The United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission resumed the vote on Ameren Missouri’s Callaway Energy Center’s license renewal earlier this week.
The NRC recently released a document on its website stating that after a review of Ameren Missouri’s application, it would “support the option of license renewal from an environmental perspective.” The vote was originally suspended in December after the Missouri Coalition for the Environment petitioned the license renewal.
According the Safe Energy Director Ed Smith, the coalition will appeal again if the license renewal is approved.
“The reason that we would appeal the NRC’s decision is because we do not think, right now, the NRC is legally following the law as it relates to spent nuclear fuel storage,” Smith said.
City Administrator of Fulton, Bill Johnson, said he supports the vote for the license renewal.
“The Callaway Energy center has been a vital economic development driver for Callaway County for 30 years,” Johnson said. “They have an outstanding safety record. They put safety first in everything that they do.”
The nuclear energy plant provides electricity for more than 1.2 million of Ameren Missouri’s customers, according to a document published by Ameren in 2013. Its current license expires in 2024. The renewal will extend its operating capabilities another 20 years if approved.
“There’s no rush for the NRC to extend the license of the Callaway nuclear reactor because it doesn’t expire until 2024,” Smith said.
Even so, Johnson says he and other city members strongly hope that the NRC approves the extended license.
“The City of Fulton deals with both state and federal regulators on a daily basis,” he said. “I am confident that the NRC is following all of the rules and regulations that are in place at this time.”
Only one member of the commission has cast their vote so far.