NRC assessment finds 87 of 93 U.S. nuclear reactors operating at highest safety, security performance

Published on March 07, 2023 by Chris Galford

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Of 93 nuclear reactors reviewed through the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s (NRC) Reactor Oversight Process in 2022, 87 were granted the highest performance category for safety and security, with the other six dinged for a few low safety significance items.

The annual assessment found no reactors currently sit in the third and fourth – lower quality – performance categories. The bulk of reactors remains under the NRC’s baseline inspections program, under which inspectors invest thousands of inspection hours into each reactor. As to the six lower-performing reactors, NRC noted that these were only bumped into the second performance category for one or two items of low safety significance.

By falling into that category, these six – Calvert Cliffs 1 of Maryland, Davis-Besse of Ohio, Peach Bottom 2 of Pennsylvania, Quad Cities 2 of Illinois, V.C. Summer of South Carolina, and Waterford of Louisiana – will be subject to additional inspection and follow-up of regulatory oversight and required corrective actions.

With letters dispatched to detail these annual assessments, NRC will follow up with an inspection plan for the coming year. It will also host a public meeting or similar event for each plant to discuss assessment results. These meetings will likely take place later this spring and summer.