[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 90 (Friday, May 9, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 26779-26783]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-10717]


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NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION

[Docket Nos. 50-259, 50-260, 50-296; License Nos. DPR-33, DPR-52, DPR-
68; EA-14-005; NRC-2014-0107]


In the Matter of Tennessee Valley Authority, Browns Ferry Nuclear 
Plant, Units 1, 2, and 3

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Confirmatory order; issuance.

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SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing a 
confirmatory order to Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA or Licensee), the 
holder of License Nos. DPR-33, DPR-52, DPR-68, authorizing the 
operation of Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant, Units 1, 2, and 3. The 
facility is located on the Licensee's site in Athens, Alabama. The 
order was

[[Page 26780]]

a result of Alternative Dispute Resolution between the NRC and TVA, and 
required TVA to complete a number of corrective actions to address the 
submittal of information to the NRC that was not complete and accurate 
in all material respects, and to address TVA's change to a license 
condition without submitting an amendment request. The order is related 
to control room staffing levels that were not sufficient to implement 
certain fire response procedures and achieve safe shutdown on the 
three-unit site during a postulated fire event.

DATES: Issue Date: May 1, 2014.

ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2014-0107 when contacting the 
NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You 
may access publicly-available information related to this action by the 
following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2014-0107. Address 
questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-287-
3422; email: Carol.Gallagher@nrc.gov. For questions about this Order, 
contact the individual 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 Order is available in 
ADAMS under Accession No. ML14121A519.
     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.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Carolyn Evans, Region II, U.S. Nuclear 
Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001; telephone: 404-997-
4414, email: Carolyn.Evans@nrc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The text of the Order is attached.

    Dated at Atlanta, Georgia, this 1st day of May 2014.
    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Leonard D. Wert,
Deputy Regional Administrator for Operations.

Confirmatory Order

I

    Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA or Licensee) is the holder of 
License Nos. DPR-33, DPR-52, and DPR-68, issued by the U.S. Nuclear 
Regulatory Commission (NRC or Commission) pursuant to 10 CFR part 50 on 
December 20, 1973, June 28, 1974, and July 2, 1976, respectively. The 
licenses authorize the operation of the Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant 
(BFN), Units 1, 2, and 3, in accordance with the conditions specified 
therein. The facility is located on the Licensee's site in Athens, 
Alabama.
    This Confirmatory Order is the result of an agreement reached 
during an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) mediation session 
conducted on April 3, 2014.

II

    On February 14, 2014, the NRC issued Inspection Report 05000259, 
260, 296/2013005 to TVA, (IR) which documented the identification of 
two apparent violations that were being considered for escalated 
enforcement action in accordance with the NRC Enforcement Policy. The 
first apparent violation involved two examples of TVA's submission of 
information that was not complete and accurate in all material 
respects, as required by 10 CFR 50.9, Completeness and Accuracy of 
Information. The information contained in TVA's letters was inaccurate 
because, contrary to their assertions, TVA's stated control room 
staffing levels were not sufficient to implement certain fire response 
procedures and achieve safe shutdown on the three-unit site during a 
postulated 10 CFR 50, Appendix R fire event.
    The second apparent violation involved TVA's change to a license 
condition without submitting an amendment request, as required by 10 
CFR 50.90, Amendment of License or Construction Permit at Request of 
Holder. In this case, from June 29, 2010, through October 30, 2013, the 
licensee inappropriately changed the requirements for site staffing, 
incorporated as part of license amendments 271, 300, and 259, without 
submission of a license amendment request. The licensee's actions to 
amend staffing levels via a commitment change resulted in bypassing the 
review and approval that would occur as part of the license amendment 
process.

III

    On April 3, 2014, the NRC and TVA met in an ADR session mediated by 
a professional mediator, arranged through Cornell University's 
Institute on Conflict Resolution. ADR is a process in which a neutral 
mediator with no decision-making authority assists the parties in 
reaching an agreement or resolving any differences regarding their 
dispute. This confirmatory order is issued pursuant to the agreement 
reached during the ADR process. The elements of the agreement consist 
of the following:
    1. The NRC and TVA agreed that the issues described in NRC 
Inspection Report 05000259, 260, 296/2013005 represent violations of 
regulatory requirements. The violations are as follows:
    a. 10 CFR 50.9(a) requires, in part, that information provided to 
the Commission by a licensee or information required by statute or by 
the Commission's regulations, orders or license conditions to be 
maintained by the licensee shall be complete and accurate in all 
material respects.
    Contrary to the above, TVA provided information to the Commission 
that was not complete and accurate in all material respects as 
evidenced by the following two examples:

    In a letter dated June 29, 2010, TVA provided inaccurate 
information to the NRC indicating that the minimum staffing levels 
stated in their licensing basis were not required to achieve safe 
shutdown on the three-unit site during an Appendix R fire event. 
TVA's letter stated, ``TVA has assessed the number of operators 
required to carry out the SSIs. The most demanding staffing is 
required by 0-SSI-16, ``Control Building Fire EL (elevation) 593 
Through EL 617.'' The evaluation concludes that the minimum staffing 
of three USs (Unit Supervisors), six ROs (Reactor Operators), and 
eight AUOs (Auxiliary Unit Operators) is adequate for successful 
implementation of this SSI.'' This information was inaccurate 
because the licensee needed an additional SRO (Senior Reactor 
Operator) to successfully implement 0-SSI-16.
    In a letter dated November 30, 2011, TVA provided inaccurate 
information to the NRC indicating that the minimum staffing levels 
stated in their licensing basis were not required to achieve safe 
shutdown on the three-unit site during an Appendix R fire event. 
TVA's letter stated, ``. . . Total staffing level is one Shift 
Manager (SM), three Unit Supervisors (US), Six ROs, and eight AUOs. 
One of the US may be the STA (Shift Technical Advisor) . . .'' This 
statement was inaccurate because the minimum staffing levels stated 
in their licensing basis were required to achieve safe shutdown on 
the three-unit site during an 10 CFR 50, Appendix R fire event.

    The above information was material to the NRC because it was 
reviewed by

[[Page 26781]]

the NRC staff to determine compliance with regulatory requirements.
    b. 10 CFR 50.90 requires, in part, that whenever a holder of an 
operating license under this part desires to amend the license or 
permit, application for an amendment must be filed with the Commission, 
as specified in 10 CFR 50.4, fully describing the changes desired, and 
following as far as applicable, the form prescribed for original 
applications.
    Contrary to the above, from June 29, 2010 to October 30, 2013, the 
licensee inappropriately amended the requirements of their license 
without filing an application for an amendment as specified in 10 CRFR 
50.4. Specifically, the licensee inappropriately changed the 
requirements for site staffing incorporated as part of license 
amendments 271, 300, and 259, without submission of a license amendment 
request. The licensee's actions to amend staffing levels via a 
commitment change resulted in bypassing the review and approval that 
would occur as part of the license amendment process.
    2. Based on TVA's review of the incident and NRC's concerns with 
respect to precluding recurrence of the violations, TVA agrees to 
implement and continue to implement corrective actions and enhancements 
specified in Section V of this Confirmatory Order.
    3. The NRC considers the corrective actions and enhancements 
discussed in Section V of this Confirmatory Order to be appropriately 
prompt and comprehensive to address the causes which gave rise to the 
incident discussed in the NRC's Inspection Report of February 14, 2014.
    4. Based on the corrective actions and enhancements described 
above, NRC will conduct follow-up inspections using NRC Manual Chapter 
Inspection Procedure 92702 to confirm, among other things, the 
thoroughness and adequacy of the actions specified in Section V of this 
Confirmatory Order. Close out inspection of the corrective actions 
documented in this Confirmatory Order will make the need for additional 
follow up inspection of the violations unnecessary.
    5. The NRC and TVA agree that the above elements will be 
incorporated into issuance of a Confirmatory Order.
    6. In consideration of the commitments delineated above and in 
Section V of this Confirmatory Order, the NRC agrees to refrain from 
proposing a civil penalty or issuing a Notice of Violation for all 
matters discussed in the NRC's IR to TVA of February 14, 2014 (EA-14-
005).
    7. This agreement is binding upon successors and assigns of TVA.
On April 25, 2014, TVA consented to issuance of this Order with the 
commitments, as described in Section V below. The Licensee further 
agreed that this Order is to be effective 30 days after issuance and 
that it has waived its right to a hearing.

IV

    Because the licensee has agreed to take additional actions to 
address NRC's concerns, as set forth in Section V of this Confirmatory 
Order, the NRC has concluded that its concerns can be resolved through 
issuance of this Confirmatory Order.
    I find that TVA's commitments, as set forth in Section V, are 
acceptable and necessary and conclude that with these commitments, the 
public health and safety are reasonably assured. In view of the 
foregoing, I have determined that public health and safety requires 
that TVA's commitments be confirmed by this Order. Based on the above 
and TVA's consent, this Confirmatory Order is effective 30 days after 
issuance.

V

    Accordingly, pursuant to Sections 104b., 161b., 161i., 161o., 182, 
and 186 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, and the 
Commission's regulations in 10 CFR 2.202 and 10 CFR Parts 50, it is 
hereby ordered, that license nos. DPR-33, DPR-52 AND DPR-68 are 
modified as follows:
    1. TVA agrees to implement, or continue to implement, the following 
corrective actions and enhancements:
    a. Actions related to the violation of 10 CFR 50.9, Completeness 
and Accuracy of Information:
    i. Fleet-wide:
    1. By no later than September 1, 2014, TVA will revise and issue a 
fleet-wide procedure governing the preparation of information intended 
to support licensing submittals to the NRC. The procedure shall contain 
requirements for the preparation (including specifications for draft 
information), verification, and management oversight of this 
information, and will delineate acceptable validation documents. The 
procedure will include an overt discussion of the roles and 
responsibilities for individuals involved. BFN will provide training in 
accordance with the procedure change process.
    ii. BFN-specific:
    1. By no later than May 23, 2014, TVA will design, develop, and 
implement a BFN Integrated Completeness and Accuracy Review Evaluation 
Board (ICAREB). The ICAREB will be chartered to provide pre-submittal 
reviews of correspondence and supporting documentation for BFN 
licensing submittals to the NRC, including those prepared by BFN staff 
and Corporate Nuclear. Specific criteria for dissolution of the ICAREB 
will be established, but it will remain active, at a minimum, until a 
fleet-wide procedure governing the preparation of information intended 
to support licensing submittals to the NRC is active.
    2. By no later than August 21, 2014, BFN Licensing will prepare a 
benchmarking report identifying industry best practices in the area of 
10 CFR 50.9 compliance in the preparation and validation of inputs to 
NRC submittals. This report will be made available to the NRC for 
review. BFN will consider benchmarking results, as appropriate, for 
implementation.
    b. Actions related to the violation of 10 CFR 50.90:
    i. Fleet-wide:
    1. By July 15, 2014, TVA will benchmark nuclear industry 
methodologies used to maintain Licensing Bases Documents. A report on 
this activity will be made available to the NRC for review. BFN will 
consider benchmarking results for implementation.
    2. By no later than August 15, 2014, TVA will develop and issue a 
fleet-wide Licensing Compliance Review Procedure to establish the 
process for verifying that changes to NPG administrative and technical 
procedures not covered under the 10 CFR 50.59 review process are 
reviewed for conformance to the current licensing basis. BFN will 
provide training in accordance with the procedure change process.
    3. By no later than August 15, 2014, TVA will revise NPG-SPP-01.1 
and NPG-SPP-01.2 to incorporate the Licensing Compliance Review 
process, including verification of compliance.
    4. By no later than September 26, 2014, TVA will convert NLDP-5 
``FSAR Management'' to an NPG Standard Programs and Processes (SPP) 
procedure. BFN will provide training in accordance with the procedure 
change process.
    5. By no later than June 13, 2014, TVA will implement, via an 
independent entity, a review of the 10 CFR 50.9 and 10 CFR 50.90 Root 
Cause Analysis reports to assess the completeness and adequacy of the 
identified root/contributing causes, extent of cause, extent of 
condition and CAPRs/CAs. The deliverable from this review will be a 
report with documented recommendations. TVA will consider

[[Page 26782]]

these recommendations for implementation.
    6. By no later than July 15, 2015, TVA will implement, via an 
independent entity, an effectiveness review of the corrective actions 
completed to date with regard to the 10 CFR 50.9 and 10 CFR 50.90 Root 
Cause Analyses.
    ii. BFN-specific:
    1. TVA completed a snapshot self-assessment to verify if 
commitments are being implemented accurately on March 25, 2014.
    2. TVA acknowledges that there have been previous instances where 
repetitive PERs were submitted on the issue of adequate staffing and 
the issue was ineffectively resolved. BFN commits to close the CAP 
Fundamental Problem that was identified under the 95003 that resulted 
in significant programmatic and organizational changes in TVA's CAP by 
no later than April 9, 2014. In addition, the NRC recently closed the 
95003 Tier 1 CAL Commitment in the BFN CAP.
    3. By no later than May 2, 2014, TVA will develop and implement an 
Interim Licensing Compliance Review Checklist for use by procedure 
writing organizations and document reviewers to ensure the correct 
licensing basis documents are referenced when revising procedures. This 
Interim Licensing Compliance Review Checklist will be used until 
issuance of a revised Licensing Compliance Review Procedure. (b.i.2 
Fleet-wide action above).
    4. By no later than November 26, 2014, TVA will perform a detailed 
review of all procedures revised prior to August 15, 2014, during the 
Procedure Upgrade Project to ensure that the licensing basis 
information required by the revised SPP-01.1 and SPP-01.2 is 
identified. This review will include all licensing, administrative and 
governance procedures. The revised procedures will institutionalize the 
licensing review process and provide sustainability from that point 
forward in the Procedure Upgrade Project.
    5. By no later than November 28, 2014, TVA will complete training 
of BFN Engineering, Licensing and licensed Operators regarding the 
scope and hierarchy of licensing basis documents, lessons learned from 
circumstances associated with EA-14-005, and the associated change 
process. The training material will be available for NRC review.
    6. Through December 31, 2014, changes to BFN licensing commitments 
will be reviewed and approved by a second site licensing engineer in 
addition to review and approval by site licensing. The focus of this 
additional review will be to ensure that the correct regulatory change 
process(es) has/have been used. This action will be discontinued upon 
completion of the training encompassed in item 5 above.
    7. By December 31, 2015, TVA will review a sample of facility 
changes, based on plant risk and complexity, that have occurred from 
2004 to May 2014, to determine whether these changes have been 
appropriately incorporated into the licensing basis documents. TVA's 
method of selecting facility changes to be sampled will be provided to 
the NRC by July 15, 2014. Any identified discrepancies will be 
dispositioned through the corrective action process. The results of 
this review will be made available to the NRC.
    8. By December 31, 2015, TVA will review a sample of BFN facility 
changes, based on plant risk and complexity, accomplished within the 
last 3 years and processed outside of the 10 CFR 50.59 process to 
determine whether these changes have been appropriately incorporated 
into the licensing basis documents. TVA's method of selecting facility 
changes to be sampled will be provided to the NRC by July 15, 2014. Any 
identified discrepancies will be dispositioned through the corrective 
action process. The results of this review will be made available to 
the NRC.
    9. By December 31, 2014, TVA will make a presentation to the (1) 
Regulatory Issue Working Group and (2) the Regulating Utility Group 
regarding the circumstances of the violations discussed above and the 
importance of leadership attention to the effective management of the 
current licensing basis and complete and accurate communications with 
the NRC. The presentation will be made available to the NRC in advance.
    c. Prior to July 15, 2014, TVA will perform, via an independent 
entity, a reevaluation of Operations minimum shift staffing. The 
results of that staffing evaluation will be documented as a reference 
to OPDP-1, ``Conduct of Operations.''
    d. Upon completion of the terms of items of the Confirmatory Order, 
TVA will provide the NRC with a letter discussing its basis for 
concluding that the Order has been satisfied.
    The Regional Administrator, NRC Region II, may relax or rescind, in 
writing, any of the above conditions upon a showing by TVA of good 
cause.

VI

    Any person adversely affected by this Order, other than TVA, may 
submit a written answer and/or request a hearing on this Order within 
30 days from the date of this Order, pursuant to 10 CFR 2.302 and 10 
CFR 2.309. Where good cause is shown, consideration will be given to 
extending the time to answer or request a hearing. A request for 
extension of time must be directed to the Director, Office of 
Enforcement, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-
0001, and include a statement of good cause for the extension.
    If a hearing is requested by a person whose interest is adversely 
affected, the Commission will, if appropriate, issue an Order 
designating the time and place of any hearings. If a hearing is held, 
the issue to be considered at such hearing shall be whether this Order 
should be sustained.
    All documents filed in the NRC adjudicatory proceedings, including 
a request for a hearing, a petition for leave to intervene, any motion 
or other document filed in the proceeding prior to the submission of a 
request for hearing or petition to intervene, and documents filed by 
interested governmental entities participating under 10 CFR 2.315(c), 
must be filed in accordance with the NRC's E-Filing rule at 10 CFR 
2.302. The E-Filing process requires participants to submit and serve 
all adjudicatory documents over the internet, or to physically deliver 
or mail a copy of documents on optical storage media. Participants may 
not submit paper copies of their filings unless they seek and receive 
an exemption in accordance with the procedures described below.
    To comply with the procedural requirements of E-Filing, at least 10 
days prior to the filing deadline, the participant should contact the 
Office of the Secretary by email at hearing.docket@nrc.gov, or by 
telephone at (301) 415-1677, to request (1) a digital identification 
(ID) certificate, which allows the participant (or its counsel or 
representative) to digitally sign documents and access the E-Submittal 
server for any proceeding in which it is participating; and (2) advise 
the Secretary that the participant will be submitting a request or 
petition for hearing (even in instances in which the participant, or 
its counsel or representative, already holds an NRC-issued digital 
certificate). Based on this information, the Secretary will establish 
an electronic docket for the hearing in this proceeding if the 
Secretary has not already established an electronic docket.
    Information about applying for a digital ID certificate is 
available on the NRC's public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals/getting-started.html. System

[[Page 26783]]

requirements for accessing the E-Submittal server are detailed in the 
NRC's ``Guidance for Electronic Submission,'' which is available on the 
NRC's public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals.html. Participants may attempt to use other software not 
listed on the Web site, but should note that the NRC's E-Filing system 
does not support unlisted software, and the NRC Meta System Help Desk 
will not be able to offer assistance in using unlisted software.
    If a participant is electronically submitting a document to the NRC 
in accordance with the E-Filing rule, the participant must file the 
document using the NRC's online, Web-based submission form. In order to 
serve documents through the Electronic Information Exchange System, 
users will be required to install a Web browser plug-in obtained from 
the NRC's Web site. Further information on the Web-based submission 
form, including the installation of the Web browser plug-in, is 
available on the NRC's public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals.html.
    Once a participant has obtained a digital ID certificate and a 
docket has been created, the participant can then submit a request for 
a hearing or petition for leave to intervene. Submissions should be in 
Portable Document Format (PDF) in accordance with the NRC guidance 
available on the NRC's public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/site-help/e-submittals.html. A filing is considered complete at the time the 
documents are submitted through the NRC's E-Filing system. To be 
timely, an electronic filing must be submitted to the E-Filing system 
no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on the due date. Upon receipt of 
a transmission, the E-Filing system time-stamps the document and sends 
the submitter an email notice confirming receipt of the document. The 
E-Filing system also distributes an email notice that provides access 
to the document to the NRC's Office of the General Counsel, and any 
others who have advised the Office of the Secretary that they wish to 
participate in the proceeding, so that the filer need not serve the 
document on those participants separately. Therefore, applicants and 
other participants (or their counsel or representative) must apply for 
and receive a digital ID certificate before a hearing request/petition 
to intervene is filed so that they can obtain access to the document 
via the E-Filing system.
    A person filing electronically using the NRC's adjudicatory E-
Filing system may seek assistance by contracting the NRC Meta System 
Help Desk thorough the ``Contact Us'' link located on the NRC's public 
Web site at http://www.nrc/gov/site-help/e-submittals.html, by email to 
MSHD.Resource@nrc.gov, or by a toll free call to 1-866-672-7640. The 
NRC Meta System Help Desk is available between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., 
Eastern Time, Monday through Friday, excluding government holidays.
    Participants who believe that they have a good cause for not 
submitting documents electronically must file an extension request, in 
accordance with 10 CFR 2.302(g), with their initial paper filing 
requesting authorization to continue to submit documents in paper 
format. Such filings must be submitted by: (1) First-class mail 
addressed to the Office of the Secretary of the Commission, U.S. 
Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, Attention: 
Rulemaking and Adjudications Staff; or (2) courier, express mail, or 
expedited delivery service to the Office of the Secretary, Sixteenth 
Floor, One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 
20852, Attention: Rulemaking and Adjudications Staff. Participants 
filing a document in this manner are responsible for serving the 
document on all other participants. Filing is considered complete by 
first-class mail as of the time of deposit in the mail, or by courier, 
express mail, or expedited delivery service upon depositing the 
document with the provider of the service. A presiding officer, having 
granted an exemption request from using E-Filing, may require a 
participant or party to use E-Filing, if the presiding officer 
subsequently determines the reason for the exemption from use of E-
Filing no longer exists.
    Documents submitted in adjudicatory proceedings will appear in the 
NRC's electronic hearing docket, which is available to the public at 
http://ehd1.nrc.gov/ehd, unless excluded pursuant to an order of the 
Commission, or the presiding officer. Participants are requested not to 
include personal privacy information, such as social security numbers, 
home addresses, or home phone numbers in their filings, unless an NRC 
regulation or other law requires submission of such information. With 
respect to copyrighted works, except for limited excerpts that serve 
the purpose of the adjudicatory filings and would constitute a Fair Use 
application, participants are requested not to include copyrighted 
materials in their submissions.
    If a person other than the licensee requests a hearing, that person 
shall set forth with particularity the manner in which his/her interest 
is adversely affected by this Order and shall address the criteria set 
forth in 10 CFR 2.309(d) and (f).
    In the absence of any request for hearing, or written approval of 
an extension of time in which to request a hearing, the provisions 
specified in Section V above shall be final 30 days from the date of 
this Order without further order or proceedings. If an extension of 
time for requesting a hearing has been approved, the provisions 
specified in Section V shall be final when the extension expires if a 
hearing request has not been received.

    Dated this 1st day of May 2014.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Leonard D. Wert,

Deputy Regional Administrator for Operations.

[FR Doc. 2014-10717 Filed 5-8-14; 8:45 am]
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