[Federal Register Volume 60, Number 102 (Friday, May 26, 1995)]
[Pages 27992-27993]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 95-12970]



[Docket Nos. 50-334 and 50-412]

Beaver Valley Power Station, Unit Nos. 1 and 2; Environmental 
Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact

    In the matter of Duquesne Light Company; Ohio Edison Company; 
Pennsylvania Power Company; The Cleveland Electric Illuminating 
Company; and The Toledo Edison Company.

    The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (the Commission) is 
considering issuance of an exemption from certain requirements of its 
regulations to Facility Operating Licenses No. DPR-66 and NPF-73, 
issued to Duquesne Light Company, et al. (the licensee), for operation 
of the Beaver Valley Power Station, Unit Nos. 1 and 2, located in 
Beaver County, Pennsylvania.

Environmental Assessment

Identification of the Proposed Action

    The proposed action is in accordance with the licensee's 
application dated February 8, 1995, for exemption from certain 
requirements of 10 CFR 73.55, ``Requirements for physical protection of 
licensed activities in nuclear power reactors against radiological 
sabotage.'' The exemption would allow implementation of a hand geometry 
biometric system for site access control such that combined picture 
badges/keycards for certain non-employees can be taken offsite.

The Need for the Proposed Action

    Pursuant to 10 CFR 73.55, paragraph (a), the licensee shall 
establish and maintain an onsite physical protection system and 
security organization.
    Paragraph (1) of 10 CFR 73.55(d), ``Access Requirements,'' 
specifies that ``licensee shall control all points of personnel and 
vehicle access into a protected area.'' Paragraph (5) of 10 CFR 
73.55(d) specifies that ``A numbered picture badge identification 
system shall be used for all individuals who are authorized access to 
protected areas without escort.'' Paragraph (5) of 10 CFR 73.55(d) also 
states that an individual not employed by the licensee (i.e., 
contractors) may be authorized access to protected areas without escort 
provided the individual ``receives a picture badge upon entrance into 
the protected area which must be returned upon exit from the protected 
area * * *.''
    Currently, employee and contractor combined identification badges/
keycards are issued and retrieved on the occasion of each entry to and 
exit from the protected areas of the Beaver Valley Power Station site. 
Station security personnel are required to maintain control of the 
badges while the individuals are offsite. This practice has been in 
effect at the Beaver Valley Power Station since the operating license 
was issued. Security personnel retain each identification badge/
keycard, when not in use by the authorized individual, within 
appropriately designed storage receptacles inside a bullet-resistance 
enclosure. An individual who meets the access authorization 
requirements is issued an individual picture identification card/
keycard which allows entry into preauthorized areas of the station. 
While entering the plant in the present configuration, an authorized 
individual is ``screened'' by the required detection equipment and by 
the issuing security officer. Having received the badge/keycard, the 
individual proceeds to the access portal, inserts the badge/keycard 
into the card reader and passes through the turnstile which unlocks if 
the badge/keycard is valid.
    This present procedure is labor intensive since security personnel 
are required to verify badge/keycard issuance, ensure badge/keycard 
retrieval, and maintain the badges/keycards in orderly storage until 
the next entry into the protected area. The regulations permit 
employees to remove their badges from the site, but an exemption from 
10 CFR 73.55(d)(5) is required to permit contractors to take their 
badges offsite instead of returning them when exiting the site.

Environmental Impacts of the Proposed Action

    The Commission has completed its evaluation of the licensee's 
application. Under the proposed system, all individuals authorized to 
gain unescorted access will have the physical characteristics of their 
hand (hand geometry) recorded with their badge/keycard number. Since 
the hand geometry is unique to each individual [[Page 27993]] and its 
application in the entry screening function would preclude unauthorized 
use of a badge/keycard, the requested exemption would allow employees 
and contractors to keep their badges at the time of exiting the 
protected area. The process of verifying badge/keycard issuance, 
ensuring badge/keycard retrieval, and maintaining badges/keycards, 
could be eliminated while the balance of the access procedure would 
remain intact. Firearm, explosive, and metal detection equipment and 
provisions for conducting searches will remain as well. The security 
officer responsible for the last access control function (controlling 
admission to the protected area) will also remain isolated within a 
bullet-resistant structure in order to assure his or her ability to 
respond or to summon assistance.
    Use of a hand geometry biometrics system exceeds the present 
verification methodology's capability to discern an individual's 
identity. Unlike the combined photograph identification badge/keycard, 
hand geometry is nontransferable. During the initial access 
authorization or registration process, hand measurements are recorded 
and the template is stored for subsequent use in the identity 
verification process required for entry into the protected area. 
Authorized individuals insert their badge/keycard into the card reader 
and the biometrics system records an image of the hand geometry. The 
unique features of the newly recorded image are then compared to the 
template previously stored in the database. Access is ultimately 
granted based on the degree to which the characteristics of the image 
match those of the ``signature'' template.
    Since both the badge/keycard and hand geometry would be necessary 
for access into the protected area, the proposed system would provide 
for a positive verification process. Potential loss of a badge/keycard 
by an individual, as a result of taking the badge offsite, would not 
enable an unauthorized entry into protected areas.
    The access process will continue to be under the observation of 
security personnel. The system of identification badges/keycards will 
continue to be used for all individuals who are authorized access to 
protected areas without escorts. Badges/keycards will continue to be 
displayed by all individuals while inside the protected area. Addition 
of a hand geometry biometrics system will provide a significant 
contribution to effective implementation of the security plan at the 
    The change will not increase the probability or consequences of 
accidents, no changes are being made in the types of any effluents that 
may be released offsite, and there is no significant increase in the 
allowable individual or cumulative occupational radiation exposure. 
Accordingly, the Commission concludes that there are no significant 
radiological environmental impacts associated with the proposed action.
    With regard to potential nonradiological impacts, the proposed 
action does involve features located entirely within the restricted 
area as defined in 10 CFR Part 20. It does not effect nonradiological 
plant effluents and has no other environmental impact. Accordingly, the 
Commission concludes that there are no significant nonradiological 
environmental impacts associated with the proposed action.

Alternatives to the Proposed Action

    Since the Commission has concluded there is no measurable 
environmental impact associated with the proposed action, any 
alternatives with equal or greater environmental impact need not be 
evaluated. As an alternative to the proposed action, the staff 
considered denial of the proposed action. Denial of the application 
would result in no change in current environmental impacts. The 
environmental impacts of the proposed action and the alternative action 
are similar.

Alternative Use of Resources

    This action does not involve the use of any resources not 
previously considered in the Final Environmental Statements for the 
Beaver Valley Power Station Units Nos. 1 and 2.

Agencies and Persons Consulted

    In accordance with its stated policy, on April 18, 1995, the staff 
consulted with the Pennsylvania State official, Robert C. Maiers of the 
Bureau of Radiation Protection. Department of Environmental Resources, 
regarding the environmental impact of the proposed action. The State 
official had no comments.

Finding of No Significant Impact

    Based upon the environmental assessment, the Commission concludes 
that the proposed action will not have a significant effect on the 
quality of the human environment. Accordingly, the Commission has 
determined not to prepare an environmental impact statement for the 
proposed action.
    For further details with respect to the proposed action, see the 
licensee's letter dated February 8, 1995, which is available for public 
inspection at the Commission's Public Document Room, The Gelman 
Building, 2120 L Street, NW., Washington, DC, and at the local public 
document room located at the B.F. Jones Memorial Library, 663 Franklin 
Avenue, Aliquippa, Pennsylvania 15001.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 22nd day of May 1995.

For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
John F. Stolz,
Director, Project Directorate I-2, Division of Reactor Projects-I/II, 
Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
[FR Doc. 95-12970 Filed 5-25-95; 8:45 am]