would expect some level of conservatism in an application. The NRC would likely require incorporation of a level of conservatism into the design in order to maintain adequate assurances of safety. NRC Evaluation and Assessment It would be anticipated that a reasonable amount of conservatism would need to be incorporated into the design and safety analyses.

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A3.

RISK BASED DESIGN APPROACH

Statement of the Issue BNFL Inc. appears to be incorporating risk and probabilistic approaches into many aspects of the design process, and appears to be conducting the equivalent of a Level 3 probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) (i.e., estimates of reliability/failure probabilities, release source terms, and dose consequences). However, the equivalent of Level 3 PRAs are difficult to do and usually require a completely designed facility supported by historical operating information. Such a level of design and operational information is not available in the existing documents and is not likely to exist until significant additional design efforts are completed or the plant is constructed and operated. The approach also places a higher level of credence in the analytical methods and results than appears warranted. Furthermore, this approach appears to introduce substantial additional levels of difficulty into the design process and subsequent regulatory reviews. Specific Example(s) The Integrated Safety Management (ISM) 2 report and Seismic PRA reports both use PRA type methods. They are based upon an earlier design than the FFP submittal. Calculations and control strategies are based upon the numerical results without consideration of standard approaches (e.g., hydrogen monitoring for flammable gas accumulation, weld radiography). Proposed controls vary considerably from one iteration to the next. DOE Position DOE has endorsed a risk-based approach without consideration of baseline criteria or minimum standards. NRC Concerns Few baseline design criteria appear to be used in the design (see NUREG-1702). In the recent NRC white paper entitled, ìRisk-Informed and Performance-Based Regulation,î it is stated that, ì... the use of PRA technology should be increased in all regulatory matters to the extent supported by the state of the art in PRA methods and data, and in a manner that complements [not replaces] the NRCís deterministic approach and supports the NRCís traditional defense-indepth philosophy.î The white paper notes that the NRC does not endorse an approach that is risk-based or make decisions based solely upon the numerical results of risk assessments. Stated succinctly, the combined RIPB approach uses risk insight, engineering analysis, and judgement, including the principle of defense-in-depth and the incorporation of safety margins and performance history. NRC Evaluation and Assessment The risk-based approach being taken by DOE and BNFL Inc. in the Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization (TWRS-P) design process is a significant departure from that endorsed by the NRC. Such an approach is not likely to be acceptable in the NRC regulatory arena. A4. REDUNDANCY AND DEFENSE-IN-DEPTH 159 NUREG-1747

Statement of the Issue In the current facility design, some systems have multiple lines to provide for redundancy, while other systems have fewer lines or redundant flow paths or even single lines with single point failure modes. For example, the Process Vessel Ventilation System has three 100 percent fans with emergency poweróone fan running, one fan on standby, and one fan assumed to be unavailable due to maintenance. However, the cell ventilation systems have three 50 percent fans (two running, one in standby). Some pumps have duplicates. However, the evaporators (i.e., in two separate areasólow activity waste (LAW) receipt and Melter Feed Preparation) represent single point failure nodes in their areas, with one 100 percent pump each; maintenance requires drain down and flushing as there are no isolation valves. The normal process industry approach would have three pumps for each intended use. Another possible single failure vulnerability in the design is the single 7-day fuel oil tank serving the three emergency diesel generators (EDGs). The current system description for the EDGs indicates that there is a 2-hour fuel supply for each EDG. If the duration of the loss-of-offsite power extends beyond 2 hours, the EDGs (as implied by the system description) would only be supplied fuel from the single 7-day tank which does not meet the single failure criterion and Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Std 308 (referenced in the current Safety Requirements Documents [SRD]). Also, the current system description for the 4.16 kV power distribution system states that dividing loads into separate load groups is not a design criterion. This is counter to the redundancy requirements needed to support safety functions such as 3-100% trains of process vessel exhaust fans per the current ISM Summary. Based upon the provided information, some IROFS may not have adequate redundancy (e.g., cooling water coils). Dedicated spare tanks do not appear to have been incorporated into the approachófor example, only a single cesium concentrate tank is shown in the current design, even though it might contain tens of megacuries of activity. Supporting information is either nonexistent or appears insufficient to justify the differences in approaches. It appears that data for design and safety analysis originate from different sources and contexts, and apparently are not checked for compatibility including basic assumptions. This issue may be the result of an incomplete safety classification of the structures, systems, and components (SSC) at the current time as described in item 5 of these issues. To assure that the facility will be capable of planned operation and that excessive maintenance will not be needed, the NRC would anticipate that these deficiencies would be addressed in the near-term. A5. DESIGN/AUTHORIZATION BASES, CONCEPT EVOLUTION, DESIGN CHANGES, AND INTEGRATION

Statement of the Issue It appears that safety analyses are being performed using designs and/or bases that may be incompatible or have changed. For example, while it was anticipated that the design would meet the standards identified earlier during the hazard analysis and standards identification process, decisions have been made on specific design characteristics/components, with the intent of later modifying the standards to match the design. Significant design changes have occurred (e.g., extra tanks, changes in the buildings, less shielding) and may be continuing to occur, often without documentation of an explanation. In NUREG-1747 160

other words, the design basis (and ìAuthorization Basisî) have been changed but the analysesóand particularly the safety analysesówere using different bases and justifications. In addition, the Contractor did not appear to be following the SRD and its change process, and was not maintaining the Authorization Basis current. Many SSCs have been and are being designed at nominal service conditions and not for design basis conditions that envelope anticipated, off-normal and accident conditions. Some parameters have limited margin. Specific Example(s) Currently, many system descriptions for electrical systems and the ISM Summary pertaining to instrumentation and control (I&C) components do not reference the appropriate IEEE standards listed in related SRD safety criteria. The facilityís inventory has been significantly increased due to the addition of the LAW tanks (the ìsix-packî of 400 kgal per tank) and the storage of ultrafiltered high level waste (HLW) solids, yet this has not been reflected in the Authorization Basis over the past eight months. There is little documentation linking design changes (such as the elimination of the sulfate removal step) and their impacts from 1 month to the next. The FFP submittal is the first design update since the Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR)óa 2year time period. The ISM Cycle 2 submitted one month after the FFP submittal is based upon an earlier design. DOE Position DOE and BNFL, Inc. have stated that there is an ongoing "tailoring" effort to take exception to specific SRD standards and to delete and/or substitute all or parts of standards. Although this "tailoring" is going on, there is little formal documentation which evaluates the adequacy of the exceptions. As the result of a a special inspection in December 1999, the RU issued a Corrective Action Notice (CAN) against the Contractor for failing to adequately maintain the Authorization Basis. In response, the Contractor submitted several Authorization Basis Amendment Requests (ABARís) documenting some of the changes. NRC Concerns The Hazards Analysis Report (HAR), SRD, Integrated Safety Management Plan (ISMP), and ISAR are all part of the Authorization Basis. The Contractor failed to make changes in the Authorization Basis and to apply to the RU for approval. The design effort continued using different standards and bases. A design basis approach is not being followed from either the design or regulatory perspective.

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NRC Evaluation and Assessment The NRC would anticipate a more traditional approach to Authorization Basis/Design Basis management. For example, using the SRP, it would be expected that the documents would display an integrated and consistent level of design for the facility, with consistency in the design bases, codes, and standards for the safety structures, systems, and components. A6. SAFETY EMPHASIS

Statement of the Issue Cost and schedule are mentioned numerous times as the rationale for considering certain design approaches (e.g., the use of passive systems to avoid the cost of emergency/safetydesignated backups, reducing backup equipment). Thus, in an effort to reduce projected capital costs, design decisions are being made that may increase safety concerns and maintenance issues, and, for that matter, may even ultimately result in increased overall costs. Specific Example(s) Cost and schedule topics have arisen at essentially every Topical Meeting. In the June 2000 Topical Meeting, there were several questions about the cost (material and machining) of Hastelloy for the melters without a discussion of technical or safety-related functions/requirements, etc. DOE Position DOE/RU frequently broaches the subject of cost and schedule in regulatory and safety meetings. Some acquiescence on cost issues occurs. Frequently, it has been stated by both the RU and the Contractor that regulation can only occur by the contract. NRC Concerns This apparent design emphasis on cost and schedule perspectives dilutes the safety issues and may overlook safety requirements, thus requiring additional efforts by the Contractor and the regulators that may impact subsequent safety reviews. It is worth noting that the FFP submittal and associated decisions have not included reviews of the safety aspects of the proposed facility. A7. DOSE ASSESSMENT METHODOLOGY INCLUDING DATA SOURCES

Statement of the Issue BNFL Inc. has provided substantial information regarding the methodology (i.e., equations) that it intends to use for evaluation of worker, co-located worker, and public doses under both normal operating and accident conditions. However, as noted in item 16, there remain differences in what are considered acceptable approaches for certain accident scenarios. Regardless of the scenario, there are issues concerning (a) the sources of data to be used for evaluation of doses and (b) the degree of conservatism to be employed, as well as (c) the means by which uncertainty of many parameters would be addressed. NUREG-1747 162

Specific Examples 1. BNFL Inc. should clearly state the justification for the selection and use of its sources of data. A particular concern is the use of data derived from small deviations from normal conditions applied to accident conditions, without an assessment of its accuracy, validity, and pedigree. The use of the ìBest Basisî inventory in various scenarios should be justified as this may not adequately represent all feeds or be adequate for enveloping expected inventories for accident scenarios (i.e., itís nonconservative). Also, as the RU has pointed out, BNFL Inc. needs to provide a comparison with DOE-HNDB-3010-94 and NUREG/CR-6410 if other parameters are used. While the use of the Sellafield Database was withdrawn (letter CCN011928, Dobson to Gibbs, dated March 10, 2000), the use of BNFL Inc. data for reliability, corrosion, and filling voids in other data has been verbally mentioned in the April-June 2000 timeframe. The dose methodology appears to rely too heavily upon optimistic considerations, averages, and probabilities in the consequence estimates that imply but do not identify safety controls; these would be necessary items for review when the Construction Authorization Request (CAR) is received. By letter dated October 25, 1999, BNFL Inc. provided a report RPT-W375-NS00001, Rev. 0, ìDose Assessment Methodology Description.î The RU responded in a letter dated December 20, 1999, which indicated that ì. . . the [BNFL Inc.] document did not explain how a measure of conservatism in the analysis would be achieved to account for the level of uncertainty in the parameters.î The TWRS staff agrees with the position stated in this letter and has provided written comments (e.g., internal memo from Struckmeyer through Tokar to Leach dated March 8, 2000 and entitled, ìBackground Information and Comments on TWRS-P Project: ëDose Assessment Methodology Description,í ëSeismic Probabilistic Risk Analysis Dose Assessment Methodology Report,í and ëSeismic Probabilistic Risk Analysis Methodology Report.íî

2.

3.

DOE Position In letter 00-RU-0292 (Gibbs to Bullock, dated April 6, 2000), the RU accepted the final BNFL Inc. dose methodology described in a BNFL Inc. letter dated February 23, 2000. However, DOE submitted additional questions for consideration. NRC Concerns Additional radiological protection issues that were raised during the course of the NRCís involvement in the TWRS-P project The co-located worker issue: 1. 2. A difference in regulatory approach between DOE and NRC appears in the concept of a co-located worker. For the TWRS-P facility, in addition to the categories of general employee and radiological worker (defined in 10 CFR Part 835) and member of the public (defined in both 10 CFR Part 20 and Part 835), a third category known as the co-located worker 163 NUREG-1747

(CLW), has been defined within the ìTop-Level Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Principles for TWRS Privatization Contractors,î DOE/RL-96-0006, Revision 1, July 1998. The co-located worker is defined in Chapter 6.0, ìGlossary,î as the following: An individual within the Hanford Site, beyond the Contractor-controlled area, performing work for or in conjunction with DOE or utilizing other Hanford Site facilities. 3. No equivalent concept exists for NRC licensees. The co-located worker definition contains the term ìcontrolled area,î which is defined differently for DOE and its contractors (10 CFR Part 835) than it is for the NRC and its licensees (10 CFR Part 20). 10 CFR Part 835: Controlled area means any area to which access is managed by or for DOE to protect individuals from exposure to radiation and/or radioactive material. 10 CFR Part 20: Controlled area means an area, outside of a restricted area but inside the site boundary, access to which can be limited by the licensee for any reason. Note that the DOE term ìcontrolled areaî is virtually identical to the NRC term ìrestricted area.î There is no defined DOE term called ìrestricted area.î 10 CFR Part 20: Restricted area means an area, access to which is limited by the licensee for the purpose of protecting individuals against undue risks from exposure to radiation and radioactive materials. Restricted area does not include areas used as residential quarters, but separate rooms in a residential building may be set apart as a restricted area. 4. The co-located worker concept would be a difficult issue to resolve if regulatory control of the TWRS-P contractor were to shift from DOE to NRC. It would require either an exception to the NRC regulations or a change in (a reduction of) the exposure permitted to persons beyond the controlled area boundary (per 10 CFR Part 835) or restricted area boundary (per 10 CFR 20). [To accomplish a reduction in exposure after construction of the facility had been completed, it would be necessary to require the contractor to invoke one or more of the following remedies: retrofit with additional shielding, dilute the radioactive waste feed streams to lower the activity (and thereby increase the total volume of vitrified waste), moving co-located workers farther away from the contractorís facility, and possibly other methods.] Discussion of this issue between the two organizations produced no concession or compromise. When DOE concluded that there was little or no likelihood that such a transition would occur, the issue was left unresolved from the NRC point of view. Distance to site boundary: Although the concept of ìsite boundaryî may appear to be self-evident, it is not defined in 10 CFR Part 835. A definition is provided by Part 20: NUREG-1747 164

Site boundary means that line beyond which the land or property is not owned, leased, or otherwise controlled by the licensee. A consequence of the lack of a definition in 10 CFR Part 835, at least from the NRC point of view, is that DOE and/or its contractor can specify a ìfence-lineî for the calculation of dose to the public that is well beyond the boundary that is under direct oversight of the contractor. The area between the contractorís oversight and the boundary of the DOE-defined controlled area is the realm of the co-located workers. It should also be noted that most persons who are granted access within the Hanford site boundary will be considered occupationally exposed personnel by DOE, whereas under NRC regulations, many such persons would be considered members of the public. NRC Evaluation and Assessment It is imperative that the necessary justifications, as well as the information lacking in the report, be provided at or before the submittal of the CAR, as it has a potentially major bearing on the design of the facility. For example, if the dose consequence methodology underestimates the consequences and/or frequencies of potential events, IROFS and safety related SSCís may not be appropriately identified, and the facility may expose the workers, the public, and the environment to potentially excessive risks and hazards. Without this information, the regulators will be faced with having to make a decision on whether to approve the construction of a facility, based upon the acceptability of the facility design and proposed operations, but in the absence of key information needed to demonstrate that acceptability. A8. OPTIMISTIC DESIGN ASSUMPTIONS IMPACT ON OPERATIONS AND MAINTENANCE

Statement of the Issue The design approach assumes that the process and systems function as designed and planned, but some assumptions on operations and maintenance are outside the envelope of experimental or literature results. Shielding designs assume a full decontamination result without consideration of ìbleed-through,î carryover, or cross-contamination. It is not clear that the design addresses potential safety issues associated with the process not meeting its intended parameters (e.g., decontamination factors, concentrations, aging). Consequently, it may prove difficult for the facility to carry out planned operations or meet throughput expectation, and radiation field accrual due to these effects may increase worker doses and safety concerns. Though the regulatory review at a subsequent Safety Analysis Report (SAR) stage may show the need for design modifications with subsequent delays, it is also possible that these concerns will not be realized until the plant is in operation, resulting in plant derating or shutdown until the modifications can be completed.

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Specific Example The Contractor uses a ìbest basis inventoryî value for most of the feed concentrations. The FFP submittal contains two activity balances with feed concentrations approximately 2 percent of that allowed by the contract. From the same submittal and LAW building design reviews, the designers assume full cesium decontamination without provision for additional shielding (e.g., stronger foundations). The FFP design includes several single point failure nodes (e.g., the feed evaporator). DOE Position DOE/ORP appears to be encouraging this optimistic approach; one way is by emphasizing the DOE desire for higher capacities. For example, the FFP submittal includes a short report on facility capacity increases that does not evaluate any safety or regulatory concerns. This report also states the plant can increase the glass production rate of the melters by 100 percent. This corresponds to 100 percent availability of the melters and continuous operation beyond testing conditions with very high bubbling rates. In addition, increases in carryover into the offgas system and maintenance are not evaluated. DOE/RU has not assessed this aspect of the Contractorís activities. NRC Concerns The NRC would anticipate both realism and conservatism in a design submittal. The NRC would also expect an integrated approach that evaluates potential safety issues from all perspectives, including design, construction, operation, maintenance, replacement, and decontamination and decommissioning (D&D). An overly optimistic design may translate into significant maintenance and exposure issues. Also, optimism and higher capacity operation may overlook safety considerations and change the parameters/bases for the safety analyses (e.g., higher carryover of radionuclides to less shielded areas, higher frequency of accident precursor events due to more wear), potentially resulting in unanalyzed safety questions. NRC Evaluation and Assessment Both DOE and the Contractor need to incorporate realistic approaches to the proposed design. A9. UNCERTAINTIES

Statement of the Issue All mathematical and computer models have uncertainty. Atmospheric transport, dispersion, and consequence models have uncertainties that can be large, approaching several hundred percent at times. From the perspective of the proposed TWRS-P facility, these uncertainties arise from these main areas: 1. 2. Uncertainties in the waste analyses. Variability in the waste feeds and at surge/inventory points in the facility. 166

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3.

Model limitations caused by an incomplete understanding of the phenomena involved in the accident scenario or the transport, dispersion, and consequence to the human receptors. Partial modeling of the phenomena or the scenario events and sequences. Unknowns, uncertainties, or the lack of information in the numerical input required by the models. The impact of assumptions and default input data values. Design uncertainties (i.e., the facility is not fully designed and is unlikely to be so for a considerable time period).

4. 5. 6. 7.

The Contractor has not considered these uncertainties in the analyses to date. Specific Example(s) The material at risk calculations primarily use either best basis inventory or specific tank inventory data (based upon limited sampling). No uncertainty bounds are carried through the calculations. No percentile levels or other statistical bounds are identified. The respirable fraction (RF), airborne release fraction (ARF), and dispersion calculations by the Contractor sometimes use distributions in the input data as part of a PRA type of analysis. However, this approach confuses time dependence with uncertainty. In addition, the Contractor frequently mentions the mean or average for comparison with regulatory limits (e.g., the seismic PRA presentation at the October 1999 Topical Meeting). Inclusion of uncertainties or the consideration of uncertainties would exceed the limit, thus implying that adequate assurances of safety are not being achieved. NRC Concerns The NRC is concerned with adequate assurances of safety for the workers, the public, and the environment. On an experiential basis, the NRC has used and recommended for use conservative parameters and assumptions that would be expected to envelope uncertainties by a wide margin and beyond credible questioning of results. This approach might overestimate unmitigated doses but it results in the imposition of safety controls that reduce estimated doses from nuclear facilities that were significantly removed from any regulatory limits. Thus, compliance could be assured and adequate assurances of safety demonstrated relatively easily. However, the emphasis of DOE and the Contractor on the use of realistic values implies much smaller margins that may not accommodate uncertainties and may challenge regulatory limits. Fundamentally, if realistic assumptions and values approach a regulatory limit (say, within an order of magnitude), how is compliance demonstrated, and at what point/margin should as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) be applied to the design process?

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NRC Evaluation and Assessment BNFL Inc. and the RU have not identified an approach that addresses these uncertainties. The NRC would likely anticipate that uncertainties would be adequately addressed prior to a major submittal, in order to avoid additional regulatory reviews and potential delays. A10. LACK OF METHODOLOGY AND ìREASONABLE CRITERIAî FOR SELECTING APPROACHES AND INPUT VALUES

Statement of the Issue The design and analyses use mathematical models which require the selection of appropriate computer codes/algorithms and significant amounts of input data. Different models and input produce different results (e.g., dose consequence estimates from analyzing potential accidents), which can correspond to different potential severity levels, event frequencies, and reliabilities. The results (output) influence safety requirements, including identification of IROFS. BNFL Inc. has not clearly established the methodology for selecting models and input parameters that are consistent and appropriate for identifying and analyzing safety requirements, and that adequately incorporate reasonable conservatism/margin to address potential unknowns and uncertainties. Specific Example(s) The seismic and PRA models require a large amount of input data. When questioned about the sources and validity of the data at the October 1999 Topical Meeting, the Contractor responded that the data represented examples for exercising the models. Subsequent meetings, reports, and further responses to questions have not elicited any methodology and reasonable criteria for selecting models, approaches, and input values. DOE Position DOE is aware of the problem. NRC Concerns Standard NRC practice requires validation of models and input data. The NRC would anticipate that such validation would have occurred and been documented. Similarly, it would be anticipated that a methodology for selecting approaches and models that represent the system and safety conditions would exist and be documented. In short, the ìGIGOî (garbage-in, garbage-out) phenomena needs to be avoided. NRC Evaluation and Assessment In the absence of such methodology for model selection and validation, and clear criteria for data selection, it would not be possible to demonstrate adequate assurances of safety.

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A11.

DEFINITION OF UNMITIGATED EVENTS

Statement of the Issue The current approach does not appear to adequately address the significance of unmitigated events and their use in identifying IROFS. Currently, implicit assumptions are made about barriers; for example, a cell is assumed to provide certain decontamination factors (DFs) in accidents which result in a less severe consequence. A lower consequence usually translates into lower reliability and quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC) requirements. The DF assumption may result in overlooking and not identifying safety controls and their requirements, including reliabilities. Without a suitable definition for unmitigated events, safety requirements and controls may not be adequately identified and evaluated in safety analyses and submittals that might be evaluated under the SRP. Specific Examples The chemical safety analyses assume the function of diluting, identifying, and containment mechanisms, and include their source reduction effect without attributing any safety significance to these mechanisms. The ISM cycle 2 analyses use a cell DF of 10 for leak events and an aerosol concentration based upon a restricted volume. The FFP submittal mass balances use values for radionuclides that are well below the contract allowables (in some cases, 5 percent of the allowable value); mitigating mechanisms are not identified. DOE Position The RU is aware of the concerns. NRC Concerns Some of the ISM analyses are now using unmitigated analyses. However, there still is an apparent bias by the Contractor ISM review teams to implicitly rate hazards in a mitigated manner. In addition, the rationale for the selection of input parameters is not clear. Often, the parameters selected appear low for the situation and for regulatory and safety purposes. Thus, it is not clear that safety requirements are being adequately identified and categorized. NRC Evaluation and Assessment The Contractor has previously identified its approach for using unmitigated analyses for safety determinations and average parameters for determining mitigated effects and risk. This approach has been confused and muddled in many of the submittals received to date. The ISM process appears to contribute to this confusion. Future safety-related submittals will have to be closely reviewed to verify that the distinction of unmitigated analyses is maintained.

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A12.

CRITICALITY ANALYSIS

Statement of the Issue Based upon submittal of four interim criticality evaluations, BNFL Inc. has developed its criticality safety program by bounding keff for nearly dry waste solids with maximum Pu content as specified in the BNFL Inc. Contract, Revision 6. This approach relies upon providing controls on the feed and analyzing the process to ensure that no normal operations or process upsets could result in formation of a critical mass. BNFL Inc. has not adequately addressed how double contingency will be applied to the feed sampling control nor is it clear that BNFL Inc. has addressed all potential concentration mechanisms in their interim criticality reports to date. A second issue is that BNFL Inc. has committed to only one criticality detector in each area requiring alarms which is inconsistent with the requirements of 10 CFR 70(a)(1) which requires ìcoverage of all areas shall be provided by two detectors.î Specific Examples 1. In BNFL Inc.ís ìInterim Criticality Evaluation of HLW/LAW Ultrafiltration,î dated September 29, 1999, in Section 4, ìMethodology,î it states that ìit is assumed that the fissile concentration of the feed when received at the WTP is equal to the maximum concentration specified in the contract.î On BNFL Inc.ís SRD, page 3-9 (dated November 2, 1999), safety criterion 3.3-8, states ìCoverage of all areas requiring detection may be provided through a single detectorî in respect to criticality alarms.

2.

DOE Position Although the RU considers the overall criticality safety case developed in the interim assessments to be likely to succeed, the RU still maintains a list of open issues which were expected to be closed through a July 2000 BNFL Inc.íës final criticality report. These open issues were provided in November 30, 1999, letter to Mr. M.J. Lawrence (BNFL Inc.) from Dr. D. Clark Gibbs, titled ìRegulatory Unit Response to the Interim Criticality Evaluation for Cesium Ion Exchange, Technetium Ion Exchange and LAW Melter Feed Evaporation.î The RU has not objected to BNFL Inc.ís implementation of only one criticality detector. NRC Concerns In each of the evaluations, BNFL Inc. has relied upon concentration limits for special nuclear material as provided for in their contract with DOE as an upper boundary for criticality analyses, despite the fact that there are waste forms within the Hanford tank waste that may be above those limits. The criticality values are from the Carter Handbook that is widely used in the DOE Complex. However, these have not undergone rigorous validation. The NRC uses American National Standards Institute/American Nuclear Society (ANSI/ANS) 8.1 and other ANS standards that have undergone rigorous validation (see NRC Regulatory Guide 3.71). A review using the SRP would expect BNFL Inc. to indicate their control methods for ensuring that materials of higher concentration will not enter the facility and that accumulation will not occur due to the processing. The SRP would also expect BNFL Inc. to complete their criticality NUREG-1747 170

evaluations of all process areas and update those already completed to account for any design changes. Thus, the main concerns are: 1. NRC is concerned that waste forms outside of the contract scope may intentionally be introduced in the future because of the planned expanded use of the plant. Further, that the current controls for introduction of materials into the facility need to be better defined. NRC is also concerned that not all concentration mechanisms (e.g. preferential settling of specific isotopes) have been evaluated in the accident evaluations. BNFL Inc. has committed to only one criticality alarm in each area requiring alarms which is inconsistent with the requirements of 10 CFR 70(a)(1) which requires ìcoverage of all areas shall be provided by two detectors.î This position is in direct conflict with NRC regulations and would require exemption or facility changes should NRC ever assume regulatory authority.

2. 3.

NRC Evaluation and Assessment Although it appears that BNFL Inc.ís criticality approach may be acceptable, additional information would be required to resolve the concerns in items 1 and 2, above. BNFL Inc. will have to revise their SRD to meet the third concern. A13. FUTURE SITE CONDITIONS

Statement of the Issue It does not appear that adequate consideration has been given to the potential for future changes that may occur at the Hanford site relative to the impact of changing site activities and land use changes. For example, there have been discussions regarding the addition of other industrial facilities onsite and the possibility of a reduction in the site area. Such changes could result in significant reductions in the distance to the offsite receptor and thus impact the dose calculations. Specific Example On page ES-24, DOE/EIS-0222D (Hanford land use plan) displays a map indicating an industrial area 1-2 miles east of the proposed location for TWRS-P. DOE Position DOE and the Contractor have not examined and considered the potential effects of future site boundary changes that are likely to occur during the facilityís operational period. NRC Concerns Future site changes will result in receptors being closer to the facility. This is likely to produce changes in the safety analyses that require more important-to-safety (ITS) SSCs in order to 171 NUREG-1747

demonstrate adequate assurances of safety. For an existing facility, shutdown for backfits may become necessary. NRC Evaluation and Assessment It would be expected that the possible site and surrounding area conditions in the future and during the projected design/operating life of the facility would be reflected in information reviewed under the SRP and used to estimate the consequences from the various design scenarios. This would include determination of ITS SSCís that encompass the effects of land use changes over the facilityís lifetime. A14. PROCESS TECHNOLOGY

Statement of the Issue 1. Technology Development and Testing Technology development and testing for the facility are not yet complete. Without testing results, performance of the selected technologies to be used in the TWRS-P facility may not be demonstrated, and design/operating parameters may not be properly formulated. 2. Process Technology and Safety Very limited information has been presented on the process technology and its relationship with safety. An incomplete understanding of the facility operation may lead to the use of an unrealistic model in the accident and consequence calculations. Specific Examples Unknowns continue to exist in the areas of radioisotope removal efficiency through various ion exchange operations; for example, an additional column has been added as a polishing step and cooling coils are shown on the columns, but no additional data is provided. The technology to be used for sulfur removal keeps changing. These unknowns will impact downstream process shielding and, therefore, may potentially impact the safety analysis of the facility. In addition, BNFL Inc. has not evaluated the potential generation and impact of ion exchange resin fines throughout the process due to erosion and degradation. If resin fines are generated throughout the process, they may be radioactive and could move to other process units and eventually impact downstream radiation levels. Adequate information on these technologies would be expected to be available in licensing-type submittals reviewed subject to the SRP. Few tests appear to be planned to verify safety parameters prior to construction. In addition, several of the design points (e.g., melter performance) appear to be significantly outside the current window of experimental results (the normal design approach would select operating conditions within the window of results). Additional testing may be necessary to identify, adequately parameterize, and substantiate some safety requirements prior to the submittal of licensing documents in order to demonstrate adequate assurances of safety. NUREG-1747 172

DOE Position Preliminary screening tests were completed in July 1999 for the pretreatment unit operations. At the July 1999 Topical Meeting, the RU expressed disappointment at the lack of safety emphasis in the presentation and, by implication, the test plan. However, a follow-up Topical Meeting or status reporting was not pursued. DOE subsequently received a number of short test reports in April 2000, and noted that additional, operational-type parameters have been tested and evaluated. The NRC has not seen these test reports, but DOE indicates testing to assess and verify safety parameters has not been performed and is not planned. NRC Concerns The Contractor has specified a large amount of research and technology development testing, including testing to support environmental permits for the treated melter offgasses. The test results discussed at the April 1999 Topical Meeting were screening tests to identify potential methods and ion exchange media. As already noted, the NRC has not seen the April 2000 short test reports. The NRC is concerned that safety issues related to the technologies may not be adequately addressed by the experimental programs. In addition, the test quality level and experimental variability (including a limited number of tests and repeatability) may introduce additional uncertainty into the safety analyses. NRC Evaluation and Assessment Additional information would be expected to verify operational parameters, identify potential hazards and their parameters (e.g., the resin fines), estimate safety parameters and, ultimately, provide sufficient information to show adequate assurances of safety. A15. CONSEQUENCES OF EXTREMELY UNLIKELY SEISMIC EVENTS

Statement of the Issue Earthquakes in the extremely unlikely range as defined by DOE standards (i.e., 1E-4/yr to 1E6/yr) are not supposed to result in unacceptable accident consequences (dose consequences). The NRC SRP provides similar guidance. The proposed modification of 10 Part 70 places frequency limits on events; as an example, a high consequence event has to be rendered highly unlikely by the facilityís design and/or controls (IROFS) and this is furthered defined in the SRP as 1E-5/yr. It would be expected that BNFL Inc. would consider earthquakes that are less frequent but more severe than the 2000-year interval design basis earthquake, and show that the facility has been designed such that earthquakes in the extremely unlikely range will not result in unacceptable radiation exposures. In the review of a licensing submittal, the SRP would anticipate that the consequence methodology for these earthquakes would be clearly delineated and readily available for detailed review. Specific Example(s) The staff reviewed the BNFL Inc. proposed ìInterpretation of the Requirements for Meeting the Radiation Exposure Standards in Table 1 of DOE/RL-96-0006,î stated in an enclosure to the September 20, 1999, letter from A. J. Dobson, BNFL Inc., to D. Clark Gibbs, Department of Energy/Regulatory Unit (DOE/RU) (CCN#: 006158). 173 NUREG-1747

Note: The referenced document, DOE/RL-96-0006, contains Table 1, Dose Standards Above Normal Background, which was left incomplete at the time of its release. The standards for Unlikely Events and Extremely Unlikely Events, for workers and co-located workers, were purposely left open, i.e., ìto be derivedî by the contractor, BNFL Inc. These dose standards were derived by the contractor and implemented in Revision 1 of Volume II, Table 2-1, Radiological Exposure Standards Above Normal Background, of its Safety Requirements Document regulatory submittal (BNFL-5193-SRD-01, Volumes I and II, Rev. 1, June 1998). The latter table provides the complete set of standards, filling in the ìto be derivedî portions of Table 1 of DOE/RL-96-0006. BNFL Inc. proposed that ìFor a design basis natural phenomena hazard (such as the design basis earthquake), a frequency of occurrence is established and, from that frequency, the appropriate public, facility worker, and co-located worker dose standards are then determined from the Table. For natural phenomena events, the table is only applicable at frequencies down to and including those established as the design basis for the facility. The table is not applicable to the evaluation of natural phenomena events, with frequencies lower than the frequency of the design basis event.î DOE Position A reply dated October 5, 1999, from D. Clark Gibbs, DOE/RU, to M. J. Lawrence, BNFL Inc. (99-RU-0570), indicated the DOE/RUís rejection of the BNFL Inc. proposal. The staff concluded that the BNFL Inc. proposal also would not appear to be acceptable within the NRC regulatory framework. Using the example of the design basis earthquake cited by BNFL Inc., this interpretation would establish its frequency, which is defined as having a 2000-year recurrence interval (i.e., a frequency of occurrence of 5 x 10-4 yr -1), as the lowest probability to be considered with regard to the dose standards. According to Table 2-1 this frequency of occurrence would be in the category of ìUnlikely Events.î The frequencies of other design basis natural phenomena hazards are not addressed by this example, but presumably would be handled in a similar fashion under the BNFL Inc. proposed interpretation. RU Response to BNFL Inc.: A reply dated October 5, 1999, from D. Clark Gibbs, DOE/RU, to M. J. Lawrence, BNFL Inc. (99-RU-0570), indicated the RUís rejection of the BNFL Inc. proposal. The reason for rejection was summarized in the letter as follows: 1. BNFL must ensure that for any credible event (one with frequency greater than 10-6 per year), the event will not result in radiation doses that exceed the values given in the Table [2-1]. The BNFL Inc. proposal confuses the requirements for ìdesign basis earthquakeî with the broader requirements specified in the Glossary of DOE/RL 96-0006 and the SRD for ìdesign basis events.î

2.

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3.

To meet the dose standards in the table, the facility analyses must consider less frequent but more severe earthquakes than the defined ìdesign basis earthquake,î which has a recurrence interval of 2000 years. To summarize the RU response, the 2000-year recurrence interval of the design basis earthquake (i.e., a frequency of occurrence of 5 x 10-4 yr -1) is not sufficiently low to meet the guidelines of the ìextremely unlikely eventsî category of Table 2-1, which range from 10-6 to 10-4 yr -1.

NRC Concerns NRC staff Comments: The NRC staff reviewed the BNFL Inc. proposal and the DOE/RU response, and agree with the position taken by the RU; i.e., that the BNFL Inc. interpretation should be rejected. The basis for the NRC staffís agreement on this issue is derived from the following considerations: 1. A Commission Policy and Guidance White Paper on Risk-Informed and Performance-Based Regulation, dated March 1999, which refers to the PRA Policy Statement (60 FR 42622, August 16, 1995). This Policy Statement formalized the Commission's commitment to risk-informed regulation through the expanded use of PRA. The PRA Policy Statement states, in part, "The use of PRA technology should be increased in all regulatory matters to the extent supported by the state of the art in PRA methods and data, and in a manner that complements the NRC's deterministic approach and supports the NRC's traditional defense-in-depth philosophy." While no specific numerical criteria are mentioned in the White Paper or the PRA Policy Statement, an earlier (August 1986) policy statement [ìSafety Goals for the Operation of Nuclear Power Plants; Policy Statement; Correction and Republication,î 51 FR 30028, August 21, 1986.] concerning risks to the public from nuclear power plant operation stated that guidance to be derived from additional studies to be performed by the staff would be based on the following general performance guideline: Consistent with the traditional defense-in-depth approach and the accident mitigation philosophy requiring reliable performance of containment systems, the overall mean frequency of a large release of radioactive materials to the environment from a reactor accident should be less than 1 in 1,000,000 per year of reactor operation. This performance guideline is specifically concerned with nuclear power plant operation, in which there are multiple levels of defense (i.e., containment systems). The guideline indicates that the containment systems are part of the accident mitigation philosophy, which means that an accident (initiating event) may occur more frequently than 1 in 1,000,000 years of operation, as long as the mitigative features function in such a manner as to reduce the probability of a release below this value. Although there are many differences between a nuclear reactor and the proposed TWRS-P facility, it should be noted that the latter may have levels of some radionuclides comparable to a reactor in shutdown condition, but in more dispersible forms.

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The TWRS-P facility is also being designed with mitigative systems, which are not identical to those in a nuclear power plant, but serve a similar purpose. However, in Section 6.0 of RL/REG-98-18, the DOE-RU defines the event probability ranges in terms of the frequency of the event, not the frequency of consequences [ìRegulatory Unit Position on Radiological Safety for Hanford Co-located Workers,î RL/REG-98-18, Rev. 0, September 16, 1998], e.g., a large release. Thus the ìEstimated Frequency of Occurrenceî in Table 2-1 (the second column of the table in Appendix A) is the frequency of the event (accident), not the frequency of the consequences of the event. Therefore BNFL Inc. must show that the dose standards in Table 2-1 will be met for events having the stated frequency ranges using mitigative features as necessary in order keep exposures to workers, co-located workers, and the public within the standards. Although the NRC guideline and the DOE-RU requirements are not intended to cover the same types of facilities, there is consistency in the regulatory approach; i.e., that given an extremely unlikely event (accident) having a credible frequency of occurrence between 1 x 10-6 yr -1 and 1 x 10-4 yr -1 (per DOE/RL-96-0006), the facility must be designed in such a manner so as to reduce the consequences of the event to an acceptable level, usually expressed as a dose to workers and the public. 2. If the NRC were to assume regulatory authority over the TWRS-P project, and assuming no substantial changes are made in the guidance as outlined in Draft NUREG-1520 (Standard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for a Fuel Cycle Facility), then, according to Draft NUREG-1520: The applicant describes the maximum earthquake magnitude and peak ground acceleration at the site and its expected likelihood, in terms of return period at which the plant processes can be shut down safely with acceptable risk of radiological exposure to workers, public, and the environment. Applicant compares the design basis earthquake with the maximum earthquake accelerations expected on the site with a return period of 10,000 years. The purpose of the comparison is to evaluate the likelihood of the design basis earthquake to ensure that such an event is properly considered in the applicantís ISA. [Standard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for a Fuel Cycle Facility, NUREG-1520, July 16, 1999, Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001] This requirement obligates the applicant to consider earthquakes with a recurrence interval of no less than 10,000 years (i.e., at least 1 x 10-4 yr -1). Therefore, if the TWRS-P facility were subject to NRC regulatory authority, the 2000-year recurrence interval proposed by BNFL Inc. for the design basis earthquake (i.e., a frequency of occurrence of 5 x 10-4 yr -1) is not sufficiently low to meet this requirement. 3. In 10 CFR Part 20, the annual dose limits of 5 rem to the worker and 0.1 rem to members of the public are stated, with the application of the principles of as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) in both the design and operation of facilities. These dose limits correspond to relative risks of latent cancer fatalities of 2 x 10-3 yr -1 and 4 x 10-5 yr -1, respectively. (This is based on Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation 176

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(BEIR) V risk estimates of 4 x 10-4 fatal cancers per rem for acute doses less than 10 rem, and 1 x 10-3 fatal cancers per rem for acute doses greater than 10 rem.) For the workers, ALARA generally results in doses of 100-300 mrem (risks of 4 x 10-5 yr -1 to 1.2 x 10-4 yr -1). Part 20 limits on decommissioning (10 CFR 20.1402, Radiological criteria for unrestricted use) and Part 61 limits on waste disposal (10 CFR 61.41, Protection of the general population from releases of radioactivity) display lower annual public limits of 0.025 rem (a risk of 1 x 10-5 yr -1), again subject to the application of ALARA. Typical public doses from commercial nuclear operations are well below 0.001 rem yr -1 (a risk below 4 x 10-7 yr -1). The risk values stated in the previous paragraph are measures of consequence, not event frequency; however, an event frequency may be derived and compared to the frequency of the design basis earthquake (or the design basis event) if sufficient information is available concerning the source term and the mode(s) of exposure. While such a calculation is somewhat outside the scope of this paper, it may be noted that per Table 2-1, an extremely unlikely event (an event having a frequency of occurrence between 1 x 10-4 yr -1 and 1 x 10-6 yr -1) must result in a consequence of no more than 25 rem dose to a worker. Therefore, event frequencies corresponding to the doses for workers in the previous paragraph would need to be well below the frequency of occurrence of 5 x 10-4 yr -1 proposed by BNFL Inc. 4. The revised 10 CFR Part 70 discusses both high and intermediate consequence events in the context of frequency ranges. High consequence events are those that might exceed acute doses of 100 rem to workers and/or acute doses of 25 rem to individuals outside the controlled area. Section 70.61(b) states that high-consequence events must meet a likelihood standard of highly unlikely. The risk of each credible highconsequence event must be limited, unless the event is highly unlikely, through the application of engineered controls, administrative controls, or both, that reduce the likelihood of occurrence of the event or its consequence. Intermediate consequence events are those that might exceed acute doses of 25 rem to workers and/or acute doses of 5 rem to individuals outside the controlled area. Proposed Section 70.61(c) requires that intermediate-consequence events must meet a likelihood standard of unlikely. The risk of each credible intermediate-consequence event must be limited, unless the event is unlikely, through the application of engineered controls, administrative controls, or both, that reduce the likelihood of occurrence of the event or its consequence. The safety program may be graded such that management measures applied are commensurate with the reduction of risk attributable to that item. The frequency terms ìhighly unlikelyî and ìunlikelyî are not defined in the proposed rule, but guidance is given in NUREG-1702, Section 3.7 of the draft TWRS-P Standard Review Plan (SRP), [Standard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for the Tank Waste Remediation System Privatization (TWRS-P) Project, Draft Report, March 1999] which lists ìhighly unlikelyî as corresponding to 1 x 10-5 yr -1 and below, and ìunlikelyî as corresponding to the frequency range of 1 x 10-2 yr -1 to 1 x 10-5 yr -1. (The Contractortailored standards, at 1 x 10-4 yr -1 to 1 x 10-6 yr -1 for ìhighly unlikelyî events, and 1 x 10-2 yr -1 to 1 x 10-4 yr -1 for ìunlikelyî events, are more conservative than those stated in the draft TWRS-P SRP.) While these are goals and provide insight, this additional 177 NUREG-1747

conservatism of the frequency/consequence standard provides some assurance that the BNFL Inc. design would meet the NRC guidance as described in the TWRS SRP, as long as the event frequencies considered in the analyses are not arbitrarily limited to a higher value such as the frequency of the design basis earthquake (i.e., 5 x 10-4 yr -1) as proposed by BNFL Inc. NRC Evaluation and Assessment To summarize, the NRC staff considers PRA and risk-based analyses to be important parts of the safety analyses, but not the only part. The NRC staff recognizes that risk analyses need to be supplemented with traditional deterministic analyses, appropriate conservatism, and defense-in-depth for effective regulatory decision making, as indicated in the Commissionís policy statement. BNFL Inc.ís proposed ìInterpretation of the Requirements for Meeting the Radiation Exposure Standards in Table 1 of DOE/RL-96-0006î would not be in conformance with Draft NUREG-1520, which states that the applicant must compare the design basis earthquake with the maximum earthquake accelerations expected on the site with a return period of 10,000 years (a frequency of 1 x 10-4 yr -1). The contractorís proposal for the design basis earthquake would be less conservative than this standard, as well as the implied standards based on the 10 CFR Parts 20, 61, and 70 dose limits. As the RU indicated in its rejection of the proposal, the Contractor appears to confuse the design basis earthquake with the design basis event. A16.1 SEISMIC PROBABILISTIC RISK ANALYSIS

Statement of the Issue As stated in Item A.15 the radiological consequences of events in the extremely unlikely range as defined by DOE standards are not supposed to result in unacceptable accident consequences (dose consequences). In order to assess the radiological consequences of seismic events with a return period of greater than 2000 years that was established as the design basis earthquake (DBE) for the facility, BNFL Inc. proposed a seismic probabilistic risk analysis be performed. The general methodology for that analysis has been provided by BNFL Inc. and it has been consistent with current PRA assessment methods. There are, however, specific areas within the application of the methodology where there are issues that are yet to be resolved. These issues are generally associated with the availability of failure data that are relevant for seismic fragility curves that are used in the methodology. Specific Example As a result of the hazards analyses performed to date for the facility, it has been determined that the major contributor to the dose consequences for the events in the extremely unlikely range of occurrence is the loss of the containment/confinement boundaries for the materials being processed. This has been translated into the identification of process vessels and tankage as well as the process cells as these boundaries. Consequently, the basis for a fragility curve for a tank designed, for example, for a peak horizontal ground acceleration of 0.24 g that shows an 80 percent probability of rupture at 0.80 g has not been established. Similarly, the structural failure of cell walls designed to the same acceleration that is stated to have a failure probability of 14 percent has also not been substantiated. NUREG-1747 178

DOE Position DOE has been in the process of attempting to follow the application of the PRA methodology through a series of PRA Status Meetings that were still ongoing at the time of the contract termination. This issue apparently remains open. NRC Concerns Since the consequences are evaluated in terms of the radiological doses, structural failure, for example, in the cell walls that are considered in this project as mitigation elements, does not necessarily define the onset of damage significant enough to permit loss of confinement of a portion or all of the radiological inventory. Therefore, to use the PRA methodology will require the capability to predict the progression of cracking/distress of the concrete sections under increasing seismic loads to define fragility curves that relate structural behavior to leakage pathways and subsequent loss of confinement. It is not clear if all of the input data can be adequately represented with distribution functions for the purposes of safety regulation. NRC Evaluation and Assessment Without additional information and qualification of these issues, it is not possible to determine if the proposed approach is suitable for quantifying the risk and assuring adequate safety of the proposed facility. A16.2 RADIOLOGICAL RELEASES FOR SEISMIC EVENTS

Statement of the Issue Certain documents transmitted from BNFL Inc. to the DOE-RU in October and December 1999 discuss the assessment of radiological releases from the proposed TWRS-P project. These documents discuss: 1. 2. The general methodology of assessing radiological releases.96 Methods for assessing such releases following a seismic event97 (BNFL Inc. stated that this report is based in part on the document in (1) above, and that this report is a part of the overall Seismic PRA Methodology contained in (3) below).

96

BNFL Inc., letter to U.S. Department of Energy, with attachment, ìMethods for Assessing Consequences of Potential Accidental Radiological Releases from the WTP,î (RPT-W375-NS00001, Rev. 0, October 12, 1999), October 25, 1999

BNFL Inc., letter to U.S. Department of Energy, with attachment, ìMethods for Assessing Consequences of Potential Accidental Radiological Releases from the RPP-WTP Facility Following a Seismic Eventî (RPT-W375NS00006, Rev. B, December 7, 1999), December 8, 1999.

97

179

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3.

Aspects of the techniques of probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) methodology as related to seismic events, including risk quantification.98

The attachment to an NRC memorandum99 to the DOE-RU addresses the NRC comments on these documents, as well as the RUís response to the BNFL Inc. methodology of assessing radiological releases, and the RUís response to BNFL Inc.ís seismic PRA document. Specific Example The seismic report (item (2) above) indicates that its methodology is based in part on the general dose assessment methodology report (item (1) above); however, the general report uses bounding, conservative values, whereas the seismic instead uses best estimate values and distribution functions. DOE Position DOE has accepted the basic, dose methodology approach taken by the Contractor. DOE has requested clarification of several points but appears receptive to the general, seismic approach being followed by the Contractor. NRC Concerns The NRC staff indicated in its comments that it would be helpful to include a definition of ìbest estimate valuesî and the sources of these data, as well as the justification for using these data, and the criteria for their selection. The staff also indicated that it would be useful to explain how the purpose of the Seismic Probabilistic Risk Analysis Methodology Report (and the related Seismic Probabilistic Risk Analysis Dose Assessment Methodology Report) are met using best estimate values and distribution functions. These two documents appear to imply that the primary reason for performing the analyses of dose consequences arising from seismic events is to determine the risk of incurring a given level of dose (i.e., the consequence) to the facility worker, co-located worker, and the public. It did not seem clear from either document whether PRA methodology will be used to identify and categorize those SSCs that may require additional strengthening or enhancement for situations in which conservative values of the various inputs are hypothesized to occur simultaneously. Accordingly, without knowledge of the specific input data and its associated level of conservatism, it was not possible to validate the results of the analyses. In addition, the NRC would expect validation of the model, the input data, and the results. It should be recognized that additional communications between the RU and BNFL Inc. may have resolved some of these concerns, but may have not come to the attention of NRC staff. NRC Evaluation and Assessment
98

BNFL Inc., letter to U.S. Department of Energy, with attachment, ìSeismic Probabilistic Risk Analysis Methodologyî (RPT-W375-NS00005, Rev. B, December 17, 1999), December 20, 1999.
99

Struckmeyer, R.K., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, memorandum to M. Leach, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, ìBackground Information and Comments on TWRS-P Project: ìDose Assessment Methodology Description, Seismic Probabilistic Risk Analysis Dose Assessment Methodology Report, and Seismic Probabilistic Risk Analysis Methodology Report.î March 8, 2000

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Without qualification of these issues, it is not possible to determine if the proposed approach is suitable for determining acceptable risk and adequate assurances of safety from the proposed facility. A16.3 AVAILABILITY OF DOCUMENTS

Statement of the Issue In its submittals, BNFL Inc. refers to a document that does not appear to be publicly available. Specific Example For example, BNFL Inc.ís SRD, Rev. 2d (November 2, 1999), Vol. II, under Safety Criterion 4.12 on page 4-4 references under ìImplementing Codes and Standards,î ASCE 4-98 (Draft), ìSeismic Analysis of Safety-Related Nuclear Structures and Commentary.î This document is apparently intended to update and replace ASCE 4-86 with the same title. The referenced document describes the seismic analysis methods that will be used to perform the seismic analysis of safety-related structures of the facility. The document provides a methodology for calculating seismic responses in structures and provides input motions for use in the seismic qualification of electrical and mechanical systems and components. DOE Position DOE has not pursued this matter nor the applicability of the draft standard. NRC Concerns The document in its current state of development does not constitute a standard that can be used as a reference since the ASCE Rules for Standards Committees have apparently not been fully executed for the standardization of the draft document. If BNFL Inc. wants to follow the draft requirements of such a document, those document provisions would have to be incorporated in toto into the text of the SRD document, and then acceptability would need to be determined by the DOE RU staff. NRC Evaluation and Assessment This draft standard needs to be reviewed for its acceptability for regulatory purposes.

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A17.

FIRE PROTECTION

Statement of the Issue There were several fire protection comments generated during review of the SAP and ISAR submittals. Most dealt with clarifications or omission of details. Since that time, there have been two Level 1 meetings on fire protection: September 1999 and March 2000. From these meetings, four major issues, and a number of minor issues remain. Specific Examples 1. Process building construction classification: BNFL Inc. proposed a construction type which would not meet the requirements for Type 1 construction per National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 220, nor the fire resistive construction types required by a strict interpretation of the Uniform Building Code (UBC). Steel fireproofing: The steel fireproofing issue is related to the construction classification issue. If fire resistance of the outside walls is not required, fireproofing of structural steel for these walls would not be required. In addition, BNFL Inc. wished to avoid fireproofing of structural steel in areas of low combustible loading. Protection of final high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters from fires: BNFL Inc. has stated in the fire protection Level 1 Meeting that no water sprays would be employed in filter plenums based on the superior qualifications of the circular filters to be used. BNFL Inc. has proposed modified requirements for the use of sprinklers in radioactive areas of the facility: a. b. C5 Areas (most contaminated with low fire loading): No sprinklers or steel fireproofing in C5 areas. C3 Areas (moderate contamination with varying degrees of combustible loading and safety significance): Sprinklers used selectively in these areas with justification provided where sprinklers are not used. C2 Areas (low potential for contamination, with in-situ and transient combustibles, such as maintenance supplies): These areas would likely be sprinklered.

2.

3.

4.

c.

DOE Position 1. DOE criteria require compliance with the UBC. The RU has commented to BNFL Inc. (Gibbs to Bullock, letter dated 5/3/00) that a justification for the selection of nonfire resistive construction type would have to include identification and analysis of building areas with unusual or concentrated hazards, bounding fuel packages, and critical structural members whose failure due to fire could structurally undermine a significant portion of the facility. The analysis would also be expected to address any fire protection administrative controls, such as transient combustibles and vehicle access to the proximity of process buildings (e.g., control of exterior fire exposure hazards). 182

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2.

The RU has commented to BNFL Inc. (Gibbs to Bullock, letter dated 5/3/00) that the RU continues to expect that TWRS-P structural steel fireproofing will meet the requirements of the UBC. The RU also expects that any type of equivalency analysis will demonstrate that there are no fire hazards that present a potential threat to structural steel integrity. Both NRC and DOE fire protection criteria call for water spray protection in the final filter bank of the confinement system. At this time, the RU (Gibbs to Bullock, letter dated 5/3/00) is requesting clarification of the BNFL Inc. position. DOE/RU requested that the contractor establish a definitive set of criteria for the use of sprinklers in a given area. The contractor wished to rely on the Fire Hazard Analysis (FHA) and judgement because of the uniqueness of the different fire areas in terms of type and distribution of combustibles, heat release rates, ventilation, etc.

3.

4.

NRC Concerns 1. NRC has stated (Tokar to Gibbs, letter dated 6/5/00) that the staff was in agreement with the RU criteria for resolution of this concern: a justification of non-fire resistive construction type based on analysis of hazards, fuel loading, and the expected fire protection administrative controls. NRC stated ( letter dated 6/5/00 M. Tokar, NRC, to D.C. Gibbs, DOE,) that the NRC staff was in agreement with the RU comments requiring an equivalency analysis for compliance with the UBC, and added two additional points: a. b. Lack of steel protection based on intended use would severely limit any future modifications for use of that area. Lack of fire suppression capability along with lack of steel protection in the same area makes administrative control of combustibles the only defense measure, and makes the fire protection in the area a vulnerability that would be identified in a FHA or Integrated Safety Analysis (ISA).

2.

3. 4.

Both NRC and DOE fire protection criteria call for water spray protection in the final filter bank of the confinement system. NRC reviewers feel that there is too much uncertainty regarding the concern about sprinkler coverage.

NRC Evaluation and Assessment 1. 2. Regarding building construction classification, NRC criteria would require Type 1 construction per NFPA 220. A letter providing comments on the Explosive Hazards 1 and 2 Topical Meetings (Pierson to Gibbs, letter dated 11/4/99) contained a short description of the NRC criteria for building construction and expressed concern about the stated BNFL Inc. position regarding fireproofing of structural steel. 183 NUREG-1747

3.

Since protection of the final HEPA filters involves the basic design of the ventilation system, NRC staff preferred to make this a plant systems or radiation protection issue for the time being. NRC has requested a set of definitive criteria for determining the use of sprinklers in a given area.

4.

Finally, the Hanford site recently experienced a large brush fire that burnt approximately 50 percent of the siteís total land area. Circa 200,000 acres were burnt, along with some structures in west Richland. Additional fire breaks and berms had to be constructed around some of the facilities for protection. Therefore, the NRC would anticipate that the Contractor would also factor this experience in the facilityís design. A18. EXPLOSIVE HAZARDS

Statement of the Issue The last topical meetings in which explosive hazards for the TWRS-P project were discussed in detail were in August and September 1999. The August Topical Meeting (Explosive Hazards I) addressed hazards from melter steam explosions, explosions from nitrate organic reactions in the melter offgas system, over pressurization of an ion-column, ammonium nitrate explosion in the off-gas system, and a sugar dust explosion in the feed preparation vessel. None of these events were considered credible by BNFL Inc., although specific probabilities were not presented to support such conclusions and there appeared to be an over-emphasis upon routine and near-normal conditions. Consequently, all of these events were left as potential issues by NRC and the RU pending further information and analysis. A resubmittal of the August 1999 Topical Report in March 2000 and information from design review meetings alleviated some of the NRC concerns about steam explosions, nitrate-organic reactions, and sugar dust explosions. Current NRC staff concerns about steam explosions are primarily the potential for a refractory failure allowing molten glass to contact water in the cooling jacket. Potential explosions caused by the contact of water and the cold cap were partially addressed by the BNFL Inc. responses to comments; nonideal behavior and misfeeds appear to require further analysis. Also, the BNFL Inc. process does not appear to be as vulnerable to radiological releases from organic-nitrate and sugar explosions as originally determined from the first submittal, although some questions still remain, primarily dealing with misfeeds and frequencies. Potential explosions from ammonium nitrate formation and over pressurization of the ion exchange column are still considered as open issues requiring considerable progress. The September Topical Meeting (Explosive Hazards II) was concerned with the potential for explosion of hydrogen gas in approximately 40 process tanks. At this time an active ventilation system for hydrogen build-up was proposed to take the place of the passive release system that was proposed earlier, probably for a single tank. This active system consisted of an air extract system with two 100 percent fans and one 100 percent backup fan. Process air is used for dilution during normal operation. An air vent system is provided for loss of off site power (with loss of process air) conditions. Although the staff considered this design a significant improvement over the passive system, there were concerns from the presentation and report. These concerns included: 1. Hazard evaluations based on normal operating conditions rather than off normal. 184

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2. 3. 4. 5.

Rupture of vessel vent jumper was not considered in hazard evaluation. Loss of ability to maintain pressure control in vessel vent system was not considered. Large surges in offgas were not considered. The worse case detonation scenario was not properly evaluated.

Specific Example(s) (Already cited.) In addition, at the June 2000 Topical Meeting on closing out issues, there was an ISM presentation on hydrogen explosion concerns. However, the presented ISM was very subjective with few quantitative analyses that supported its intended conclusion of no hydrogen monitoring requirements. Furthermore, previously unmentioned components of the system were introduced, such as the dampers and air flow monitors, without reliability analyses. DOE Position: DOE finds the additional information interesting but insufficient to adequately explain (and address) the issues. After the June 2000 Topical Meeting, DOE is requesting another demonstration of the ISM process on the hydrogen explosion concerns with more quantitative information and reasoning. NRC Concerns A review of the resubmittal in February 2000 also led to a re-evaluation of the open issues. The NRC staff concluded that rupture of the vessel vent jumper and loss of ability to maintain pressure control can probably be nearly eliminated by an expanded set of performance requirements on the system. The other concerns remain however. The June 2000 Topical Meeting introduced dampers, flow monitors, and other equipment on the ventilation system for the first time. No reliability information was provided. However, a cursory review by NRC staff indicates a frequency of failure of circa 1E-4/yr (assuming perfect operation of the fan system), which would not render hydrogen explosion events incredible. Details of the NRC staffís concerns with the original submittals and presentations for the Explosive Hazard Topical Meetings may be found in R. Piersonís, NRC, letter of November 4, 1999, to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, entitled ìNRC and CNWRA Comments on the Explosive Hazards Topical Meetings I and II, August 24, 1999 and September 28, 1999.î Details of the review of the resubmittals may be found in M. Tokarís, NRC, letter of April 27, 2000 to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, entitled ìNRC Response to March 23, 2000, Letter Concerning the Resubmittal of the August and September 1999 Topical Meeting Reports on Explosive Hazards.î NRC Assessment and Evaluation It would be anticipated that the Contractor will complete the design in sufficient detail, with quantitative analyses, and with identification of IROFS, before the explosion issues can be adequately addressed and closed.

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A19.

COMPLIANCE WITH NQA-1

Statement of the Issue BNFL Inc., in its QA Program Implementation Plan (QAPIP) has committed to implementing a QA program in accordance with applicable requirements of American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) NQA-1-1989, as well as the DOE QA requirements of 10 CFR 830.120. BNFL Inc. has not adequately identified its commitments or interpretations related to the applicability of specific NQA-1 requirements, either as full and explicit commitments to NQA-1, nor have exceptions to and applicability of the provisions of the document been identified. Implementing procedures for NQA-1 requirements appear not to have been fully and completely developed, and there is no explicit commitment to the records storage and software requirements of NQA-1. Specific Example Implementing procedures for all NQA-1 requirements appear not to have been fully and completely developed, and there is no explicit commitment to the records storage and software requirements of NQA-1. BNFL Inc. has not identified exceptions taken to NQA-1-1989. DOE Position DOE considers the BNFL Inc. commitment in its QAPIP to NQA-1-1989, to be a full and adequate commitment at this point in the project. Program implementation and NQA-1 requirement applicability will be addressed as necessary during inspections. NRC Concerns All applicable NQA-1 requirements needed for design, including records and software control programs, should be fully in-place during the current design phase, while others should be fully in-place before additional safety analyses, advance procurement or initial construction are begun. Correction and/or backfit of design analyses and documentation performed under an inadequate design control program could become necessary. NRC Evaluation and Assessment In the TWRS SRP, NUREG-1520, NRC endorsed NQA-1-1989 as an acceptable QA program standard for the TWRS project. Exceptions or ìtailoringî of the NQA-1 requirements should be addressed, supported as technically adequate or rejected as early in the project as practical to avoid costly and laborious retrofits. A.20 QUALITY ASSURANCE PROGRAM IMPLEMENTATION

Statement of the Issue BNFL Inc. has committed to apply and implement the QA program across the entire project organization including the subcontractors for design, procurement, and construction. However, each of the various major subcontractors operate under their own individual QA program. There is the potential for conflicting and missing requirements for a project when a multitude of NUREG-1747 186

QA programs are in-place. At this stage of the project there is concern regarding the adequacy of design control across the entire project for the detailed design and the beginning of procurement in areas such as the control of design inputs from the various subcontractors. The level of BNFL Inc. engineering verification and QA oversight of the subcontractors/team members activities to assure that adequate application and implementation of all QA requirements for ongoing design has not been evident to date. Specific Example BNFL Inc. conducts its activities in accordance with its QAPIP. GTS Duratek, who is designing the high and low level vitrifiers and the basic vitrification process, and offsite Bechtel engineering organizations operate to their own QA plans or manuals. DOE Position DOE considers that BNFL Inc. has committed to adequate QA program implementation and inadequacies will be addressed during inspections. NRC Concerns The adequacy and appropriateness of the QA program activities requires strong and effective QA oversight even when all participating organizations are operating to the same QA plan. The use of multiple QA plans by a variety of organizations and corporate entities in several locations requires application of QA oversight to assure adequacy and appropriate implementation by all participants. This level of oversight has not been evident in the project activities to date. NRC Evaluation and Assessment The appropriate and adequate implementation by all major team members and subcontractors of QA requirements should be verified prior to or early in the project design activities in order to preclude extensive avoidable retrofits for design, procurement or other project activities. A.21 SAFETY CLASSIFICATION OF STRUCTURES, SYSTEMS, AND COMPONENTS, AND GRADED QA

Statement of the Issue A complete safety categorization of the structures, systems and components (SSCs) has not been fully developed by BNFL Inc. or provided to DOE. The Design Safety Features (DSF) deliverable that BNFL Inc. submitted in February of 1999 was intended to be an initial identification of the DSF which would include identification of those elements of the facility important- to-safety (ITS) including SSCs that give assurance that the SSCs will perform the required safety functions. BNFL Inc., in the DSF submittal, provided two categories of ITS SSCs: those elements that were to be ITS based on previous experience in the design of similar plants and the other category being those SSCs that were identified in the application of the ISM process. At the time of the DSF submittal, BNFL Inc. had identified 568 SSCs that were expected to be ITS and 1003 DSFs had been identified. It was also clearly stated that the total number of ITS SSCs identified to date did not represent the number of elements that would be ITS in the final facility. Associated with the safety categorization of the SSCs is the 187 NUREG-1747

related classification within the QA program that in this case is to use a graded approach to QA. Without a list of all SSCs for each of the safety categories, a logical and systematic graded QA program cannot be developed. Such a list has not been presented up to the time of the submittal of the Limited Construction Authorization Request (LCAR), dated June 26, 2000. Specific Example BNFL Inc. intends to use confinement as a DSF. For example, an element within the facility that can function as a secondary confinement barrier is one of the individual process cells within the pretreatment building. Credit will be taken for such confinement barriers as passive barriers achieved with the stainless steel liner of the cells, the seals on the penetrations and by the fact that there will be a limit on the thru-wall cracking of the reinforced concrete cell walls. These are considered by BNFL Inc. as DSF to protect against loss of material and to provide adequate shielding. The cell wall was designated as ITS. Other DSFs associated with the cells that were identified by BNFL Inc. include the use of design codes, use of a suitably qualified and experienced person (ìSQEPî) in design and construction, seismic design, material selection, nondestructive testing/inspection/QA during design and construction, shielding assessment, design to withstand maximum cell temperature and analytical assessment of structural stability. In spite of the words in the DSF submittal, and the fact that no complete list of ITS SSCs has been provided, the LCAR, dated June 26, 2000, contains the following statement. ìStainless steel liners are not designated as Important to Safety.î This is apparently believed to be justified by the statement that, ìProcess cells are provided with liners (typically stainless steel) to prevent leakage of spilled process liquor into the soil column over time. The liners also facilitate decontamination of the process cells to minimize the contamination spread during operation and to facilitate deactivation and decommissioning. Containment of spilled liquor as a means to reduce operating risk to within exposure standards for workers or members of the public relies on the concrete structure itself and does not require liners.î The DSF submittal contains the following statements. ìSpecification for materials used for stainless steel cladding have been developed based on extensive experience gained in cladding process cells on many projects. Specified tolerances for materials along with welding and weld test procedures ensure quality of secondary confinement provided by the cladding. All welded seams are examined to ensure they are free of unacceptable defects.î The submittal also provided information that would indicate some safety level and quality levels are envisioned, although not well defined at this time. Listed below are some of the tests that were indicated would be performed. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Visual inspection Dye penetrant examination. Ferrite meter check. Ultrasonic examination. Radiographic examination. Copper tests. Pneumatic pressure test. Ponding test.

DOE Position NUREG-1747 188

DOE has identified the need for the completion of the safety classifications and has expected this information to develop from the completion of the Integrated Safety Management system approach which had not been completed at the time of contract termination. While the LCAR has been rejected by DOE, its rejection was not based on this issue. This issue is expected to be an open issue when the project resumes. NRC Concerns Until there is an adequate list, meaning most major SSCs, of the SSCs in each of the designated safety categories and graded QA classes, and whatever other logic systems are associated with the facility provided, there is a concern that the initiation of construction under the LCAR may allow SSCs that should be ITS and in a certain quality class to be addressed in a substandard level when compared to the needs of the facility. NRC Evaluation and Assessment Because there is a strong emphasis on the design margins being only sufficient enough so that the target consequences are met based on the ISA, there is concern that the initiation of construction activities prior to a completed design being available for hazards analyses will result in judgements being made later that are not necessarily well founded when compared to what is built and in-place at that time. For any SSCs involved in any LCAR activity, the safety class and quality class should be soundly based or there should be conservative assumptions made and documented for the future verification. A.22 CHEMICALS AND THEIR SAFETY

Statement of the Issue Several chemical safety issues were initially identified in the ISAR. The DSF submittal further analyzed one of these scenarios. However, the analysis may have been incomplete. From subsequent discussions, it is not clear if chemical safety issues (in either radioactive or nonradioactive areas of the facility) are being evaluated and addressed as necessary, and would be available for regulatory evaluation in the near term. In addition, the design of the cold chemical storage areas is very general and the detail may not be completed and available for specific safety analyses. Thus, the safety evaluation of those areas and their effects could not be performed. The changes in the storage and handling system concepts for the wet chemicals need to be resolved and integrated into subsequent safety submittals. Specific Example(s) 1. Several chemical safety issues were initially identified in the ISAR, including storage of concentrated nitric acid, concentrated sodium hydroxide handling, anhydrous ammonia handling, and dry glass formers storage and handling. The Design Safety Features (DSF) subsequently analyzed the concentrated nitric acid spill. However, the analysis was inconsistent and incomplete. The Contractor intends to subcontract much of the nonradioactive chemical handling area. This has contributed to the current lack of attention and detail in this area, and the 189 NUREG-1747

2. 3..

lack of a complete hazards and operability (HAZOP) study of the chemical handling areas. 4. The Contractor performed an initial safety screening of chemical spills (in the ISAR and DSF) using the Automated Resource for Chemical Hazard Incident Evaluation (ARCHIE) model, available from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) public domain website. ARCHIE was apparently selected because of its wide use for screening potential events, simple Gaussian plume algorithm, and little modeling experience is required for its use. For this application, however, there are a number of uncertainties regarding its use without considering uncertainties and the appropriate vapor pressures. As an example, ARCHIE indicated there would be no ITS SSCs from chemical incidents. However, the ISM Cycle 2 utilized a different model that indicated there might be ITS SSCs associated with the prevention and mitigation of concentrated nitric acid spills. The following additional examples accrue from the April and June 2000 Topical Meetings: a. b. Limited detailed information, particularly for quantitative and reliability analyses. Incomplete and uneven application of the HAZOP processófor example, offnormal conditions and the significance of pump and flow controls for static mixers are overlooked. Inconsistency with NRC guidance (the issued NUREG-1702) and draft regulations (the revised 10 CFR Part 70). Potential high level of risk, some two orders of magnitude or more greater than radiological risks.

5.

c. d.

DOE Position From the April 2000 Topical Meeting minutes the RU questioned: 1. The proposal to have different connection types and sizes to prevent unloading, misloading, and inadvertent mixing of incompatible chemicals, because most trucks carry multiple connectors. The same piping and equipment in facility bulges for more than one chemical, thus risking an incident of mixing incompatible chemicals. The general risks from frequent tank truck deliveries to the facility (eight or more a day). At the June 2000 Topical Meeting, DOE/RU has stated that they are inclined to accept the Contractorís chemical safety approach that considers ITS only when a potential scenario involves multiple hospitalizations, a worker fatality, or exceeding Emergency Response Planning Guideline-3 (ERPG) levels for the CLW. NRC Concerns NUREG-1747 190

2. 3.

The safety evaluations of the chemical areas cannot be completed without sufficient design and hazards information. In addition, the NRC is concerned that the proposed approach constitutes a significantly greater risk from chemicals than from radiological incidents and is inconsistent with commercial nuclear industry practice at fuel cycle facilities. The approach is also inconsistent with the revised 10 CFR Part 70 and related guidance that has been developed in conjunction with the industry. NRC Evaluation and Assessment The chemical safety area needs to be revisited and the design finalized and quantitatively analyzed. A.23 IODINE REMOVAL

Statement of the Issue The status of iodine removal from the process system needs to be resolved and the supporting information would be expected in safety submittals. A condensed history of the iodine-129 issue follows: 1. From the ISAR review in February 1998, DOE/RU question 102 asked about the projected iodine-129 release rates as well as the effectiveness of absorption unit operations in the HLW primary offgas system. There was little response by the Contractor. Subsequently at the May 1999 Topical Meeting, BNFL Inc. stated that iodine-129 removal was not required. The RU requested additional information that might support this assertion. On September 7, 1999, BNFL Inc. provided estimates of iodine releases and the associated doses in letter CCN 005716 and its Attachment 1. The RU questioned the assumptions in the letter because they were lower than the contract specifications. On October 5, 1999, BNFL Inc. clarified the situation by claiming that iodine controls ìother than caustic scrubbersî (e.g., silver zeolite beds) were unnecessary. In March of 2000, BNFL Inc. provided additional information supporting the sole use of caustic scrubbers for iodine control, including the basis for decontamination factors (DFís), in CALC-W375HV-PR00092 (also referenced in the BNFL Inc. letter CCN 012970, Dobson to Gibbs, dated 5/5/00). BNFL Inc. also submitted a draft of the Best Available Radiological Control Technology (BARCT).

2.

3.

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Specific Example The Contractor estimated a dose of circa 0.3 mrem/yr to the public from anticipated iodine-129 releases, based upon a DF of 100 across the caustic scrubbing system. DOE Position The DOE/RU performed an independent dose calculation using conservative assumptions and obtained similar results as the Contractor (see RU internal memorandum REG:JLP/00-RU0318, dated April 11,2000). Consequently, the RU has concluded that the Contractor is proposing effective control strategies for iodine-129 and that the doses will be a small fraction of the annual limits. This conclusion still requires the use of an effective scrubbing technology, such as the caustic scrubber approach presented by BNFL Inc. at the March 2000 Topical Meeting. However, the RU has not limited the Contractor to caustic scrubbing as the decontamination technology. NRC Concerns The NRC is concerned that effective control measures are applied to iodine due to its biological significance and known thyroid effects. These concerns are magnified by the arid environment around the Hanford site. At face value, the proposed caustic scrubber approach would seem to give acceptable dose results. However, there is a lack of detailed information on the design and approach - all caustic scrubbers do not perform equally well for iodine removal. Furthermore, an assessment of the caustic scrubbing systems reliability, performance (particularly with time), offnormal effects, and safety significance would be anticipated. For example, failure of the system (a DF of 1) could result in doses of circa 30 mrem/yr to the public if it is not repaired or maintained in a timely fashion. This would exceed air permit limits (NESHAP - 10 mrem/yr) and would be at least an ALARA design issue from the NRC perspective. Additionally, the anticipated doses are strong functions of distance from the stack, and since the NRC considers the CLW as a member of the public, a functioning system could correspond to doses of circa 0.3 rem around the proposed facilityís fenceline. The Hanford land use EIS anticipates site privatization initiatives and an industrial park about 1 mile from the 200-East area. Thus, even if the NRC were to accept the CLW approach, anticipated public doses would still be higher than the 0.3 mrem/yr estimate. The NRC would also expect an assessment of offnormal effects upon the scrubbing systemís performance, such as differing feed compositions (iodine amounts), scrubbing medium composition, packing deterioration, liquid/gas ratios, monitoring systems, and associated management measures. Like the RU, the NRC would not limit the Contractor to a specific scrubbing technology although the characteristics and experience of the technology would be factored into the NRC evaluation of its ability to meet the performance requirements. NRC Evaluation and Assessment The NRC would expect the previously mentioned concerns to be fully addressed in safety documentation.

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A.24

INCREASED TANKAGE AND INVENTORIES

Statement of the Issue As the design has evolved during the Phase I.B-1 period, the potential quantity of waste that could be stored within the tankage volume now being proposed for the facility has increased considerably and may contain the equivalent waste volume of up to three of the double-shell tanks (DST). It is not clear if additional increases in tank volumes will occur because a sizing rationale for the tanks has not been presented. For example, there are now six circa 380 Kgal tanks for LAW receipt and six circa 90 Kgal tanks for HLW receipt and storage. In addition, separated and concentrated radionuclides may also be stored (e.g., cesium, technetium, strontium/transuranic waste, and UF [ultrafiltration] concentrates). To date, the Contractor has not used a consistent and reasonably conservative approach for estimating tank and radionuclide inventories. For example, the mass balances in the FFP submittal use radionuclide values potentially at least an order of magnitude lower than the contract allows. Per the SRP, the NRC would expect that the design basis for the facility is clearly described and that the volumes and the associated activity have been adequately analyzed in the dose assessments for the various scenarios. Specific Example(s) Per the FFP submittal, there are at least 3 million gallons of tank storage space at the facility, as identified in the previous paragraph. This is equivalent to three DSTs at Hanford. DOE Position DOE does not have a clear position on tank storage. The large amount of tankage appears to be driven by DOE concerns for batching flexibility, HLW storage space, and higher plant capacities. NRC Concerns The tankage represents a significant radiochemical inventory in a mobilized or easily-mobilized form. NRC Evaluation and Assessment NRC evaluations indicate the tanks represent a significant source term for leakage, spill, misrouting, and external event accident scenarios. In addition, they will contribute to operations and maintenance activities at the facility (e.g., for pumps, instrumentation, agitators, sampling, breather filters, etc.). The NRC would anticipate that there would be safety controls associated with this large tankage. The presence and identity of these controls is not apparent in the FFP submittal and related documentation.

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A.25

INSPECTION FEATURES

Statement of the Issue A complex radiochemical facility such as TWRS-P is likely to need numerous inspections over its design and operating periods. These would include inspection of SSCs, such as acceptance during construction, and corrosion of pipes and vessels, weld/connection integrity, instruments and calibration, cleaning, removal of deposits, and seal integrity during operations. In addition, additional inspections would focus on the operator and procedural issues, radioactive and material flow through the facility, and general conditions (of plant, people, and organization). The deliverables for this project did not contain or imply that inspections were included during the design or operating periods. Specific Examples Section 3.13, ìReliability, Availability, Maintainability, and Inspectability (RAMI)î of the Contractorís ISMP, BNFL-5193-ISP, rev. 4, dated December 2, 1998, requires that testability and inspectability of Safety Design Class systems and components be facilitated during design by such features as redundancy, that allow for a system or component to be removed from service for maintenance or testing without loss of safety protection and provisions. Contrary to the above, the Contractor had neither proceduralized nor implemented the requirement to consider inspectability and testability in the evolving facility design. No special features are identified in the designs submitted with the FFP material that would assist inspection of SSCs for construction acceptance or continued operation. Special ports for probes (e.g., eddy current, ultrasonic, radiation) and scopes are not apparent. There are many components that are in continuous use without built-in spares. Many of the pumps (e.g., the evaporator recirculation pumps) have neither a spare nor isolation valves to facilitate testing and inspection. DOE Position Members of the Design Process Inspection Team had identified this omission in the Design Process Inspection of January 2000. Because the ISMP represented part of the project Authorization Basis, this was considered an Inspection Finding. This information was conveyed to the Contractor via letter 00-RU-0210, Gibbs to Bullock, dated February 8, 2000, which transmitted the Design Process Inspection Report, IR-00-001. Additional follow-up has not occurred at this time. NRC Concerns NRC staff participated in the Design Process Inspection Team, and inspectability considerations were included in NRC Inspection Report 70-3091/0001. Without adequate means to inspect and test SSCs built into the design, it will be difficult for the Contractor to demonstrate adequate safety, particularly as the plant ages. Since it is required by regulation, then, without adequate design features to simplify inspection, the plant is likely to suffer capacity losses to accommodate the inspection needs.

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NRC Evaluation and Assessment NRC would anticipate that approaches and specific design features for inspection would be described as part of the management measures in a potential license submittal. A.26 CHEMICAL VERSUS RADIOLOGICAL RISK

Statement of the Issue The NRC approaches the potential hazards and risks form radioactive materials, chemicals generated by radioactive materials, and chemicals that may impact the safe handling of radioactive materials in a uniform manner via an ISA. Per the revised 10 CFR Part 70 and the SRP, potential hazards of high consequence identified by the ISA should be rendered highly unlikely by design and controls, while potential hazards of medium consequences should be rendered unlikely by design and controls. The SRP further identifies 1E-5/yr or lower as highly unlikely and the range of 1E-2/yr to 1E-5/yr as unlikely. The effects from chemicals are delineated in terms of emergency planning levels (essentially one hour or less exposures). The Contractor has identified process industry guidance as the basis (ìstandardî) for potential chemical hazards at the TWRS-P facility and intends to use standard, off-the-shelf equipment. However, this appears to result in a significantly higher, accepted level of risk from chemical events as compared to radiological events. Specific Examples As an example with the FFP submittal design, an offgas release to the gallery around the LAW melters would likely have fatal consequences for the personnel present with a potential frequency of circa 1E-3/yr. This is two orders of magnitude above the SRP value and potentially a thousand times greater than the SRD value for high dose, radiological accidents. The personnel would be exposed to radiological, chemical, and physical consequences (jetting, temperature, and pressure); however, the radiological consequences would not likely constitute the greatest risk or cause the potential fatalities. No IROFS were identified for this event. DOE Position From the April 2000 Topical Meeting minutes, the RU questioned: 1. The proposal to have different connection types and sizes to prevent unloading, misloading, and inadvertent mixing of incompatible chemicals, because most trucks carry multiple connectors. The same piping and equipment in facility bulges for more than one chemical, thus risking an incident of mixing incompatible chemicals. The general risks from frequent tank truck deliveries to the facility (eight or more a day).

2. 3.

At the June 2000 Topical Meeting, DOE/RU stated that they are inclined to accept the Contractorís chemical safety approach that considers ITS only when a potential scenario involves multiple hospitalizations, a worker fatality, or exceeding ERPG-3 levels for the CLW, because the approach was previously approved in the SRD by the RU. 195 NUREG-1747

NRC Concerns The proposed approach is inconsistent with NRC guidance, the revised 10 CFR Part 70 regulations, and commercial fuel cycle approaches that balance chemical and radiological risks at fuel cycle facilities. It is worth mentioning that the American Institute of Chemical Engineers has printed material (see, for example, Guidelines for Engineering Design for Process Safety) that discuss in detail the desire for ìinherently saferî plants with ìmultiple safety layersî (redundancy). In addition, best handling practices are available from manufacturers of specific chemicals (e.g., nitric acid) and chemical categories - these generally emphasize precautions and redundancy. The Contractor does not appear to be following this chemical process industry guidance. NRC Evaluation and Assessment The level of risk associated with chemical events is relatively high and incongruous with NRC regulations and guidance, and nuclear and process industry trends towards lower risk. It would seem that the potential risk level from chemical events should be lower and comparable to the radiological risk level, as noted by the revised 10 CFR Part 70 and the SRP. It should be noted that the use of Emergency Response Planning Guidelines (ERPGs) for analyzing chemical exposure may not be sufficiently conservative for some scenarios. ERPGs are intended to be used for evaluating emergency escape only, where the unit of the ìeffectî from exposure for 1 hour is not a ìtime weighted averageî (TWA). Also, the ERPG values are deterministic and represent significantly different acute effects - ERPG-1 corresponds to irritation and annoyance, ERPG-2 represents an injury level that does not impede emergency egress, and ERPG-3 denotes a level corresponding to irreversible injury. Thus, while generally accepted as a screening tool, the use of ERPG values may be inappropriate for longer duration scenarios such as control room habitability. Instead, lower values (e.g., TWA) may be better choices for those situations. A.27 RELIANCE ON THE OPERATORS

Statement of the Issue The proposed TWRS-P handles relatively large quantities of materials and activities for a radiochemical plant and contains numerous cells. While some of the cells are remotely operated, personnel access is planned for many of these cells for routine maintenance and recovery. In addition, the Contractor has indicated a preference for administrative controls and operator actions (including evacuation) over engineering and design controls. Specific Example(s) 1. The Contractor has elected to use a locally-shielded LAW melter in lieu of the traditional, remotely operated melter. The replacement of melter consumables, such as bubblers and thermowells, is intended to be done manually using a Consumable Changeout Box (CCB). This might occur 10% of the time and, in addition to the CCB procedures, requires an operator procedure to place the melter into idle mode.

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2.

The same LAW melter is located in a gallery with two other melters. Operators will be present in the gallery 30 percent or more of the operating time. The Contractor intends to use evacuation procedures in the event of an accidental release of radioactive materials into the gallery. In the current design, the pump bulges and canister decontamination cells rely upon operator entry for maintenance. Per NRC regulations, these would likely be categorized as ìvery high radiation areasî and require procedures for decontamination, canister movement, and/or door interlocks to prevent overexposures. Many of the tables in the ISM Cycle 2 list ìoperator actions,î procedures, and/or administrative controls. ìRestricted accessî is frequently listed as a primary control strategy to reduce operator exposure.

3.

4.

DOE Position During the March, 2000 Topical Meeting on Melters and Offgas Treatment, DOE/RU viewed a computer-generated model of the operation of the Consumable Changeout Box (CCB). DOE appears to be willing to accept reliance upon the operators as part of the primary hazard control strategy. NRC Concerns This approach of relying on administrative controls and operator actions runs opposite to the preference stated in the SRP NUREG-1702 and the revised 10 CFR Part 70 Statement of Considerations. NRC Evaluation and Assessment The NRC would look more favorably upon approaches that do not rely upon operator actions as either the primary or the secondary control strategy. A.28 TWRS-P SITE SPECIFIC GEOPHYSICAL AND GEOTECHNICAL INVESTIGATION REPORT

Statement of the Issue The analysis and design of the structural foundation system of the existing site materials and those materials that may be transported to the site as well as the concrete and steel structures to be constructed on or in the site materials should reflect the site specific conditions. Pretopical meetings on the subject of seismic analysis and design that were held in 1998 and 1999 targeted the report of the site specific geophysical and geotechnical investigations and recommendations to be available in mid-1999 to correspond to the start of the seismic analysis in March 1999 and the completion by the end of December 1999. This schedule would allow, based on the project schedules, to have the structural analysis completed by mid-April 2000. This schedule would provide for the completion of the development of structural and civil information for input to the LCAR. Repeated delays in the initiation of the work as well as in the completion of the work occurred in 1999 with meetings to discuss the data, findings and recommendations being postponed in August, September and October of 1999, and then no 197 NUREG-1747

meetings being identified. Until the LCAR, dated June 26, 2000, was submitted no information has been available relative to the site subsurface investigations. The LCAR identifies the document as, ìGeotechnical Investigation Report,î Shannon and Wilson, Inc., H-161-51, dated May 2000. Specific Example The basis for the analysis and design of the pretreatment building may be based on assumed information and the actual report of the geotechnical conditions has not been reviewed and evaluated by the regulatory authority. DOE Position DOE recognizes that this report and the information it contains is long overdue, however, the contract for the work was apparently under DOE control, not BNFL Inc. NRC Concerns While the report is late and untimely, the data and recommendations in the report must be thoroughly reviewed for adequacy and the final regulatory evaluation and recommendations will have to be reflected in the analysis and design completed to date. Assumptions made during the period of time when the design parameters from the actual report were not available must be verified as conservative. The adequacy of the complete analysis and design work should not be influenced by the fact that rework will have to be performed. NRC Evaluation and Assessment NRC did not receive the report in the LCAR material provided by the RU just as the project was being terminated, so no evaluation or assessment of this issue was made.

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APPENDIX B
January 29, 1997

MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING BETWEEN THE NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION AND THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY COOPERATION AND SUPPORT FOR DEMONSTRATION PHASE (PHASE 1) OF DOE HANFORD TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEM PRIVATIZATION ACTIVITIES
B1. PURPOSE

The purpose of this Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the Department of Energy (DOE) is to establish the basis for cooperation and mutual support during the demonstration phase (defined as Phase I) of DOE's Tank Waste Remediation System-Privatization (TWRS-P) activities. An objective of this DOE/NRC interaction is the development and execution of a comprehensive regulatory program by DOE that is consistent with NRC's regulatory approach for protecting workers, the general public, and the environment. DOE's regulatory program is to be structured to facilitate the possible transition of regulatory responsibilities from DOE to NRC at the start of the full-scale operations phase (defined as Phase II). During Phase I, DOE is responsible for implementing the TWRS Privatization regulatory program. This MOU provides for cooperation and mutual support in an integrated effort that provides for: 1. 2. DOE to acquire capability to implement a program of nuclear safety and safeguards regulation consistent with NRC's regulatory approach. NRC to acquire sufficient knowledge and understanding of the physical and operational situation at the Hanford waste tanks and the processes, technology and hazards involved in Phase I activities, to enable NRC (a) to assist DOE in performing reviews in a manner consistent with NRC's regulatory approach and (b) to be prepared to develop an effective and efficient regulatory program for the licensing of DOE contractor-owned and contractor-operated facilities that will process waste at Hanford during Phase II. INTRODUCTION Background

B2. 1.

During 1991, the DOE established the TWRS Program at the Hanford site to manage, retrieve, treat, immobilize, and dispose of certain radioactive waste in a safe, environmentally-sound, and cost-effective manner. The requirements and commitments for the TWRS cleanup activities are documented in the Hanford Federal Facilities Agreement and Consent Order, also known as the Tri-Party Agreement (TPA). Under the TPA, DOE, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Washington State Department of Ecology have agreed to a timetable for cleanup of the Hanford site. 199 NUREG-1747

DOE, through the TWRS Program, is making a fundamental change in its contracting approach at Hanford, utilizing privately-owned facilities on the Hanford site for processing waste which contains special nuclear material. This change in contracting approach also necessitates a fundamental change in DOE's approach to regulation and oversight. To accomplish the TWRS requirements, DOE plans to privatize treatment operations for the Hanford tank wastes. The TWRS-P is divided into two phases, a demonstration phase (defined as Phase I) and a full-scale operations phase (defined as Phase II). During both phases, DOE will purchase waste treatment services from a DOE contractor-owned, contractor-operated facility under a fixed-price type of contract; DOE will provide the feedstock to be processed. The DOE TWRS-P Contractor must finance the project; design the equipment and facility; apply for and receive required permits and licenses; construct the facility and bring it on line; operate the facility to treat waste; and deactivate the facility. DOE will undertake nuclear safety and safeguards regulatory responsibility associated with the TWRS-P activities during Phase I. The EPA and the State of Washington have responsibility to regulate environmental issues and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has responsibility to regulate occupational safety. NRC's participation during Phase I will primarily be of a cooperative nature for the purposes of information transfer and assisting DOE in the establishment of a regulatory program that is consistent with NRC's regulatory approach for protecting workers, the general public, and the environment. This MOU describes the relationship between NRC and DOE for activities conducted during Phase I only. The relationship between NRC, DOE, and the DOE TWRS-P Contractors during Phase II remains to be clarified by legislation and/or regulatory requirements. 2. Phase Descriptions Phase I Phase I is a proof-of-concept/commercial demonstration-scale effort. The objectives of Phase I are to: (a) demonstrate the technical and business viability of using privatized facilities to treat Hanford tank waste, (b) define and maintain required levels of safety and safeguards, (c) maintain environmental protection and compliance, and (d) substantially reduce life-cycle costs and time required to treat Hanford tank waste. Phase II Phase II will be the full-scale production phase, in which the facilities are to be configured so that all the remaining tank waste can be processed. The objectives of Phase II are to (a) implement the lessons learned from Phase I, and (b) process all tank waste into forms suitable for final disposal. The current DOE proposal is to have NRC assume full regulatory responsibility (consistent with the manner in which NRC regulates its licensees) for Phase II, although certain operational, statutory, and regulatory issues must be clarified before the proposed Phase II regulation by NRC can be implemented. Current estimates are that DOE procurement documents and NRC regulatory requirements for Phase II would be needed by the year 2004. This MOU does not apply to Phase II activities. NUREG-1747 200

B3. 1.

AUTHORITY Department of Energv

Sections 31, 91, and 161 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended; Section 104 of the Energy Reorganization Act of 1974; and, Section 301 of the DOE Organization Act authorize DOE to provide for the safe storage, processing, transportation and disposal of hazardous waste, including radioactive waste, resulting from nuclear materials production and weapons production. In addition, with regard to activities under DOE's jurisdiction, Section 161.i.(3) of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, permits DOE to prescribe such regulations or orders as it may deem necessary to govern DOE activities authorized by the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, including standards and restrictions governing the design, location, and operation of facilities used in the conduct of such activity, in order to protect health and to minimize danger to life or property. 2. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Sections 53, 57, 62, 63, 81, 103, 104, and 161b, of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, and Section 201(f) of the Energy Reorganization Act of 1974 authorize NRC to license and establish by rule, regulation, or order, standards and instructions to govern the possession and use of special nuclear material, source material, or byproduct material to protect health or to minimize danger to life or property, or to promote the common defense and security. This agreement is entered into pursuant to these and other applicable authorities, including the Economy Act of 1932, as amended. B4. 1. 2. FOUNDATION UNDERSTANDINGS This MOU applies to Phase I only. DOE will regulate the DOE TWRS-P Contractors during Phase I under the terms and conditions agreed upon by DOE and the DOE TWRS-P Contractors, and will be responsible for the regulatory oversight of all design, construction, operational, and event-response activities. NRC will have no regulatory authority over the DOE TWRS-P Contractors during Phase I. No regulatory action, process, or practice established by DOE during Phase I will be binding on NRC during any possible NRC regulatory oversight of DOE TWRS Privatization Contractors during Phase II. NRC's regulatory approach is based (a) on reviewing the applicant's systematic and integrated identification of potential accidents and interactions resulting from radiological and related process chemical and fire hazards, and (b) on ensuring adequate protection against those hazards which could impact on the safety of the worker, the general public and the protection of-the environment.

3.

4.

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B5. 1.

AGREEMENTS BETWEEN PARTIES Responsibilities Department of Energy The Manager, Richland Operations Office, will be responsible for implementing the terms of this agreement. The TWRS Regulatory Official, who reports to the Manager, Richland Operations Office, will be the DOE point of contact for all communications relating to carrying out the provisions of this agreement. Nuclear Regulatory Commission The Director of the Office of Nuclear Materials Safety and Safeguards (NMSS) will be responsible for implementing the terms of this agreement. The Chief of the responsible Branch within NMSS will be the NRC point of contact for all communications related to carrying out the provisions of this agreement.

2.

General Provisions a. At the foundation of the DOE privatization approach is a predictability and reliability feature embedded in DOE's contracts with the TWRS-P Contractorsónamely contractual commitments for DOE regulatory actions within specific time periods. Essential to timely and orderly DOE regulatory actions is the awareness by NRC of these contractual commitments and the need for timely interaction between DOE and NRC at all levels. If an issue arises in the implementation of this MOU which cannot be resolved at the agency point-of-contact level, the NRC and DOE agree to refer the matter within 30 days to the Director, NMSS, and the Manager, Richland Operations Office, for appropriate action. It is the intent of both parties to conduct the TWRS Regulatory Program in an open, public, and professional manner. NRC and DOE recognize the importance of providing timely and accurate information to the public regarding regulatory matters that may affect the protection of workers, the general public, and the environment. Meetings between NRC and DOE staff in connection with this MOU wilI be governed by NRC policy on open meetings (59 FR 48340; September 20, 1994). NRC will participate with DOE in public meetings and other public interactions, as appropriate. All transmittals between DOE and NRC regarding TWRS Privatization activities will be made publicly available, consistent with NRC and DOE policies and requirements, at an established local public document room. Each agency recognizes that it is responsible for the protection, control, and accounting of classified, proprietary, and procurement-sensitive information; Safeguards Information (SGI); and Unclassified Controlled Nuclear Information (UCNI).

b.

c.

d.

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e.

Each agency will be responsible for processing, under its established program(s), allegationsódeclarations or statements or assertions of impropriety or inadequacy whose validity has not been establishedóassociated with the regulated TWRS-P activities covered by this MOU. Each agency will keep the other agency informed, as appropriate, of such allegations, the allegations' status, and the allegations' resolution. Each agency will assure that allegations are promptly referred to the agency or entity that has jurisdiction over the allegation. support of the DOE TWRS Privatization activities, DOE will provide private office space and equipment, if needed, for NRC in the vicinity of the TWRS Regulatory Unit in the Richland, Washington area. DOE will provide the NRC with ready access to current TWRS regulatory information; access to key individuals in the Regulatory Unit for consistency discussions; access to TWRS general information, tank farm status and operational issues, and safety perspectives; and access to Hanford site safety perspectives.

f.

3.

Regulatory Interaction Activities a. Site Familiarization

NRC will need to acquire knowledge of the physical and operational situation for the Hanford waste tanks and of the processes, technologies, and hazards involved in processing the tank wastes. The following activities will be performed to provide this familiarization: I. NRC will visit the Hanford site, as necessary, to examine the conditions of the tank farms as they may relate to TWRS-P. As part of NRC's orientation, DOE will provide to NRC information on: ï ï ï ï ï ï ï ï ï The physical conditions and operational requirements necessary for safe storage, retrieval, transfer, and processing of the tank waste. Evaluations of the criticality potential for TWRS Privatization activities. Radiation levels of the waste and chemical forms of the waste. Contamination levels in the areas of the planned TWRS Privatization facilities and tanks. Hydrogen generation/flammable gas situation of tanks. Organic complexant/nitrate oxidizer situation of tanks. Other possible hazards associated with the waste. Available or planned waste movement systems. The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), and Atomic Energy Act of 1954 for the TWRS. 203 NUREG-1747

II.

DOE will provide NRC access to the tank farms, tank farm records and documentation, and other information concerning operational conditions and events that NRC may desire in order to understand the TWRS Privatization project and associated hazards, processes, and conditions.

III. Upon request by NRC, DOE will brief or hold discussions with NRC on issues related to the TWRS Privatization effort. The locations, timing, and content of these meetings will be agreed upon by the points of contact for each agency. IV. NRC may occasionally conduct reviews and special audits or inspections at DOE's request to provide objective perspective on selected regulatory issues. b. Regulatory Familiarization

To assist the DOE in establishing the capability to regulate consistent with NRC concepts and principles, the NRC will provide detailed briefings, guidance documents, and support in developing important administrative and technical program elements of a regulatory program. NRC will provide DOE access to regulatory training provided by NRC to its staff on a space available basis and, with specific agreement, will provide DOE opportunity to observe NRC's regulatory activities. c. Development of DOE TWRS Regulatory Program

DOE guidance specific to the regulation of DOE TWRS-P Contractors will be prepared and issued by DOE. The guidance is for use by the DOE's TWRS Regulatory Unit in its execution of the regulatory reviews and resulting regulatory actions and is provided as information to the DOE TWRS-P Contractors for their preparation of regulatory submittals. The guidance will cover those submittals required of the Contractors by DOE such as the Quality Assurance (QA) program, essential set of safety standards and requirements (including the site-specific design basis), integrated safety management plan, safety assessment, construction authorization request, operating authorization request, operational reports and assessments, and deactivation authorization. DOE will be responsible for issuing this guidance in its final form. The following activities will be performed by NRC and DOE to develop the guidance: I. NRC will provide DOE with established and evolving NRC guidance and position documents as input for DOE to consider in the development and updating of its guidance for the DOE regulatory review. NRC will assist DOE in developing a DOE inspection program that will be applied during design, fabrication construction (e.g. acceptable codes and standards for concrete, electrical, welding, etc.), installation, and qualification testing. DOE will develop guidance for the review of Contractor submittals and DOE reviews of TWRS-P activities. NRC will review and provide a basis for its comments on DOE's draft guidance to identify areas that may not be consistent with NRC's regulatory approach. 204

II.

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III. NRC will participate, as appropriate, with DOE in the joint development of guidance, based on industry standards, e.g., American Nuclear Society/American National Standards Institute (ANS/ANSI), for issuance by DOE as guidance for the DOE TWRS-P Program. d. Regulatory Program Implementation

Specific DOE regulatory activities planned include design basis review, QA program evaluation, standards approval, initial safety evaluation, construction authorization and inspection, operating authorization oversight, and deactivation authorization. These actions will begin in Fiscal Year 1997 and continue throughout Phase 1. The following activities will be performed by DOE and NRC in fulfillment of their respective responsibilities under this MOU: I. DOE will be responsible for safety (e.g. design basis) and safeguards reviews and determining acceptability of DOE TWRS-P Contractors' submittals against the DOE TWRS guidance. DOE will have final decision authority for regulatory implementation during Phase I and for all interactions with the DOE TWRS-P Contractors. NRC will review and provide a basis for its comments on DOE TWRS-P Contractors' submittals to identify any areas that are not consistent with NRC's regulatory approach. These submittals will include all documents which address the technical and quality basis for the TWRS facilities and which could affect nuclear and process safety and safeguards in design, construction and operation. NRC will assist DOE in evaluating submittals and in verifying effective implementation of: ï Design: design basis, design verification, level of design detail and documentation, design specifications, calculations and drawings, and procurement specifications. Quality assurance for design, procurement, construction, pre-operational testing and operation. Operator training and qualification Human factors. Emergency response.

II.

ï ï ï ï

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B5. 1. 2.

OTHER PROVISIONS Nothing in this MOU will limit the authority of either agency to independently exercise its authority with regard to matters that are the subject of this MOU. Nothing in this MOU will be deemed to establish any right nor provide a basis for any action, either legal or equitable, by any person or class of persons challenging a government action or a failure to act. This MOU will be effective upon signature and upon satisfaction of conditions in Section VI.4 and will remain in effect until the end of Phase I. This agreement may also be terminated by mutual agreement or by written notice of either party submitted six months in advance of termination. Amendments or modifications to this agreement may be made upon written agreement of the parties. This MOU will become effective and remain in effect during such time periods when Congress authorizes and provides appropriate funding (or when there is another acceptable form of reimbursement) for NRC's participation in this project. Activities within the scope of this MOU and within the scope of appropriated resources are mutually agreed to be without reimbursement of cost for either organization. Special activities such as described in Sections V.C.1.d and V.C.2 may be negotiated for cost reimbursement as needed.

3.

4.

5.

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206

APPENDIX C
POINT PAPER SUMMARIES
C1. MATERIALS CONSIDERATIONS OF PROPOSED TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEMS

Technical approaches are being formulated for the treatment of DOE tank wastes into vitrified waste forms suitable for long term storage and disposal. Tank wastes from the Hanford site are likely to involve significant processing efforts for separating radionuclides from nonradioactive species and concentrating them in the high level waste (HLW) glass. The appropriate selection of materials of construction and their inservice corrosion/erosion performance monitoring impact the safety of the facility primarily from the perspective of adequate confinement of radioactive materials, and this paper provides an overview of materials selection concerns based upon the knowledge of the design approach at this point in time, corresponding to perhaps a 5 percent design level (i.e., very preliminary design). Both general and specific corrosion/erosion are likely to occur over the Tank Waste Remediation System (TWRS) operating lifetime of some 30-plus years. Potential areas of the TWRSPrivatization (TWRS-P) facility where corrosion/erosion induced loss of confinement could result in the potential for radiation exposures exceeding regulatory limits have been identified as follows: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Tanks. Pressurized transfer piping. Pump seal areas. Melters. Melter offgas treatment areas.

Analyses estimate both unmitigated and mitigated consequences from potential accident scenarios in these areas, using a conservative approach suitable and normalized volumes for safety categorizations and preliminary designs. Several corrosion/erosion scenarios have potential accident consequences to the workers and the public of sufficient severity and risk (in the 2E-2/yr to 6E-2/yr range) such that prevention (reduce probability) and mitigation (reduce consequences) become necessary, requiring the identification of items relied upon for safety. These include the following: 1. 2. 3. 4. Leakage from HLW and low activity waste (LAW) storage tanks, with potential risks of 1.4E-3/yr to 1.4E-4/yr. Pressurized transfer lines with potential risks around 4E-5/yr. Pump seal areas with potential risks up to 4E-2/yr. Corrosion failures in the HLW melter areas with potential risks up to 1.2E-2/yr.

Potential risks from corrosion/erosion related loss of confinement of the separated cesium storage tank and LAW melter areas are lower in the 1E-6/yr to 1E-7/yr range. 207 NUREG-1747

There are no clear definitions of ìacceptable risk.î However, the NRC public dose limit from routine operations and the average U.S. worker risk (all causes) both correspond to around 5E5/yr risk, and it would be anticipated that ìacceptable riskî would be some percentage of this. A small percentage (0.1-0.5 percent) of the average cancer risk (currently around 2E-3/yr) has also been mentioned. It seems likely that the total, potential risk level for a TWRS-P like facility would have to be below 1E-5/yr and probably close to 1E-6/yr in order to be acceptable to the public. Therefore, some equipment is likely to be designated as relied on for safety in order to address corrosion/erosion loss of confinement concerns and reduce the potential risks. The two most likely approaches are prevention, which depends heavily upon operator actions to detect corrosion/erosion and avoids loss of confinement events, and mitigation, which relies upon the cell and ventilation system for additional confinement after failure. Ideally, the selection of the appropriate materials of construction, in conjunction with robust designs, redundant features, safety controls, adequately conservative corrosion/erosion margins, inspections, monitoring, and operator intervention are likely to provide adequate assurances of safety and offer the potential for reducing materials-related accident risk to more acceptable levels (circa 2E-6/yr). This effort has identified a relative lack of published corrosion and erosion information under expected operating conditions of the TWRS-P, particularly in the melter and offgas areas. Also, failure and release data for accident analysis are not well established for vitrification facilities in the expected TWRS-P environment. It is anticipated that additional information will become available from DOE and contractor efforts as the program continues to develop. This paper has considered selected materials-related safety considerations with respect to the proposed TWRS-P facility. Since radioactive materials will be confined in vessels, pipes, pumps vitrification melters, waste canisters, and other associated confinements, the appropriate performance- and life-limiting factors due to corrosion, erosion, and the combined effects of corrosion and erosion have been considered in general terms. However, the design of the TWRS-P facility is very preliminary and ongoing as of December, 1999. Reportedly, the current status corresponds to about 5 percent of preliminary design, with major design changes occurring. Detailed information on materials selection for various major process vessels, piping, and other confinement is still not available. Careful monitoring of this critical aspect should be considered when the Contractor submits the construction authorization request (CAR) in November 2000. C2. PROCESS SAFETY OF PROPOSED TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEMS

Technical approaches are being formulated for the treatment of U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) tank wastes into vitrified waste forms suitable for long term storage and disposal. Tank wastes from the Hanford site are likely to involve significant chemical processing for separating radionuclides from nonradioactive species with the intent of concentrating the radioactive species in the vitrified HLW and concentration of the nonradioactive species (including most of the sodium) into vitrified LAW. The current plan envisions treatment in a private contractor owned facility on the Hanford site with subsequent storage of the vitrified HLW at a DOE facility onsite. Disposal of vitrified LAW occurs in a near-surface DOE disposal unit at Hanford. This paper presents analyses for chemical and process safety at potential TWRS-P facilities using generic and conceptual process approaches proposed by DOE contractors. These NUREG-1747 208

analyses identify the following areas of concern from the perspective of chemical and process safety: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Radiochemical inventories. Process efficacy. Organic ion exchange resin/nitrate interactions. Crystalline silicotitanate (CST) drying. Organic materials . Radiolysis. High temperature operations. Nonradioactive chemical effects upon radiochemical processing.

Several of these areas of concern have events that can be analyzed at this early stage of design using a conservative, bounding approach suitable for structures, systems, and components (SSC) categorization. The remaining areas of concern are discussed qualitatively, but require a more detailed process and facility design for quantification. Analyses estimate both unmitigated and mitigated consequences and potential risks from these events. Several event scenarios involving resin interactions, CST, large radiochemical inventories, melter cold cap, and cold chemical releases have potential accident consequences to the workers and the public of sufficient severity such that the corresponding risk may not be acceptable, based upon comparisons to current limits. Consequently, prevention (reduce frequency and probability) and mitigation (reduce consequence severity) become necessary, requiring the identification of items relied on for safety. Analyses estimate the combined, unmitigated risk to the receptor at 100 meters as approximately 2.4E-2/yr, about an order of magnitude above the equivalent risk of the 10 CFR Part 20 radiation worker annual dose limit of 5 rem. Melter and organic resin scenarios dominate the potential unmitigated risk at 100 meters, accounting for about 94 percent of the risk total. However, the remaining risk from the identified potential events still is an order of magnitude greater than the average occupational risk for U.S. workers of 4.8E-5/yr. Fortunately, relatively simple and effective prevention and mitigation methods are available to reduce the potential risk from the TWRS-P facility. Passive prevention methods rely upon high quality, inspected, and tested components with conservative design and corrosion margins. This is a standard approach for nuclear facilities. Active prevention uses controls to avoid operating sequences outside the design envelope that are precursors to events with consequences; the controls can be based upon instrumentation or administrative procedures. Mitigation reduces consequences primarily by confinement (e.g., cells with high efficiency particulate air [HEPA] filters), with adequate levels of defense-in-depth. Again, this is a standard approach in the nuclear industry. Prevention and mitigation offer the potential to reduce the risk from TWRS-P operations to around 2E-6/yr. This result is less than 5 percent of the average occupational risk, around 1 percent of the risk from the average background dose, and around 0.1 percent of the average cancer fatality rate and is likely to be acceptable. Obviously, DOE and its contractors will include experimental testing as part of the program leading to the design, construction, and operation of the TWRS-P facility. Few appropriate safety related parameters, such as failure rates, modes, and release fractions, are available for HLW processing and vitrification facilities. It would be beneficial if the measurement of such safety parameters could be included in the DOE program.

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A potential rupture of cold chemical storage tanks containing ammonia and nitric acid would have onsite and offsite effects exceeding Emergency Response Planning Guideline-3 levels and require evacuation of the facility. Consequently, the facility design should include provisions to address such an event, by either dedicated breathing air to control and operator areas of the facility during such an event, a remote control facility, automated operation/shutdown, effective mitigation of the chemical releases, or other means. In addition, some portions of the facility should be designed as shelter areas from potential events, including chemical releases.

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APPENDIX D
DISCUSSION OF POTENTIAL ISSUES FOR REGULATORY TRANSITION
This attachment provides a discussion of issues related to the potential transition of regulatory authority for the Tank Waste Remediation System/Waste Treatment Plant (TWRS/WTP) facilities from U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) based upon their status as of June 2000. Many of these issues are summarized in Main Reference 17 and have been discussed between the DOE and NRC over the 4-year length of the program. From the viewpoint of the NRC staff, most of the issues would be addressed by the legislation that enables NRC regulatory authority over the TWRS/WTP facilities or NRC external regulation of DOE facilities, and by continued refinement and detailing of the proposed facility designs. The remaining issues relate to DOE programmatic activities and not regulation. If the NRC had remained involved in the program, continuing activities and design refinements might have changed some of the conclusions. D1 Issue Emergency planning is presently site-wide and is under the control of the DOE. Since the NRC normally regulates emergency planning at licensee facilities, this aspect of the TWRS/WTP contractor operation would become subject to NRC regulation. Discussion The emergency planning requirements of DOE and NRC are very similar. NRC requires some applicants for licenses under 10 CFR Part 70 to provide emergency plans.100 Further guidance specific to the format and content for the emergency plans is given in Regulatory Guide 3.67.101 DOEís requirements for emergency planning are contained in DOE Order 151.1,102 which supersedes the 5500 series of DOE Orders. However, the Hanford Emergency Response Plan103 still invokes the 5500 series of DOE Orders until the new Order can be implemented. Further detailed guidance is provided in the Emergency Management Guide.104 The guidance EMERGENCY PLANNING

100

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section 70.22(1)(ii).

101

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). Regulatory Guide 3.67, ìStandard Format and Content for Emergency Management System.î NRC: Washington, D.C. January 1992. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE Order 151.1, ìComprehensive Emergency Management System.î DOE: Richland, Washington. September 25, 1995. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL 94-02, ìHanford Emergency Response Plan.î DOE: Richland, Washington. 1994

102

103

104

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE G 151.1, ìEmergency Management Guide.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 1997.

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in this document is very similar to that found in the NRC Regulatory Guide. It is, however, more specific. Both DOE and NRC have a classification scheme for emergency events. DOE suggests three levels (alert, site area emergency, and general emergency),105 while the NRC guidance provides for two different emergency event classifications (alert and site area emergency).106 Both agencies support the use of offsite emergency resources in the event of emergencies and suggest written agreements between these local, state, and federal entities.107,108 Many DOE facilities have other facilities in close proximity and areas of public access (e.g., rivers, state or federal roads, etc.) within a short distance of the facility. In this situation, DOE usually develops a site-wide or reservation-wide emergency plan that incorporates the facilityspecific plans. The approach is consistent with that of the NRC; however, more coordination of emergency planning activities with local, state, and Federal agencies is required. The DOE Field Office usually provides this coordination, particularly when there are multiple contractors on a site.109 In both its Integrated Safety Management Plan110, 111 and its Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR), BNFL Inc. states that its emergency management plan will be implemented consistent with the Hanford Emergency Response Plan such that an integrated, timely, emergency response is assumed. DOEís emergency planning activities cover the entire Hanford Reservation, which encompasses many more facilities than just the proposed TWRS/WTP facilities, and provides the primary interface with the appropriate local and state agencies. Facility-specific emergency plans are also prepared by the contractor; however, these plans primarily contain the facilityspecific information required to comply with DOE Orders and define the conditions under which the DOE Operations Office is apprised of an emergency and the coordination between the

105

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE G 151.1, Emergency Management Guide, Vol. 3, Table 3.1, ìSummary of Emergency Classes.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 1997.

106

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). Regulatory Guide 3.67, Section 3, ìStandard Format and Content for Emergency Plans for Fuel Cycle and Materials Facilities.î NRC: Washington, D.C. January 1992.
107

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE G 151.1, ìEmergency Management Guide.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 1997.
108

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). Regulatory Guide 3.67, Section 3, ìStandard Format and Content for Emergency Plans for Fuel Cycle and Materials Facilities.î NRC: Washington, D.C. January 1992.
109

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE G151.1, Vol. 1, ìEmergency Management Guide.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 1997. BNFL Inc. BNFL-5193-ISP-01, Rev. 2, ìTWRS-P Project Integrated Safety Management Plan.î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. April 17, 1998.

110

111

BNFL Inc. BNFL-5193-ISP-01, Rev. 0, ìTWRS-P Project Integrated Safety Management Plan.î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. September 1997.

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facility and DOE. As noted above, DOE then interfaces with the appropriate local and state authorities. BNFL Inc. has stated in its submittals that it will develop its emergency plans consistent with the Hanford Emergency Response Plan and that it will work with DOE and its contractors to provide for integrated emergency management of the Hanford site.112 BNFL Inc. has also committed to design its emergency management program to work within the existing emergency management programs and to entering into agreements with DOE and the DOE contractors operating other facilities on the Hanford site to share resources and equipment.113 The NRC staff has reviewed Section 9 of BNFLís ISAR, which pertains to emergency management, and found that the format and content were consistent with the NRCís guidance. Furthermore, the NRC staff found no significant open items in the area of emergency management aside and that the DOE guidance is both generally consistent with the NRCís approach and more prescriptive. The NRC staff did find that the emergency management plans of TWRS/WTP should be integrated with those of the site, and responsibilities, authorities, etc., established in written documentation. If regulatory oversight were to transition to the NRC, then the TWRS/WTP contractorís emergency program would likely fall under NRC jurisdiction. NRC may require the contractor to modify its Emergency Response Plan to be consistent with the NRC guidance. For example, the discussion of emergency planning in the ISAR defines three categories of emergencies, which is consistent with the DOE guidance. If NRC were to assume regulatory oversight, then the TWRS-P emergencies may have to be reclassified and other changes may be required to provide compliance with the NRC Regulatory Guide.13 The NRC staff has noted that the emergency classifications currently proposed by BNFL Inc. are consistent with the Hanford Emergency Response Plan but are inconsistent with the emergency event classifications in 10 CFR Part 70. The NRC staff noted that the TWRS-P project presents different hazards from those of the more traditional fuel cycle facilities so that a need for extending the emergency classifications to include the general emergency category might be warranted depending on the conclusions of the integrated safety analysis. However, the TWRS-P emergency event classifications would still not be consistent with the NRC guidance. The NRC staff has considered a number of alternatives ranging from modifying the regulations to allowing DOE to maintain the role of lead agency for emergency response. The alternatives ranging from modifying the regulations to allowing DOE to maintain the role of lead agency for emergency response. The alternatives also included using the licensing process to define the emergency event requirements. The NRC staffís concern is that, if the TWRS-P project had emergency event classifications different from other 10 CFR Part 70 licensees, this could be a source of NRC staff confusion in the NRCís Emergency Response Center during an actual event and that there could be confusion on training and procedures. The TWRS-P situation is somewhat analogous to the Washington Public Power Supply System (WPPSS) nuclear plants, WNP-1 and WNP-2, that are situated on leased land on the DOE
112

BNFL Inc. BNFL-5193-ISP-01, Rev. 2, Section 3.10, ìTWRS-P Project Integrated Safety Management Plan.î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. April 17, 1998.
113

BNFL Inc. BNFL-5195-ISAR-01, Rev. 0, Section 9.1, ìTWRS-P Project Initial Safety Analysis Report.î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. January 12, 1998.

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reservation. However, the WPPSS facility is not situated in close proximity to other facilities, and there are no DOE workers in the immediate vicinity of the WPPSS facilities. WPPSS has established two Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) with DOE; one for cooperation and mutual use of emergency response personnel, and a second for use of DOEís decontamination facilities in the event of personnel contamination. WPPSS also has established agreement with the local and state emergency response organizations. Similarly, the Siemens fuel fabrication facility, which as an NRC licenses under 10 CFR Part 70, is located on property that it owns but which is adjacent to the DOE reservation. Like WPPSS, Siemens has established MOUs with DOE and the interested local and state agencies. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment If the TWRS/WTP facilities were to transition to NRC regulation, the NRC staff would expect integration issues with other Hanford site operations to be fully addressed, communications and responsibilities clearly defined, and the appropriate authorities for the TWRS/WTP Emergency Plan (EP) managers to direct the Hanford site EP as necessary based upon the Integrated Safety Analysis (ISA). This would likely be formalized in MOUs similar to the existing NRC facilities on and adjacent to the Hanford site. The NRC staff does not view this as a significant issue. D2 Issue DOE is concerned about the regulator, authority, and requirements for the radioactive wastes generated by TWRS-Privatization (TWRS-P). Discussion The DOE plans for long term storage and/or disposal of the vitrified low activity waste (LAW) from the TWRS-P facility locally (i.e., on the Hanford site) in near-surface facilities. The vitrified high-activity waste will be stored locally and subsequently sent to a Federal repository for permanent disposal. The current framework for regulation of DOE radioactive waste provides for the NRC regulation of high level waste (HLW) and DOE regulation of other types of radioactive waste. A key consideration in identifying DOE-regulated waste is whether the waste was generated incidental to HLW reprocessing. Such wastes might include spent resins, failed melters, and high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters in addition to vitrified LAW. The critical importance of this determination is that waste determined to be incidental to HLW reprocessing is not classified as HLW and can be addressed by low level waste (LLW) regulations and storage/disposal facilities. Such facilities could be regulated by either DOE, NRC, or the State of Washington. If DOE decided to use existing DOE storage/disposal facilities at Hanford, these would not be subject to regulation by NRC. A significant portion of this issue is devoted to the examination of the nuances of identification of waste incidental to HLW reprocessing. Under the current regulatory structure, the NRC staff regards the identification of waste incidental to HLW reprocessing as the pivotal issue in assessing the adequacy of DOE plans for onsite disposal of LLW generated by TWRS-P. NUREG-1747 214 RADIOACTIVE WASTE REGULATORY AUTHORITY

The incidental waste issue stems from NRCís broad definition of HLW and the absence of a formal definition of incidental waste. HLW is defined as irradiated reactor fuel; liquid wastes from the first cycle of a solvent extraction system, or equivalent, and the concentrated wastes from subsequent solvent extraction cycles, or equivalent, in an special nuclear fuel (SNF) reprocessing facility; and solid materials into which those liquid wastes have been converted. Disposal of HLW requires a geologic repository. Land disposal requirements of radioactive wastes are contained in 10 CFR Part 61ósuch wastes are usually referred to as LLW. Incidental wastes are not mentioned in the regulations. Appendix F of 10 CFR Part 50 sets the NRC policy relating to siting of fuel reprocessing plants and related waste management facilities. The policy sets the time limits for on-site storage of high level radioactive wastes and also defines high level radioactive waste. In 1970, with the promulgation of 10 CFR Part 70, the Atomic Energy Commission specifically noted that the term high level waste did not include waste resulting from HLW reprocessing plant operations such as ion exchange beds, sludges, and contaminated laboratory items, such as clothing, tools, and equipment. These excluded wastes were referred to as incidental waste.114 There are operational an economical incentives to demonstrate that waste is not high-level waste.115 Once the highly radioactive component of waste is separated out, the resultant less radioactive (and potentially more voluminous) LAW is like incidental waste and is in a regulatory dilemma; it is not clearly covered under present NRC regulations and may be disposed of in accordance with DOE orders for LLW disposal116 at DOE facilities provided the Washington Administrative Code (WAC) is satisfied. Under the present system, unless the NRC determines that this LAW/incidental waste is not HLW, the waste must be disposed of as HLW in a federal repository. However, if sufficient levels of radioactivity are removed from the LAW/incidental wastes, their potential hazards would be comparable to LLW. Hence, their disposal performance requirements could be achieved by near-surface facilities as well. In January and July 1990, the states of Oregon and Washington unsuccessfully petitioned the NRC to formally promulgate rules for determining that wastes generated incidental to HLW reprocessing are not HLW. In denying the petition for formal rulemaking, NRC restated the criteria for determining the waste to be incidental and not HLW.117 The NRC criteria were also stated in a letter to DOE and are summarized below:118 Criterion One: Wastes have been processed (or will be further processed) to remove key radionuclides to the maximum extent that is technically and economically practical.

114

Atomic Energy Commission (U.S.), Washington, D.C. Federal Register: Vol 35, p. 17533. November 14, 1970.

115

U.S. Department of Energy (D. Wodrich) presentation to Oregon Department of Energy. ìClassifying Hanford Tank Low Activity Waste Fraction.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 27, 1996.

116

Department of Energy Order 5820.2A defines LLW as all radioactive waste that is not high level, transuranic, spent fuel, or byproduct material.
117 118

Department of Energy (U.S.). Washington, D.C. Federal Register: Vol 58, p. 12342. March 4, 1993. Bernero, R., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to J. Lytle, U.S. Department of Energy, March 2, 1993.

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Criterion Two:

Wastes will be incorporated in a solid physical form at a concentration that does not exceed the applicable concentration limits for Class C LLW as set out in 10 CFR Part 61.

Criterion Three: Wastes are to be managed, pursuant to the Atomic Energy Act, so that safety requirements comparable to the performance objectives set out in 10 CFR Part 61, Subpart C, are satisfied. In short, the NRC position is that the vitrified LAW and incidental wastes can be treated like LLW if they have similar characteristics and hazards as LLW. In November 1996, the DOE Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL) requested NRC agreement that the Hanford tank waste planned for onsite disposal is incidental waste (i.e., not HLW) and, therefore, would not be under NRC licensing authority.119 The basis for this request was an RL technical basis report that included an interim performance assessment of the waste disposal site. The NRC concluded that the Hanford tank waste planned for onsite disposal met the criteria for classifying it as incidental waste; however, because of the preliminary nature of the tank waste performance assessment submitted by RL, several conditions were stipulated.120 From the DOE/Regulatory Unit (RU) perspective, any agreement RL has in place with the NRC related to classification of incidental waste will not be affected by a transition to NRC regulation, so long as NRC grants the materials license to the TWRS-P Contractor on the basis of possession and not ownership of the waste. Under the current arrangement, DOE will retain title to all materials in the waste envelopes provided to the Contractor and in all intermediate and final waste products.121 The NRC regulation under which the TWRS-P Contractor would likely be regulated (10 CFR Part 70) does not specifically require the contractor to take title or ownership of the waste material being processed.122 The State of Washington is an Agreement State123 as provided by Section 274 of the Atomic Energy Act124 (AEA). That provision of the AEA permits individual states to assume, with the concurrence of the NRC, regulation of some activities that would otherwise be regulated by the NRC. Low-level radioactive waste management and disposal are among the nuclear activities for which regulation can be assumed by Agreement States and the State of Washington currently regulates such activities within their borders except at DOE facilities. Agreement

119

Kinzer, J., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to C. Paperiello, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, November 7, 1996.
120

Paperiello, C., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to J. Kinzer, U.S. Department of Energy, June 9, 1997.
121

U.S. Department of Energy. TWRS Privatization Contract No. DE-AC06-RL13308, Section C.4.c, page C-9. DOE: Richland, Washington. September 26, 1996.
122 123

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section 70.1(a), ìDomestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î

Agreement State means a state that has developed a program for regulation of those aspects of radioactive materials and radiation-producing devices not reserved exclusively for the NRC and has signed an agreement with the Commission to assume that responsibility.
124

Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended.

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State regulations must be compatible with NRC regulations, but need not be identical. Because Agreement State programs are essentially an extension of the NRC regulatory regime, transition to external regulation of DOE facilities in an Agreement State suggests that the Agreement State would likely be responsible for regulation of LLW generated by TWRS-P. Any uncertainty with respect to the appropriate regulatory entity for management of such wastes could be explicitly addressed in federal legislation mandating external regulation of TWRS/WTP or DOE nuclear activities. In a similar vein, Washington is a member of the Northwest Interstate Compact on Low-Level Radioactive Waste Management and has enacted into law the governing requirements125 of that organization. The compact approach to providing for management of LLW was created by Federal statute and was designed to encourage development of regional LLW disposal facilities in part to promote economic viability. The Federal statue126 allows the compacts to exclude waste from outside the compact. However, the Northwest compact language does not require that all LLW generated within the borders of the member states be disposed of at the compactís regional site. The compact even allows individual LLW generators to establish and maintain LLW management facilities for their sole use.127 Furthermore, Federal waste facilities are excluded from the definition of ìfacilitiesî for the purpose of the compact statute.128 Some radioactive materials from remediation of DOE facilities are being disposed of in onsite facilities permitted under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA).129 In an effort to eliminate potential redundancies in the requirements of CERCLA and the DOE Order on radioactive waste management, DOE adopted a policy130 allowing for the substitution of CERCLA requirements to satisfy similar requirements of the DOE Order if the CERCLA requirements could be demonstrated to yield results equivalent to the DOE requirements. In addition, DOE has prepared guidance to clarify how compliance with the policy can be achieved.131 In fact, one of the DOE facilities that motivated DOE to develop and adopt the CERCLA policy was the Environmental Restoration Disposal Facility (ERDF) at the Hanford site.

125

Revised Code of Washington, Title 43, Chapter 145, Section 010, ìNorthwest Interstate Compact on Low-Level Radioactive Waste Management.î
126 127 128 129 130

Low-Level Radioactive Waste Policy Amendments Act of 1985, Pub. L. 99-240, as amended (January 15, 1986). Revised Code of Washington, Title 43, Chapter 145, Section 010, Article IV, ìRegional Facilities.î Revised Code of Washington, Title 43, Chapter 145, Section 010, Article II, ìDefinitions.î Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act. 1980/1986.

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). CERCLA Policy: ìPolicy for Demonstrating Compliance with DOE Order 5820.2A for Onsite Management and Disposal of Environmental Restoration Low level waste under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act.,î DOE: Washington, D.C. May 31, 1996.
131

U.S. Department of Energy, submittal to Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board, ìGuidance for complying with DOE Order 5820.2A, íRadioactive Waste Managementë for Onsite Management and Disposal of Low level waste (LLW) Resulting from Environmental Restoration Activities,î January 9, 1997.

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Both the current DOE Order on radioactive waste management and the proposed draft revision of the Order132 include the assumption that HLW is mixed waste unless demonstrated otherwise. Mixed waste is waste that includes both a radioactive component and a hazardous component (as defined in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) regulations133). Such waste is subject to the requirements of EPA and to applicable radioactive waste management requirements. In addition, the Federal Facilities Compliance Act134 imposes specific deadlines and other requirements on management of mixed waste at DOE facilities. An indirect consequence of the mixed waste assumption is that LLW and transuranic waste derived from HLW are likewise assumed to be mixed waste unless they are demonstrated to be otherwise or the HLW from which they are derived has been demonstrated to be otherwise. Fortunately, EPA regulations identify vitrification as the best achievable technology (BAT) for the hazardous constituents in HLW and LAW. In the authorizing legislation for NRC regulation of LLW,135 the responsibility for management of waste with radionuclide concentrations in excess of those allowed for Class C waste is delegated to the DOE. Consequently, the NRC has not promulgated regulations applicable to disposal of such waste. The DOE, on the other hand, does not classify LLW in the same manner as the NRC. DOE does not have explicit requirements for greater than Class C (GTCC) waste, but rather manages it to meet the usual LLW performance requirements of DOE. Transition to external regulation of DOE may produce a situation in which there are no explicit requirements for GTCC waste. The NRC staff believes the waste from vitrification and decommissioning will exhibit radionuclide concentrations less than Class C. In its role as final arbiter of classifications of waste incidental to HLW reprocessing, NRC can disallow such classification of specific waste streams that exceed Class C concentrations. That practice would leave the HLW repository as the most likely disposal facility for such waste, and certification of such waste forms for emplacement in the repository would be required. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this a significant issue for regulatory transition because the TWRS/WTP facility is being designed so that the vitrified and incidental wastes will have radionuclide levels meeting Class C criteria or lower. Appropriate qualification testing and documentation will be needed. D3. Issue SAFEGUARDS AND SECURITY

132

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE Order 435.1 (Draft), ìRadioactive Waste Management,î (distributed for internal departmental concurrence). DOE: Richland, Washington. July 1, 1998.
133

Hazardous Waste Implementing Regulations under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act 40 CFR 260 through 270, U.S. EPA.
134 135

Federal Facilities Compliance Act of 1992, Pub. L. 102-386, as amended. 1992 Low-Level Radioactive Waste Policy Amendments Act of 1985, Pub. L. 99-240, as amended. (January 15, 1986).

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The application of safeguards and security requirements for both the DOE and NRC licensed facilities is based on the classification of the materials processed and/or stored at the facility. It appears there are many similarities in the DOE and NRC classifications of the materials for TWRS/WTP, but there are minor differences. Discussion The physical protection requirements for various classifications of special nuclear materials are very similar between DOE and the NRC. The requirements for the protection of special nuclear materials are provided in the 5600 series of the DOE Orders, and the NRC requirements are contained in 10 CFR Part 73. Both DOE and NRC also recognize the differences in the quantities and attractiveness characteristics (isotope, materials type, concentration, enrichment, and physical form) of the materials in the application of those requirements.136 The Hanford waste tanks include 177 tanks containing approximately 214 million curies in approximately 55 million gallons of waste. Most of the tanks contain several kilograms of U-235 at low concentrations and enrichment levels. Pu-239, also at low concentrations, is contained in 18 of the tanks, but small quantities (10 to 100 grams occur in all the tanks. The Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) for TWRS-P137 characterizes the waste as containing ìminor amounts of special nuclear material in the tank waste to be processed by the TWRS-P facility.î The NRC notes that plutonium and U-235 are contained in the TWRS-P tanks in a Formula Quantity of Special Nuclear Material (i.e., greater than 5,000 grams - also called a Category I quantity). The protection requirements for Category I material are given in 10 CFR 73.45. The NRC would classify the materials as Category I since it is based on the characterization of the feed materials and the definition of Category I material as provided in 10 CFR 73.2. Section 73.2 states, ìFormula quantity means strategic special nuclear material in any combination in a quantity of 5,000 grams... This class of material is sometimes referred to as a Category I quantity of material.î From the perspective of material control and accounting (MC&A), the NRC has indicated that because DOE sites contain different isotopes and higher concentrations or levels of enrichment of plutonium than NRC-licensed facilities, the categories in the NRC regulations do not overlap. The NRC has also indicated that sampling programs may be required for process control of the vitrification recipe as well as the pretreatment subsystems. To further complicate the differences in classifying the material, the ISAR states, ìFor the TWRS-P facility to successfully process this waste, it must separate the radionuclides from the diluted waste while taking into account the additional chemicals (e.g., chelating agents).î This raises the question as to what isotopes are to be separated, to what concentrations, where will they be located within the facility, and what levels of protection will be provided at those locations. Guidance provided to the TWRS-P Contractor states: ìThe material to be provided to
Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Sections 70.4, 73.2, and 74.4 and U.S. Department of Energy Order 5633.3B.
137 136

BNFL Inc. BNFL-5193-ISAR-01, Rev. 0, ìTank Waste Remediation System Privatization, Initial Safety Analysis Report.î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. January 12, 1998.

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the Contractor under this Contract has been designated as waste, ...and removed from the safeguards books. Provided that the Contractorís treatment process does not increase the attractiveness of the material...it will remain exempt from safeguards requirements....î138 The NRC staff has a concern that, because of the classification of the materials, following DOEís associated MC&A requirements in DOE Order 5633.3B may not achieve the level of material characterization and isotopic identification that NRC would likely require under its MC&A requirements in 10 CFR Part 73. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC believes that operations at the proposed TWRS facilities and wastes from specific tanks may result in the accumulation or de facto separation of special nuclear material (SNM) and, thus, might require safeguards. Consequently, the NRC has the position that the issue should be revisited once the design is further along (say at the Construction Authorization Request/Preliminary Safety Analysis Report [CAR/PSAR] stage) and when more operating details are available (say at the Operations Authorization Request [OAR] stage). Given the similarity between NRC and DOE safeguards requirements, the NRC does not see this as a significant issue for regulatory transition. D4. Issue The NRC may choose to regulate emissions from the TWRS/WTP since the facility would be located on Federal property. That responsibility is currently vested with the State of Washington, Department of Health (WDOH). Discussion There is the potential for multiple regulation of facility emissions for the TWRS-P project by the State of Washington, by DOE, and by either NRC or the EPA. The Clean Air Act of 1977,139 as amended, permits the EPA to rescind its applicable regulations upon a finding that ìthe regulatory program established by the NRC pursuant to the AEC for such category or subcategory of facilities licensed by the NRC provides an ample margin of safety to protect the public health.î In 1996, applicable regulations in 40 CFR Part 61, Subpart I, were rescinded for NRC or Agreement State licensees other than reactor licensees. Subpart I was rescinded when NRC adopted a dose constraint of 10 mrem (0.1 mSv) per year from air emissions of radioactive material to the environment.140 (Part 61 of 10 CFR , Subpart I is enforced by NRC as part of the general radiation protection regulations for NRC licensees other than reactor licensees; the application of Subpart I, to NRC reactor licensees had been REGULATION OF EMISSIONS

138

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL-96-0002, ìTop-Level Safeguards and Security Requirements for TWRS Privatization.î DOE: Richland, Washington. February 1996.
139 140

Clean Air Act of 1977, Section 112(d)(9). Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section 20.1101(d), ìRadiation Protection Programs.î

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rescinded earlier.) This avoided EPA/NRC dual regulation of most NRC-licensed facilities regarding air emissions of radioactive material. Under the Clean Air Act, the States may obtain authority from the EPA to implement and enforce the requirements of the National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants.141 In 1994, the State of Washington obtained this authority for the airborne emission of radionuclides under EPAís 40 CFR Part 61, Subparts H and I. The WDOH implements the State of Washingtonís Standards for Subpart H and I through Chapter 246-247142 of the WAC. When the EPA rescinded Subpart I for NRC facilities, the State of Washington retained its authority under the Clean Air Act and chose to continue to implement 246-247 WAC for NRC facilities. EPA regulations in 40 CFR Part 61, Subpart H, pertain to radioactive air emissions from facilities owned or leased by DOE. Unlike Subpart I for commercial licensees, Subpart H remains in effect. Consequently, radionuclide air emissions from the TWRS-P project will likely be subject to joint regulation by DOE, EPA, and the State of Washington prior to transition and by NRC and the State of Washington after transition. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment If the NRC were to assume regulatory authority for TWRS/WTP, the NRC would regulate portions of air emissions. Since there is precedence for this approach (both the State and NRC regulate emissions at the Siemens facility), the NRC staff does not view it as a significant issue. D5. Issue At its sites and facilities, DOE uses the concept of the co-located (CLW) as a worker on the DOE site who is not working in the facility being evaluated. In 1998143, the NRC provided information on the CLW in which the NRC stated that the NRC does not usually recognize the CLW and would usually consider the workers located on the site but not working in a specific facility as members of the public for accident scenario evaluation. This is because such CLW may be operating under different management organizations and radiation protection programs, and hence, the integration and control may be inadequate for managing the organizations and potential events, particularly for prompt events (i.e., most potential accident scenarios for a TWRS/WTP facility would be prompt events, with little warning, but could continue for hours). (For comparison, the presence of multiple organizations contributed to delays in fighting the recent range fire at the Hanford site that burnt 200,000 acres144.) The NRC and DOE CO-LOCATED WORKER

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 61, ìLicensing Requirements for Land Disposal of Radioactive Waste.î
142 143

141

Washington Department of Ecology, WAC 246-247, ìRadiation Protection - Air Emissions.î

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). SECY-98-038, ìHanford Tank Waste Remediation System Privatization Co-Located Worker Standards.î NRC: Washington, D.C. March 4, 1998.
144

ìAgencies Reviewing Policies.î Hanford News/Tri-City Herald. July 7, 2000.

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approaches have the potential to result in different consequence estimates that may produce differing classifications for systems, structures, and components (SSC) required for risk reduction to workers and the public. As a result, SSCs designated for worker protection may require upgrading to meet NRC requirements when regulatory oversight of the TWRS/WTP facilities transitions to the NRC. Discussion The DOE/RU position is that CLWs are a subset of workers and should not be classified as members of the public.145 The classification of an individual as a CLW is found in DOE safety analysis reports and a proposed standard.146,147 In the DOE proposed standard for accident analysis, the CLW is defined as a worker in a fixed population outside the daily process safety management controls of a given facility area. In practice, this fixed population normally refers to the workers at an independent facility area located some distance from the reference facility area. The classification is particularly relevant to accident planning and emergency management. Although the CLW classifications are not found in DOE rules, the definition for a general employee and a member of the public in the DOE rule 10 CFR Part 835, ìOccupational Radiation Protection,î provides the basis for the RU position that CLWs are considered a subset of workers rather than as members of the public.148 A general employee is an individual who is either a DOE employee or a DOE contractor employee, an employee of a subcontractor to a DOE contractor or a visitor or a DOE contractor employee, an employee of a subcontractor to a DOE contractor or a visitor who performs work for or in conjunction with DOE or utilizes DOE facilities.149 As a worker at an independent facility area, a CLW is a general employee under that activity and may receive an occupational exposure. A member of the public means an individual who is not occupationally exposed to radiation or radioactive material. An individual is not a ìmember of the publicî during any period in which the individual receives occupational exposure.150 Thus, by this DOE logic, a CLW should not be classified as a member of the public because CLWs may receive occupational exposure under 10 CFR Part 835. It should be noted that, under this approach, the CLW does not have to have

145

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-98-18, Revision 0, ìRegulatory Unit Position on Radiological Safety for Hanford Co-Located Workers.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 17, 1998.
146

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). EH-12-94-01, Vol. 2, Appendixes, ìMethod of Assessment of Worker Safety Under Radiological Accident Conditions at Department of Energy Nuclear Facilities.î DOE: Richland, Washington. June 1994.
147

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE-SP-STD-3005-93 Proposed, ìDefinitions and Criteria for Accident Analysis.î DOE: Washington, D.C. March 5, 1993. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 835, ìOccupational Radiation Protection, Final Rule.î December 1993.
149 150 148

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section 835.2, ìDefinitions, General Employee.î December 1993.

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section 835.2, ìDefinitions, Member of the Public.î December 1993.

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dosimetry, bioassay monitoring, evacuation drills, personnel protective equipment (PPE), or radiation training, but can receive occupational exposure up to 5 rem per year. Some examples of CLW by this approach include postal workers, delivery drivers, secretaries, normal trades contractors, food service vendors, and Native American Indians. DOE has not established a universal accident dose standard value for CLWs to be used for the design of nuclear facilities. Rather, DOE has proposed a method to assess worker safety under accident conditions.151 The RU referenced the proposed method in the top-level standards document, DOE/RL-96-0006.152 This method of assessing the adequacy of radiological design provisions and safety under accident conditions for DOE facilities classifies some individuals as CLW.153 DOE has reported on accident dose guidelines proposed by Contractors for radiological consequence as a function of accident frequency for workers, CLWs, and the public.154 For radiological consequence assessment, the Contractor-proposed accident dose standards for CLWís are identical to the values for workers at the reference facility for unlikely and highly unlikely events. Some DOE accident assessments do not distinguish CLWs from workers at the reference facility.155 The impact of the accident dose value selected from the CLW to the facility design and selection of safety provisions under accident conditions depends on numerous factors. These include the proximity of the CLWs to the reference facility, the nature of the site and meteorological conditions, and the specifics of the accident, source term, and release. Once the risk posed by an accident is quantified in terms of consequences to the worker, the CLW and the public, the need for safety controls/SSCs can be determined. Safety class SSCs are those systems, structures, and components required to mitigate the consequence or prevent an accident that poses an unacceptable risk to the public. Similarly, safety significant SSCs are required to prevent or mitigate the consequences or prevent an accident that poses an unacceptable risk to the worker or the CLW. Safety significant SSCs are subjected to more stringent design, fabrication, and construction requirements than SSCs that have no specific safety role. Safety class SSCs are subjected to even more stringent requirements than safety significant SSCs. Thus, the separate category of CLW might reduce the requirements of some SSCs. The NRC approach usually does not recognize such an entity as the CLW. Other workers and people outside the specific facility and its area yet working on or visiting the DOE Hanford siteó for any reasonówould be considered members of the public. This is because such CLW may be operating under different management organizations and radiation protection programs, and

151

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). EH-12-94--01, Volume 1, Main Report, ìMethod for Assessment of Worker Safety under Radiological Accident Conditions at Department of Energy Nuclear Facilities.î DOE: Richland, Washington. June 1994.
152

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE-RL-96-0006, ìTop-Level Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Principles for TWRS Privatization Contractors.î DOE: Richland, Washington. February 1996.
153 154

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). EH-12-94-01, Volume 1. DOE: Richland, Washington. June 1994. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). EH-12-94-01, Volume 1. DOE: Richland, Washington. June 1994. Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). E H-12-94-01, Volume 1. DOE: Richland, Washington. June 1994.

155

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hence, the integration and control may be inadequate for managing the organizations and potential events. For TWRS-P, DOE plans to use a large portion of the Hanford site to define CLW, which typically results in minimum distances to members of the public (i.e., with lower dose and risk limits) of approximately 10 miles. In contrast, the NRC focuses on the concept of ìcontrolled areaî by the facility operator; at NRC facilities this is usually associated with a fence although the controlled area can extend beyond the fence and even beyond the site boundary. Thus, the NRC approach usually corresponds to a shorter distance (usually 100-200 meters) to the public for accident analysis purposes, which can translate into more items relied on for safety [IROFS]. However, the key concept is the TWRS/WTP operatorís authority to exercise control over the Hanford site emergency plans; if such authority is granted by DOE to the TWRS/WTP operator, then the ìcontrolled areaî concept may be satisfied, and the issue is moot. This is the approach under discussion with a proposed mixed oxide (MOX) facility at Savannah River that will undergo NRC licensing156. The NRC approach uses accident analyses to estimate consequences (for workers and the public) and compare these to standards and limits in the regulations and guidance. Certain NRC regulations, including 10 CFR Part 72, provide numerical standards for evaluating the impacts of accidents on individual members of the public at the controlled area boundary. The revision to 10 CFR 70 includes accident standards for the facility worker, members of the public, and the environment but not for CLWs. In addition, the dose limits require comparison. Under the TWRS-P regulatory program the dose limits were 25 rem for the worker, CLW, and the public for highly unlikely events (the public had a target dose goal of 5 rem). In DOE, highly unlikely corresponds to the frequency range of 1E-4/yr to 1E-6/yr. From the perspective of the NRC staff, the revised 10 CFR Part 70 and standard review plan (SRP) have a worker dose limit of 100 rem and a public dose limit of 25 rem for high consequence events, and corresponding limits of 25 rem and 5 rem for intermediate consequence events. High consequence events are to be rendered highly unlikely (1E-5/yr or less in frequency) by safety controls, and intermediate consequence events are to be rendered unlikely (in the 1E-2/yr to 1E-5/yr frequency range) by safety controls. Thus, at face value, the DOE limits are more restrictive although the fuel cycle SRP157 does allow grading of the frequency limit in inverse proportion to the magnitude of the consequences and this could result in the limits overlapping between frequencies of 1E-5/yr and 1E-6/yr. The application of as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) (required under either DOE or NRC regulation) would probably render such differences insignificant. As an aside, the NRC notes the DOE regulatory approach should consider future site changes planned that are likely to reduce the distances to the public for accident evaluation purposes (see Issue A.13 in Appendix A). Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment

156

Persinko, A., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, memorandum to M. Leach, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, ìSummary of Meeting with Duke Cogema Stone & Webster to Discuss Technical Topics Associated with the Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility,î February 24, 2000. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). NUREG-1520, ìStandard Review Plan for the Review of a License Application for a Fuel Cycle Facility.î NRC: Washington, D.C. 2000.

157

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The NRC Staff considers this to be a resolvable issue either by the application of appropriate controls over the site or the application of ALARA. D6. Issue The NRC would most likely regulate a TWRS/WTP facility under 10 CFR Part 70, a special nuclear materials license. The contract provides that DOE retains ownership of the waste material, even when it is inside the Contractorís facility. DOE is concerned this part of the contract may require revision, transferring material ownership to the Contractor when it enters his facility and back again to DOE when it leaves. Discussion: Section C.4.c of the contract between DOE and BNFL Inc.158 states that DOE will retain title to the waste envelopes provided to the Contractor and all intermediate and final waste products. If regulatory oversight were to transition to NRC, DOE has a concern that the NRC may require transfer of the ownership of the waste to the Contractor as long as the intermediate and final waste products remained in TWRS/WTP Contractor facilities. Transfer of ownership of the waste was not provided for in the DOE contract with the TWRS-P Contractor; thus, the contract would have needed renegotiation if the NRC required waste ownership transfer. Information on waste ownership is not yet available for the new Management and Operations (M&O) style contracts proposed by DOE that replace the privatization approach. From an NRC perspective, the TWRS-P facilities would likely be subject to a license under 10 CFR Part 70 which pertains to the issuance of licenses to receive title to own, acquire, deliver, receive, possess, use, and transfer special nuclear material.159 The TWRS-P facility would be required to obtain a specific license under 10 CFR 70.22 to possess the special nuclear material in the TWRS waste; however, transfer of ownership of the waste is not required by 10 CFR Part 70. NRC has issued special licenses to a number of licensees for possession of DOE-owned material. For example, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory was issued a special license for the conduct of research and development activities in the 300 Area of the Hanford site using DOE-owned fissile material. A private company, Applied Radiant Energy Corporation in Lynchburg, Virginia, has also received a special license for its possession of DOE-owned cesium capsules. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this an issue. D7. PAYMENT FOR TRANSITION TO AND REGULATION BY THE NRC WASTE OWNERSHIP

158 159

Contract Number DE-RP06-96RL13308, Amendment A0005, August 24, 1998. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 70, ìDomestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î

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Issue Regulation of TWRS/WTP facilities requires funding. Discussion Regulatory costs are difficult to estimate accurately, especially for a new type of plant for which there is no licensing experience. Presently, the regulatory costs for the TWRS-P effort are born by DOE and NRC; both from budgeted line item funding. It is expected that, during transition, regulatory costs will increase for the NRC and decrease for DOE. The funds for the current NRC activities related to the TWRS-P facility were a line item in the budget of about $2 million annually160 (for approximately 13 full time equivalents [FTEs]). For comparison, the DOE RU costs for developing and executing a full scope nuclear, radiological, and process safety regulatory program have remained between $7 and $8 million per year, roughly split equally between contractor and federal employee. The average annual cost of one NRC staff person is around $260,000.00.161 Therefore, $8 million corresponds to about 32 FTEs at the NRC. Given that the NRC has already developed regulations and guidance for regulating TWRS/WTP facilities, it is reasonable to expect that NRC costs would be significantly lower than $8 million for regulatory transition and licensing/certification activities, prior to full and stable operation. Following license issuance and full transition to NRC regulatory oversight, these costs would be expected to decrease slightly. NRC is, by statute, a full recovery agency for which all costs of operation are recovered by charges levied upon licensees.162 Surcharges could also be added to cover other NRC overhead costs. Over a 10year period, it would be expected that the costs for NRC regulation would be lower than the current costs of the regulatory activities. There is no legislative bar to NRC assessing annual fees (under 10 CFR Parts 170 and 171) to Federal agencies who hold NRC licenses.163 However, for either privatized or M&O facilities, DOE is not expected to be a licensee and, therefore, would not be subject to direct NRC fee assessment. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment NRC involvement in TWRS-P has been funded via a line item in the budget. Future regulation of a TWRS/WTP facility by the NRC would require legislation that would also identify the
160

NRC line item budget for the Special Projects Branch regulatory activities for TWRS in 1998 is $1.9 million plus about $500 K for consultantsí fees.
161 162 163

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section CFR 170.20, ìAverage Cost per Professional Staff-Hour.î Omnibus Budget and Reconciliation Act of 1990.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). SECY-98-050, ìDevelopment of Legislative Issues for Licensing a Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility,î pp. 33-35. NRC: Washington, D.C. March 16, 1998. [This reference provides an analysis of who pays NRC relative to the MOX fuel fabrication facility in which DOE is currently paying for NRC assistance on design and operation issues where DOE becomes the licensee. However, the analysis does not apply to the vitrification facility if the TWRS/WTP contractor were to become the licensee.]

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funding mechanism, be it by line items, fee collection, DOE payments, or a combination thereof. It is anticipated that the NRC regulatory costs would be a small fraction of the actual DOE expenditures to the contractors on the tank waste programs. The NRC Staff does not see funding of regulatory activities as a significant issue. D8. Issue DOE is a party to the Tri-Party Agreement (TPA) and is responsible for TPA commitments. DOE has expressed a concern that NRC regulatory activities during and after regulatory transition could impact the TPA commitments, and, thus, DOE might request the NRC to become involved in the TPA. Background The Hanford Federal Facility Agreement and Consent Order (often referred to as the Tri-Party Agreement, or TPA164) is a legal agreement between DOE, EPA, and the State of Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology). Its legal authority stems from the RCRA and the CERCLA. The TPA contains provisions for the overall environmental management of the Hanford site. This includes provisions for management of hazardous waste treatment, storage, and disposal (TSD), and hazardous waste permitting. The TPA includes details concerning the implementation of remedial and corrective actions including closure and post-closure activities. The TPA defines the respective roles, responsibilities, and interrelationships between DOE, EPA, and Ecology concerning these environmental management activities. It also defines interrelationships and responsibilities between RCRA and CERCLA. In addition, the TPA delineates authorities, identifies enforcement provisions, and provides for dispute resolution among the parties.63 The TPA contains an Action Plan that establishes plans for compliance with RCRA and CERCLA and the Washington State Hazardous Waste Management Act (HWMA). In addition, the Action Plan sets milestones for CERCLA and RCRA activities that must be met by DOE. Failure to meet these milestones can result in fines and lawsuits. These milestones represent the actions necessary to ensure acceptable progress toward Hanford site compliance with RCRA, CERCLA, and HWMA.63 The TWRS-P Contractor had agreed via Clause H.22 of the contract165 to plan and perform work consistent with the requirements of the TPA even though it is not a signatory. It would be anticipated that future contractors under the new contracts would be asked to do the same. As discussed in Section 1, DOE is using contract-based regulation for the regulatory oversight of the TWRS/WTP waste immobilization contractor(s). In the context of contract-based
164

TRI-PARTY AGREEMENT

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL-96-25, Revision 0, ìPolicy for Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety of TWRS Privatization Contractor.î DOE: Richland, Washington. July 3, 1996.
165

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). ìTWRS Privatization Contract No. DE-RP-96RL13308, Amendment A0005.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 23, 1998.

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regulation, the regulatory agency has an incentive to conduct the necessary regulatory activities in such a manner that the project schedule is not unduly delayed and DOEís external commitments are satisfied, while simultaneously adhering to the principle of independence (from the DOE-RL TWRS program office) and its primary role of ensuring adequate safety166 (Main Reference 17). The NRC would have no vested interest in regulating the TWRS privatized waste immobilization contractor in such a manner that would assure that DOEís TPA milestones could be satisfied (Chapter 7.0, Main Reference 17). The NRC has assumed regulatory oversight of several DOE facilities or former DOE facilities. These facilities include the gaseous diffusion plants (GDPs) at Paducah and Portsmouth (in this case, DOE has leased the facilities to the U.S. Enrichment Corporation, which is the licensee to the NRC), and a storage facility at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) for dry storage of Three Mile Island waste. In all cases, the NRC has not become a party to the existing Federal Facility Compliance Agreements. In fact, the NRC enabling legislation probably would preclude it from becoming a party to the TPA. Furthermore, the NRC Principle of Independence would be compromised since its regulatory decisions would have to be made in the context of their impact upon schedules, milestones, and costs. Thus, the NRC would not attempt to become involved in the TPA and DOE would maintain sole responsibility for satisfying the provisions of the TPA. The NRC does not generally commit to support external schedules such as licensee review schedules or the TPA. Any NRC regulatory actions that might affect DOE commitments to the TPA would probably be based upon significant findings and issues that would affect TPA commitments regardless of NRC involvement. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment DOE is a party to the TPA and is responsible for TPA commitments. The NRC staff would expect the NRC to remain a non-party to the TPA, consistent with other regulators (e.g., Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board (DNFSB), WDOH) and NRC precedence. The NRC staff does not see this as a significant issue. D9. Issue ìContract-basedî regulation has been used on TWRS-P. A transition contractor is in place and new contracts will be issued. The DOE is unsure if it should retain its stop work authority under the contract and, if it does, should DOE conduct readiness reviews. Such activities could conflict with NRC regulatory oversight. Discussion From a regulatory perspective, DOE would not have any safety concerns for TWRS-P operations in Phase II that could not be adequately protected by NRC, the Occupational Safety DOE STOP WORK AUTHORITY

166

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-97-10, Rev. 1 ìRadiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of TWRS Privatization Contractors Regulatory Plan.î DOE: Richland, Washington. January 7, 1998.

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and Health Administration (OSHA), the EPA, and the State of Washington oversight. However, DOE may choose to retain a residual stop work authority in order to safeguard against the unknown and uncertainties. The vitrification of DOE waste will be in the hands of a single contractor or contractor team. DOE will likely maintain oversight to ensure that the contractor meets its programmatic commitments to DOE to immobilize the waste in the tanks on an agreed-upon schedule. DOE will wish to protect its interests and commitment, in the event that the contractor delivers a product to DOE that fails to meet technical specifications satisfactory to DOE under the terms of the contract, by insisting on a non-safety-related ìstop workî provision. This provision may prevent the production of more ìoff-specî vitrified material. An appropriate method for handling (and possibly, reprocessing) off-spec products would need to be arranged by DOE. Fixing the technical problems or operational problems might involve a review of the contractorís technical approaches to vitrification of DOE waste (a ìtechnical readiness reviewî) by DOE prior to further waste processing. DOE might also incorporate a stop work authority for safety purposes into the contract. If regulatory oversight responsibilities were to transition to the NRC, the contract(s) would require modification to define NRC as the authority for the radiological and nuclear process safety aspects of the TWRS-P effort. As a regulator, the NRC would anticipate DOE maintaining stop work authority in some form under its contracts, including retaining the authority to conduct a readiness review prior to restart. The NRC staff believes such activities would be transparent to its regulation provided that all other regulatory requirements and licensing conditions were being met by the TWRS/WTP facility. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The DOE currently has stop work authority for safety and programmatic concerns under the contracts. The NRC Staff anticipates both the NRC and DOE would have stop work authority for safety concerns after regulatory transition, and the Staff does not consider this to be an issue. D10. Issue The DOE currently has total programmatic responsibility for the TWRS-P project. That programmatic responsibility includes a safety oversight content, which is exercised by the RU. It should be clear how DOEís safety responsibilities will be discharged or modified by external regulation by the NRC. Discussion The Contractor, as the owner of the plant, has the prime responsibility for safety. TWRS/WTP facilities will be built on the DOE Hanford site and DOE expects to retain ownership of the waste materials at all times. While the new contracts may not be finalized for several months, it is anticipated that some form of contract reimbursement or incentive will be included for the production of containers containing the vitrified wastes. 229 NUREG-1747 CONTINUED SAFETY OVERSIGHT BY DOE

In the wider world of commercial chemicals, toll-processing of chemicals may include operations for compounding, formulating, milling, custom blending, repackaging or separating and purifying materials which remain the property of the supplier. Companies toll-processing chemicals for others are answerable to OSHA for maintaining a safe workplace for employees and to EPA for protection of the environment. Operational safety is the responsibility of the tollprocessor; the responsibility of the chemical supplier is to ensure that the toll-processor is made aware of the hazards associated with the process materials and does not usually extend to ensuring that the toll-processing is conducted safely. Typically, a chemical company wishing to subcontract out certain steps involved in the manufacture of a product will invite bids for the work and, for strategic reasons, provide feedstock to two or more toll-processors. The chemical supplier will want to ensure that the toll-processors are technically competent to perform whatever it is their tasked to do, meet the supplierís product specifications, and deliver the product on a mutually agreed upon schedule. At no time will the chemical supplier wish to take responsibility for safe operation of the toll-processorís facility, even if that facility is located adjacent to that of the chemical supplierís. However, if the supplier and toll-processor operate contiguous facilities, the two companies may agree to support each other in emergency planning and firefighting operations if an accident should occur. For Hanford and TWRS/WTP, it is anticipated that DOE will take more interest in the safety aspects than a company contracting for toll-processing of materials due to the singular nature of the wastes, the plant location on the Hanford site, the presence of DOE facilities in close proximity to the planned location of the vitrification facility, the high profile of the project, and the large costs involved. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The DOE currently is the regulator for the proposed TWRS/WTP activities. After transition, the NRC would become the regulator. The NRC anticipates the DOE would want to perform some safety oversight activities, perhaps in a manner analogous to a corporate headquarters unit providing oversight to an operating facility. The NRC staff does not consider this to be an issue for regulatory transition. D11. Issue Under NRC regulation, the licensing of TWRS-P might be subjected to hearing requests under the ìRules of Practice,î 10 CFR Part 2. This may require some time and has the potential to impact DOE schedules. Discussion The Rules of Practice, 10 CFR Part 2, provide for hearings. An Administrative Law Judge may be appointed whose principal objective would be to ensure that the process for airing all propositions is fair and equitable. The NRC staff understands that 10 CFR Part 2 applies to 10 CFR Part 70 actions unless Congressional action is taken through amendment of the Administrative Procedures Act or as part of the legislation authorizing NRC regulation of TWRS/WTP. However, the NRC Staff NUREG-1747 230 THE APPLICATION OF 10 CFR PART 2 HEARING REQUESTS

believe that 10 CFR Part 2 hearings under 10 CFR Part 70167 (without the Atomic Safety Licensing Board [ASLB] or discovery) are more focused on specific issues than general licensing and rulemaking hearings168 (with the ASLB) and are intended to conclude expeditiously. Hearings requested for granting a license to possess special nuclear material under this section of the code may be conducted according to Subpart 1 of 10 CFR Part 2. The certification of the GDPs, licensed under 10 CFR Part 76, required special legislation and was not subjected to a 10 CFR Part 2 public hearing process. This was because these were existing facilities and the facilities were certified rather than licensed. For Hanford, either licensing or certification could be used for NRC regulation. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment Whether the route is licensing, certification, or Congressional mandate the NRC staff does not foresee a significant schedule impact from the hearing process and, therefore, does not consider this to be a significant issue for regulatory transition.

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 2, subpart (1), Section 2.1205(h) ìRequest for a hearing: petition for leave to intervene,î and Section 2.1209, ìPower of Presiding Officer,î which give wide latitude to the presiding officer in determining that ìthe specified areas of concern are germane to the subject matter of the proceeding and that the petition is time.î Section 2.1211(a), ìParticipation by a person not a partyî allows a person who is not a party to make a limited appearance to state his of her views on the issues. A limited appearance is not considered part of the decisional record. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 2, subpart (h), Section 2.805 (a), ìParticipation by interested person,î deals principally with rulemaking and affords opportunity for interested persons to participate ìthrough the submission of statements, information, opinions, and arguments.î There may also be informal hearings for interested persons. The opportunity on general matters appears much greater than allowed under Section 2.1211.
168

167

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D12. Issue

CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS FOR FEED DELIVERY

DOE will continue to deliver radioactive feed material to the Contractor. Presumably, DOE will agree to abide by the direction of the NRC-regulated Contractor as to the rate and characteristics of this feed material. Discussion The issue concerns the transfer of DOE-owned tank waste to the TWRS/WTP facility after transition to NRC regulation. The waste specifications in the current contract are principally based on a hypothetical Phase I plant which is operated for only 5-9 years. The facility is being designed to be operable for a period that can reasonably be expected to enable it to treat waste that is not enveloped by the current specifications in the contract. It is estimated that approximately 5 percent of the waste in the tanks is outside the envelope determined by the contract specifications. Although there exists conceptual solutions for dealing with this situation (e.g., blending with other tank contents or inert substances), the details of the waste characteristics may not become known until after their contents have been homogenized, which will occur only shortly before processing. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff expects there will be specifications and safety requirements for the wastes and the plant operations. If the wastes cannot be blended, then an amendment process could be pursued by the licensee (this has already occurred at the GDPís). This is not an issue for regulatory transition. D13. Issue There are regulatory requirements for soliciting comments from the public and stakeholders. Discussion From the DOE perspective, input from interested stakeholders needs to be solicited. This includes the Contractors themselves, consensus groups such as the Hanford Advisory Board (HAB) and the Tribal Nations, Hanford workers, and other members of the public who have expressed interest. DOE has a responsibility to obtain the input of stakeholders and the Tribes as the effective clients of all the agencyís work. Furthermore, the RU has an Openness Policy169 that makes it
169

COMMUNICATION PLAN WITH STAKEHOLDERS

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-97-04, Rev. 2, ìPolicy for Openness and Openness Plan.î DOE: Richland, Washington. June 1998. The radiological, nuclear, and process safety regulation of TWRS Privatization contractors provide that the Hanford site shall be transacted publicly and candidly.... ìThe Tribal National and Public should be involved in decisions concerning privatization contractor regulations. Their involvement improves our processes and products and helps (to) ensure safety. We welcome and encourage this involvement.î

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clear that stakeholdersí views are important and will be addressed. The RU is satisfying this policy in a number of ways, both in providing information and in listening to the views of others in open meetings and within such groups as the HAB. However, regulation does not occur in a vacuum, and the NRC recognizes DOEís responsibilities for communication170. The NRC also requires it of its licensees. Previous DOE attempts at openness, particularly in interactions with the Agreement Tribes, have been to provide all DOE documents without focus or any attempt to indicate to the recipient as to the relevance of those documents. From the recipientsí point of view, this flood of paper obscured communication.171 Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC anticipates that the existing DOE communication plans (e.g., with the Hanford Advisory Board) would continue during and after transition to NRC regulation, as they are separate from the regulatory processes. In addition, the NRC also maintains public communication and openness as part of its regulatory practices. Therefore, the NRC staff does not consider this a significant issue. D14. Issue DOE is concerned that NRC regulation might increase the costs of tank waste treatment. Discussion As background, it should be noted that the cost of NRC regulation is greater than that actually expended on an individual facility,172 because collected fees include the costs of NRCís overhead activities. From the perspective of Hanford and DOE, the issue is whether the transfer of regulatory authority from DOE to NRC provides a net benefit in safety for the additional costs involved, assuming that actual NRC costs will also include a surcharge to fund the above items.173 It is not clear whether surcharges might be added to NRC fees for TWRS-P regulation. COST BENEFIT OF NRC REGULATION

170

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). SECY-98-050, ìDevelopment of Legislative Issues for Licensing a Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility,î p. 3, item 7. NRC: Washington, D.C. March 16, 1998.
171

Donna Pouwakee, Manager, Waste Management, Nez Perce Indian Tribe, Consultancy with Council of Energy Resource Tribes, Lewiston, Idaho, 1992.
172

ìIn 1995...nuclear power plant operators paid over 80 % of all user fees. Almost half of that amount went to pay for NRC overhead and management costs.î Nuclear Energy Oversight, Nuclear Energy Institute, p. 3. May 1998.
173

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section 171.16, ìSchedule of Materials Annual Fee Surcharges.î

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The original 1996 MOU between the Secretary of Energy and the Chairman of the NRC was signed in the expectation of a net benefit in safety.174 Just prior to that time, DOE had been the subject of audits by the General Accounting Office (GAO) and by the DNFSB which pointed to critical deficiencies in DOE safety programs and oversight. Also qualitatively, there may appear to be a clear and visible benefit from separation of the operator from the regulatoryójust as the NRC was separated from the Atomic Energy Commission. To effect this separation while working with DOE, the NRC has established a clear separation of its activities from those of the DOE/RL TWRS program. Both DOE and NRC have reaffirmed their belief that ìthere would be clear benefits from external regulation of worker and nuclear safety at DOE facilities.î175 Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff notes that the likely, direct regulatory costs would be lower than the current costs (see Section D7 of this appendix) and the regulatory program and authority would be clearer, which would likely translate into lower, indirect costs. However, the total costs associated with regulation will probably be a small portion of the total program cost. Consequently, the NRC staff considers the NRC regulation of TWRS/WTP facilities to be a national policy issue that should not be decided by cost/benefit analyses. Therefore, the NRC staff does not consider this to be a significant issue. D.15 Issue The Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board (DNFSB) currently has an oversight role for the TWRS/WTP program. It is not clear that this would continue after transition to NRC regulation. Discussion The DNFSB was created in 1988 to provide independent, external oversight of DOE defense nuclear facilities.176 The specific functions of the DNFSB are to review and evaluate standards, conduct investigations, analyze design and operational data, review facility design and construction, and make recommendations to the Secretary of Energy.177 The DNFSB has the DEFENSE NUCLEAR FACILITIES SAFETY BOARD ROLE

174

U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Memorandum of Understanding, November 1996.
175

Statements by ìofficials of both agenciesî before a House Commerce Subcommittee, May 20, 1998. NUCLEAR WASTE NEWS, page 203, May 21, 1998. Elizabeth Molerís and Shirley Jacksonís testimony (18 and 17 pp.) are obtainable through BPI DocuDial as Nos. 48-2946 respectively.
176 177

Pub. L. 100-456. September 29, 1988 and United States Code, Section 2286. Atomic Energy Act, as amended, Section 312. 1954

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authority to conduct hearings, establish reporting requirements for the Secretary of Energy, and assign resident inspectors at DOE defense nuclear facilities.178 With regard to the DNFSBís scope of authority, a DOE defense nuclear facility means any of the following:179 1. A production facility or utilization facility180, 181 that is under the control or jurisdiction of DOE and that is operated for national security purposes, but the term dose not include: a. Any facility or activity covered by Executive Order No. 12344, dated February 1, 1982, pertaining to the Naval nuclear propulsion program; b. Any facility or activity involved with the transportation of nuclear explosives or nuclear material; c. Any facility that does not conduct atomic energy defense activities; or d. Any facility owned by the United States Enrichment Corporation. 2. A nuclear waste storage facility under the control or jurisdiction of the Secretary of Energy, but the term does not include a facility developed pursuant to the Nuclear Waste Policy act of 1982 and licensed by the NRC.

Based on this definition, it is not clear whether the TWRS/WTP facility is a DOE defense nuclear facility. This definition does indicate that exceptions have been made for certain other facilities that appear to meet the basic criteria for being classified as a DOE defense nuclear facility but whose activities are overseen by agencies other than the DNFSB. If the TWRS-P facility is determined to be a DOE defense nuclear facility and subject to DNFSB oversight after NRC regulation begins, the TWRS/WTP contractor will be subjected to dual oversight. This could result in the NRC and the DNFSB applying overlapping resources on TWRS-P activities and expending resources to resolve any conflicting recommendations made

178 179

Atomic Energy Act, as amended, Section 313. 1954 Atomic Energy Act, as amended, Section 318. 1954

180

Atomic Energy Act, as amended, Section 11, defines a production facility as (1) any equipment or device determined by rule of the Commission to be capable of the production of special nuclear material in such quantity as to be significant to the common defense and security, or in such manner as to affect the health and safety of the public; or (2) any important component part especially designed for such equipment or device as determined by the Commission.

181

Atomic Energy Act, as amended, Section 11, defines a utilization facility as (1) any equipment or device, except an atomic weapon, determined by rule of the Commission to be capable to making use of special nuclear material in such quantity as to be of significance to the common defense and security, or in such manner as to affect the health and safety of the public, or peculiarly adapted for making use of atomic energy in such quantity as to be of significance to the common defense and security, or in such manner as to affect the health and safety of the public; or (2) any important component part especially designed for such equipment or device as determined by the Commission.

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by the two organizations. Additionally, the TWRS/WTP contractor may have to employ additional resources to satisfy the needs of the two oversight bodies.182 Preliminary NRC Staff Determination The NRC has determined that legislative authority is required for it to regulate TWRS/WTP facilities. As part of such legislation, the NRC staff anticipates that regulatory roles will be clearly defined, and based upon the precedent established at the enrichment and SNF storage facilities that the NRC regulates at DOE sites, the Staff does not expect a role for the DNFSB. The NRC staff does not consider this to be an issue. D16. Issue Price-Anderson indemnification may need changes in its application if the TWRS/WTP facility transitions to NRC regulation. Discussion Under Subsection 170.d of the Atomic Energy act of 1954, as amended,183 the Secretary of Energy is required to enter into indemnity agreements with anyone conducting activities under contract with DOE that involve risk of public liability and that are not subject to Subsection 170.b., which addresses financial protection requirements for NRC licensees, or Subsection 170.c., which specifies indemnification agreements for NRC licensees. In 1996, DOE issued a contract to BNFL Inc.184 to conceptually design the TWRS-P tank waste treatment facility. This contract incorporates by reference the Department of Energy Acquisition Regulations (DEAR) clause on nuclear hazards indemnity,185 which provides indemnification to BNFL Inc. pursuant to Subsection 170.d. of the AEA. This clause states, in part, ì...the contractor will not be required to provide or maintain, and will not provide or maintain at Government expense, any form of financial protection to cover public liability....î The most recent contract negotiated with BNFL Inc.186 incorporates this same clause. The new, M&O type contracts are likely to contain the same clauses. PRICE-ANDERSON INDEMNIFICATION

182

DNFSB actions to date with respect to TWRS/WTP are consistent with the assumption that they interpret their scope of responsibility to include jurisdiction over the program.
183 184

42 USC 2210, The Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, January 6, 1997.

Department of Energy, (US)(DOE). DE-AC06-96RL-13308, Amendment A0005. DOE: Richland, Washington. August 24, 1998.
185

Department of Energy, (US)(DOE). DEAR 952.250-70, ìNuclear Hazards Indemnity Agreement.î DOE: Richland, Washington. January 1992.
186

Department of Energy, (US)(DOE). DE-AC06-96RL-13308, ìAmendment A0005.î DOE: Richland, Washington. August 24, 1998.

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If the TWRS/WTP facility transitions to NRC regulation, the operator would most likely become the single licensee. In this case, the Secretary of Energy would no longer be required by the AEA to offer indemnification to the contractor, because the Contractor would be ì...subject to financial protection requirements under Subsection b. or agreements of indemnification under Subsection c....î187 (It should be noted that, although Subsections 170.a., b., and c. of the AEA pertain to NRC licensees, it is not clear whether Subsection 170.d. would prohibit DOE from indemnifying an NRC licensee.)188 Additionally, if DOE were to no longer provide indemnification, the contract may need other clauses and changes (e.g., removal of the DEAR clause). With the TWRS-P contractor as an NRC licensee under 10 CFR Part 70, the NRC has optional regulatory authority under Subsection 170.a. of the AEA to require financial assurance, and if such financial assurance is required, indemnification may also be provided. Subsection 170.b. (1) requires that the amount of financial assurance be determined ì...on the basis of criteria set forth in writing....î Subpart B to 10 CFR Part 140189 provides this criteria and contains NRCís requirements for financial protection and indemnity agreements for applicants and licensees other than Federal agencies and nonprofit educational institutions. Currently, 10 CFR Part 140, in addressing applicants for a license or licenses issued under 10 CFR Part 70190 considers only plutonium processing facilities, fuel fabrication plants, and uranium enrichment facilities. Specifically, Subsections 140.13a and 140.13b address the financial protection required of those types of facilities. In applying discretionary authority for Price-Anderson indemnity coverage, the NRC has in the past not extended the coverage if the potential public liability from a possible nuclear accident would not exceed the amount of the commercially available insurance. Such financial assurance and indemnification have been required as license conditions for a small number of 10 CFR Part 70 facilities, including plutonium processing and fuel fabrication facilities. Earlier this year, DOE and the NRC evaluated a number of regulatory issues associated with NRC licensing a mixed oxide (MOX) fuel fabrication facility. The MOX facility would be located on a DOE site and designed, constructed, and operated by a private contractor. DOE would own the MOX facility; therefore, the NRC has stated its intention to make DOE and the operating contractor co-licensees. Regarding Price-Anderson indemnification for the MOX project, both DOE and NRC agreed that the operating contractor would be eligible for DOE indemnification if NRC did not extend its discretionary coverage, and hence, legislative clarification would not be required.191 However, the DOE-NRC evaluation did not discuss the

187 188 189

Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, Section 170.d. 1954 Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, Section 170. 1954

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 140, ìFinancial Protection Requirements and Indemnity Agreements.î
190 191

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 70, ìDomestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î

Section-98-050, ìDevelopment of Legislative Issues for Licensing of a MOX Fuel Fabrication Facility,î March 16, 1998.

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fact that if DOE indemnifies the operating contractor (which is also a co-licensee), DOE may assess civil penalties against the contractor for violations of DOE Nuclear Safety Requirements,192 thereby establishing the potential for dual DOE-NRC regulation of the contractor. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff believes the legislation enabling NRC regulation will define any Price-Anderson indemnification arrangements. The NRC staff does not consider this an issue. D17. Issue If regulatory transition were to occur, DOE would like the timing to offer the best chance of avoiding unnecessary delays in removing and immobilizing the tank wastes. Discussion From the perspective of DOE, the timing for transition needs to be selected so as to reduce the potential for disruption to a minimum. Some timing considerations tend to conflict. In programmatic terms, it would be beneficial for DOE that transition occurs sometime after full and confirmed operation so that it could be assured that the plant meets its specifications. On the other hand, to minimize potential retrofit changes in meeting NRCís regulatory expectations, it might be preferable to make the transition as soon as possible. (This can also be accomplished by resolving all regulatory differences prior to construction and transitioning later.) Legislation may be required if the 10 CFR Part 2 public hearings process is not to be invoked, perhaps by NRCís acceptance of DOEís prior authorization basis, or if there is intent to certify, rather than license, the facility. Legislation or Office of Management and Budget action may be needed on funding issues. DOE is of the opinion that potential delays involved in legislation and NRC review can best be accommodated in a process conducted in parallel with the DOE/RU authorization process during the TWRS-P design and construction activity. As part of the MOU, ongoing cooperation has existed between DOE and NRC in identifying the full spectrum of differences in regulatory oversight between the two agencies. This work is intended to resolve technical differences in such a manner that the design will meet NRC requirements or that NRC will accept DOEís prior authorization basis. DOE can authorize the design through construction on the basis of the PSAR. At that point, the RU intends a second licensing step to authorize operation after review and approval of a Final Safety Analysis Report (FSAR). This junction, normally involving revised documentation between the PSAR and FSAR, could beneficially be the time at which the documentation and the Safety Analysis Report (SAR) are upgraded and changed to meet NRC requirements for TIMING TO AVOID DELAYS FROM REGULATORY TRANSITION

192

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section 820.20(b), ìBasis for Civil Penalties.î

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format and content. With the forgoing cooperative work in hand, the disturbance could be minimal. In order to have confidence that the design of the vitrification plan will operate as specified and that planning towards remediating the tank farm(s) will be successful, DOE must have confidence that the plant is constructed as planned. This includes actual design and construction. It could also be desirable, from DOEís perspective, to confirm operation and the end products of each section of the plant, including the pretreated wastes and the quality of the glasses. The NRC staff believes that there are three alternatives for the timing of regulatory transition: 1) immediately, 2) overlapping, or parallel, regulatory transition process during design, or 3) regulatory transition during operations. Alternatives one and two correspond to licensing of the vitrification plant, for which rules and guidance already exist. Option 3 represents a certification route. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff believes the legislation establishing NRC regulation of TWRS/WTP will define the timing for transition. Transition as soon as possible in the near-term offers the clearest benefits. D18. Issue DOE has expressed concerns about protecting its financial interests in the vitrification facility. Discussion DOE has already invested several hundred million dollars in the Phase I activities. The completion of the design and construction activities in Phase I may amount to another $4 billion193. Thus, DOE has considerable financial interests in the program. DOE protects those interests, particularly through frequent meetings with the TWRS contractors to assess progress and by an inspection program during preliminary design and construction. Ordinarily, NRC would not become involved with the regulatory process until after completion of preliminary design. The NRC has no financial interests to protect. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this a regulatory transition issue because the NRCís mission is protection of the workers, the public, and the environment. DOE FINANCIAL INTERESTS

193

Nuclear News Flash, September 1, 2000.

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D19. Issue

QUALITY ASSURANCE

The DOE TWRS Quality Assurance (QA) program requirements and the TWRS-P contractorís DOE-approved QA programs may need to be modified in order to facilitate the transition to NRC regulation. Discussion The QA of TWRS/WTP activities is governed by the DOE QA rule (10 CFR 830.120).194 Although organized and worded differently, the DOE QA rule requirements are intended to be generally consistent with basic commercial nuclear industry QA requirements (such as NQA-1195) and NRC QA requirements.196,197 The DOE QA rule requirements are expressed at a higher level than commercial nuclear industry and NRC QA requirements, and provide for flexibility in the approaches that may be taken to meet the requirements. As a result, a QA program could be developed to meet the requirements of the DOE QA rule without meeting the NRC QA requirements. DOE has prepared an implementation guide for the QA rule198 that provides additional insights into what DOE considers an acceptable QA program. The DOE QA rule does contain requirements that go beyond what is normally expected of an NQA-1 or NRC QA program. However, the preamble to the DOE QA rule states, ìJust as the NRC has endorsed NQA-1 as an acceptable way (there are others) for their licensees to implement the requirements of (10 CFR Part 50) Appendix B, DOE contractors may use NQA-1 as a way to implement the rule.î199 In order to determine the impact of transitioning from a QA program that meets the DOE QA rule to a program that meets NRC QA requirements, the NRC QA requirements must be known. At this time, the NRC has defined the QA requirements it would apply to a high level

194

Item 3 of Section 6.0 of the ìPolicy for Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of TWRS Privatization Contractors,î (DOE/RL-96-25) states that the contractorís set of standards and requirements ìshall contain, as a subset, the nuclear safety requirements in 10 CFR Parts 830, 834, and 835 that are enforceable under 10 CFR Part 820.î
195 196

ANSI/îASME NQA-1, Quality Assurance Requirements for Nuclear Facilities.

The NRC QA requirements being referred to are thos in 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix B, Quality Assurance Criteria for Nuclear Power Plants and Fuel Reprocessing Plants; 10 CFR Part 60, Subpart G, Quality Assurance; 10 CFR Part 71, Subpart H, Quality Assurance; and 10 CFR Part 72, Subpart G, Quality Assurance.
197

See Section 3.5 of the DOE/EMís Comparison of NRC and DOE Requiremnts for Independent Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Facilities dated June 1995 and section 4.1.6 of the DOE/EMís Office of Spent Fuel Management Comparison of Department of Energy TWRS Top-Level Standards and Principles and Nuclear Egulatory Commission Draft Standard Review Plan for Fuel Cycle Facilities.
198

Implementation Guide for US with 10 CFR 830.120, Quality Assurance, DOE G 830.120.

Department of Energy (U.S.), Washington, D.C. Federal Register: Vol. 59, pp. 15843-15849 (Sec II.C.30). April 5, 1994.

199

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waste (HLW) processing facility. The existing 10 CFR Part 70200 does not contain specific QA requirements for SNM licensees except for licensees who intend to possess and use SNM in a plutonium processing and fuel fabrication plant. For such a plant, 10 CFR Part 70 indicates that the QA program description should include a discussion of how the criteria in 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix B will be met.201 Specific references to 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix B or NQA-1 are not anticipated to be included. In concert with development of the new draft 10 CFR Part 70, NRC has developed two SRPs; some for facilities possessing and using SNM and some specifically for TWRS/WTP facilities. The current SRP for TWRS-P states that the NRC reviewer should review the application to determine whether the applicant, for items relied on to prevent or mitigate accidents of high consequences, has either: 1. Described its (and its principal contractorís) organization, organizational authority, and organizational responsibilities for QA; provided a commitment to implement and maintain the QA program to comply with the applicable elements of NQA-1; or Described its (and its principal contractorís) organization, organizational authority, and organizational responsibilities for QA, and addressed the extensive checklist provided in the appendix to this section of the SRP. In either case, the applicant should also (a) describe how the QA program will be graded for items of lesser or no effect on consequences of concern and (b) list the items relied on for safety as determined by the applicantís integrated safety analysis. In its QA Program and Implementation Plan (QAPIP),202 which had been approved by the RU,203 BNFL Inc. had committed to comply with the applicable elements of NQA-1, DOE/RW-0333P,204 and NUREG-1293.205 Additionally, the TWRS-P contract required that DOE/RW-0333P be applied.206 Although the QAPIP appeared to indicate that the basic requirements of NQA-1, Part I (1994a) apply and that the NQA-1 supplementary requirements were to be addressed as
200 201

2.

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 70, ìDomestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Draft Part 70, ìDomestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î July 30, 1998.
202

BNFL Inc., BNFL-5193-QAP-01, Revision 4, ìQuality Assurance Program and Implementation Plan.î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. 1998.
203

Gibbs, D.C., U.S. Department of Energy, letter to M.J. Bullock, BNFL, Inc., ìApproval of BNFL-5193-QAP-01, Rev. 4, ëQuality Assurance Program and Implementation Plan,í (QAPIP),î June 2, 1998.
204

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RW-0333P, ìQuality Assurance Requirements and Description for the Civilian Radioactive Waste Management Program.î DOE: Richland, Washington
205

Nuclear Regulatory Commission, (U.S.)(NRC). NUREG-1293, ìQuality Assurance Guidance for a Low-Level Radioactive Waste Disposal facility.î NRC: Washington, D.C. 1991.
206

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-98-13, Revision 0, Table 3.1.1 and Section 4.1, ìDOE Regulatory Unit Evaluation Report of the BNFL Inc. Quality Assurance Program and Implementation Plan.î DOE: Richland, Washington. May 1998. indicates that application of DOE/RW-0333P is a contractual requirement.

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required by project specific activities, the language in the QAPIP was not sufficiently clear for the NRC to make a definitive judgment on which elements of NQA-1 had been committed to. However, the QAPIP is clear that DOE/RW-0333P applies. DOW/RW-0333P requirements are derived to a large extent from NRC QA requirements (10 CFR Part 50, Appendix B; 10 CFR Part 60, Subpart G; 10 CFR Part 71, Subpart H; and 10 CFR Part 72, Subpart G) and NQA-1 requirements. DOE/RW-0333P has been approved by the NRC under 10 CFR Part 60 and 10 CFR Part 71 for radioactive material packages.207 Moreover, DOE is applying DOE/RW-0333P to the TIM-2 Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation, which is in the process of being licensed by the NRC.208 Based on the TWRS-P commitment to apply DOE/RW-0333P, the NRC concluded that the TWRS-P QA program description satisfied the QA requirements of the 1998 draft of 10 CFR Part 70 and the guidance in the corresponding draft of the TWRS SRP regarding a commitment to meet NQA-1 (the Basics and Supplementary Requirements in Part I [from the former NQA-1] and the requirements in Part II [from the former NQA-2] but not the Nonmandatory Appendices Preliminary in Part III). Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The DOE TWRS Quality Assurance (QA) program requirements and the TWRS-P contractorís DOE-approved QA programs may need to be modified in order to facilitate the transition to NRC regulation. The NRC staff believes the differences in QA requirements are small and the adequacy of the QA program really depends upon its implementation. The NRC Staff does not consider this a significant transition issue. D20. Issue DOE is concerned that there may be impacts upon non-TWRS/WTP facilities at Hanford after regulatory transition to the NRC. Discussion Some NRC requirements are known to be different from DOE standards and practices established for the design and safe operation of facilities at Hanford. Examples include, risk evaluation guidelines including the concept of the co-located worker, design basis seismic and IMPACTS ON OTHER HANFORD SITE FACILITIES

207

Travers, W.D., U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, letter to R.A. Milner, U.S. Department of Energy, February 29, 1996.
208

License Application for the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory Three Mile Island Unit Two Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation, Chapter 6, Revision 0, October 1996.

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tornado magnitudes, and natural phenomena hazards evaluation criteria.209,210 However, the NRC may find such DOE standards and practices acceptable, even if different. As a recent example, NRC has accepted the DOEís approach for determining the design basis earthquake and tornado design requirements for the new dry spent fuel storage facility at the INEEL, which is undergoing a licensing review under 10 CFR Part 72.211 Where DOEís approach is not acceptable to the NRC, the NRC will require TWRS/WTP to comply with its different requirements, after transition to regulation of the facility by NRC. Although the NRC would have no authority to impose these requirements on non-TWRS/WTP facilities, the imposition of NRC requirements on TWRS/WTP could impact on other facilities broadly in two ways. First, designing or operating the facility to meet NRC requirements may require design and operational changes at neighboring facilities or from the Hanford site as a whole. Second, in cases where the facility is designed or operated to meet certain NRC requirements that are different than DOE standards and practices, obviously different safety requirements between TWRS/WTP and its neighboring facilities may be questioned by stakeholders, and pressure for upgrading non-TWRS/WTP facilities may result. An example of the first type of potential impact involves NRCís interpretation that a co-located worker at a DOE site will be considered a member of the public for accident dose evaluations under NRC regulation.212 If the TWRS/WTP facility is designed so that any individual outside of its controlled area of a few hundred yards meets NRCís public accident dose limits, then there is no effect on neighboring facilities. However, if the facility is not so designed, the NRC could expect the contractor to exercise some control over Hanford worker access to surrounding facilities and to include such workers in the TWRS/WTP facility radiation protection and monitoring program.213 Also, the NRC could expect the DOE Richland Operations Office and local agencies to redefine the siteís established emergency planning zones and evaluation practices, and to revise emergency planning agreements. Whether the second type of impact occurs is unclear, as evidenced by three recent examples. A new TMI-2 spent fuel storage facility at INEEL will be licensed by the NRC and located within the security fence of the DOE-regulated Idaho Chemical Processing Plant (ICPP). New N reactor spent fuel conditioning and storage facilities at Hanford are being designed to NRCequivalent requirements while modifications to existing, nearby project facilities are accomplished in accordance with DOE requirements. For both projects, public support for the move to NRC requirements has been positive, and there has been no public concern expressed

209 210

ìComparison of DOE and NRC Requirements for Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Facilities.î SCIENTECH. 1995.

Westinghouse Hanford Company (WHC). WHC/DB-003, Additional NRC Requirements for the K Basins Spent Fuel Project. WHC: Richland, Washington
211

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). SECY-98-071, ìExemption to 10 CFR 72.102(f)(1) Seismic Design Requirements for Three Mile Island Unit 2 Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation.î NRC: Washington, D.C. April 8, 1998.
212

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). SECY-98-038, ìHanford Tank Waste Remediation System Privatization Co-Located Worker Standards.î NRC: Washington, D.C. March 4, 1998.
213

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). SECY-98-038, page 3, ìHanford Tank Waste Remediation System PRIVATIZATION Co-Located Worker Standards.î NRC: Washington, D.C. March 4, 1998.

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over the safety of the neighboring DOE regulated facilities. The DOE project managers attribute these positive results to frequent and open communications with their Stakeholders. On the other hand, at Hanford, at least one Stakeholder representing a public interest group has already expressed an interest in formally participating in any NRC licensing of the vitrification plant. The technical impacts to non-TWRS/WTP facilities of regulatory transition need to be identified, evaluated, and addressed on an individual basis as such issues arise. Coordinating the transition to external regulation of the tank farm storage and vitrification facilities will likely reduce the impacts to the non-vitrification portion of the tank farms, which is the nonTWRS/WTP facility most susceptible to these impacts. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this an issue for regulatory transition. D21. Issue For its facilities, DOE has regulatory authority for occupational safety. For NRC licensed facilities, the OSHA has such authority. If the TWRS/WTP transitioned to NRC regulatory oversight, OSHA might assume regulatory authority for occupational safety. Discussion: The Occupational Safety and Health Act prohibits OSHA from regulating where another Federal agency chooses to exercise its own authority.214 DOE has authority for regulating worker safety at its facilities under the Atomic Energy Act of 1954.215 Accordingly, DOE contractors are responsible for worker occupational health and safety;216 DOE enforces compliance with both OSHA and DOE requirements for worker occupational health and safety. Traditionally, DOEís authority has extended to all facilities at a site, even new facilities which are typically government-owned, contractor-operated (GOCO) facilities. The original TWRS-P facility would have been company-owned, company-operated (COCO). However, OSHA declined to accept regulatory authority for the facility, and consequently, the RU regulates the occupational safety program. In 1993, the Secretary of Energy committed to replace selfregulation of worker safety with external regulation, and OSHA was undertaking pilot programs RESPONSIBILITY FOR OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY

214 215 216

OSHA Act of 1970, Section 4(b)(1). 1970. Atomic Energy Act of 1954, Section 161.i(3). 1954

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). Order 440.1A, ìWorker Protection Management for DOE Federal and Cotnractor Employees.î DOE: Washington, D.C. March 27, 1998.

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at certain DOE facilities,217 although it is not clear when, or if, OSHA would accept and exercise oversight authority over DOE facilities. If the TWRS/WTP project were to transition to regulation by NRC, the 1988 MOU between NRC and OSHA218 could apply. (It would also be possible to develop a specific MOU to address the TWRS/WTP project, like the MOU written for the GDPs.219) Under the 1988 MOU, NRC exercises regulatory responsibility for worker radiological health and safety at an NRC-licensed facility. Furthermore, as stated in the 1988 MOU, NRC would have the responsibility for regulating the ì...chemical risk produced by radioactive materialsî and ì...plant conditions that affect the safety of radiological materials and thus present an increased radiation risk to workers.î These latter responsibilities include regulating certain aspects of fire and chemical safety at NRC facilities. In addition, under the 1988 MOU, during inspections of radiological and nuclear safety, NRC personnel may identify occupational safety concerns, normally within the scope of OSHAís responsibility, and may receive complaints from an employee about OSHA-covered working conditions. In such instances, NRC would report the matter to the licenseeís management. NRC inspectors may elevate OSHA safety concerns to the attention of NRC management who would inform the OSHA Regional Office, when appropriate. On a case-by-case basis, NRC and OSHA conduct joint inspections at NRC-licensed facilities. Conversely, OSHA provides NRC with information that it may obtain concerning worker radiological health and safety. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff anticipates that the enabling legislation for NRC regulation would clearly define the responsibilities. This is not a significant issue for regulatory transition. D22. Issue The NRC and DOE use different approaches for the tailoring of requirements for safe mission performance. Discussion This issue concerns the different approaches used by DOE and NRC for establishing requirements for achieving adequate safety and reconciliation of any differences in the approaches to facilitate seamless transition from DOE to NRC regulation, should transition occur at a future date. As discussed in more detail below, even though the DOE approach to establishing requirements is somewhat different than the NRC approach, the requirements TAILORING OF REQUIREMENTS

217

Voluntary Protection Programs are in place at WIPP, Allied Signal, both Star sites, and Weldon Springs (Merit site). OSHA trials are currently being conducted at ORNL and ANL.
218

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.), Washington, D.C. ìMemorandum of Understanding between the NRC and OSHA; Worker Protection at NRC-Licensed Facilities.î Federal Register: Vol. 53, p. 43950. October 31, 1988.
219

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.), Washington, D.C. ìMOU between the NRC and OSHA with Respect to the Gaseous Diffusion Plants.î Federal Register: Vol. 61, p. 40249. August 1, 1996.

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resulting from either approach will likely achieve adequate safety, and significant reconciliation may not be necessary. The DOE approach is a bottom-up process based on the principles of Integrated Safety Management. DOE contractors identify, propose, and justify safety standards and requirements by selecting from appropriate DOE and industry standards and requirements, with full consideration of the work processes and specific hazards associated with a facility. In the case of the TWRS project, the DOE approach for radiological, nuclear, and process safety220 places on the TWRS Contractor the responsibility to achieve (a) adequate safety of the workers and the public, (b) comply with applicable laws and legal requirements, and (c) conform to DOE stipulated top-level safety standards and principles.221 Within this framework, the contractor identifies the work needed, evaluates the associated hazards, selects appropriate standards, and justifies the adequacy of the selected standards.222 The traditional NRC approach is a top-down process. Adequate protection for the general public, workers, and the environment with regard to matters under the authority of NRC is achieved through compliance with established requirements, in the form of rules, regulations, and orders embodied primarily in 10 CFR Energy. The NRCís requirements have evolved over the years through the formal rulemaking process and are continually subject to modification and change as new information becomes available. Such requirements are established for classes and types of facilities and processes. License applicants are required to demonstrate compliance with all applicable requirements before a license is granted by the NRC. When a license is granted following NRCís detailed reviews of the applicantís information and analyses, the NRC concludes that adequate safety will be achieved because applicable rules, regulations, and orders will be met.223 The revised 10 CFR Part 70, which the NRC would likely apply to TWRS/WTP facilities, is more relevant.224 The revised 10 CFR Part 70 contains top-level performance-based requirements and baseline design criteria, rather than NRCís traditional prescriptive, deterministic

220

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-97-10, Rev. 1, ìRadiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of TWRS Privatization Contractors Regulatory Plan.î DOE: Richland, Washington. January 1998.
221

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL-96-0006, Rev. 0, ìTop-Level Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Principles for the Privatization Contractor.î DOE: Richland, Washington. February 1996.
222

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL-96-0004, Rev. 0, ìProcess for Establishing a Set of Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Requirements for TWRS Privatization.î DOE: Richland, Washington. February 1996. For example, see Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Sections 70.23(a), 70.31(a) and 70.32(a)(8) on license approval and issuance.
224 223

NRC statement during a May 28, 1998 public meeting on the revised Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 70.

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requirements.225 As noted by NRC, under the revised Part 70, ìthe contractor must design226 its facility to meet the baseline design criteria and other requirements that are identified in the NRCís regulations and perform an integrated safety analysis of the facility design to confirm that appropriate controls will be provided.... This approach incorporates both flexibility of a riskinformed, performance-based safety analysis as well as baseline design criteria from which a judgment is reached that there is reasonable assurance of adequate safety.î The applicantís license application summarizes the results of the integrated safety analysis, the facility design, compliance with the prescribed standards and requirements, and the ability of the facility to withstand/mitigate the hazards identified in the integrated safety analysis. Therefore, there is nothing inherent in the TWRS/WTP requirements development process, compared to the draft Part 70 process, that would preclude the selection of a set of standards and requirements for the TWRS/WTP facility that will achieve adequate safety in either an NRC or a DOE regulatory environment. However, this will not guarantee that the NRC would accept the TWRS/WTP standards and requirements as sufficient should the facility transition to NRC regulation. In fact, NRC has already acknowledged that the DOE and NRC approaches are intended to reach the same endpoint but has expressed the following concerns with the approach for TWRS-P: 1. Safety requirements were proposed and conditionally approved during the pre-conceptual design phase of the facility. This attempt to reach judgment on adequate safety was performed prior to the majority of design information being available. For both regulatory processes, the determination of adequate safety is somewhat subject to engineering judgment and, as such, should transition occur, additional requirements and potential backfits could be needed. The situation is exacerbated by (a) DOEís tailoring approach, which allows the TWRS-P Contractor to pick and choose in proposing a set of applicable safety requirements, and (b) the appearance that the RU is increasingly influenced by cost and schedule considerations during its regulatory decision making process (from Chapter 7.0, Main Reference 17).

2.

3.

Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff believes this issue is not significant if regulatory transition occurs in the nearterm because the end result should be comparable.

225

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). SECY-98-185, ìProposed Rulemaking-Revised Requirements for the Domestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î NRC: Washington, D.C. July 30, 1998.
226

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). SECY-98-185, ìProposed Rulemaking-Revised Requirements for the Domestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î NRC: Washington, D.C. July 30, 1998. Note that the wording on pages 23 and 44 of SECY-98-185 indicates that an applicant must consider/address the baseline design criteria, not necessarily meet them.

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D23. Issue

ACHIEVEMENT OF ADEQUATE SAFETY

DOE and NRC may reach different conclusions about the achievement of adequate safety and this may require reconciliation during the possible future transition of TWRS/WTP to NRC regulation. Discussion This concerns the implementation of measures to avoid or to identify, assess, and disposition differing conclusions between DOE and NRC on the achievement of adequate safety as a result of the different approaches. Such measures are best implemented early in the projectís life cycle and continue on an ongoing basis to preclude a backlog of differences that would have to be resolved as part of the transition process to NRC regulation. The DOE regulatory approach for TWRS-P safety (radiological, nuclear, and process) places on the TWRS/WTP Contractor the responsibility to achieve (a) adequate safety for the workers and the public (b) comply with applicable laws and legal requirements, and (c) conform to DOE stipulated top-level safety standards and principles.227 Within this regulatory framework, the TWRS-P Contractor identifies the work needed, evaluates the associated hazards, selects appropriate standards, and justifies the adequacy of the selected standards.228 As discussed in Section D.22, the DOE regulatory approach for TWRS-P is potentially similar to the NRC approach anticipated in the revised 10 CFR Part 70. Nevertheless, the NRC has expressed the following concerns about the process for TWRS-P: 1. Safety requirements were proposed and conditionally approved during the pre-conceptual design phase of the facility. This attempt to reach judgment on adequate safety was performed prior to the majority of design information being available. For both regulatory processes, the determination of adequate safety is somewhat subject to engineering judgment, and as such, should transition occur, additional requirements and potential backfits could be needed.

2.

Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff believe this is a technical issue that requires additional design effort by the contractors.

227

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). RL/REG-97-10, Rev. 1, ìRadiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of TWRS Privatization Contractors Regulatory Plan.î DOE: Richland, Washington. January 1998.
228

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). DOE/RL-96-0004, Rev. 0, ìProcess for Establishing a Set of Radiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Standards and Requirements for TWRS Privatization.î DOE: Richland, Washington. February 1996.

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D24. Issue

EFFECT OF SCHEDULE DELAYS ON THE OVERALL RISK

DOE is concerned about balancing the risks of the TWRS/WTP facility with the risk of continued storage of the tank wastes. Discussion DOE has expressed interest in balancing the risks posed by continued operation of the tanks with the risks posed by operation of the vitrification plant, regardless of the regulatory framework. In particular, DOE is concerned that delays in TWRS/WTP operations due to regulatory matters (DOE and/or the NRC transition) would translate into increased risks because the tank farm system is old and potentially leaking. In theory, the regulatory requirements for a TWRS/WTP facility could be different (and reduced) against a baseline of the existing hazards of tank storage, which could be reduced by the operation of the facility. From the viewpoint of DOE, early startup, high availability, and high capacity operation of the vitrification plant could serve to reduce the risks posed by the tanks and the overall risk of HLW at Hanford, even if requirements on the vitrification plant were relaxed. NRC requirements have been established to minimize risks of operation of a facility relative to a baseline of non-operation, even though NRC can consider balancing risks within a facility. However, NRC operates to codified regulations (10 CFR Part 70) and, while provision for risk benefits and balancing can be made via the risk-informed, performance based approach, it can be difficult to manage and balance the different risks on a quantitative basis with limited information on the design and safety features of the TWRS/WTP facility. Regulatory requirements could be administered with recognition of the real risks from the degrading tanks as baseline risks. The risks to continued operation of the tank farm are analyzed in the Basis for Interim Operation (BIO),229 which temporarily substitutes for a comprehensive Safety Analysis Report (SAR). The tanks also represent immediate concerns. Steel tanks that were built upwards of 55 years ago to a design life of 10 years ultimately will fail. The collapse of tanks due to overburdened loads, perhaps under seismic excitation, while they still contain waste represents both an immediate public concern and a long-term remediation challenge. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff anticipates that the scope of NRC regulationóthe TWRS/WTP facilities, tank farms, other Hanford facilitiesówill be defined in the enabling legislation. A single regulatory entity offers consistency and the potential to consider total risks from tank waste management. However, absent specific design and quantitative analysis, and NRC regulation of the entire Hanford Site operations, it is not possible to assess balancing total risk for the tank waste/HLW

229

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). HNF-SD-WM-BIO-001, Rev. 0, Executive Summary page ES-13, ìThe Basis for Interim Opration of the Tank Waste Remediation System Facilities.î DOE, Richland, Washington. August 1998.

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related systems at Hanford. However, achieving adequate assurances of safety is likely to be based upon individual facility analyses. D25. Issue DOE has expressed concerns about balancing the resources available for the safety features of the TWRS/WTP (the vitrification facilities in particular) across the entire TWRS complex. Discussion The resources that support safety operation of the vitrification plan and the tanks are both drawn from the same source (i.e, public funds) and are, therefore, ultimately in competition with one another. DOEís concern is that the risk of the deteriorating tanks is increasing as the tanks continue to age thereby increasing the likelihood of tank leaks and accidents. Approximately 25 percent of the tank farm equipment fails upon demand. Therefore, this issue is directed toward the DOE observation that regulatory oversight needs to be applied to the vitrification plant and the tanks in such a manner as to minimize the overall risk from both. This could be done by providing a consistent regulatory framework for all parts of the TWRS/WTP programóthe tanks and the vitrification plant. Given the increasing risk of continuing the status quo with the tanks, DOE wants to emphasize the importance that all efforts be made to ensure that the design, licensing, and operation of the vitrification plant occur on schedule. However, while such a conclusion may be logical, DOE does not want to be seen as recommending regulation of the vitrification plant to any lesser standards than are applied to their other nuclear facilities. In management of the Hanford site, DOE ensures the safety of all operations according to the risk of those operations, and allocates funding and resources accordingly. From DOEís perspective of total risk, this might correspond to expedited schedules or safety features different from a facility constructed individually. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC is concerned with adequate assurances of safety for the workers, the public, and the environment. Once safety and regulatory requirements are met for TWRS/WTP, resource allocation is an internal DOE matter. The NRC staff expects the scope of NRC regulation to be defined in the enabling legislation. D26. Issue Changes may be required as the TWRS/WTP facility transitions to NRC regulation. BACKFIT/RETROFIT RESOURCE ALLOCATION ACROSS TWRS FACILITIES

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Discussion The TWRS-P facility could be subjected to new or modified requirements imposed by NRC if regulatory transition occurs. These new or modified requirements may require that the TWRS-P facility be modified. Terms such as ìbackfitî and ìretrofitî are commonly used to describe modifications that are made in response to a new or modified requirements. These terms, the regulatory actions and precedents associated with them and the differences between them are discussed further below. The NRC has backfitting provisions in its regulations for reactors, independent spent fuel storage installations, and GDPs.230 In these regulations, backfitting is generally defined as the modification of, or addition to, systems, structures, or components of a facility; or to the procedures or organization required to operate a facility, any of which may result from a new or amended provision in the NRC rules or the imposition of a regulatory staff position interpreting the NRC rules that is either new or different from a pervious NRC staff position. Backfitting only applies to facilities that have received a license (including a construction permit) or a certification. For these facilities (except for a few special conditions noted in the regulations231), the NRC can require a backfit only when it determines that there is a substantial increase in the overall protection of the public health and safety or the common defense and security to be derived from the backfit and that the direct and indirect costs of implementation for that facility are justified in view of this increased protection. Backfit provisions are expected to be ultimately included in 10 CFR Part 70.232 In response to an Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) Petition for Rulemaking that requested a backfitting provision for 10 CFR Part. 70 similar to the one in 10 CFR 50.109, the NRC staff proposed that ìa qualitative backfit mechanism, similar in purpose to a 10 CFR 50.109 provision, be considered after the safety bases, including the results of the ISA, are established and incorporated in the license, and after licensees and staff have gained a few years of experience with implementation of the ISA requirement. This mechanism would not apply to modifications identified as a result of the initial ISAs that are needed to assure protection of public health and safety; these modifications would be required for compliance with the revised 10 CFR Part 70.î233

230

See Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section 50.109, ìBackfitting,î Section 72.62, ìBackfitting,î and Section 76.76, ìBackfitting.î
231

A backfit analysis is not required if regulatory action is necessary to ensure that a facility provides adequate protection to the health and safety of the public; the modification is necessary to bring a facility into compliance with a license/certification or NRC rules or orders, or into conformance with written commitments by the licensee; or the regulatory action involves defining or redefining what level of protection to the public health and safety should be regarded as adequate. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 70, ìDomestic Licensing of Special Nuclear Material.î The draft 10 CFR Part 70 issued on July 30, 1998, does not include a backfit provision. However, because of the differences of opinion on whether to include a backfit provision in Part 70, the Commission is requesting public comment on its intent to defer consideration of a qualitative backfit provision in Part 70.
233 232

Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.)(NRC). SECY-97-137, Attachment 1, Section 8.0, ìProposed Resolution to Petition for Rulemaking Filed by the Nuclear Energy Institute.î NRC: Washington, D.C. June 30, 1997.

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Changes that are required to be made when an existing facility applies for an NRC license or certification are termed ìretrofitsî and do not meet the criteria for being classified as a backfit. Thus, NRC backfit provisions do not apply to retrofits. In fact, the NRC does not have specific retrofit provisions in its regulations. The Portsmouth and Paducah GDPs, which were existing, DOE-regulated operational facilities prior to being transitioned to NRC regulation, had to meet or commit to meet the applicable NRC regulations in order to receive certifications. For these plants a plan for achieving compliance with respect to any areas of noncompliance with the NRCís regulations had to be submitted with the application for an initial certificate of compliance.234 Although a backfitting rule for the GDPs was issued, the NRC interpreted the rule not to apply until after the initial NRC certification process was completed.235 It should be noted that the GDPs were transitioned to NRC regulation approximately 50 years after their design and 45 years after construction, while transition of the TWRS/WTP facilities would likely occur within 5 years of the design activities. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC anticipates that some Backfits/Retrofits may be necessary upon transition of the TWRS/WTP to NRC regulatory authority. However, the NRC staff expects these to be minor because the facilities would represent new design and construction, with complete documentation, and the NRC has participated with DOE and their contractors in Phase IA and Phase IB-1 of the program. Regulatory transition of other TWRS activities might involve older facilities with less documentation and could result in more significant requirements. D27. Issue DOE has discussed the scope of NRC regulation, including facilities beyond the immediate TWRS/WTP facilities. Discussion HLW has been stored in large underground storage tanks at the Hanford site since 1944. The existing tank waste, as well as new waste added to the tanks farms, is regulated by the TPAís RCRA enforcement provisions. The TPA, initially issued in 1989, is an enforceable agreement among DOE, Washington State Department of Ecology, and EPA for achieving environmental compliance at the Hanford site. Under the TPA, the 149 single-shell tanks must be emptied by 2018, and the 28 double-shell tanks must be emptied by 2028. All processing must be completed by 2028.236 The TPA was modified in 1996 to permit private companies to SCOPE OF NRC REGULATION

Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Section 76.35(b), ìCertification of Gaseous Diffusion Plants, Contents of Application.î Buhl, A.R., T. Murley, G. Edgar, and D. Silverman. ìNRC Regulation of Doe Facilties.î Nuclear News, p. 32. May 1997.
236 235

234

Environmental Protection Agency (US)(EPA) and State of Washingtong Department of Ecology. ìHanford Federal Facility Agreement and Consent Orderî (Tri-Party Agreement between DOE,EPA, Ecology).

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perform remediation of the tank waste in response to a DOE initiative to encourage industry to use innovative approaches to remediate the tank waste.237 The DOE TWRS-P program was developed to address the remediation of the tank waste component of the overall TWRS program using a privatized contractor. Within the TWRS-P program, the DOE regulatory program had been structured to facilitate the possible future transition to NRC regulation. An MOU between DOE and NRC also had been prepared to ensure that the DOE regulatory program is consistent with NRCís regulatory approach and to allow NRC to gain sufficient experience and knowledge of the TWRS-P activities to be able to license the TWRS-P facility (i.e., the vitrification facility) in the future.238 As initially envisioned by DOE, both vitrification of tank waste and storage of tank waste would be privatized, and the NRC would regulate all TWRS activities of the privatized contractor(s). This was described as Phase II of TWRS-P. At present, the NRC has no direct involvement in overseeing tank-related activities. Although NRC has licensing authority over any facilities expressly authorized for the long-term storage and disposal of defense HLW, previous NRC legal determinations have indicated that the storage of HLW in the tank farms does not constitute long-term storage and is not subject to NRC licensing. Thus, legislation would likely be needed to grant the NRC the authority to regulate the tank farms (legislation is also needed for NRC to regulate the vitrification facilityóit could be part of the same legislative package). DOE, using its own rules, Orders, standards and other directives currently regulates the tank farms. From the perspective of DOE, focusing financial resources and NRC regulatory attention on the vitrification facility alone could result in insufficient consideration of the considerable environmental and public risk posed by continued operation of the tanks with their associated leakage and potential for collapse and explosion. Conversely, having both the tank farms and the vitrification facility regulated by the NRC would ensure that NRCís regulatory approach and principles and a consistent regulatory framework are applied to both facilities. In evaluating regulatory requirements and decisions in the context of the entire TWRS complex, the NRC could balance the risks posed by continued operation of the tank farms against the risks posed by operation of the vitrification facility, thereby selecting the alternative that minimizes the net risk to the environment and to the public. The NRC staff considers the term ìconsistent regulatory frameworkî to mean similar baseline requirements, similar risk based performance criteria, and similar regulatory procedures (license and amendment reviews, inspections, and enforcement). A consideration with respect to having the NRC regulate the tank farms is that regulation would most likely be done using a certification process. (The requirement for using a licensing process or a certification process would likely be specified in the legislation needed to grant the NRC the authority to regulate the tank farms.) To implement certification, a new section (Part) in the NRC regulations would need to be developed to specify the certification process and the

237

Department of Energy (U.S)(DOE). EIS-0189-SA23, ìSupplement Analysis for the Tank Waste Remediation System.î DOE: Richland, Washington. May 1998.
238

ìMemorandum of Understanding between the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and U.S. Department of Energy.î January 29, 1997.

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standards to be applied to the tank farms. The specific requirements in this new Part could be different than the requirements to be applied to the vitrification facility (i.e., 10 CFR Part 70). The tank farms are currently a government-owned, contractor-operated facility. If the tank farms were to be transitioned to NRC regulation, the licensee/certificate holder could be DOE, the contractor, or both. DOE has previously expressed interest in transitioning operation of the tank farms to a privatized contractor, similar to that originally planned for the vitrification facility. This was described as Phase II of TWRS privatization. The licensees/certificate holders for the tank farms and the vitrification facility might be different, and separate licenses/certifications could be required for NRC regulation of these facilities. Thus, the NRC regulatory focus would tend to center on whether the activities occurring at each individual facility are meeting the commitments in each safety analysis report and the conditions of each license/certificate. Further more, separate NRC licensing project managers would likely be assigned for the tank farms and vitrification facility, and separate docket files would likely be opened in each case. However, to the extent that both facilities were licensed/certified by a single safety regulator, greater consistency of safety decision making can be expected. Cases exist or will exist on DOE sites where NRC regulates one facility and DOE regulates other facilities, although these have much simpler interfaces than at TWRS. The TMI-2 Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation (at the DOE Idaho Site) is an example of a case where NRC will license and regulate a new facility that will receive waste from an existing facility, specifically the Test Area North (TAN) facility. In this case, DOE regulates current TAN facility spent fuel pool storage operations and will regulate dry storage cask loading operations performed at the TAN facility. NRC regulation will begin when the fuel leaves the TAN facility boundary in an approved transportation cask.239 In another case, at the Portsmouth and Paducah GDPs, certain operations have been certified by NRC while others remain under DOE control. This shared site arrangement required that regulatory boundaries be established to ensure a clear understanding of responsibilities for regulatory oversight and the rules governing particular portions of the plants.240 Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff anticipates that the scope of NRC regulationóthe TWRS/WTP facilities, tank farms, other Hanford facilitiesówill be defined in the enabling legislation and this will address this issue. A single regulatory entity offers consistency and the potential to consider total risks from tank waste management. However, absent specific design and quantitative analysis, it is not possible to assess balancing total risk for the tank waste/HLW related systems at Hanford and achieving adequate assurances of safety is likely to be based upon individual facility analyses.

239

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE). Rev. 0. Section 1.2, ìLicense Application for the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory Three Mile Island Unit Two Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation.î DOE: Idaho Operation Office. October 1996.
240

Buhl, A.R., T. Murley, G. Edgar, and D.Silverman. ìNRC Regulation of DOE Facilities.î Nuclear News. p. 32. May 1997.

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D28. Issue

LOCATION OF THE REGULATOR

DOE believes the regulator should be located near the Hanford site. Discussion The location of the regulator is a potential issue, especially prior to the start of operations. Ideally, the regulator should be close to the regulated. As a practical matter, since the regulator usually has more than one licensee, this is normally not possible. However, the issue of NRC assumption of regulatory authority for DOE facilities, or facilities on DOE land, is new. As a regulator, the NRC usually stations a resident inspector locally, has a lead field office, and maintains a technical review staff at the NRC Headquarters. The resident inspector and the field office focus on daily and more immediate issues, including inspections and enforcement, and routine meetings with the facility staff on operations. The Headquarters staff focuses on licensing and evaluation issues, and includes more specific area technical specialists. For regulatory activities associated with the proposed TWRS/WTP facilities, the NRC would probably maintain several FTEs as residents at the Hanford site, have a dedicated team of several FTEs at the Region IV Office, and maintain a staff of around 15 specialists at the NRC Headquarters. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff anticipates that NRC regulation of TWRS/WTP facilities would involve some staff FTEs at the Hanford site, some staff FTEs at the Region IV Office, and some staff FTEís at the NRC Headquarters. The actual staffing levels would be determined by Congress via the enabling legislation and the scope of NRC regulation it requires. D29. Issue The program for TWRS/WTP is split into several phases, and a multi-step licensing process may be more appropriate . Discussion NRC has adopted one-step licensing for 10 CFR Part 70 licenses. TWRS-P had contractually established a two-step process with separate authorization of contraction and operation. Regulatory activity also occurred during preliminary design of TWRS-P, and is likely to occur during the completion of the design under the M&O contractual arrangement. The NRC does MULTI-STEP LICENSING

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not have a well-defined approach for regulating preliminary design work although such activities have occurred in the past and are occurring now.241 The RU expects preliminary design to be the basis of the Contractorís PSAR in the Construction Authorization Report (CAR). The NRC would normally expect their 10 CFR Part 70 license applications to be supported by a more advanced design. If the NRC were to assume regulatory authority after the start of construction but before the start of operations, the Contractor may have to upgrade the PSAR to a level consistent with NRCís expectations before this transition. However, the NRC regulatory approach is flexible and can adapt to a two-step approach with a submittal for a construction permit and a subsequent submittal of a license application for operations. In the revised 10 CFR Part 70,242 NRC is requiring that a licensee effectively perform a second step in the one-step licensing process by requiring that a preliminary hazards analysis be performed on the preliminary design prior to construction of new facilities. NRC notes that this could be viewed as an additional licensing step if approval was required, but it is not clear whether this step would include public participation. Without public participation it could seem to be an NRC approval of work already done on the preliminary design.243 Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The revised 10 CFR Part 70 allows multi-step licensing. An amendment process would allow the constructed TWRS/WTP facility to obtain approval for changes, different flow capacities, and different radionuclide inventories. This is not an issue. D30. Issue DOE believes differences in 10 CFR Part 20244 and 10 CFR Part 835245 need to be understood and reconciled to the extent necessary. DIFFERENCES IN 10 CFR PART 20 AND 10 CFR PART 835

241

In the licensing of the US-DOE Clinch River Breeder Reactor Plan in the late 70ís when regular meetings on parts of the design basis and safety analysis were presented to the NRC in Germantown at biweekly meetings thus obtaining valuable prelicensing feedback. The MOX facility is anticipated to be a two-step licensing effort with considerable, upfront involvement and interactions between the NRC and the DOE contractors. The NRC Staff have also been involved in the TWRS Program itself from 1997 through 2000.
242

Code of Regulations, Title10, Energy, Revised Part 70, ìLicensing of Special Nuclear Material.î Issued for public viewing in July 1998.
243 244 245

BNFL Inc. ìContractors Initial Safety Analysis Report,î BNFL Inc.: Richland, Washington. 1997. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 20, ìStandards for Protection Against Radiation.î Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Energy, Part 835, ìOccupational Radiation Protection.î

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Discussion DOE promulgated primary standards for radiation protection in December 1993 when 10 CFR Part 835 was issued as a final rule.246 The new rule was intended to codify current radiological safety requirements contained in DOE orders and directives; however, for various reasons, not all aspects of radiological safety were included in the rule. For example, respiratory protection was not covered under the rule because another directive, the DOE Radiological Control Manual247, already contained respiratory protection requirements. At the time 10 CFR Part 835 was issued, all DOE contractors were required to incorporate compliance to the DOE Radiological Control Manual in their contracts. (This requirements has since been modified.) For the most part, DOE and NRC radiation protection regulations are similar, but a few differences exist. The most notable difference is that requirements found in 10 CFR Part 20 are more comprehensive than the 10 CFR Part 835 requirements, but where differences in dose values exist, the DOE requirements are usually more conservative. Areas found in 10 CFR Part 20 and not covered by 10 CFR Part 835 include: 1. 2. 3. 4. Respiratory protection including respirator protection factors. Sealed radioactive source control. Radioactive waste disposal. Packaging receipt.

The TWRS-P Contractor was required to comply with all requirements in 10 CFR Part 835, and any additional requirements it elected to include in the Safety Requirements Document (SRD). The additional safety criteria248 address areas covered in 10 CFR Part 20, but not covered by 10 CFR Part 835. The NRCís Special Projects Branch reviewed the applicable sections of the TWRS-P Contractorís SRD and concluded that, in general, the SRD radiation protection standards are equivalent to 10 CFR Part 20, and if properly implemented, the TWRS-P Contractorís Radiation Protection Program (RPP) could be compliant with the NRC regulations. However, the NRC staff did not review the TWRS-P Contractorís SRD for specific compliance to 10 CFR Part 20. The RU agreed with this assessment. Both agencies also agreed that the key to developing a 10 CFR Part 20 compliant RPP lies in the details of the implementation of the SRD Safety Criteria for radiation protection. The TWRS-P Contractor had not developed the implementation details. It was expected that the level of detail needed to better evaluate compliance with 10 CFR Part 20 would become available at the PSAR stage when the TWRS-P Contractor would have submitted a revised

246 247

Department of Energy (U.S.). Federal Register: Vol. 588, No. 238.

Department of Energy (U.S)(DOE). EH-0256T, Rev. 1, ìRadiological Control Manual.î DOE: Richland, Washington. DATE:________
248

Safety Criteria are standards that the TWRS-P contractor included in the Safety Requirements Document. These Safety Criteria are generally based on regulations or industry standards, but can be created ad hoc.

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RPP for construction. It is expected that a similar approach will be taken by the new contractors working under M&O arrangements. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this a transition issue. D31. Issue DOE expects there may be some costs associated with changing documentation to meet NRC expectations after regulatory transition. Discussion Regulation by the NRC may require additional documentation, different formats, more specificity, or additional analyses. DOE used the example of the GDPs since the regulatory oversight of the GDPs recently transitioned to the NRC from DOE; DOE evaluated the costs involved in the GDP documentation changes. A source at DOEís Oak Ridge Office put the cost of revised paperwork alone (independent of any physical change at the facilities) at $50 million plus for revision of procedures, the SAR, and other documents for the GDPs. It should be noted, however, these costs were for old plants in which existing documentation was lacking and many of the documents had to be created or required major updates, and training/certification of personnel was necessary. In addition, the GDPs were not in compliance with the DOE regulations and requirements at the time of transition, which contributed to the costs involved. It would be expected that if the TWRS/WTP contractors were in compliance with the DOE regulatory framework at the time of transition to NRC regulation, the costs for revision of new plant documents (all of which would likely be available in electronic formats) would be substantially less. Given the use of M&O contracts, DOE would fund these documentation requirements and changes. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this a significant transition issue. D32. Issue DOE is concerned that there may be misunderstandings regarding the applicability and enforceability of the DOE Orders and their relationship with DOE rules. Discussion In the transition of regulatory oversight from DOE to the NRC for the GDPs, the NRC presumed that the GDPs were required to strictly comply with DOE Orders. However, that was not the case. Thus, the role of DOE Orders in the conduct of DOE business required clarification. The term ìOrderî or more precisely, ìSafety Orderî is a misnomer and leads one to a basic NUREG-1747 258 THE ROLE OF DOE ORDERS VERSUS NRC RULES COST OF CONTRACTOR DOCUMENTATION

misconception in understanding the DOE regulatory process. The terminology problems can be exacerbated because the NRC regulatory structure also includes the term ìOrderî but it is used in the more conventional sense. NRC Orders have the force of law and are issued to licensees as mandatory requirements. According to DOE and contrary to what the term ìOrderî implies, DOE Safety Orders are not, on their own, legal requirements and are not necessarily mandatory. DOE Safety Orders were not promulgated according to the Administrative Procedures Act requirements and are not legally binding. The Administrative Procedures Act requires public noticing and a comment period, among other things, before an Order is promulgated. Absent this process, Orders can be incorporated into a contract to be administratively enforceable under the terms and remedies provided in the contract. Without a statutory or contractual requirement, implementation of a particular Order typically involved an agreement by DOE to compensate the contractor for any additional burden associated with Order compliance. The Price-Anderson Act Amendments of 1988 authorized DOE to impose civil and criminal penalties for violations of enforceable orders. However, in practice, there were no enforceable orders and few civil or criminal penalties were ever imposed.249 From the DOE perspective, the need for defining ìDOE Ordersî during the DOE/NRC transition process became apparent during discussions related to transition of the GDPs to NRC oversight. The GDPs were constructed in the early 1950s and operated through multiple DOE regulatory regimes. During near term (1990) regulation, the plants were subjected to aggressive DOE inspections (Tiger Teams) which identified noncompliance with DOE Safety Orders, recommended privatized operations, and recommended NRC oversight. Even before 1992, when DOE was directed to lease the GDPs to USEC, an upgrade program was initiated and new DOE Safety Orders were issued.250 Order-related lessons learned from the GDP transition are not generally applicable to TWRS. DOE Order compliance was specifically excluded from the TWRS-P contract.251 Both the DOE and NRC have been involved in developing the TWRS-P regulatory (Integrated Safety Management Plan [ISMP] and SRD) and design (Integrated Safety Analysis [ISA] and SAR) bases. The regulatory basis for the new contracts has not been defined yet. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this an issue.

249 250

Defense Nuclear Facilties Safety Board. Tech 5.

Department of Energy (U.S)(DOE). ORO-2051, ìRegulatory Oversight Program.î DOE: Oak Ridge, Tennessee. September 1997.
251

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE) Rev. 1, ìRadiological, Nuclear, and Process Safety Regulation of TWRS Privatization Contractors.î DOE: Richland, Washington. January 1998.

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D33. Issue

THE ROLE OF THE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT IN REGULATORY TRANSITION

DOE believes the potential effects of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) need to be considered for regulatory transition. Discussion Presently, DOE has responsibility for ensuring compliance of the TWRS/WTP activities to NEPA. As part of its compliance activities, DOE has issued an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) that includes the TWRS/WTP activities. However, when TWRS-P regulatory oversight transitions to the NRC, NRC will also have to comply with NEPA requirements pertinent to its activities. DOEís implementing regulations for NEPA are found in 10 CFR Part 1021. Similarly, the NRC implementing regulations are found in 10 CFR Part 51 and provide for the adoption of other Federal agenciesí NEPA documentation, as well as the participation of the NRC in the NEPA process of other Federal agencies as a lead or cooperating agency. Both DOE and NRC rules permit the flexibility of being lead agencies or cooperating agencies and to work along with other Federal entities on NEPA documentation. In the past, the NRC has not viewed the task of NEPA coordination and integration as a large challenge, and normally works with other agencies when preparing EISs. Since the TWRS/WTP project is a major Federal action, DOE had prepared an EIS in the early 1990s for it and related activities. The EIS considers the actual cleanup activities and operations of the TWRS-P facilities and includes construction, operation, and decontamination and decommissioning activities. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this an issue because of the existing NEPA coverage and the similarities between the two agencies in their approaches to NEPA. It is possible that an updated or supplemental EIS/Environmental Assessment (EA) may become necessary, based upon the final approaches selected by the TWRS/WTP contractors. D34. Issue DOE is concerned by the potential effects of the Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS) and/or the Advisory Committee on Nuclear Waste (ACNW) on the transition of TWRS/WTP regulation from DOE to NRC. ROLE OF THE ACRS OR ACNW IN REGULATORY OVERSIGHT TRANSITION

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Discussion The ACRS was established in 1957 by revision of the AEA of 1954 and provides advice to the NRC on potential hazards of proposed or existing nuclear reactor facilities and the adequacy of proposed safety standards. The AEA also requires that the ACRS advise the Commission with respect to the safety of operating reactors and perform such other duties as the Commission may request. Consistent with the Energy Reorganization Act of 1974, the Committee will review any material related to the safety of nuclear facilities and activities of the DOE specifically requested by DOE. Upon request, the ACRS has also provided advice to the DNFSB and the U.S. Navy. In addition, the ACRS, on its own initiative, performs reviews of specific generic matters on nuclear facility safety-related items. Activities of the ACRS are conducted in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, which provides for public attendance and participation in ACRS meetings. The NRC established the ACNW in 1988. Until that time, the ACNW was a subcommittee of the ACRS. The ACNW reports to and advises the NRC on nuclear waste disposal facilities as directed by the Commission. This includes 10 CFR Part 60 and 10 CFR Part 61, and other applicable regulations and legislative mandates such as the Nuclear Waste Policy Act, the LowLevel Radioactive Waste Policy Act, and the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act, as amended. The primary emphasis of this Committee is waste disposal facilities. Although neither of the above descriptions of the ACRS/ACNW charters directly encompass TWRS/WTP activities, a DOE discussion with the Executive Director of ACRS/ACNW indicates that one or both of the advisory committees would likely evaluate issues related to licensing of TWRS/WTP. The DOE/RU had concerns that ACRS/ACNW involvement in the regulatory oversight transition may include the potential for delay, and DOE discussed these concerns with the Executive Director and ACNW Nuclear Waste Branch Chief. Both indicated that although the committees may ask for additional information following a presentation of the proposed action, there is little likelihood, in their view, of a substantial delay of the TWRS-P transition process. The committees meet eight times per year and submit their reports within 1 month following the meetings. An ACNW letter to NRC Chairman Jackson, dated December 23, 1997, forwarded the ACNW 1998 Strategic Plan and Priority Issues and Activities. Listed as a second-tier priority was a commitment to review waste-related activities associated with the NRCís possible regulation of certain DOE facilities if NRC assumes responsibility for those activities as result of privatization or enactment of new legislation. Following their review of the September 16, 1996, NRC Strategic Plan Framework Document, the ACNW endorsed the concept of DOE regulation by NRC and expressed associated recommendations. Based on the above discussion, the ACNW would likely take an interest in the transition of regulatory responsibility associated with TWRS-P. A review of ACNW reports from July 1996 to the present suggests that a typical ACNW recommendation would be expected within 3 months of an initial presentation of the issue to the Committee. Some issues that were not time sensitive were not concluded for up to a year, while reports on other issues were released within 1 week of the presentation to the Committee. Records of recent meetings suggest that ACNW involvement in the TWRS-P regulatory oversight transition process would not result in any delays. ACNW participation in the process would occur in parallel with other transition/licensing activities. 261 NUREG-1747

Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this to be a significant issue because no delays are anticipated. D35. Issue DOE is interested if there would be any impacts from regulatory transition upon future generations and resources. Discussion: The premise for the TWRS-P vitrification plant is that it will take waste, process it, and return a stable vitrified waste form for safe, long-term storage and disposal. By doing so, DOE intends to remediate the Hanford waste tanks and, eventually in the mid-21st Century,252 return the land to beneficial use as it was prior to 1940. Future generations in the latter half of the 21st Century would benefit by greater land resources than are available now. As previously noted, external regulation of DOE facilities, including TWRS/WTP facilities, is expected to improve the safety and protection of workers, the public, and the environment. This can only have a positive effect upon the future. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC Staff does not see this as an issue for regulatory transition. Any schedule impacts from regulatory transition would be minuscule compared to the long time periods involved. D36. Issue DOE is concerned that regulatory decisions may not continue to be open to the public and public input after transition of regulation to the NRC. Discussion When the Hanford reservation was established, it was under a cloak of secrecy, and decisions were made in wartime conditions where the imperative was the successful conclusion of the war. Decisions were made by the military with little input from anyone else. This unilateral form of decision making extended to DOEís management in the days of the cold war. Even as late as the 1970s, very little input was accepted from Stakeholders other than that which was legislated (as for the Agreement Tribes) or had an impact on Congressional funding (politicians). PUBLIC INPUT TO REGULATORY DECISIONS IMPACT ON FUTURE GENERATIONS

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The Tri-Party Agreement specifies complete clean-up of tank wastes by 2028, following which time the tanks themselves and all appurtenances would require decontamination and decommissioning and disposal.

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Now, however, the situation is different. The DOE/RU has an Openness Policy253 that makes it clear that Stakeholderís views are important and will be addressed. The RU satisfies this policy in a number of ways, both in providing information and in listening to the views of others in open meetings and within such groups as the Hanford Advisory Board. Much of the interaction is fairly informal and Stakeholders have a number of ways in which they may submit comments and concerns. DOE has undertaken to disposition all Stakeholdersí comments. The transfer of TWRS/WTP to NRC regulatory oversight would result in the NRC licensing or certifying the TWRS/WTP Contractorís facility. In any licensing action, NRC is required to obtain public participation under 10 CFR Part 2, the Rules of Practice. In this process, the interaction is more formal and judicially governed than in the DOE case. The NRC generally conducts interactions with the licensee in the public domain to the maximum extent possible. The ongoing pre-licensing activities on the MOX project are a good example. Preliminary NRC Staff Assessment The NRC staff does not consider this an issue as NRC practices and procedures usually result in more openness with the public than DOE regulatory actions.

253

Department of Energy (U.S.)(DOE) RL/REG-97-04, Rev. 2, ìPolicy for Openness and Openness Plan.î DOE: Richland, Washington. June 1998. ìThe radiological, nuclear, proces safety regulation of TWRS-P contractors provide that the Hanford site shall be transacted publicly and candidly....î ìThe Tribal Nations and Public should be involved in decisions concerning privatization contractor regulation. Their involvement improves our processes and products and helps (to) ensure safety. We welcome and encourage this involvement.î

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APPENDIX E
LISTING OF U.S. NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION CORRESPONDENCE WITH THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY ON TANK WASTE REMEDIATION SYSTEM-PRIVATIZATION
1. 2. 3. 11/20/96 Lettter to T. Sheridan from NRC RE Preliminary Comments RE Initial Quality Assurance Program, RL/REG-96-01, Rev. 0 MOU signed by Hazel O'Leary & Chairman Jackson on 1/15/97, Published in FR 3/13/97 RE MOU: Cooperation & Support of Significant Projects &Activities MOU signed by J. Wagoner, DOE, on 1/15/97 and C.Paperiello, NRC, on 1/29/97, Published in FR 3/18/97 RE MOU: Cooperation & Support for Demonstration Phase (Phase I) of DOE Hanford TWRS Privatization Activities 2/21/97 Letter to J. D. Wagoner from C.J. Paperiello RE Baseline Guidance Documents for Operation of the NRC's TWRS Unit 2/27/97 Letter to T. Sheridan from NRC RE Comments Provided RE Guidance for Employees Concerns Management System 8/17/97 NRC Comments provided to DOE via letter RE LMAES Standards Approval Submission (ISMP, SRD) 10/17/97 and 10/30/97 NRC Comments provided to DOE/RU via letter RE BNFL Standards Approval Submission (ISMP, SRD) 2/6/98 Letter to DOE with NRC Comments RE BNFL Initial Safety Analysis Report (ISAR) 2/13/98 Letter to DOE with NRC RE LMAES Initial Safety Assessment Package (ISAP)

4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

10. 4/3/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments Provided on BNFLís QA Program and Implementation Plan 11. 5/21/98 Letter to J. Wagoner, DOE, from C. Paperiello, NRC, EDO- 98-00191/NMSS980078; RE: Co-Located Worker Standards for Accidents (Encl 1 SECY-98-38, Encl 2 4/28/98 SRM) 12. 6/22/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC RE Forwarding 2 Draft Documents- -Draft Part 70 and SRP for TWRS 13. 6/29/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE from R. Pierson, NRC, RE Issue Paper: Seismic Events for TWRS

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14. 7/2/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE Providing 2/23/99 Comm Paper ìModifications to MOUî 15. 7/10/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE from R. Pierson, NRC, RE Forwarding Comments on Construction Authorization Request Outline 16. 7/23/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC Comments on BNFL's Revised SRD & ISMP 17. 10/30/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments on BNFLís Report ìRadiation Protection Program for Design 18. 11/6/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments on Regulatory Unit Disposition of earlier comments 19. 11/19/98 Letter to G. Wagoner, DOE, from C.J. Paperiello, NRC, RE Co-Located Worker Standards for Accidents 20. 12/1/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments on BNFL transmittal of Criticality Safety Program PL-W375-NS00001 21. 12/2/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE Protocol Proposal for Inspection Assistance to DOE RU Inspections of TWRS-P contractor facilities and activities 22. 12/3/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE Issue Paper on Future US NRC Role for the Hanford TWRS 23. 12/03/98 Letter to C. Gbbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE TWRS Comments on ìDemonstrations on the DOE-96- 0004 Process,î BNFL Rpt-W375-PR00002, Nov 11, 1998. 24. 12/11/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments on BNFL Submittal of 11/19/98 and 12/98 Seismic Topical Mtg. 25. 12/17/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Transmits Inspection Accompaniment Report (98-01): Employee Concerns Program 26. 12/31/98 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments on BNFLís TWRS Safety Criteria for Environmental Radiation Protection Program and for Environmental Radiation Monitoring 27. 1/08/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE Revised Protocol for NRC Inspection Assistance. 28. 1/22/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE BNFL Criticality Safety Program.

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29. 2/11/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments on BNFLís TWRS Safety Criteria for Environmental Radiation Protection Program (ERPP) and for Environmental Radiation Monitoring. 30. 2/12/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE: Preliminary Comments Provided on 1/28/99 Topical MeetingóReview of Hydrogen & Explosion Info 31. 2/19/99 Letter to D.C.Gibbs, DOE, fm R. Pierson, NRC, RE Draft SRP for the Review of a Licence Applicaiton for TWRS-P Project. 32. 2/19/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, fm R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments Provided on Review of Fire Protection Info Provided by BNFL 33. 2/24/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, fm R.C. Pierson RE Review of Quality Assurance Inspection Plan and Inspection Technical Procedure I-101. 34. 3/1/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, fm R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments Provided on Proposed Approach for Evaluating Compliance with RESW Requirements 35. 3/18/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE forwarding NRC comments on BNFLís Design Safety Features. 36. 3/19/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC Inspection Accompaniment Report (99-01): Training & Qualification Program 37. 4/1/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC RE NRC comments on Draft RL/REG-99-05, ìGuidance Review Document for the Construction Authorization Request. 38. 4/21/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson RE Forwards CNWRA Report on Estimate of Hydrogen Generation from Wastes at the Proposed TWRS-P Fac. 39. 4/23/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments forwarded on Methods for Assessing Consequences of Potential Accident Radiological Releases from the TWRS-P Fac (Preliminary). 40. 5/10/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments Forwared on 3/18/99 BNFL Transmittal of Seismic Documents. 41. 5/28/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Transmittal of Point Paper on Process Safety at a TWRS-P Facility. 42. 6/4/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Transmits copies of SECY99-107 & related Secretary Requirements Memorandum 43. 6/11/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC Inspection Accompaniment Rpt (99-02), ìQuality Assurance.î

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44. 6/14/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments provided on Chapter 4 of Guidance Document for Construction Authorization Request. 45. 6/22/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE 5/25/99 RU Activity Report from Jan-April 99 (Triennial Report). 46. 6/22/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments on BNFL Inc. Quality Assurance Plan and Implementation Program. 47. 6/25/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE DOE 5/5/99 Ltr on Disposition of the NRC Comments on the BNFL Inc. Design Safety Features Submittal. 48. 7/2/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC Expenditures on Hanford TWRS Related Work from FY97- 2nd Qtr FY99. 49. 7/2/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R. Pierson, NRC, RE Providing 2/23/99 Comm Paper ìModifications to MOU.î 50. 7/9/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments on BNFL Inc. 6/14/99 Submittal ìInfo for June Topical Meeting. 51. 7/15/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, DOE, RE NRC Inspection Accompaniment Report (99-03): Self Assessment & Corrective Action Plan. 52. 7/16/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, fromm R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE 5/99 Sellafield Report Sent. 53. 7/27/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Review of SW Research Institute Report: ìRadiological Binding on the Synthetic Biopolymer Diazoluminomelanin.î 54. 7/29/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC Inspection Accompaniment Report (99-04): Radiation Protection Program. 55. 8/5/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Public Concern of Potential Inappropriate Use of 304 Stainless Steel in Tank Farm (Ralph Davison). 56. 8/13/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC Comments on BNFL Report, ìRPP for Design, Rev 2 & Rev 0.î 57. 8/17/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC RE Comments on Inspection Program for the Regulatory Oversight of the RPP-P, Rev 3 (RL/REG-98-05, 7/1/99). 58. 8/19/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE BNFL Record Storage. 59. 8/25/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC Inspection Accompaniment Report 99-05, ìConfiguration Management Program.î

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60. 8/26/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC Position on Pipe Damping Relative to the 1998 ASME Boiler & Pressure Vessel Code, Section III, App N, as Revísd by ë99 Addenda. 61. 11/1/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Transmittal of Report by CNWRA ìProcess Hazards & Safety Issues for TWRS-Pî Volumes I & II. 62. 11/2/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Comments on Rev 4C of BNFL Quality Assurance Program and Implementation Plan. 63. 11/4/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC and CNWRA Comments on Explosive Hazards Topical Meetings I & II, 8/24/99 & 9/28/99. 64. 11/4/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRc, RE Quality Assurance for Limited Construction Authorization Acts. 65. 11/4/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE NRC Comments on RL/REG-99-19, Rev. 0, ìAnalysis of Radiation Materials at Risk Supporting Source Term Development for TWRS-P Facility. 66. 11/12/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Point/Status Paper on Quality Assurance. 67. 11/12/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Transmittal of Comments on ìProposal to Modify the Current RPP-WTP Position with respect to Process Chemical Hazards for TWRS-P,î 9/28/99. 68. 11/15/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE 10/22/99 RU Response to NRC Point Paper on Process Safety at TWRS-P Facility. 69. 11/23/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from R.C. Pierson, NRC, RE Response to BNFL Inc.ís Comments on CNWRA Report on Estimates of TWRS-P Hydrogen Generation. 70. 12/14/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Galloway, NRC, RE NRC Observations on the Topical Meetings with BNFL Info for 11/98-11/99. 71. 12/23/99 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Galloway, NRC, RE Information Paper Comparing Radiological Protection Standards in 10 CFR Part 20 & 835. 72. 1/21/00 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Leach, NRc, RE Potential Critical Tech Issues for Construction Authorization Resolution. 73. 1/28/00 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Leach, NRC, RE NRC Inspection Accompaniment Report (01): Design Process. 74. 2/25/00 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Leach, NRC, RE Transmittal of Comments on the Report and Topical Meeting on ìCompliance w/Risk Goals and Project Reliability Database.î 269 NUREG-1747

75. 3/24/00 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Leach, NRC, RE NRC Inspection Accompaniment Report (70-3091/002) Training & Qualifications. 76. 4/12/00 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Tokar, NRC, RE Additional Comments from March Topical Meeting. 77. 4/27/00 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Tokar, NRC, RE NRC Response to 3/23/00 Ltr on Resubmittal of Aug & Sept 99 Topical Mtg Reports on Explosive Hazards. 78. 4/25/00 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Tokar, NRC, RE Summary of Discussion of TWRS-P Project RPP - Differences in Regulatory Requirements and Guidance of DOE and NRC. 79. 4/19/00 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Tokar, NRC, RE Comments on TWRS-P Project, RU Position on Conformance w/Risk Goals in DOE/RL-96-0006, RL/REG-200008, Rev 0 3/28/00. 80. 5/2/00 Letter to D.C. Gibbs, DOE, from M. Tokar, NRC, RE Transmittal of Point Paper on Materials Issues and Safety at TWRS-P Facility.

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