ADR, Cameco, Canada, cancer, contamination control exit surveys, Cornell University, corruption, Crow Butte, dangers of nuclear, dilute and disperse, environment, exit survey, liability, mining, Nebraska, NRC, nuclear, nuclear contract workers, nuclear energy, nuclear industry, nuclear power, nuclear reactors, nuclear safety, radiation, radiation contamination, risk management, uranium, uranium mining, US, US NRC, USA, Wyoming
Canada’s “Cameco Corporation is the world’s largest publicly traded uranium company, based in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. In 2012, it was the world’s second largest uranium producer, accounting for 16% of world production.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cameco
Power Resources, Inc. is a US subsidiary of Cameco
“The NRC has concluded that a willful violation of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) 40.9(a) occurred between September 12, 2013, and February 6, 2014, when an operations supervisor documented contamination control exit surveys of contract personnel exiting the North Butte satellite facility when, in fact, the exit surveys were not performed. Power Resources, Inc., agrees with this conclusion.” http://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1627/ML16274A117.pdf So, Cameco admitted to this occurring for just short of 5 months, however it could have been longer. The supervisor documented radiation contamination control exit surveys, when they were not performed – in other words falsified data. Contamination control exit surveys would be to test the workers for radiation before they leave the site. These were contract workers, which means that they may not have any knowledge of radiation and there won’t be a record of their exposure, or not an accurate one. This acts as a double liability loophole for Cameco. This means that the workers may have tracked radiation materials outside, into their vehicles, to their homes, and anyplace else they went, too.
Cameco has existed since 1988 (28 yrs) and has radioactive roots going back to 1930 and radium mining (86 yrs): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cameco Cameco needed to be fined and disciplined for breaking the law, not given “Alternative Dispute Resolution”.
On October 3rd, the US NRC announced:
“The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has issued a Confirmatory Order to Power Resources, Inc., of Casper, Wyo., documenting actions that the company has agreed to take to ensure it maintains complete and accurate records of radiation surveys of personnel exiting its facilities… The NRC preliminarily determined that a former operations supervisor falsified a record of exit surveys that was supposed to be conducted on Sept. 12, 2013. In fact, the surveys required by NRC regulations were not conducted.” http://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1627/ML16277A500.pdf [WTF? Isn’t this the same as falsification? ] Because their summary was unclear and confusing, it was necessary to go to the longer (and still confusing) account of Cameco’s crimes.
From the longer official version:
“Our August 24, 2016, letter provided you with the results of an investigation conducted by the NRC’s Office of Investigations to determine whether willful violations of NRC requirements occurred at the Power Resources, Inc.’s North Butte satellite facility located in Campbell County, Wyoming. Based on the results of the investigation, the NRC preliminarily determined that a former operations supervisor willfully failed to maintain complete and accurate records of contamination exit surveys. / Our letter also informed you that four apparent violations by Power Resources, Inc. were being considered for escalated enforcement action in accordance with the NRC’s Enforcement Policy… based on OI’s investigative results, the NRC is concerned that willfulness may be associated with the apparent violation involving the failure to maintain accurate records of contamination exit surveys. By
letter dated August 24, 2016, the NRC notified PRI of the results of the investigation and provided an opportunity to: ( 1) provide a response in writing, (2) attend a predecisional enforcement conference, or (3) participate in an ADR mediation session in an effort to resolve these concerns.
The NRC has concluded that a willful violation of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) 40.9(a) occurred between September 12, 2013, and February 6, 2014, when an operations supervisor documented contamination control exit surveys of contract personnel exiting the North Butte satellite facility when, in fact, the exit surveys were not performed. Power Resources, Inc., agrees with this conclusion.” http://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1627/ML16274A117.pdf
Here is where Cornell University enters as a nuclear nursery school teacher provider:
“In response to the NRC’s offer, PRI requested the use of the NRC’s ADR process to resolve differences it had with the NRC. On September 22, 2016, the NRC and PRI met in an ADR session mediated by a professional mediator, arranged through Cornell University’s Institute on Conflict Resolution. The ADR process is one in which a neutral mediator, with no decision-making authority, assists the parties in reaching an agreement on resolving any differences regarding the dispute. This Confirmatory Order is issued pursuant to the agreement reached during the ADR process.” http://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1627/ML16274A117.pdf
This appears abuse of the idea of Alternative Dispute Resolution. Cameco subsidiary Power Resources violated the law. So, why ADR? The promotion of ADR was supposedly to protect the US government from litigation, and not to keep it from enforcing the law: “intended to offer a prompt, expert, and inexpensive means of resolving disputes as an alternative to litigation in the Federal courts“ https://www.adr.gov/pdf/adra.pdf http://www.va.gov/adr/docs/ADRA.pdf
Is this why the only easy way to find up to date US law is from Cornell? Who are these arbiters arranged by Cornell? Students? Interns? Other?
“U.S. Code › Title 28 › Part III › Chapter 44 › § 651
28 U.S. Code § 651 – Authorization of alternative dispute resolution
For purposes of this chapter, an alternative dispute resolution process includes any process or procedure, other than an adjudication by a presiding judge, in which a neutral third party participates to assist in the resolution of issues in controversy, through processes such as early neutral evaluation, mediation, minitrial, and arbitration as provided in sections 654 through 658.” https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/28/651
From the shorter US NRC summary:
“Power Resources will: (1) conduct annual meetings among key management, radiation safety officers, facility managers and other appropriate technical personnel to emphasize the importance of compliance with NRC regulations and ensure the accuracy of records; (2) ensure that it has a qualified member of its health physics staff available at any of its facilities when equipment is being released from a radiologically controlled area to an unrestricted area; and (3) provide additional training for new employees and supplemental annual refresher training.” http://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1627/ML16277A500.pdf
From the longer version – Within the “corrective actions” supposedly taken there are hints that additional Cameco crimes were committed. As stated above, the US NRC mentioned 4 additional ones that they were considering for enhanced enforcement:
“Corrective actions taken by PRI [I.e. Cameco] include:
2. Conducted training for supervisory employees regarding enhanced investigative and documentation techniques for issues that have the potential to include employee wrongdoing, including deliberate misconduct, falsification of documents, and harassment, retaliation, and chilling effects at the Smith Ranch, North Butte, and Crow Butte facilities.
3. Conducted training for supervisory employees regarding maintenance of a safety conscious work environment, including employee protection, barriers to a safety conscious work environment, chilling effects, and best practices. The safety conscious work environment training included an interactive discussion of multiple case studies and examples relevant to the PRI operational facilities.
5. Conducted immediate refresher training on requirements for free release surveys, contractor training, and documentation of daily monitoring records for the North Butte Mine Manager, Operations Supervisor, and Safety Health Environment and Quality Specialist III.
6. Added training specific to the proper use of daily monitoring records to the PRI annual refresher training and to the new hire/contractor radiation training.
“7. Added training on processes involving free release surveys, personnel qualified to perform free release surveys of equipment, and on the use of specific forms to the PRI annual refresher training and new hire/contractor radiation training.
8. To ensure the effectiveness of the training, examination questions regarding free release surveys were added to the test that all personnel must pass in order to work unescorted in radiologically-controlled areas at all PRI facilities“. http://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1627/ML16274A117.pdf NOTICE HOW VERY BASIC THE TRAINING AND ADDED TRAINING IS. THERE IS EVEN MORE. CAMECO HAS EXISTED SINCE 1988, 28 YEARS AND A PREDECESSOR OF CAMECO STARTED IN 1930, 86 YEARS AGO. IF THEY DON’T KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING THEN THEY SHOULD BE KICKED OUT OF THE US. IF THEY DO THEY SHOULD BE MEGA-FINED AND KICKED OUT OF THE US.
“In accordance with 10 CFR 2.202 and 10 CFR 2.309, any person adversely affected by this Confirmatory Order, other than PRI, may request a hearing within 30 calendar days of the date of issuance of this Confirmatory Order. Where good cause is shown, consideration will be given to extending the time to request a hearing. A request for extension of time must be made in writing to the Director, Office of Enforcement. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555, and include a statement of good cause for the extension.” http://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1627/ML16274A117.pdf More details at link and at bottom of this post. While they say that they then sound like it is less. Who knows? But, you can always complain at anytime by phone or in writing, if so inspired.
North Butte facility now is licensed as a satellite to the Smith Ranch facility.
“By 2006, the only active uranium mine in Wyoming was the Smith Ranch-Highland in-situ leaching operation in the Powder River Basin, owned by Power Resources, Inc., a subsidiary of Cameco. The mine produced 907 tonnes of yellowcake (uranium oxide concentrate, U3O8) in 2006, making it the leading uranium producer in the United States“. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uranium_mining_in_Wyoming
“In accordance with 10 CFR 2.202 and 10 CFR 2.309, any person adversely affected by this Confirmatory Order, other than PRI, may request a hearing within 30 calendar days of the date of issuance of this Confirmatory Order. Where good cause is shown, consideration will be given to extending the time to request a hearing. A request for extension of time must be made in writing to the Director, Office of Enforcement. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555, and include a statement of good cause for the extension.
All documents filed in NRC adjudicatory proceedings, including a request for hearing, a petition for leave to intervene, any motion or other document filed in the proceeding prior to the submission of a request for hearing or petition to intervene, and documents filed by interested governmental entities participating under 10 CFR 2.315(c), must be filed in accordance with the NRC’s E-Filing rule (72 FR 49139; August 28, 2007, as amended at 77 FR 46562, August 3, 2012). The E-Filing process requires participants to submit and serve all adjudicatory documents over the internet, or in some cases to mail copies on electronic storage media.
Participants may not submit paper copies of their filings unless they seek an exemption in accordance with the procedures described below.
To comply with the procedural requirements of E-Filing, at least 10 days prior to the filing deadline, the participant should contact the Office of the Secretary by e-mail at email@example.com, or by telephone at (301) 415-1677, to (1) request a digital identification (ID) certificate, which allows the participant (or its counsel or representative) to digitally sign documents and access the E-Submittal server for any proceeding in which it is …” http://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1627/ML16274A117.pdf
Top image based on the following: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:There%27s_a_big_cry-baby_in_the_moon.jpg