In response to “What’s the hurry?” (Dec. 3): There is no requirement that a lawyer be used to file an intervention or raise a safety concern during the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s license renewal process. A group called Pilgrim Watch, headed by Mary Lampert, participated in a hearing before the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board without an attorney during the license renewal review for the Pilgrim nuclear plant in Massachusetts. Over the next 24 to 30 months, as the NRC processes the application filed by Pacific Gas and Electric to renew the operating license for Diablo Canyon, there will be several opportunities for members of the public to participate and provide the NRC staff with information that will be considered as part of its review.
Public involvement in the NRC’s activities is a cornerstone of strong, fair regulation of the nuclear industry. The NRC recognizes the public’s interest in the proper regulation of nuclear activities and provides opportunities for citizens to make their opinions known. The NRC seeks to elicit public involvement early in the regulatory process so that safety concerns that may affect the community around Diablo Canyon can be resolved in a timely and practical manner. This process is considered vital to assuring the public that the NRC is making sound, balanced decisions about nuclear safety.