NRC proposes new rules for special nuclear material control and accounting

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is asking the public to comment on a proposal to update, clarify and strengthen the requirements for material control and accounting (MC&A) of special nuclear material. The proposed rule appears in today’s Federal Register.

The NRC requires licensees to control and account for plutonium, enriched uranium and uranium-233, also known as special nuclear material. Plutonium and uranium-233 can be produced in nuclear reactors, while enriched uranium is created in a uranium enrichment facility. The MC&A program coupled with physical protection and information security programs helps to ensure these materials are not taken from facilities that possess them.

The proposed rule would change the requirements for collecting and reporting information on these materials. It adds new requirements for certain licensees that have 350 grams or more of special nuclear material, strengthens other requirements, applies the rules to more licensees, and clarifies terms and language.