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Appendix B U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (USNRC) is an independent regulatory agency established by the Congress under the Energy Reorganization Act of ~ 974 to ensure adequate protection of the public health and safety and the environment and to promote the common defense and security in the civilian use of nuclear materials. The USNRC scope of responsibility includes regulation of: . Commercial nuclear power; non-power research, test, and training reactors; Non-DOE fuel cycle facilities; medical, academic, and inclustrial uses of nuclear materials; and . Transport, storage, and disposal of nuclear materials and waste. The regulatory system established by the USNRC has its authority in legislation listed] in Chapter 2, Table 2. ~ . To fulfill this agency's Congressionally mandated mission, the USNRC has established licensing procedures for regulating the use of byproduct, source, and special nuclear materials. Specifically, the goals for radioactive waste management are to: ensure treatment, storage, and disposal of waste proclucec] by civilian use of nuclear materials in ways that do not adversely affect future generations; and to protect the environment in connection with civilian use of source, byproduct, or special nuclear materials through the implementation of the AEA and NEPA. Current Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC ~ O CFR Part 20) Regulations define Source Materials, Byproduct Matenals, ant! Special Nuclear Materials as follows: Source material means: (1~ Uranium or thorium or any combination of uranium and thorium in any physical or chemical form; or (2) Ores that contain, by weight, one-twentieth of ~ percent (0.05 percent), or more, of uranium, thorium, or any combination of uranium and thorium. Source material does not include special nuclear material. 51

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Byproduct material means: (~) Any radioactive material (except special nuclear material) yielded in. or made . . . radioactive by, exposure to the radiation inci(leni to the nrnr.f~c Of nrmA,~rincr ^' 1lti1;~7;~ special nuclear material; and /~ ~ err . ~ ~ ~ ' a--_ e~ ~__vv ~4 ~~ ~~V1118j JO ~~11141116 t2) l he tailings or wastes produced by the extraction or concentration of uranium or thorium from ore processed primarily for its source material content, including discrete surface wastes resulting from uranium solution extraction processes. Underground ore bodies depleted by these solution extraction operations do not constitute "h~rnrorl,,~i material" within this definition. Special nuclear material means: /1 ~ ^1_ ~~ ~ ~ .~ - J r ~ aid r~urunlum, uranium enrlcnect In the isotope 233 or in the isotope 235, and any other material that the Commission, pursuant to the provisions of section 51 of the Act, determines to be special nuclear material. but does not in~l',rle Err. mntPriO] tar (2) Any material artificially enriched bY anv of the foregoing hat also net inr.lil~lP source material (10 CR 20.10031. ~1 ~ T - ` ~ _% ~ . ~ - _J ~__J ~~ ,~ ~, van Rev~ levy 111~1~ -fee U5NK(: conducts licensing and inspection activities associated with domestic nuclear fuel cycle facilities, uses of nuclear materials, transport of nuclear materials, management and disposal of LLW and HEW, and decontamination and decommissioning of facilities and sites. USNRC also is responsible for establishing the technical basis for regulations, and provides information and technical basis for developing acceptance criteria for licensing reviews. An important aspect of the USNRC regulatory program is its inspection and enforcement activities. The USNRC has four regional offices (Region I in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania; Region II in Atlanta, Georgia; Region IIl in Lisle, Illinois; and Region {V in Arlington, Texas), that conduct inspections of licensed facilities including nuclear waste facilities. USNRC also has an Office of State and Tribal Programs, which establishes and maintains communication with state and local governments and Tribes, and administers the Agreement States Program. An Agreement State is a state that has signed an agreement with the USNRC allowing the state to regulate the use of radioactive material within that state, consistent with the USNRC regulations. Out of the 50 states, 33 are Agreement States. USNRC issues guidance on how to implement its regulations in the form of Regulatory Guides and Staff Positions. The USNRC staff develops Regulatory Guides to establish a standard approach to licensing. They are not intended to be regulatory requirements, but they do reflect methods, procedures, or actions that would be considered acceptable by the staff for implementing specific parts of USNRC regulations. Regulatory Guides describe the standard format and content for license applications. Staff Positions are divided into two general types: so-called "generic" positions, dealing with issues which relate to licensing activities for nuclear facilities independent of the technology or site selected; and site-~necif;n no~ition.~ `'ubirh criers cite guidance or advice applicable to a specific site. In addition to the guidance, the USNRC staff uses Standard Review Plans (typically, a "NUREG" document), which provide guidance to the USNRC staff in reviewing licensee submittals. These plans are made public so that licensees and - -Rae rem eve ~,---~,, ~~~ ~1~ 52 Interim Report

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applicants understand what is needed to comply with regulations. In this respect, the licensees and applicants have this third type of guidance to assist them in preparing their demonstration of compliance with the applicable regulations and stanciarcis. Important guidance for radiation protection programs is provicled in International Commission on Radiation Protection (ICRP) and the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP) technical guiclelines. Applicable recommendations are cited in USNRC staff documents, which focus on dose assessments. USNRC regulations that affect the management of low-activity waste include the Low-Level Waste Disposal Regulations (10 CFR Part 61), Radiation Protection Standards (10 CFR Part 20), and criteria related to the disposition of uranium mill tailings (10 CFR Part 40, Appendix A). The USNRC regulates the radioactive characteristics of Tow-leve! waste materials acceptable for near-surface land disposal through a combination of prescriptive and performance-based requirements. Performance assessment is required to calculate worker and public exposure risks associated with waste disposal. According to the USNRC, a near-surface disposal facility is one in which radioactive waste is disposer! within the upper 30 meters of the land surface. Institutional control of access is required for 100 years, and within 500 years radioactivity must decay to a sufficiently Tow-leve] so that it will not pose unacceptable hazards to an intruder or the general public. To meet this latter requirement, further prescriptive regulations define three classes of waste that are cleemed suitable for near-surface disposal. Classification as Class A (the easiest to dispose), Class B. or Class C depends on which raclionuclicles are present and their concentrations (see Tables B. 1 and B.2~. If the waste qualifies as TRU or is contaminated above certain limits with long-lived raclionuclides, it is not suitable for near-surface disposal. TABLE B. 1 Near-Surface Disposal for Allowable Concentrations of Long-Lived Radionuclides Radionuclide Concentration, curies per cubic meter (Ci/ m3) C-14 C-14 in activated metal Ni-59 in activated metal Nb-94 in activated metal Tc-99 I-129 8 80 220 0.2 0.08 Concentration, nanocuries per gram (nCi/g) Alpha emitting transuranic nuclides with half-life greater than 5 years Pu-24 1 Cm-242 100 3,500 20,000 SOURCE: Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Part 61.55. ~ Mining industry waste is excluded from this requirement. Interim Report 53

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TABLE B.2 Allowable Concentrations of Short-Lived Radionuclides for Near-Surface Disposal Radionuclide Class A Waste Class B Waste Class C (Cdm3) (Ci/m3) Waste (Ci/m3) Total of all nuclides with less than 5-year 700 a a half-life H-3 40 a a Co-60 700 a a Ni-63 3.5 70 700 Ni-63 in activated metal 35 700 700 Sr-90 0.04 150 7,000 Cs-137 1 44 4.60() - a: There are no limits for these radionuclides in Class B or C wastes. Practical considerations such as the effects of external radiation and internal heat generation on transportation, handling, and disposal limit the concentrations for these wastes. NOTE: Not all Class C-or-less wastes will be acceptable at all sites and some GTCC wastes may be acceptable at certain sites. This distinction is the essence of the difference between waste classification and site-specific decisions on remediation. SOURCE: Code of Federal Regulations, Title 10, Part 61.55. 54 Interim Report