Seabrook Nuclear Plant’s Relicensing Looks Likely Despite Extra Hearing Tonight

Feb 13, 2019

Credit Annie Ropeik / NHPR

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission will meet with Seacoast residents Wednesday night, ahead of an anticipated re-licensing for Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant.

Regulators set this hearing after facing backlash in January for saying they planned to grant Seabrook owner NextEra's request for a 20-year license extension.

That approval would have come before the agency's independent law panel holds a hearing later this year on safety concerns about cracks in concrete at the plant.

Joe Donoghue is the NRC's acting director for re-licensing. He says they'd expected to hold that hearing before finalizing the new license, but their safety reviews were done sooner than expected.

"The reason we're having this meeting is, frankly, we failed to communicate adequately with all the stakeholders here on that change in plan,” he told reporters Tuesday.

He says they will look into any new information residents raise at the new meeting, but the license extension will still likely be granted before the safety hearing.

Wednesday’s meeting in Hampton starts at 6 p.m.