- Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL-16)
WHAT IT IS
The Nuclear Licensing Efficiency Act would streamline regulatory reviews to support the deployment of new nuclear technologies by directing the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to set specific review timelines and incorporate previously performed environmental reviews when available. In addition, the bill directs the NRC to consider updates to the hearing process and the use of the Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS).
WHY WE LIKE IT
Nuclear power produces the majority of clean electricity in the United States, and can play a key role in decarbonization. However, inefficiencies in the licensing process provide uncertainty to both companies designing these new technologies, and companies that want to use the reliable, low-carbon energy that nuclear power can provide. Building upon the bipartisan Nuclear Energy Innovation and Modernization Act and Nuclear Utilization of Keynote Energy (NUKE) Act, which were both focused on regulatory modernization and efficiency, this bill directs the NRC to prioritize its resources to meet clear licensing milestones and consider improvements in the licensing process so the NRC to meet its safety mission while providing certainty in its review timelines.
- Creates specific timelines and milestones for the environmental and technical reviews of new applications.
- Directs the NRC to supplement and incorporate previously performed Early Site Permit environmental reviews for the actual license application at the site that holds the Early Site Permit.
- Directs the NRC to use historical environmental review information for new applications at sites that already have an existing nuclear facility.
- Enacts a rulemaking to incorporate these previously stated efficiencies.
- Commences a study on the need for having uncontested hearings.
- Allows the Commission to request the Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards to review an application, and provides a specific timeline for the ACRS to complete its review.