Waste Confidence – This Chat is Closed


2010 04 McConnell KeithMy name is Keith McConnell and I am the Director of the Waste Confidence Directorate. Unfortunately, Andy Imboden, who was scheduled to moderate this Chat, could not be here today, so I will be answering your questions.

I have been at the NRC since 1986, bringing my background and expertise as a geologist to various projects, including waste management, decommissioning and uranium recovery, as well as other positions. I have also served three NRC chairmen and in the Office of General Counsel.

I have a Bachelor’s degree in Geology from Clemson, a Master’s in Geological Sciences from Virginia Tech and a Ph.D. in Geological Sciences from the University of South Carolina.

“Waste Confidence” refers to the Commission’s determination on the environmental impacts of storing spent nuclear fuel from the time a reactor’s license expires until final disposal of the fuel.  This is an area with many political, legal, and technical issues.

The Directorate is currently developing a generic environmental impact statement to support an updated Waste Confidence rule.  More information about Waste Confidence, public involvement opportunities, and links to relevant documents is available on the NRC’s Waste Confidence websiteYou can also check out this video on our NRC YouTube channel.

We’ve kept you up to date on our progress through several blog posts and regular teleconferences. Currently, the Commissioners are evaluating the draft generic environmental impact statement and proposed rule . We hope – with their approval – to publish them soon for a 75-day public comment period. We are also planning 10 public meetings to receive public comments – two here at NRC headquarters and 8 around the country. I hope we can discuss how you can participate in this extensive public outreach effort during this NRC Chat.

As this will be an informal discussion, anything you submit in the Chat will not be considered as an official comment on the rule or the generic environmental impact statement. Be sure to submit your comments once the public comment period is announced. 

I look forward to your questions about the Waste Confidence process, status and upcoming opportunities for public participation.