A Focus on NRC Annual Assessment Meetings

Prema Chandrathil
Public Affairs Officer
Region III

formal meetingIt’s Spring – and annual assessment meetings are popping up all over. The NRC holds these important meetings every year for every nuclear power plant to provide information about how the plant performed in the previous year.

What happens at these meetings? If you attend, you can expect to hear about NRC inspection activities, how the plant performed from a safety perspective, and how it met NRC requirements, including if there were any violations and, if so, what actions were taken to correct those issues. You would also hear directly from NRC resident inspectors, who are at the plant on a daily basis and know the plant inside and out. They and other specialists inspect the plant to help ensure protection of the public health and safety.

We just posted a short YouTube Video on the subject today. “Three Minutes with an NRC Expert on the Annual Assessment Meetings” can be found here.
community outreachAs the video underscores, annual assessment meetings are not all the same. There are different types, including a formal meeting, an open house and community outreach event. The most common meeting is a formal meeting where the public is invited to observe the interactions between the NRC and plant staff. Open houses are informal and are designed to encourage one-on-one conversations. An example of a community outreach event is where the NRC would staff a booth at a local event in an effort to talk to more folks. The type of meeting will vary depending on the plant’s performance, community feedback and local interest.

No matter the format of the meeting, the public will have an opportunity to not only hear about the plant’s performance and NRC inspection efforts but also ask questions, make comments and talk to the NRC staff.

A common misconception is that these meetings are transcribed — they are not. The basis for the NRC’s discussion is the annual assessment letters issued by the NRC to individual plants. These letters are documented and publically available. You can find them on the NRC website.

3 minutes with AA_1The NRC continues to reach out in an effort to inform people about what the agency does, how we regulate and how a particular plant is doing in meeting NRC rules and regulations. We are committed to protecting public health and safety, and strive to be open and responsive in these annual assessment meetings.

If you are interested in any upcoming public meeting you can check out the public meeting schedule and review the meeting notice as well as the press release.

We hope you’ll check out the video to learn more.

Author: Moderator

Public Affairs Officer for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

6 thoughts on “A Focus on NRC Annual Assessment Meetings”

  1. Sorry for the delayed response, Garry. Thanks for the information you provided! Not having been to any of those public meetings, I also don’t know why nuclear facility staff would rapidly head for the exit. I’m sure NRC personnel act professionally.

    One possibility is the presence of “news media” with an anti-anything-nuclear agenda at the meeting, ready to pounce on facility staff with prepared negative “gotcha!” comments or questions. Members of the public who are present probably would behave respectfully and with genuine interest.

    Has anyone else experienced facility employees fleeing the site, giving us possible reasons for flight? Just curious…

  2. SONGS is awaiting approval from the state of California prior to beginning decommissioning activities or expansion of its Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation. There have been and will continue to be public meetings at NRC Headquarters in Rockville, Md., where generic safety issues related to spent fuel storage, like stress corrosion cracking, are discussed. At this time the NRC has no public meetings scheduled in the vicinity of SONGS. However, the San Onofre Community Engagement Panel continues to provide opportunities for public engagement on the issues you have expressed interest in. They can be reached here: http://www.songscommunity.com/cep.asp

    Victor Dricks

  3. I used the search tool and nothing is scheduled for San Onofre NPP, why is that?
    Just because it is starting to be decommissioned is no reason not to hold a local meeting, since many are very concerned with safety, spent fuel storage casks and personnel cutbacks.

  4. The meetings are a place where members of the public may interact with the NRC and nuclear facility staff. I’ve seen some nuclear facility executives leave the room of the meeting as quickly as possible. Their choice, just as it is my choice to wonder what are they running from? It is an opportunity for informal discussion which the facility executives should not pass up.

    For the most part, the NRC is responsive, courteous and professional. Thank you.

    One additional item, there is a problem with the email block portion of the log in field for this posting. I attempted to use our organizational email, then my personal email address, neither worked, both are active email addresses. The Face Book login is working fine.

  5. It’s crucial for NRC officials at formal meetings and community forums to fully report on initiatives by plant officials and employees which go “beyond the call of duty” promoting safety and energy security within the facility and all surrounding civilian areas. The tendency for governmental agencies to focus of what went wrong and “how we corrected it” MUST be balanced with additional reporting of SPECIFIC benefits of the facility to surrounding civilian environs. You can catch more bees with a fragrant flower bloom than with vinegar. Too often, governmental regulatory agencies focus solely on the vinegar, which is a severe disservice to a public which depends on a safe and reliable energy source.

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