ComEd, Dept. of Justice, Exelon, fleecing of America, FOIA, Free Speech, hidden cost of nuclear waste, Holtec, Holtec hides info from government, Holtec hiding information, India, Kris P. Singh, Kris Pal Singh, New Mexico, nuclear energy, nuclear power, nuclear waste, nuclear waste liability, public safety, Spent Fuel, spent fuel canisters, Spent Fuel Casks, spent fuel system, taxpayer fleece, US attorneys, US DOJ, US taxpayer
Holtec should not be able to use a highly regulated and publicly funded industry to make profits, but to refuse to provide information about the cask business….”
“COMMONWEALTH EDISON COMPANY, Plaintiff, v. No. 98-621C Judge Hewitt UNITED STATES, Defendant, Case 1:98-cv-00621-ECH , Document 288 , Filed 03/12/2004“, Page 6 of 9 http://www.plainsite.org/dockets/download.html?id=14565388&z=24a65e24. Kris Pal Singh-Holtec’s hiding of information from the government and the public is another big reason they should not be allowed to store America’s nuclear waste, and is probably related to the poor quality of the spent fuel casks: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2018/07/26/facts-on-how-holtec-spent-nuclear-fuel-canisters-are-substandard-and-should-not-be-used-parked-or-buried-anywhere-comment-by-july-30th-1159-pm-et/ Comment here on Holtec International HI-STORE Consolidated Interim Storage Facility by Jul 30 2018, at 11:59 PM ET, ID: NRC-2018-0052-0058 https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=NRC-2018-0052 Documents here: https://www.nrc.gov/waste/spent-fuel-storage/cis/hi/hi-app-docs.html Note that Holtec is once again hiding things: It has omitted 143 pages regarding cultural properties in their EIS. See: http://www.beyondnuclear.org/storage/kk-links/7%205%2018%20FOIA%20cultural%20properties%20redactions%20FINAL.pdf
Holtec is privately owned and so we don’t even know for certain who owns Holtec and it’s virtually impossible to get information on them, apart from their web site. Even US government attorneys were unable. How can a company about which almost nothing is really known and which hides information from both the public and US attorneys be allowed to handle US nuclear waste? It is generally believed that Holtec is owned by a man from India named Kris Pal Singh. We also know that he claims to be a “minority” business so that he can get government set-aside contracts. He appears to have leveraged this into a virtual monopoly on high level nuclear waste storage. There is a Holtec in India which pre-dates Holtec USA. Doug Kimmelman’s Energy Solutions is a similarly mysterious private company which handles nuclear waste.
Holtec loves to hide the devil only knows what behind claims of “proprietary info” as if anyone would want to copy their crappy, substandard, nuclear waste cans. Unlike copyright, patents expire after 20 years. Holtec letter with hiding info excuses: https://www.nrc.gov/docs/ML1521/ML15219A586.pdf They also try to intimidate people from fair use of documents submitted for public evaluation by putting copyright claims on each page, even when the page only has materials produced by the US government. As can be seen, they are as nasty as hell and why people are putting up with them and their crappy, flimsy, nuclear waste cans is unfathomable.
As USattorneys noted:
“Holtec should not be able to use a highly regulated and publicly funded industry to make profits, but to refuse to provide information about the cask business when the information it possesses about cask costs are an integral part of the damages claimed by the plaintiff in this case. When faced with damages of the magnitude of those being claimed by ComEd, it is imperative that we determine the reasonableness of these claims against the Federal Treasury.” “COMMONWEALTH EDISON COMPANY, Plaintiff, v. No. 98-621C Judge Hewitt UNITED STATES, Defendant, Case 1:98-cv-00621-ECH , Document 288 , Filed 03/12/2004“, Page 6 of 9 http://www.plainsite.org/dockets/download.html?id=14565388&z=24a65e24
What is Holtec hiding? Cheap costs with huge profits?
Holtec Spent Fuel Canisters-Casks at Diablo Canyon
Each US Nuclear power station will require around 4 spent fuel canisters-casks per year. Holtec apparently sells them for at least $1 million each, and probably much more, especially in 2018. The maximum given by GAO in their report was $1.85 million for the casks and canisters alone, which with inflation would be close to $2 million in 2018. However, Holtec’s underground variant would be more “considerably more” costly than its above ground variant, according to testimony. For the additional costs, see GAO and other testimony further below.
In the context of lawsuits against the US government, who promised to take spent nuclear fuel off the hands of the utilities, and did not, Holtec refused to give information related to its spent nuclear fuel canisters-casks.
We can find no documentation indicating that Holtec ever cooperated with the US government on this matter.
Rather, it appears that the US government “settled” for well over $1 billion with the various utilities, many or most of whom use Holtec casks. The quality of Holtec spent fuel casks appears questionable and decreasing over time, but the US taxpayer must pay up just the same.
Exelon subsidiary, “ComEd is claiming damages of hundreds of million of dollars, based almost exclusively upon estimates of what it expects to pay in the future for casks and ISFSI construction“. Page 1 of 9
“Only an economic analysis of Holtec’s costs can determine if the future costs asserted by ComEd as damages are reasonable. Only Holtec can provide information about its costs and profits in producing these casks… In addition to documents regarding Holtec’s costs to design, manufacture, engineer, and license its products, we are also seeking documents and information about the prices that Holtec has charged to each of its nuclear utility clients over time, again in an effort to determine if the estimated costs that ComEd is assuming in its damages claims are reasonable. By analyzing the amounts that Holtec has charged for these products over the course of its 16 years in business, we can determine whether ComEd’s estimates are reasonable.“Case 1:98-cv-00621-ECH, Document 288, Filed 03/12/2004, p. 5
http://www.plainsite.org/dockets/download.html?id=14565388&z=24a65e24 (Emphasis added)
According to a 2014 GAO report: “Since 1998, owners and generators of spent nuclear fuel have sued DOE primarily in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims for failing to meet its obligations under the contracts that DOE had entered into with them. The Department of Justice reported that as of March 2014, 90 such lawsuits had been filed. As of the end of fiscal year 2013, the federal government had reimbursed owners and generators about $3.7 billion in connection with such lawsuits. 4 The reimbursements come from the U.S. Department of Treasury’s judgment fund,5 In 2008, DOE submitted a license application for a repository at Yucca Mountain to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), which is financed by U.S. taxpayers. DOE estimates that future federal liability for litigation related to storing spent nuclear fuel will amount to $21.4 billion through 2071” http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/666454.pdf
In 2009, Diablo spent fuel storage casks (from Holtec) cost more than $1 million each. The first phase of loading 8 Holtec casks cost an estimated $100 million. 03.16.09 “WITH NO LONG-TERM SOLUTION, NUCLEAR PALLBEARERS BURY WASTE IN AMERICA’S BACKYARD” http://www.wired.com/2009/03/nuclear/
The canisters and the casks appear to be sold separately and thus the price for the casks-canisters alone started at around $1 million in 2014 and went as high as $1.85 million, which is $1.99 million in 2018 with inflation. Additional, related costs are discussed, below.
This is from the 2014 GAO report: “Appendix V: Process and Costs of Transferring Spent Nuclear Fuel from Wet to Dry Storage
1. Nuclear power reactor and spent nuclear fuel pools Nuclear power reactor and spent nuclear fuel pools—Spent nuclear fuel typically cools for at least 5 years in a pool before a canister ($700,000 to $1.5 million) is placed in the pool, filled with spent nuclear fuel, removed from the pool, and dried. A reusable steel transfer cask ($1.5 million to $3 million) provides shielding for nearby workers as the spent nuclear fuel is transferred from the pool and placed into either a vertical or horizontal dry storage system. The process of transferring spent nuclear fuel, excluding the canister, transfer cask, and storage system costs $150,000 to $550,000. Then the canister is placed into either a vertical or horizontal dry storage system.
2. Transporter Transporter— For vertical storage, a crawler-type transporter ($1 million to $1.5 million) carries the entire canister and storage cask in a vertical orientation to a storage pad. For horizontal storage, a tractor with a transfer trailer carries the canister in a reusable transfer cask in a horizontal orientation ($1.5 million to $3 million) to the horizontal module.
3. Vertical storage cask/horizontal storage module Vertical storage cask/horizontal storage module—Utilities typically choose either a vertical storage system ($250,000 to $350,000 per cask) or a horizontal storage system ($500,000 to $600,000 per module) for a particular site.
4. Safety and security systems and annual operations Safety and security systems and annual operations—Design, licensing, and construction of the dry storage facility and safety and security systems ($5.5 million to $42 million). Annual operations include costs of security, operations, and maintenance cost. Annual operations at an operating reactor site: $100,000 to $300,000 and at a shutdown reactor site: $2.5 million to $6.5 million” Source: GAO analysis of Nuclear Energy Institute data. | GAO-15-141. http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/666454.pdf
Similar cost estimates given in 2015 testimony by Donna Gilmore regarding replacements:
“Procure & Fabricate Fuel Canisters: $1,063,625
Unload and Dispose of Damaged Canister: $1,904,105
Deliver and Load Replacement Canister: $1,904,105
Total Per Unit = $4,871,835” http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PublishedDocs/Efile/G000/M155/K944/155944770.PDF
“Q9 Do you have any other updates to provide at this time?
A 9 Yes. In my June 30, 2014 testimony, I discussed alternatives to the Second ISFSI storage pad considered by Entergy VY . One alternative considered was to use the Holtec HI- 14 STORM 100U, an underground storage design by Holtec that was licensed by the NRC in December of 2009. At the time of my testimony, one facility planned to use an underground system. At this time, there are two facilities that plan to use or have begun to install underground systems. One facility, the Callaway Nuclear Plant, is located in Fulton, Missouri and has significantly different site conditions than the VY Station. Specifically, an area adjacent to the operating plant had been previously excavated for purposes of installing a second nuclear unit. The second unit was subsequently cancelled, leaving the excavated area vacant. Utilizing that area will greatly facilitate the installation of an underground system. The second facility is the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (“San Onofre”), a two-reactor site located in Southern California. It is my understanding that San Onofre selected an underground system based on site-specific conditions that are not applicable to the VY Station, such as site space limitations and tsunami protection, as well as commercial considerations.
Q10. Does the experience of other facilities change the evaluation of the Holtec 100U System for the VY Station?
A10. No. The experience of other facilities substantiates the conclusion that the cost to install an underground dry cask storage system at Vermont Yankee would be considerably more expensive than the above ground HI-STORM 100 system. Additionally, I understand that utilities suing the U.S. Department of Energy (“DOE”) for breach of its contracts to remove spent fuel from their sites are required to take reasonable steps to mitigate the damages incurred as a result of the breach. It is therefore unlikely that the cost of a spent fuel storage system that is significantly more costly than another available alternative can be recovered from DOE. Entergy VY continues to believe that the HI-STORM 100U system not only would be significantly more difficult and substantially more expensive to install than the above-ground HI-STORM 100 system, but also carries significant schedule and cost risks associated with an unproven system.” Excerpted from “Petition of Entergy VY for Second Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation Supplemental Prefiled Testimony of George Thomas PSB Docket No. 8300 May 11, 2015” Page 7 to 8 http://vydecommissioning.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Supplemental-Prefiled-Testimony-of-George-Thomas.pdf
“Exelon, Federal Government Reach Agreement Over Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Costs“: Aug 10, 2004, 01:00 ET from Exelon Corporation
“Under the agreement, Exelon will receive $80 million immediately in gross
reimbursements for storage costs already incurred, with additional amounts
reimbursed annually for future costs. If a national repository opens by 2010
and DOE begins accepting spent nuclear fuel as the department has said, gross
reimbursements to Exelon would eventually total about $300 million.”
Brad Fagg: “led Morgan Lewis teams that have won the industry an aggregate of well over $1 billion in judgments and settlements.” http://www.uscfc.uscourts.gov/brad-fagg
This appears a “deal”, however, compared to the 1.8$ billion for 2017 and $1.9 billion for 2016 that the US DOE uses to dump foreign nuclear waste upon itself in the name of nuclear non-proliferation. Wherever does a country so in debt get this money from? http://energy.gov/fy-2017-department-energy-budget-request-fact-sheet