Friday, February 4, 2011

“I Hope For All Our Sakes This is Right”

On January 24, 2011 the NRC Commissioners met to review the proposed policy statement on nuclear safety culture developed by the NRC staff. This most recent effort was chartered by the Commission more than 3 years ago and represents the next step in the process to publish the proposed statement for public comment.

“25 years is long enough to build a policy statement…” for nuclear safety culture. This observation by Billie Garde* in her opening remarks to the Commissioners, with her timeline referring to the Chernobyl and space shuttle Challenger accidents in 1986. She also emphasized that the need was to now focus on implementation of the policy statement. She maintained her position that a policy statement alone would not be sufficient and that regulation would be necessary to assure consistent and reliable implementation.

In that regard she lays claim to one of the more disconcerting observations made at the meeting, the gist of which can be summed up as, “I hope for all our sakes this is right…”

Here’s the video clip with the exchange between Garde and Commissioner Apostolakis.

We will be following up with additional posts with highlights from the Commission session.

*  Billie Garde is an attorney in Washington, D.C.  Her NRC website bio is here.

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