A seven-member task force set up by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to examine safety in the wake of the Fukushima incident has made 12 recommendations for strengthening nuclear safety.
The task force said that: “a sequence of events like the Fukushima accident is unlikely to occur in the United States,” but recognized that an accident involving core damage and uncontrolled release of radioactivity to the environment is ‘inherently unacceptable.’
Its dozen recommendations range in areas from loss of power to earthquakes, flooding, spent fuel pools, venting, and emergency preparedness. They include proposed new requirements for nuclear power plants to re-evaluate and upgrade their seismic and flooding protection, to strengthen their ability to deal with the prolonged loss of power, and to develop emergency plans that specifically contemplate the possibility of events involving multiple reactors.
Meanwhile, NRC chairman Gregory Jaczko has called for the NRC and the nuclear industry to commit to applying the lessons of the Fukushima accident within five years – by 2016.