[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 124 (Thursday, June 27, 2013)]
[Notices]
[Pages 38739-38741]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-15427]


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NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION

[NRC-2012-0109]


Special Nuclear Material Control and Accounting Systems for 
Nuclear Power Plants

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Regulatory guide; issuance.

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[[Page 38740]]

SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing a 
revision to Regulatory Guide (RG) 5.29, ``Special Nuclear Material 
Control and Accounting Systems for Nuclear Power Plants.'' This 
regulatory guide provides guidance on recordkeeping and reporting 
requirements with respect to material control and accounting. This 
guide applies to all nuclear power plants.

ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2012-0109 when contacting the 
NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You 
may access information related to this document, which the NRC 
possesses and is publicly available, using the following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2012-0109. Address 
questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-492-
3668; email: Carol.Gallagher@nrc.gov. For technical questions, contact 
the individual(s) listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section 
of this document.
     NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System 
(ADAMS): You may access publicly available documents online in the NRC 
Library at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. To begin the 
search, select ``ADAMS Public Documents'' and then select ``Begin Web-
based ADAMS Search.'' For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC's 
Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-
4737, or by email to pdr.resource@nrc.gov. The ADAMS accession number 
for each document referenced in this notice (if that document is 
available in ADAMS) is provided the first time that a document is 
referenced. Revision 2 of Regulatory Guide 5.29, is available in ADAMS 
under Accession No. ML13051A421. The regulatory analysis may be found 
in ADAMS under Accession No. ML13051A418.
     NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public 
documents at the NRC's PDR, Room O1-F21, One White Flint North, 11555 
Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.
    Regulatory guides are not copyrighted, and NRC approval is not 
required to reproduce them.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Richard Jervey, Office of Nuclear 
Regulatory Research, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 
20555-0001; telephone: 301-251-7404; email: Richard.Jervey@nrc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Introduction

    The NRC is issuing a revision to an existing guide in the NRC's 
``Regulatory Guide'' series. This series was developed to describe and 
make available to the public information such as methods that are 
acceptable to the NRC staff for implementing specific parts of the 
agency's regulations, techniques that the staff uses in evaluating 
specific problems or postulated accidents, and data that the staff 
needs in its review of applications for permits and licenses.
    Revision 2 of RG 5.29 was issued with a temporary identification as 
Draft Regulatory Guide, DG-5028. This guide describes a method that the 
NRC staff considers acceptable to implement special nuclear material 
control and accounting system requirements for nuclear power plants. 
This guide applies to all nuclear power plants.
    Part 74 of Title 10, of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR), 
``Material Control and Accounting of Special Nuclear Material,'' 
Subpart B, ``General Reporting and Recordkeeping Requirements,'' 
establishes the material control and accounting performance 
requirements for special nuclear material at nuclear power plants. The 
regulations at 10 CFR 74.11, ``Reports of Loss or Theft or Attempted 
Theft or Unauthorized Production of Special Nuclear Material,'' 
require, in part, that nuclear power reactor licensees notify the NRC 
of any such events within 1 hour of discovery. The regulations at 10 
CFR 74.13, ``Material Status Reports,'' require nuclear power reactor 
licensees to submit material status reports for certain quantities of 
special nuclear material. The regulations at 10 CFR 74.15, ``Nuclear 
Material Transaction Reports,'' require nuclear power reactor licensees 
to complete transaction reports when transferring, receiving, or making 
adjustments to specified quantities of special nuclear material. The 
regulations at 10 CFR 74.19, ``Recordkeeping,'' require, in part, that 
nuclear power reactor licensees keep records that show the receipt, 
inventory (including location and unique identity), acquisition, 
transfer, and disposal of all special nuclear material in their 
possession. Additionally, 10 CFR 74.19 requires, in part, that 
licensees establish, maintain, and follow written material control and 
accounting procedures, and that they conduct physical inventories of 
special nuclear material at intervals not to exceed once every 12 
months.
    Regulatory Guide 5.29 endorses American National Standards 
Institute (ANSI) N15.8-2009, ``Methods of Nuclear Material Control--
Material Control Systems--Special Nuclear Material Control and 
Accounting Systems for Nuclear Power Plants.'' ANSI N15.8-2009 provides 
guidance on the control and accounting of (1) fuel rods that are 
separated from their parent assemblies; and (2) pieces of irradiated 
material that are separated as a result of fuel damage.

II. Additional Information

    DG-5028, was published in the Federal Register on May 14, 2012 (77 
FR 28407), for a 60-day public comment period. The public comment 
period closed on July 16, 2012. Public comments on DG-5028 and the 
staff responses to the public comments are available under ADAMS 
Accession Number ML13051A437.
    This regulatory guide is a rule as designated in the Congressional 
Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801-808). However, OMB has not found it to be a 
major rule as designated in the congressional Review Act.

III. Congressional Review Act

    This regulatory guide is a rule as defined in the Congressional 
Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801-808). However, the Office of Management and 
Budget (OMB) has not found it to be a major rule as defined in the 
Congressional Review Act.

IV. Backfitting and Issue Finality

    This regulatory guide provides guidance on recordkeeping and 
reporting requirements with respect to material control and accounting, 
as set forth in 10 CFR part 74. The regulatory position held in this 
guidance demonstrates the method that the NRC staff finds acceptable 
for an applicant or licensee to meet the requirements of the underlying 
NRC regulations.
    The issuance of the guidance in this regulatory guide is not 
backfitting, as that term is defined in 10 CFR 50.109 or inconsistent 
with the issue finality provisions in 10 CFR part 52, because 
information collection and reporting requirements with respect to 
material control and accounting are not included within the scope of 
the NRC's backfitting protections or part 52 issue finality provisions. 
Material control and accounting requirements are applicable to special 
nuclear material (SNM) licensees possessing SNM quantities greater than 
the part 74-specified threshold. Materials control and accounting are 
intended to ensure that SNM is not used, or diverted for use, in a 
manner that endangers public health and safety or the common defense 
and security. The requirements are focused

[[Page 38741]]

on the possession of SNM, and not with respect to its use in the 
operation of the nuclear power reactor. This is true even though the 
guidance in this regulatory guide is addressed to materials control and 
accounting at nuclear power plants. This regulatory guide reflects the 
physical and operational considerations of nuclear power reactors, 
which are different from other facilities possessing SNM above the part 
74 specific threshold. The regulatory guide does not present more 
stringent guidance for materials licensees who are also power reactor 
licensees, as compared to guidance for those materials licensees who 
are not power reactor licensees. Therefore, the NRC does not regard the 
materials control and accounting requirements in part 74 as a general 
matter, or as applied to nuclear power reactors in the guidance of RG 
5.29, as being within the scope of backfitting or issue finality 
provisions.
    Applicants and potential applicants are not, with certain 
exceptions, protected by any issue finality provisions under part 52. 
This is because the issue finality provisions under part 52, with 
certain exclusions discussed below, were not intended to apply to every 
NRC action which substantially changes the expectations of current and 
future applicants. The exceptions to the general principle are whenever 
an applicant references a part 52 license (e.g., an early site permit) 
and/or NRC regulatory approval (e.g., a design certification rule) with 
specified issue finality provisions. However, the scope of issue 
finality provided extends only to the matters resolved in the license 
or regulatory approval. Early site permits and design certification 
rules do not address or resolve compliance with material control and 
accounting requirements in 10 CFR part 74. Therefore, no applicant 
referencing an ESP or DCR is protected by relevant issue finality 
provisions with respect to the material control and accounting matters 
addressed in this regulatory guide.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 19th day of June, 2013.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Thomas H. Boyce,
Chief, Regulatory Guide Development Branch, Division of Engineering, 
Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research.
[FR Doc. 2013-15427 Filed 6-26-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 7590-01-P