10 CFR 100.10 - Factors to be considered when evaluating sites.
Factors considered in the evaluation of sites include those relating both to the proposed reactor design and the characteristics peculiar to the site. It is expected that reactors will reflect through their design, construction and operation an extremely low probability for accidents that could result in release of significant quantities of radioactive fission products. In addition, the site location and the engineered features included as safeguards against the hazardous consequences of an accident, should one occur, should insure a low risk of public exposure. In particular, the Commission will take the following factors into consideration in determining the acceptability of a site for a power or testing reactor:
(a) Characteristics of reactor design and proposed operation including:
(1) Intended use of the reactor including the proposed maximum power level and the nature and inventory of contained radioactive materials;
(2) The extent to which generally accepted engineering standards are applied to the design of the reactor;
(3) The extent to which the reactor incorporates unique or unusual features having a significant bearing on the probability or consequences of accidental release of radioactive materials;
(4) The safety features that are to be engineered into the facility and those barriers that must be breached as a result of an accident before a release of radioactive material to the environment can occur.
(c) Physical characteristics of the site, including seismology, meteorology, geology, and hydrology.
(1) Appendix A, “Seismic and Geologic Siting Criteria for Nuclear Power Plants,” describes the nature of investigations required to obtain the geologic and seismic data necessary to determine site suitability and to provide reasonable assurance that a nuclear power plant can be constructed and operated at a proposed site without undue risk to the health and safety of the public. It describes procedures for determining the quantitative vibratory ground motion design basis at a site due to earthquakes and describes information needed to determine whether and to what extent a nuclear power plant need be designed to withstand the effects of surface faulting.
(2) Meteorological conditions at the site and in the surrounding area should be considered.
(3) Geological and hydrological characteristics of the proposed site may have a bearing on the consequences of an escape of radioactive material from the facility. Special precautions should be planned if a reactor is to be located at a site where a significant quantity of radioactive effluent might accidentally flow into nearby streams or rivers or might find ready access to underground water tables.
(d) Where unfavorable physical characteristics of the site exist, the proposed site may nevertheless be found to be acceptable if the design of the facility includes appropriate and adequate compensating engineering safeguards.