[ RadSafe ] [Nuclear News] Duke submits application for S.C. nuclear station

Sandy Perle sandyfl at cox.net
Fri Dec 14 12:57:12 CST 2007


Duke submits application for S.C. nuclear station
Fears about old-design US nuclear reactors misplaced: Tellis  
Prairie Island tribe's priority: Remove nuclear waste 
Nuclear Medicine Procedures Can Trigger Radiation Alarms In Public
Russia, Egypt to sign nuclear energy agreement soon
Radiation scare at Auckland Airport

Duke submits application for S.C. nuclear station

Charlotte, NC (Triangle Business Journal) Dec 14 - Duke Energy Corp. 
has submitted a combined construction and operating license 
application to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission for a proposed 
two-unit nuclear station in Cherokee County, S.C. 

The company's utility operation in the Carolinas is expected to need 
an additional 10,700 megawatts of capacity by 2027. The proposed two-
unit William States Lee III Nuclear Station will have a capacity of 
2,234 megawatts. It is expected to cost between $5 billion and $6 

Duke, which provides electricity to western areas of the Triangle 
including Durham and Orange counties, said earlier this week that it 
plans to spend $160 million next year on the nuclear plant. 

"Submitting the COL application to the NRC is an important step for 
our customers and company," says Brew Barron, chief nuclear officer. 
"This allows us to move forward in keeping the new nuclear generation 
option available in meeting the growing energy needs of the 

Charlotte-based Duke (NYSE:DUK) supplies and delivers energy to 
approximately 4 million U.S. customers. 

Fears about old-design US nuclear reactors misplaced: Tellis  

New Delhi, Dec 14 (IANS) Top US strategic expert Ashley Tellis Friday 
said the US was heading towards a nuclear renaissance and new designs 
of nuclear reactors, but defended old-design reactors which India can 
get if the nuclear deal sails through, saying they continue to be 
'cheap, reliable and safe'. 

'The fears about old technologies are highly exaggerated. They are 
safe, reliable and cheap,' Tellis, senior associate with the Carnegie 
Endowment for International Peace, an influential US think tank, told 
experts, diplomats and media persons here. 

He was responding to a question on the anxieties in India, about New 
Delhi getting outdated US nuclear reactors from the US once the 
nuclear deal is operationalised. 

'Being cutting-edge for its own sake is not good enough a reason to 
run away from it (old design reactors),' he said while delivering a 
lecture on 'The Return of Nuclear Energy' at the Observer Research 
Fund, a New Delhi-based think tank. 

'There is nothing wrong with pressurised heavy water reactors (PHWRs) 
or light water reactors (LWRs). As long as they do the job they are 
meant to, there's nothing wrong with them,' he said.

The Left allies of the government, which are opposed to the deal, 
have expressed apprehensions that the US will offload old reactors on 
India in case the nuclear deal sails through political obstacles on 
the way. 

'There is nothing in principle that would deny India these 
technologies after the technology denial regimes are lifted,' he said 
while alluding to the US' ongoing experiments in cutting-edge nuclear 
technologies like high temperature reactors. 

He stressed that India can also hope to get new design advanced 
nuclear reactors, which are in the process of being developed, after 
the technology regime is amended in New Delhi's favour. 

Tellis said the new generation of reactors have the potential of 
transforming the nuclear industry worldwide. 

The US, which has not built a new reactor for the last 25 years, is 
now planning to add 23-odd new reactors to 104 reactors the country 
already has in the next decade. Six potential sites for locating 
nuclear plants are currently under review, he said. 

This nuclear revival has been driven by a host of economic and 
political factors, including the dramatic increase in the safety 
regime for existing nuclear reactors, the increasing cost 
competitiveness of nuclear energy and the growing global consensus 
for combating climate change by cutting down greenhouse emissions. 

More Americans are now in favour of building new nuclear reactors as 
public confidence has increased in an area that was earlier robustly 
contested by civil society, he said. 

Nuclear energy is becoming increasingly competitive, especially in 
the context of rising oil prices and an increase in the costs of 
thermal power, more so after a new carbon control regime is 
implemented. If you add the cost of setting up carbon control 
technologies to the cost of thermal energy, nuclear energy comes very 
close in competitiveness, he said. 

Tellis, however, did not reply when asked how the cost of nuclear 
energy in India will compare to other fossil sources of energy, 
saying it will differ from economy to economy. 

Underlining the dangers of proliferation that may accompany an 
unregulated expansion of civil nuclear industry in the world, he said 
the US was working on technologies that could lead to the shift from 
open fuel cycle, which could be exploited to make atomic bombs, to 
closed fuel cycle which will eliminate dangers of proliferation. 

This technology, when it is perfected, can solve the twin problems of 
proliferation and waste management in one stroke, he said. 

Nuclear electricity currently contributes 16 per cent of global 
energy consumption and 20 per cent of the US' power requirements, 
which is much below that of advanced countries like France and Japan.

Fully aware of the uncertain future of the India-US nuclear deal and 
continuing political opposition to it, Tellis, who has been involved 
in nuclear negotiations with India from the US side, chose not to 
answer any direct questions on the deal, saying that his remarks may 
end up becoming 'political football,' which he wanted to avoid. 

Prairie Island tribe's priority: Remove nuclear waste 

WELCH (Post-Bulletin) Dec 14 -- The removal of nuclear waste from 
nearby storage units and the pursuit of more economic development are 
among the priorities of the new Prairie Island Indian Community 
Tribal Council, whose members took the oath of office Thursday. 

The five members of the Tribal Council, all cousins, include three 
who were re-elected for consecutive terms -- Ron Johnson, Johnny 
Johnson and Victory Winfrey; one who served on past councils -- Lu 
Taylor; and one elected for the first time -- Shelley Buck-Yeager. 
They were sworn in and honored at a banquet in celebration of tribal 

The Prairie Island Indian Community, which has about 700 members and 
owns Treasure Island Resort & Casino, is 40 miles north of Rochester. 

Tribal Council President Ron Johnson said he'll continue to advocate 
for the removal of nuclear waste from Xcel Energy's above-ground, dry-
cask storage units that are only 600 yards from the Prairie Island 
Indian Community. In October, he went to Washington, D.C., to urge 
members of Congress to support using the Yucca Mountain site in 
Nevada for storing nuclear waste. 

Johnny Johnson, Tribal Council vice president, said that although 
Congressional support is lacking for the Yucca Mountain site, it's a 
fight that must continue for the safety of Prairie Island members and 
the community's future. 

"We have to go back to the battlefield again," he said. 

Johnny Johnson said there are tribal members living elsewhere who 
would like to return but don't want to live near the nuclear storage 
units. One possibility for the tribe may be to purchase other land, 
up to 1,500 acres, where those tribal members could build homes, he 

Treasurer Victoria Winfrey, elected to her fifth term on the Tribal 
Council, said there are many more opportunities for economic 
development in the community. She'd like to see the medical clinic 
expand its services, a strip mall added and wind turbines brought in 
for renewable energy. 

The council will also work hard to get younger tribal members 
involved so "they are truly proud of being Native American and proud 
of their heritage," Winfrey said. 

Nuclear Medicine Procedures Can Trigger Radiation Alarms In Public 
Places, Surprising Patients

ScienceDaily (Dec. 14, 2007) - Twenty million nuclear medicine 
procedures that detect and evaluate heart disease, brain disorders 
and cancer - and that use radiopharmaceuticals to treat overactive 
thyroids and some cancers - are performed each year. While health 
care providers in many facilities do provide patients with adequate 
information about nuclear medicine procedures, there´s room for 
improvement, says a study supported by the Centers of Disease Control 
and Prevention and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality 
that appears in the December Journal of Nuclear Medicine.

"Patients undergoing diagnostic procedures are less likely than 
patients undergoing therapeutic procedures to be informed that they 
could activate radiation alarms in public places," said Armin Ansari, 
a health physicist in the radiation studies branch of the Centers for 
Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Ga. "We also found that 
many health care professionals who administer radiopharmaceuticals to 
patients - or who communicate with them regarding the radiation 
safety aspects of their procedures - have not had any formal or 
systematic training in patient education, communications or 
counseling," he added. 

"Before we began the study, casual conversations with patients who 
received diagnostic procedures (largely stress tests) suggested that 
many receive neither documentation nor counseling. Some are even 
unaware that their procedure involved trace amounts of radioactive 
materials and that they could indeed trigger radiation detection 
equipment in public places," said Ansari. The study, done in 
collaboration with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), examined 
the range of patient release procedures and practices among 66 health 
care facilities in 12 states. Participating facilities perform a 
range of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures including cardiac 
stress tests; positron emission tomography (PET), bone, lung and 
renal scans; thyroid uptake studies; whole body scans; I-131 
hyperthyroid treatments; I-131 Bexxar cancer treatments; and 
brachytherapy. For the study, 89 health care professionals (including 
doctors, nuclear medicine technologists, radiation safety officers 
and physicists) were interviewed at large and small hospitals and 
outpatient-only clinics. 

The study indicates that health care professionals-especially in 
outpatient facilities and those performing only diagnostic 
procedures-can benefit from an outreach program, detailing the need 
to inform and counsel all released patients. "Some standardization of 
basic instructions and documentation given to released patients would 
also be helpful," said Ansari. "Patients should know the importance 
of following the instructions given to them by their caregivers. They 
should feel comfortable asking questions and be forthcoming if there 
are some instructions they may have difficulty following (such as 
minimizing time in public). If patients plan to travel, they should 
make sure they have documentation on hand specifying their procedure 
and that the documentation includes a contact phone number for 
verification, if necessary," he explained. 

"SNM has long advocated that its members-in offering high-quality 
care-provide patients with adequate information. This is particularly 
necessary in today´s high-security environment, where patients of 
some procedures could incidentally trigger radiation alarms in urban 
centers, federal buildings or while traveling," said SNM President 
Alexander J. McEwan, who represents more than 16,000 doctors, 
technologists and scientists. "This study shows that while many do 
provide information and special instructions to patients, there is 
still room for improvement and increased awareness," said the 
professor and chair of the Department of Oncology, Faculty of 
Medicine, at the University of Alberta, and director of oncologic 
imaging at Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton, Canada. He noted that 
the society works closely with the CDC and the U.S. government on the 
issues discussed within the report and to increase awareness in the 
medical community. 

"As this study points out, not all facilities are as well informed as 
they should be, and they are not doing the best they can to inform 
patients," says Henry Royal, former SNM president and an expert in 
radiation safety. "It is important that patients who find themselves 
in these rare situations are fully informed and have contact cards to 
work cooperatively with security officials," added Royal. "At 
Washington University, we have three preprinted wallet-size travel 
cards (radioiodine, sestamibi/thallium, miscellaneous) that we give 
to patients who receive therapeutic doses of I-131 or who are 
planning to travel in the days to weeks following a diagnostic 
procedure," said Royal, a professor of radiology at Washington 
University School of Medicine in St. Louis and associate director of 
nuclear medicine at its Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology. 

Federal regulations and guidelines describe when and how licensed 
health care facilities can release patients following a nuclear 
medicine procedure and address the safety instructions that 
facilities must provide to patients or to their parents or guardians 
to ensure that doses to other individuals remain "as low as is 
reasonably achievable." Since 2003, NRC supplemented these guidelines 
with a notice reminding health care professionals that released 
patients need to know the importance of following instructions so 
that a dose to other individuals can be maintained low and that the 
likelihood of triggering radiation alarms is reduced. The NRC 
suggests voluntary actions that health care professionals can take 
with every released patient whose body contains detectable amounts of 
radiation after receiving diagnostic or therapeutic quantities of 
radiopharmaceuticals or brachytherapy implants. These actions should 
include explaining to patients the potential to trigger radiation 
monitoring alarms and providing them with written information for law 
enforcement use. 

Ansari and Luba Katz of Abt Associates in Cambridge, Mass., reported 
their results in "Survey of Patient Release Information on Radiation 
and Security Checkpoints," which appears in the December issue of the 
Journal of Nuclear Medicine.

Nuclear medicine-a vital component of the rapidly emerging field of 
molecular imaging-is a medical specialty that uses small amounts of 
radioactive materials bound to special compounds 
(radiopharmaceuticals) in combination with imaging scans that examine 
molecular processes in the body to detect and evaluate heart disease, 
brain disorders and cancer. In addition, radiopharmaceuticals are 
used to treat overactive thyroids and some cancers. 

Adapted from materials provided by Society of Nuclear Medicine.

Russia, Egypt to sign nuclear energy agreement soon

MOSCOW, December 14 (RIA Novosti) - Russia will sign an agreement 
with Egypt in the future to develop its nuclear power sector, the 
Russian foreign minister said Friday.

"As for cooperation with Egypt in developing its civilian nuclear 
power industry, we confirm that we are interested. The drafting of 
relevant documents is being completed, and I hope they will be signed 
soon," Sergei Lavrov told journalists after talks with his Egyptian 

The minister said the agreement will become a basis for partnership 
in the civilian nuclear sector under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation 
Treaty and the International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN nuclear 

Ahmed Aboul Gheit in turn said Egypt was geared towards developing 
nuclear energy and planned to build several nuclear power plants. 
"Therefore we are working on our legislation, which will be submitted 
soon for parliament's consideration," he said.

He stressed that the work on the document was in full compliance with 
IAEA norms.

"Egypt is bound by around 15 agreements on nuclear cooperation with 
Asian and European countries and we want to sign a similar agreement 
with Russia," the minister said.

He said talks were constantly being held with Russia on the issue and 
said he hoped the document would be signed in the near future.

Russia earlier announced its intention to take part in a tender to 
build an atomic power plant in Egypt.

Radiation scare at Auckland Airport

Dec 14 - Air New Zealand's cargo building at Auckland Airport was 
evacuated on Friday morning after a radiation contamination scare. 
The threat came after a box marked radio active was damaged, but it 
turns out it hasn't leaked. 
Two people were treated with possible radiation poisoning, but have 
not been taken to hospital. 
The incident sparked a major alert at the airport, and a cordon was 
put up around the area. 

Fire service shift manager Jaron Phillips says the call came just 
before 7am.

Crews donned splash suits to enter the building.

Firefighters are praising Air New Zealand cargo handlers who they say 
did everything right.

It has been revealed the package contained machinery used to bore 

Sander C. Perle
Global Dosimetry Solutions, Inc.
2652 McGaw Avenue
Irvine, CA 92614 

Tel: (949) 296-2306 / (888) 437-1714  Extension 2306
Fax:(949) 296-1144

E-Mail: sperle at dosimetry.com
E-Mail: sandyfl at cox.net 

Global Dosimetry: http://www.dosimetry.com/
Mirion Technologies: http://www.mirion.com/

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