Seabrook Station Granted 20-Year License Extension

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has granted operators of the Seabrook Station nuclear plant in New Hampshire an extended 20 year operating license.

Seabrook Station The license for the plant will now expire March 15, 2050, the regulator said.

The single pressurized-water reactor is located in Seabrook, N.H., about 13 miles south of Portsmouth. The operator, NextEra Energy Seabrook, submitted the renewal application in May 2010.

The NRC’s protocol for license extension applications proceedes on two tracks. A safety evaluation report was issued in September 2018, and a final supplemental environmental impact statement was issued in July 2015.

The renewal review accounted for the discovery of a rare concrete degradation issue, “alkali-silica reaction” at Seabrook.

As such, NextEra applied in August 2016 to amend Seabrook’s license for appropriate analysis of ASR-affected components. The NRC approved the amendment on March 11.

The NRC’s Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards also reviewed the staff’s work on the license renewal application and recommended its approval. With the renewal of the Seabrook operating license, 94 commercial nuclear power reactors have received renewed licenses (four of those have since permanently shut down). Three applications for subsequent license renewal are currently under review. Information about reactor license renewal is available on the NRC website.

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