[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 3 (Friday, January 4, 2013)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 663]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-31705]

Rules and Regulations
                                                Federal Register

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Federal Register / Vol. 78, No. 3 / Friday, January 4, 2013 / Rules 
and Regulations

[[Page 663]]


10 CFR Parts 20, 30, 40, 50, 70, and 72

RIN 3150-AI55

Decommissioning Planning During Operations

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Regulatory guide; issuance.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing a new 
regulatory guide (RG) 4.22, ``Decommissioning Planning During 
Operations.'' The guide describes a method that the NRC staff considers 
acceptable for use by holders of licenses in complying with the NRC's 
Decommissioning Planning Rule (DPR) (76 FR 35512; June 17, 2011). The 
DPR went into effect on December 17, 2012, and is intended to minimize 
the likelihood of new ``legacy sites,'' which are NRC-licensed 
facilities with insufficient resources to complete decommissioning 
activities and termination of a license at the end of operations.

ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2011-0286 when contacting the 
NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You 
may submit 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-2011-0286. Address 
questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-492-
3668; email: [email protected].
     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 [email protected]. The regulatory guide is 
available electronically under ADAMS Accession Number ML12158A361. The 
regulatory analysis may be found in ADAMS under Accession No. 
     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.

Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, telephone: 301-251-
7455, email: [email protected].


I. Introduction

    The NRC is issuing a new 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.

II. Further Information

    RG 4.22 describes a method that the NRC staff considers acceptable 
for use by holders of licenses in complying with the DPR. On December 
13, 2011 (76 FR 77431), the NRC issued Draft Regulatory Guide, DG-4014, 
``Decommissioning Planning During Operations,'' in the Federal Register 
with a public comment period ending on February 10, 2012. Subsequently, 
the public comment period was extended from February 10, 2012 to March 
30, 2012 (77 FR 8751; February 15, 2012) to allow more time for 
comment. In addition, the NRC staff conducted a workshop at NRC 
headquarters and a concurrent webinar on July 12, 2012, and the 
comments received at the workshop were considered in the revision of 
DG-4014. The written and oral public comments suggested areas that 
needed clarification, and the NRC revised the draft guide to address 
these areas. The public comments and NRC staff response to them may be 
found in ADAMS under Accession No. ML12278A021.

III. Backfitting and Issue Finality

    The statement of considerations for the DPR discussed that rule's 
compliance with applicable backfitting provisions (76 FR 35511, at 
35562-63). This regulatory guide presents the NRC staff's first 
guidance addressing compliance with Sec.  20.1501(a) and (b) of Title 
10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) and the newly-added 
paragraph (c) of 10 CFR 20.1406. The first issuance of guidance on a 
newly-changed or newly-added rule provision does not constitute 
backfitting or raise issue finality concerns, inasmuch as the guidance 
must be consistent with the regulatory requirements in the newly-
changed or newly-added rule provisions and the backfitting and issue 
finality considerations applicable to the newly-changed or newly-added 
rule provisions must logically apply to this guidance. Therefore, 
issuance of guidance addressing the newly-changed and newly-added 
provisions of the amended rule does not constitute issuance of 
``changed'' or ``new'' guidance within the meaning of the definition of 
``backfitting'' in 10 CFR 50.109(a)(1). Similarly, the issuance of the 
guidance addressing the newly-changed or newly-added provisions of the 
amended rule, by itself, does not constitute an action inconsistent 
with any of the issue finality provisions in 10 CFR part 52. 
Accordingly, no further consideration of backfitting or issue finality 
is needed as part of the issuance of this guidance addressing 
compliance with the newly-changed provisions of Sec.  20.1501 and 
newly-added paragraph (c) of Sec.  20.1406.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 27th day of December, 2012.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Jazel D. Parks,
Acting Chief, Regulatory Guide Development Branch, Division of 
Engineering, Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research.
[FR Doc. 2012-31705 Filed 1-3-13; 8:45 am]