I have felt confident all along that my actions have been consistent with my responsibilities and authorities as Chairman, and certainly that there was no wrongdoing. This report underscores my belief. I appreciate the Inspector General’s independent investigation and am glad to put this behind us. The report raises nothing new of substance.
Under my chairmanship, the NRC received numerous awards and recognition for our diverse and accommodating work environment. I am particularly proud that the NRC consistently has been rated as one of the Best Places to Work in the federal government during my tenure as chairman. I am also immensely proud of my consistent safety voting record, my attempts to make the commission’s decision-making process more transparent, and my strong, consensus-based leadership during the agency’s tremendous response to the events at Fukushima.
I have worked every day with an intense and singular focus on the agency’s mission, and if I were asked to do it all again – that would not change.
It is the day in and day out hard work and resolve demonstrated by the NRC staff that deserves the media’s focus and the public’s attention. During the past year we have made tremendous progress towards improving the safety of our nation’s nuclear plants and safeguarding the public health. In the last six months alone, the agency authorized three immediately effective orders for all nuclear reactors to implement key safety recommendations from the agency’s Japan Near-Term Task Force, approved the first new reactor licenses in more than 30 years, and began the transition to a new fire protection standard at nuclear power plants.
We have also imposed improved safety standards for the transportation of certain types of radioactive materials and irradiated fuel, completed regulations to ensure that the acceptance criteria established at the outset of new plant construction is maintained through plant completion, and have made significant strides towards implementing a Safety Culture Policy Statement. I am immeasurably proud of our accomplishments, and I look forward to continuing to focus on the critical safety mission of the agency.