A new joint venture (JV), Accelerated Decommissioning Partners (ADP), has been set up by Areva Nuclear Materials and NorthStar to acquire and decommission shut-down US nuclear reactors. ADP brings together Areva's core competencies in nuclear component dismantling and used fuel management with NorthStar's expertise in demolition and environmental remediation. Washington DC-based Areva Nuclear Materials is the US subsidiary of New Areva, the company being created through the restructuring of France's Areva SA into two separate entities. NorthStar, based in New York, provides comprehensive facility and environmental services, including decommissioning and closure services across the power industry.
The JV is designed to contain all the management, regulatory, technical and financial qualifications needed to decommission nuclear energy sites in compliance with US Nuclear Regulatory Commission and state requirements. The process to acquire nuclear facilities, including used nuclear fuel, is already underway
ADP is already working with a US power company to assess the decommissioning and dismantling of "multiple nuclear reactor facilities scheduled for shutdown", the companies said. It expects to complete the process, including the negotiation of terms for the post-shutdown transfer of ownership of the sites and their used fuel inventory, by the end of 2017.
In November, Entergy announced it had agreed to sell the shut-down Vermont Yankee NPP, which shut down in 2014, and to transfer its licences to NorthStar in a transaction expected to close by the end of 2018, subject to conditions and regulatory approvals. NorthStar is to begin decontamination and dismantling work at Vermont Yankee by 2021 and to complete decommissioning and site restoration by 2030. This does not apply to the Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation (ISFSF), which NorthStar will continue to operate until the US government fulfils its statutory responsibility for the final disposal of all used fuel in the USA. Only then can NorthStar decommission the ISFSF, terminate the site's licence and complete site restoration.