NRC approves of construction work on Vogtle Units 3 and 4 in 2014

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has concluded that Vogtle nuclear units 3 and 4 in Georgia are “being constructed in a manner that preserved public health and safety and met all cornerstone objectives.”

In a letter dated Feb. 27, NRC gave its approval of the 2014 construction activity at the nuclear units being built by Southern (NYSE:SO) utility subsidiary Georgia Power and its partners near Waynesboro, Ga.

NRC said April 15 that it will discuss issues concerning both the new units and existing Vogtle Units 1 and 2 during an April 23 meeting at the Augusta Technical Campus Auditorium in Waynesboro.

All inspection findings for Units 3 and 4 were “very low” or “green” on the NRC safety significance matrix, according to the letter.

“The enclosed inspection plan lists the inspections scheduled through September 30, 2015,” NRC said in the letter. “Routine inspections performed by resident inspectors are not included in the inspection plan. The inspections listed are tentative and may be revised based on construction activities at the site. The NRC provides the inspection plan to allow for the resolution of any scheduling conflicts and personnel availability issues,” NRC added.

The Vogtle Units represent the first new nuclear reactors ordered in the United States in 30 years.

Unit 3 would see its revised schedule pushed back by 18 months to the second quarter of 2019, according to a scheduled put forward recently by the contractor team for the new reactors.

Georgia Power will be the largest single stakeholder in the new Vogtle units at 45.7%. Other co-owners include Oglethorpe Power, the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia (MEAG Power) and Dalton Utilities.

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.