Well, it depends on who you ask, of course. But some suggest the existing US nuclear regulatory framework contains flaws – that in some cases – allow cost to trump safety. There has always been tension between the nuclear industry and the regulators that oversee it. The strongly-held views that permeate discussions around safety, economic viability and nuclear policy have never been more pronounced than they are in the current post-Fukushima, low natural gas price, carbon-constrained world.
This article sheds light on the domestic nuclear front by focusing on the regulatory framework that governs US nuclear power plants – specifically, on the operating reactor licensing and re-licensing process – as well as regulations with regard to the implementation of “Post-Fukushima” requirements.