New Orleans, La. – In regards to the
recent media coverage of the Palisades Nuclear Power Plant and the industry
topic of pressurized thermal shock, Entergy Corporation issued the following
statement from Tony Vitale, Palisades’ site vice president:
"The Palisades nuclear plant is a
safe and secure facility, and we have an NRC license to operate this facility
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has
strict rules, regulations and limits for all aspects of nuclear plant
operations. This includes a program to monitor nuclear power plant reactor
vessels and the potential impact of a rare accident scenario – pressurized
thermal shock – in which a large amount of cold water is injected into the
reactor resulting in rapid cooling of the reactor vessel.
This is not a new topic or one that
is unique to Palisades. In fact, for decades pressurized thermal shock has been
well understood and well monitored by the owners and operators of the nation’s
pressurized water reactors.
Every pressurized water reactor plant
in the nation is required by the NRC to continually update its calculations to
confirm reactor vessel strength – meaning every plant must conduct periodic
reactor vessel inspections and analyze reactor vessel samples. Consistent with
these NRC requirements, Palisades will conduct these inspections and analysis
during our refueling outage this fall.
We have every reason to believe the
test results will again demonstrate the safety and strength of the Palisades
reactor vessel – which will enable us to continue operating through the end of
our license in 2031. We will submit an updated evaluation to the NRC for its
review in the spring of 2014.
Our unrelenting commitment and focus
are on operating Palisades at the highest levels of safety and reliability – now
and for many years to come.”
Entergy Corporation, which celebrates
its 100th birthday this year, is an integrated energy company engaged primarily
in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns
and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric
generating capacity, including more than 10,000 megawatts of nuclear power,
making it one of the nation’s leading nuclear generators. Entergy delivers
electricity to 2.8 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi
and Texas. Entergy has annual revenues of more than $10 billion and
approximately 15,000 employees.