Regulatory Oversight Report for Canadian Nuclear Power Plants: 2016

Table of contents

Regulatory Oversight Report for Canadian Nuclear Power Plants: 2016

Executive summary

Each year, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) produces a report on the safety performance of Canada’s nuclear power plants (NPPs). This Regulatory Oversight Report for Canadian Nuclear Power Plants: 2016 provides the CNSC staff’s assessment of the Canadian nuclear power industry’s safety performance during 2016 and details the progress of regulatory issues and initiatives up to April 30, 2017.

In 2016:

  • four NPPs had operating licences
  • nineteen reactor units were operational
  • Pickering units 2 and 3 remained in safe storage

Information on the NPP at Gentilly-2, which is proceeding toward decommissioning, is not included in this report.

Documents referenced in this regulatory oversight report are available to the public on request.

Overall performance highlights

Through compliance verification inspections, reviews and assessments, CNSC staff concluded that the NPPs operated safely during 2016. The evaluations of all findings for the safety and control areas (SCAs) show that, overall, NPP licensees made adequate provisions for the protection of the environment, the health and safety of persons, and the maintenance of national security, and took the measures required to implement Canada’s international obligations on the peaceful use of nuclear energy.

The following observations support the conclusion of safe operation:

  • There were no serious process failures at the NPPs.
  • Radiation doses to the public were well below the regulatory limit.
  • Radiation doses to workers at the NPPs were below the regulatory limits.
  • The frequency and severity of non-radiological injuries to workers were very low.
  • No radiological releases to the environment from the NPPs exceeded the regulatory limits.
  • Licensees met applicable requirements related to Canada’s international obligations.
  • No NPP events above Level 0 on the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale were reported to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Table 1 summarizes the 2016 safety performance of Canada’s NPPs. It presents the SCA ratings for each NPP, the industry average ratings for each SCA and the integrated plant ratings that summarize overall safety performance. The SCA rating categories are “fully satisfactory” (FS), “satisfactory” (SA), “below expectations” (BE) and “unacceptable” (UA).

A satisfactory rating indicates the licensee’s safety and control measures are effective, while a fully satisfactory rating indicates they are highly effective. A below expectations rating indicates the safety and control measures are marginally ineffective, while an unacceptable rating indicates the safety and control measures are significantly ineffective.

Table 1: Canadian NPP safety performance ratings for 2016
Safety and control area Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average*
Management system SA SA SA SA SA SA
Human performance management SA SA SA SA SA SA
Operating performance FS FS FS FS SA FS
Safety analysis FS FS FS FS FS FS
Physical design SA SA SA SA SA SA
Fitness for service SA SA SA SA SA SA
Radiation protection FS FS FS SA SA SA
Conventional health and safety FS SA SA FS FS FS
Environmental protection SA SA SA SA SA SA
Emergency management and fire protection SA SA SA SA SA SA
Waste management FS FS FS FS SA FS
Security SA SA SA SA SA SA
Safeguards and non-proliferation SA SA SA SA SA SA
Packaging and transport SA SA SA SA SA SA
Integrated plant rating FS SA FS FS SA SA

*The industry average of all operating NPPs in Canada

All NPPs in Canada received SCA ratings of either fully satisfactory or satisfactory in 2016. There were 19 fully satisfactory SCA ratings across the NPPs, the same number reported in 2015.

The industry average in 2016 was satisfactory for 10 SCAs and fully satisfactory for four SCAs. The average increased by one fully satisfactory SCA (for “safety analysis”) from 2015 to 2016.

None of the NPPs received an integrated plant rating of below expectations or unacceptable.

Performance highlights of each NPP

Table 2 summarizes the safety performance highlights of Canada’s NPPs from 2015 to 2016. The presented SCAs have remained fully satisfactory, decreased from fully satisfactory in 2015 to satisfactory in 2016, or increased from satisfactory in 2015 to fully satisfactory in 2016. SCA ratings that have remained satisfactory from 2015 to 2016 are not included in this table.

Table 2: Canadian NPP safety performance highlights from 2015 to 2016
Safety and control area Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau
Year 2015 2016 2015 2016 2015 2016 2015 2016 2015 2016
Operating performance FS FS2 FS FS2 FS FS2 FS FS2
Safety analysis SA FS1 SA FS1 FS FS2 FS FS2 SA FS1
Radiation protection SA FS1 SA1 FS FS FS2 FS SA3
Conventional health and safety FS FS2 FS SA3 FS SA3 FS FS2 FS FS2
Waste management FS FS2 FS FS2 FS FS2 FS FS2
Security FS SA3 FS SA3
Integrated plant rating FS FS2 FS SA3 FS FS2 FS FS2

Legend

  1. Increase in SCA rating from 2015 to 2016
  2. No change in FS rating from 2015 to 2016
  3. Decrease in SCA rating from 2015 to 2016

1 Overview

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) is the federal government body that regulates the use of nuclear energy and materials to protect health, safety, security and the environment; implements Canada’s international commitments on the peaceful use of nuclear energy, and disseminates objective scientific, technical and regulatory information related to the above to the public and Indigenous peoples.Notes de bas de page 1 Licensees are responsible for operating their facilities safely and are required to implement programs that make adequate provisions for meeting legislation and regulatory requirements.

Each year, CNSC staff assess the overall safety performance of the Canadian nuclear power industry. They look at the industry as a whole and the performance of each nuclear power plant (NPP). This assessment is summarized in this document.

The Regulatory Oversight Report for Canadian Nuclear Power Plants: 2016 summarizes the assessment of NPPs against the licensing basis for each NPP. The licensing basis is defined in the CNSC information document titled Licensing Basis Objective and Definition [1]; it comprises the legal requirements of the Nuclear Safety and Control Act (NSCA), the regulations made under the NSCA, the conditions set out in operating licences, applicable standards and regulatory documents, and the safety and control measures in licence applications and licensees’ documents. This assessment is supported by information obtained through inspections, site surveillance activities, field rounds, document assessments, desktop reviews and safety performance indicator data.

This report makes comparisons and shows trends where possible. It also highlights emerging regulatory issues and development activities at the industry level and for each licensed station. The information given in this area includes updates on licensing, licence conditions handbooks (LCHs), projects and initiatives, and communications with the public and Indigenous peoples. This report includes:

  • an overview of the nuclear power industry throughout Canada
  • the safety performance assessments and ratings for the overall nuclear power industry and for each licensed station, covering the 2016 calendar year
  • detailed information on licensing and other regulatory issues pertaining to the industry as a whole, as well as each licensed station, for the period of January 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017

This report also contains a number of updates on:

  • the new nuclear project at the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station
  • the Independent Environmental Monitoring Program
  • periodic safety reviews
  • the condition monitoring for pressure tube degradation
  • the status of completion of probabilistic safety assessments
  • radio interoperability in the Durham region
  • plant data transfer systems from nuclear generating stations to the CNSC Emergency Operations Centre
  • the Ontario Provincial Nuclear Emergency Response Plan

Also included are eight appendices, a glossary and a list of references. Appendices A, B and C provide general information related to the CNSC’s regulatory oversight of NPPs in Canada. Appendix D provides information on the research and development programs of the licensees and the CNSC that aim to enhance nuclear safety. It also describes some of the safety issues that drive the research programs – and which are also subject to regulatory oversight. Appendices E, F and G provide detailed, supplementary information specific to each NPP. New to this year’s report is appendix H, which provides a list of all compliance verification inspections conducted during the calendar year for each NPP.

Documents referenced in this report are available to the public upon request.

1.1 Canada’s nuclear power plants

There are four NPPs with operating licences in Canada. They are located in two provinces and operated by three discrete licensees. These NPPs range in size from one to eight power reactors, all of which are of the CANDU (CANada Deuterium Uranium) design. This design was originally developed by the Canadian Crown corporation Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL), and is licensed to the SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. through its wholly owned subsidiary, Candu Energy Inc. A total of 19 reactor units were operational in 2016. Pickering units 2 and 3 remain in safe storage.

As reported in the Regulatory Oversight Report for Canadian Nuclear Power Plants: 2015, future regulatory oversight reporting on the Gentilly-2 Nuclear Generating Station, including for the 2016 calendar year, will not be included in this report.

In addition to showing the geographic location of each NPP in Canada, figure 1 provides data for each plant, including the generating capacity of the reactor units, their initial startup dates, the names of the licensees, and the expiry dates of the operating licences.

Figure 1: Locations and data for operating Canadian NPPs

NPP Licensee Location State of reactor units Gross capacity per unit (MWe) Startup1 Licence expiry
BruceA2 Bruce Power Inc. Tiverton, ON Four operating 831 1977 May 31, 2020
BruceB2 Bruce Power Inc. Tiverton, ON Four operating 872 1984 May 31, 2020
Darlington Ontario Power Generation Inc. Darlington, ON Four operating 935 1990 November 30, 2025
Pickering Ontario Power Generation Inc. Pickering, ON Six operating, two defuelled and in safe storage

Units 1,4: 542

Units 5–8: 540

Units 1,4: 1971

Units5–8: 1982

August 31, 2018
Point Lepreau New Brunswick Power Corp. Lepreau, NB One operating 705 1982 June 30, 2017

1 For the multi-unit NPPs, this indicates the startup of the first reactor unit.

2 Bruce A and Bruce B are licensed as one multi-unit NPP consisting of eight operating reactor units.

1.2 Regulatory oversight

The CNSC regulates the nuclear sector in Canada, including NPPs, through licensing, reporting, verification and enforcement. For each NPP, CNSC staff conduct inspections, assessments, reviews and evaluations of licensee programs, processes and safety performance.

The CNSC uses a risk-informed regulatory approach, applying resources and regulatory oversight commensurate with the risk associated with the regulated activity. The CNSC’s regulatory effort, from a licensing and compliance perspective, is derived from this risk-informed regulatory approach.

The Power Reactor Regulatory Program involves the direct efforts of approximately 203 CNSC staff, plus support from other members of the organization. This total effort includes approximately 37 CNSC employees who are located onsite at all NPPs with operating reactors. These employees perform inspections and audits, monitor safety performance and provide regulatory oversight.

1.3 Safety and Control Area Framework

CNSC staff use the Safety and Control Area Framework (SCA Framework) in evaluating each licensee’s safety performance. The SCA Framework includes 14 SCAs, each of which is subdivided into specific areas that define its key components. (See appendix B for a complete list of the SCAs and specific areas used in this report.)

The SCAs are grouped into three functional areas:

  • management
  • facilities and equipment
  • core control processes

In response to RD/GD-99.3, Public Information and Disclosure [2], licensees implemented information and disclosure programs. The primary goal of each program, as it relates to the licensed activities, is to ensure that information related to health, safety, security and the environment, and other issues associated with the lifecycle of nuclear facilities, are effectively communicated to the public and Indigenous peoples. Where the public or Indigenous peoples have indicated an interest to know, the program includes a commitment to, and protocol for, ongoing, timely communication of information related to the licensed facility during the course of the licence period.

1.4 Safety performance assessment

This report presents safety performance ratings for each SCA at each NPP. The ratings are based on findings generated during compliance verification program activities. The findings are categorized into appropriate SCAs and assessed against a set of CNSC-developed performance objectives and criteria.

The assessment presented in this report includes an integrated plant rating for each NPP.

The rating is a general measure of the overall safety performance at each NPP. It is determined by combining the ratings of the 14 individual SCAs. (See appendix C.2 for a comprehensive description of the CNSC NPP rating methodology.)

In generating the performance ratings, CNSC staff considered 1,079 findings. The vast majority of the findings (i.e., 99.6 percent) were assessed as being either compliant, negligible or of low safety significance. In other words, they had a positive, insignificant or small negative impact on the assessment of the specific area. The remainder (i.e., less than 0.4 percent) had a negative effect on the assessment of a specific area. (These findings of medium safety significance are discussed in section 3 of this report.)

1.5 Licensing

CNSC licensing of NPPs is comprehensive and covers 14 SCAs as defined in appendix B.

The CNSC assesses licence applications to ensure that the proposed safety measures are technically and scientifically sound, that all application requirements are met, and that the appropriate safety systems will be in place to protect people and the environment. The licensing process offers significant opportunities for participation of the public and Indigenous peoples, including in Commission hearings and via community meetings that are open to the general public and webcast live.

Each of the NPPs described in this report has been granted a nuclear power reactor operating licence (PROL) by the Commission. The period of a PROL has typically been five years, but the CNSC is transitioning to PROLs with longer periods (anticipated to be 10 years) in conjunction with the implementation of a comprehensive periodic safety review (PSR) process in preparation for the licence renewal. The PSR process is described in detail in section 2.2.2.

The PROLs are relatively similar for the four NPPs and contain standardized licence conditions that are organized according to the SCAs. For example, under the radiation protection SCA, each PROL has a condition that requires the licensee to implement and maintain a radiation protection program. The detailed compliance verification criteria for the radiation protection program are found in the licence conditions handbook (LCH) for each NPP. Each handbook is written by CNSC staff and contains detailed compliance verification criteria for all the conditions in the PROL. The LCHs are consistent with the licensing basis (described above) for each NPP and establish the basis for the compliance verification program during the licence period.

CNSC staff are currently standardizing LCHs for the operating NPPs. This involves the gradual adoption or adaption of templates, generic text, and common guidance for writing and revising LCHs that apply to all CNSC licences that have LCHs. This work will be conducted gradually for NPPs, beginning with the LCH for the NPP at Point Lepreau.

On June 30, 2016, NB Power applied to have its PROL for Point Lepreau renewed for a period of five years. In the second half of 2016, CNSC staff assessed the licence renewal application and a two-part public hearing was held in January and May 2017. In June 2017, the Commission renewed the PROL for the period July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2022.

CNSC staff are revising the draft LCH for Point Lepreau in preparation for the anticipated beginning of the next licence period. This work includes the adoption of the standardized instructions for writing CNSC LCHs. Since the CNSC’s standardized instructions are relatively well aligned with the contents of current NPP LCHs, the revision will be similar to the draft presented to the Commission during the Part 1 hearing for the Point Lepreau licence renewal.

1.6 Compliance verification program

The safety performance of NPPs presented in this report was determined using the results of activities planned through the CNSC compliance verification program (CVP). In 2016, these activities included surveillance and monitoring conducted by full-time, onsite inspectors, inspections supported by subject matter experts, and desktop reviews by a wide range of technical specialists. These activities were performed through an effective combination of document review, workplace observation and worker interviews. All compliance verification activities were fully documented and recorded the objective evidence that forms the basis of the compliance results.

Table 3 shows the compliance activities conducted by CNSC staff per station and for the industry as a whole. There were more than 16,400 person-days of effort by CNSC staff in conducting inspections, event reviews and other compliance activities in 2016. This effort was comparable to 2015.

Table 3: Compliance activities for stations and industry for 2016, person days
Compliance activities effort Bruce A and B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry total
Inspections 1,226 1,422 1,156 785 4,589
Event reviews 192 114 118 72 496
Other activities* 3,632 1,947 3,659 2,136 11,374
Total effort 5,050 3,483 4,933 2,993 16,459

* Includes verification activities such as station walkdowns and reviews of licensee-submitted documents and reports

The five-year trend in compliance activities is given in appendix A. All inspections completed in 2016 are listed in appendix H.

At its foundation, the CVP consists of a collection of compliance verification activities covering the 14 SCAs conducted with varying frequency over a rolling five-year period. This baseline is the minimum set of activities needed to systematically and comprehensively verify whether licensees are complying with all of the safety and control measures established as the basis for the licensing of their stations.

Between 80 and 100 applicable compliance verification activities are selected from the baseline for the year’s compliance plan. Additional reactive compliance verification activities are added. These focus on site-specific matters and known or potential licensee challenges. The annual plan is then validated by CNSC technical specialists and licensing staff using a risk-informed approach that considers the status, performance history, and conditions and challenges of each station to ensure appropriate regulatory oversight and safety performance evaluation. Additional compliance verification activities may also be added as necessary during the year in response to new or emerging licensee challenges.

The goal is to ensure that the CVP for NPPs is always timely, risk-informed, performance-based and responsive to situations at individual stations.

During 2015–16, the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development completed a performance audit of the CNSC’s oversight of the nuclear sector looking at the April 2013 to March 2015 period. Report 1—Inspection of Nuclear Power Plants—Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission was released in October 2016. The report focused on the documentation of the CNSC’s processes for planning and recording site inspections to verify compliance at NPPs, the allocation of resources to support site inspections, and confirmation of measures to correct identified non-compliances. The major findings of the report were that the CNSC:

  • could not show that it had an adequate, systematic, risk-informed process for planning site inspections at NPPs
  • did not always follow its own inspection procedures
  • followed up to confirm that NPPs corrected compliance violations the CNSC had identified, but did not always issue final reports on time

The CNSC accepted the findings of the audit and implemented a corrective action plan to address five recommendations related to improving the documentation of the NPP site inspection program.

Improvements implemented by CNSC staff included:

  • improving documentation of the site inspection planning process
  • issuing detailed criteria for when to conduct Type I program inspections
  • obtaining management approval of all inspection guides
  • introducing tracking mechanisms to ensure that lessons learned are documented at the completion of each inspection
  • maintaining management quarterly reviews of the timeliness of delivery of final inspection reports

The CNSC implemented four of the recommendations by September 30, 2016. The final recommendation – on inspection planning – was addressed by March 31, 2017.

1.7 Enforcement

The CNSC uses a graduated approach to enforcement to encourage and compel compliance, and deter future non-compliances.

When non-compliance (or continued non-compliance) has been identified, CNSC staff assess the significance of the non-compliance and determine the appropriate enforcement action based on the CNSC’s graduated approach to enforcement. Each enforcement action is a discrete and independent response to non-compliance.

Measures used to encourage or compel compliance and deter further non-compliances include:

  • informing licensees
  • issuing written notices
  • making requests under the General Nuclear Safety Regulations section 12(2)
  • issuing orders
  • increasing regulatory scrutiny
  • taking licensing actions
  • issuing administrative monetary penalties
  • decertifying persons or equipment
  • prosecution

Enforcement actions may be applied independently or in combination with other actions.

Regulatory judgment must be applied, and multiple factors taken into account, to determine the most appropriate enforcement strategy for any given situation. If the initial enforcement action does not result in timely compliance, other enforcement actions will be used.

1.8 Reporting requirements

In April 2014, the Commission approved REGDOC-3.1.1, Reporting Requirements for Nuclear Power Plants [3], to replace S-99, Reporting Requirements for Operating Nuclear Power Plants [4]. This new regulatory document was implemented on January 1, 2015, through an amendment to the individual NPP operating licences. This report therefore refers to REGDOC-3.1.1 for licensee reporting to the CNSC.

As described in REGDOC-3.1.1, all operating NPPs in Canada are required to submit to the CNSC the following regularly scheduled reports:

  • quarterly report on safety performance indicators
  • quarterly report on NPP pressure boundaries
  • quarterly report on NPP personnel
  • quarterly report on operational security
  • annual report on environmental protection
  • annual report on research and development
  • annual report on risk and reliability
  • annual report on fuel monitoring and inspection

Other scheduled specific periodic reports include:

  • updates to facility descriptions and final safety analysis report
  • probabilistic safety assessment
  • site environmental risk assessment
  • station security report
  • proposed decommissioning plan

REGDOC-3.1.1 also states that operating NPPs must submit to the CNSC reports on any unplanned situations and events. These reports are posted by the licensees on their respective websites:

  • OPG
  • Bruce Power
  • NB Power

During 2016, NPP licensees reported to CNSC staff on 248 events, and submitted 78 scheduled reports as a result of the requirements of REGDOC-3.1.1. None of the event reports resulted in findings of medium or high safety significance; all were either low safety significant, negligible or compliant. Two events were reported to the Commission as event initial reports in 2016. (See sections 2.2.4 and 3 for more details.)

2 Industry safety performance and regulatory developments

This section presents details of the industry’s safety performance and other regulatory developments.

The industry safety performance portion of this report is found in section 2.1. It provides CNSC staff’s integrated assessment of the safety performance of the industry for 2016 in each of the safety and control areas (SCAs), including highlights of generic issues and observations. The overall performance of the industry is determined by calculating an industry average rating for each SCA.

CNSC staff evaluated how well licensees’ programs met regulatory requirements and expectations, contributed to protect overall health, safety, security and the environment, and helped to implement Canada’s international commitments on the peaceful use of nuclear energy. The evaluations are based on findings made throughout the year during compliance verification inspections, desktop reviews, field rounds and follow-ups on licensee progress on enforcement actions. To be considered in this evaluation, the findings must have been communicated to the affected licensee by February 2017. The evaluations are categorized according to the following 14 SCAs:

  • management system
  • human performance management
  • operating performance
  • safety analysis
  • physical design
  • fitness for service
  • radiation protection
  • conventional health and safety
  • environmental protection
  • emergency management and fire protection
  • waste management
  • security
  • safeguards and non-proliferation
  • packaging and transport

The SCA definitions, performance objectives and specific areas are given in appendixB. The definitions of the performance ratings and the rating methodology used in this report can be found in appendixC.

CNSC and World Association of Nuclear Operators performance indicators are included in this section to illustrate various trends. CNSC safety performance indicators (SPIs) are defined in REGDOC-3.1.1, Reporting Requirements for Nuclear Power Plants[3]. Note that, while useful for trending the performance of an individual station, comparing nuclear power plant (NPP) data between stations in any particular year is difficult. Many factors – such as the number of operating units, design, unit capacity or operation – contribute to differences in SPI data.

Detailed information on various regulatory developments and issues for the nuclear power industry can be found in section 2.2. The reporting period for section 2.2 is from January 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017, unless noted otherwise.

2.1 Overall safety assessment

2.1.1 Management system

This SCA covers the framework that establishes the processes and programs required to ensure that an organization achieves its safety objectives, continuously monitors its performance against those objectives, and fosters a healthy safety culture. The industry average for management system was “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the management system SCA at NPPs met applicable regulatory requirements.

Management system ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry total
SA SA SA SA SA SA

Management system encompasses the following specific areas:

  • management system
  • organization
  • performance assessment, improvement and management review (no significant observations to report)
  • operating experience (no significant observations to report)
  • change management
  • safety culture
  • configuration management
  • records management
  • management of contractors
  • business continuity (no significant observations to report)
Management system

The CNSC requires each licensee to implement a management system that meets the requirements of either CSA standard N286-05, Management system requirements for nuclear power plants [5] (i.e., Bruce Power and NB Power) or CSA standard N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities [6] (i.e., OPG). Bruce Power and NB Power submitted their respective plans for transitioning to CSA N286-12. CNSC staff reviewed and accepted the plans. The transition will be completed by December 2018 for Bruce Power and by December 2017 for NB Power.

Oversight activities conducted by CNSC staff in 2016 revealed some deficiencies of low safety significance related to documentation, such as in the areas of updates to documents and procedural adherence. These deficiencies were not considered impediments to safe operation.

CNSC staff will continue to oversee the corrective actions taken by licensees for open action items until they are satisfactorily resolved using the Regulatory Information Bank.

Organization

The organization structure and roles and responsibilities for each licensee are documented per management system requirements. During 2016 compliance activities, CNSC staff verified the implementation of roles and responsibilities. There were no significant observations from the compliance activities performed.

Change management

Baseline programs for change management have been implemented at all sites. There are no significant observations from compliance activities to report in this specific area.

CNSC staff found some deficiencies of low safety significance related to changes in documentation, and licensees provided acceptable corrective actions to address those deficiencies. The licensees continue the implementation of the programs for change management.

Safety culture

Licensees conduct safety-culture self-assessments periodically. These assessments gather data through multiple methods, including surveys, interviews and focus groups. All licensees have implemented safety-culture monitoring panels, following the guidance provided in the Nuclear Energy Institute’s document 09-07 Rev.1, Fostering a Healthy Nuclear Safety Culture [7]. CNSC staff reviewed licensee safety culture self-assessments and confirmed the adequacy of their follow-up actions.

Configuration management

Configuration management is a systematic approach to identifying, documenting and changing the characteristics of a facility’s structures, systems and components. It also ensures that conformance is maintained between design requirements, physical configuration and facility configuration information.

CNSC staff observed that licensees are maintaining the configuration of structures, systems and components, and are in compliance with their programs. As a result, CNSC staff determined that licensees met regulatory requirements for configuration management in 2016.

Records management

CNSC staff found that licensees maintained and retained their documented information according to regulatory requirements. CNSC staff observed issues of low safety significance with the quality of the records produced by some licensees, as well as with the retention and maintenance of records produced by some licensees. CNSC staff are monitoring the implementation of corrective action plans submitted by the affected licensees. (Further information on these issues can be found in sections 3.1.1.1 and 3.2.1.1.)

Management of contractors

CNSC staff determined that licensees have implemented programs for the management of contractors to ensure that projects and contractor activities are managed. CNSC staff identified some areas for improvements with some licensee programs. These relate to governance, implementation of the contractor oversight processes, and lack of evidence of oversight of contactors’ activities. CNSC staff reviewed and accepted corrective action plans provided by licensees and are monitoring their implementation. (Further information on these issues can be found in sections 3.1.1.1, 3.2.1.1 and 3.4.1.1.)

2.1.2 Human performance management

This SCA covers the activities that enable effective human performance through the development and implementation of processes that ensure licensees have sufficient personnel in all relevant job areas – and that these personnel have the necessary knowledge, skills, procedures and tools to safely and competently carry out their duties. The industry average rating for human performance management in 2016 was “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the human performance management SCA at NPPs met applicable regulatory requirements.

Human performance management ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry total
SA SA SA SA SA SA

Human performance management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • human performance program
  • personnel training
  • personnel certification
  • initial certification examinations and requalification tests
  • work organization and job design
  • fitness for duty
Human performance program

All licensees use human performance programs to minimize human and organizational errors and to support workers in completing their tasks safely. CNSC staff determined, through compliance verification activities, that licensees have human performance programs that met regulatory requirements.

Personnel training

CNSC staff determined that all licensees use training systems based on the principles of a systematic approach to training. In 2016, implementation of these systems at each facility met regulatory requirements. Any identified weaknesses in the implementation of these systems are being addressed by the licensees in accordance with their corrective action plan processes, and do not represent an increased risk to nuclear safety.

REGDOC-2.2.2, Personnel Training [8], published in August 2014, sets out CNSC requirements for licensees regarding the development and implementation of training systems. It also provides guidance on how to meet requirements. Licensees have implemented, or are in the process of implementing, REGDOC-2.2.2.

Personnel certification

The CNSC requires all licensees to have certified shift supervisors, reactor operators (including Unit 0 operators at Bruce A and B and Darlington) and health physicists. At multi-unit NPPs, shift supervisors comprise certified shift managers and certified control-room shift supervisors. All licensees maintained sufficient numbers of personnel for certified positions in 2016. CNSC staff are satisfied that the licensee programs ensure that certified personnel at Canadian NPPs possess the knowledge and skills required to perform their duties safely.

Table 4 shows the actual number of certified personnel who are available in the certified positions at each NPP, as of December 31, 2016. The table also shows the minimum required number of personnel for each position, which is the minimum number of certified personnel that must be present at all times multiplied by the total number of crews.

Table 4: Number of certifications per station and certified positions for 2016
Station Reactor operator Unit 0 operatorsa Shift supervisorb Health physicist Total
BruceA
Actual 45 19 19 5c 88
Minimum 30 10 10 1 51
BruceB
Actual 58 25 19 5c 107
Minimum 30 10 10 1 51
Darlington
Actual 56 18 21 3 98
Minimum 30 10 10 1 51
Pickering 1, 4
Actual 33 19 4d 56
Minimum 20 10 1 31
Pickering 5–8
Actual 60 18 4d 82
Minimum 30 10 1 41
Point Lepreau
Actual 9 7 3 19
Minimum 6 6 1 13

Notes:

  1. There are no Unit 0 positions at Pickering1, 4, Pickering 5–8 or Point Lepreau.
  2. At multi-unit stations, the shift supervisor number is the total of certified shift managers plus certified control room shift supervisors.
  3. Five health physicists are certified for both Bruce A and Bruce B.
  4. Four health physicists are certified for both Pickering 1, 4 and Pickering 5–8.
Initial certification examinations and requalification tests

Compliance verification activities conducted by CNSC staff identified deficiencies in the implementation of the process to conduct simulator-based requalification tests at the Darlington and Pickering nuclear generating stations. (Further information can be found in sections 3.2.1.2 and 3.3.1.2.) OPG submitted its corrective action plans to address these deficiencies in April 2017. CNSC staff reviewed and accepted OPG’s corrective action plans. The action items related to these deficiencies are now closed.

With the exception of the deficiencies of low safety significance mentioned above, CNSC staff found that the initial certification examination programs and the requalification testing programs at all NPPs met regulatory requirements.

Work organization and job design

Minimum shift complement

In accordance with the General Nuclear Safety and Control Regulations, licensees are required to ensure the presence of a sufficient number of qualified workers to safely carry out all licensed activities. As a result, licensees must maintain a minimum shift complement (MSC) at all times in accordance with their nuclear power reactor operating licences. The MSC is specific to each NPP, and is influenced by the design of the facility, operating and emergency procedures and organizational functions. The MSC is determined by a systematic analysis and demonstrated by a validation exercise. This documentation becomes part of the licensing basis for each NPP.

The CNSC requires all licensees to report MSC non-compliances pursuant to requirements listed in REGDOC-3.1.1. A typical example of an MSC non-compliance is when a member of the MSC becomes ill during a night shift and there is no one else on shift to replace him or her. This results in a gap of a couple of hours until a replacement arrives. Licensees reported eight MSC non-compliances in 2016. CNSC staff did not identify any significant operations-related issues from the reports, and licensees took appropriate actions to ensure that safety was maintained.

Fitness for duty

All Canadian NPP licensees have fitness-for-duty programs in place.

A draft version of REGDOC-2.2.4, Fitness for Duty [9], was made available for public comment from November 2015 to March 2016. This document sets out comprehensive fitness-for-duty requirements for personnel at high-security sites, including medical fitness, psychological fitness, occupational fitness, and alcohol and drug testing. CNSC staff are reviewing the submissions received during public consultation and updating the draft document before seeking the Commission’s approval.

Managing worker fatigue

CNSC staff determined that all licensees have procedures in place that specify station requirements related to hours of work and processes for monitoring compliance with the hours-of-work limits. Only Bruce Power reported non-compliances with its hours-of-work procedure for certified staff. These non-compliances are addressed in section3.1.1.2.

To align licensee procedures in this area, the Commission approved REGDOC-2.2.4, Fitness for Duty: Managing Worker Fatigue [10] for publication on March 21, 2017. Licensees will provide implementation plans and timelines by September 30, 2017 for CNSC staff review. CNSC staff will monitor licensees’ progress towards meeting implementation timelines.

2.1.3 Operating performance

This SCA includes an overall review of the conduct of licensed activities and the activities that enable effective operating performance. The industry average rating for operating performance in 2016 was “fully satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that NPP licensees operated their facilities safely and met or exceeded applicable regulatory requirements.

Operating performance ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry total
FS FS FS FS SA FS

Operating performance encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conduct of licensed activity
  • procedures (no significant observations to report)
  • reporting and trending
  • outage management performance (no significant observations to report)
  • safe operating envelope
  • severe accident management and recovery (no significant observations to report)
  • accident management and recovery (no significant observations to report)
Conduct of licensed activity

Nineteen reactors continued to operate in Canada throughout 2016, unchanged from the previous year. CNSC staff observed that there were no serious process failures at any of the NPPs.

Unexpected reactor power reductions (or transients) can indicate problems within a plant and place unnecessary strain on its systems. Table 5 below summarizes the number of unplanned reactor power transients in Canadian NPPs caused by stepbacks, setbacks and reactor trips where the trip resulted in a reactor shutdown. (Stepbacks and setbacks are gradual power changes intended to eliminate potential risks to plant operations.)

In 2016, CNSC staff determined that all unplanned transients were controlled properly and, where necessary, power reduction was initiated by the reactor control systems. The CNSC will continue to monitor the trends associated with this indicator.

Table 5: Number of unplanned transients
NPP Number of operating reactors Number of hours of operation Un-planned reactor trips1 Step-backs Set-backs Total unplanned transients2 Number of trips per 7,000 operating hours3
BruceA 4 29,642 0 4 5 9 0.00
BruceB 4 28,693 0 0 3 3 0.00
Darlington 4 30,673 1 2 2 5 0.23
Pickering 1,4 2 13,953 1 n/a4 2 3 0.50
Pickering 5–8 4 26,983 1 1 0 2 0.26
Point Lepreau 1 7,241 1 1 0 2 0.97
Industry total 19 137,185 4 8 12 24 0.20

Notes:

  1. Automatic reactor trips only; does not include manual reactor trips or trips during commissioning testing.
  2. Unplanned transients consist of unplanned reactor trips, stepbacks and setbacks.
  3. Nuclear power industry performance target is less than 0.5reactor trips per 7,000 operating hours.
  4. Stepbacks are not implemented at Pickering 1, 4.

Figure 2 shows the individual station and industry trend in the number of unplanned transients from 2012 to 2016. The number of unplanned transients in 2016 was comparable to previous years and was acceptable to CNSC staff.

Figure 2: Trend details for the number of unplanned transients for stations and industry, 2012–16
Year Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering 1,4 Pickering 5-8 Point Lepreau Industry Total
2012 14 0 3 1 5 1 24
2013 7 4 2 3 4 1 21
2014 11 3 3 2 1 3 23
2015 6 8 3 2 3 1 23
2016 9 3 5 3 2 2 24

Figure 3 below shows the number of unplanned reactor trips per 7,000 operating hours for the Canadian nuclear power industry in comparison to the international nuclear power industry values published by the World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO). In 2016, as in previous years, the number of unplanned reactor trips at Canadian NPPs compared favourably with the nuclear industry performance target (i.e., 0.5 unplanned trips per 7,000 operating hours). Note that in 2016, WANO discontinued the publication of actual numbers of unplanned trips. Instead, it now publishes percentages of the reactors that met WANO targets.

Figure 3: Trend details for the number of unplanned reactor trips per 7,000 operating hours, compared to WANO values, 2012–16
2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Canada 0.30 0.34 0.38 0.15 0.20
WANO 0.46 0.50 0.49 0.51 0

Nuclear power industry performance target = 0.5 trip per 7,000 operating hours

Note: 7,000 hours represents the expected number of operating hours in a year for a reactor

Figure 4 below shows the forced loss rate (FLR) for Canadian NPP licensees and the industry, and presents the median value for the industry (calculated in a manner consistent with WANO methodology). The purpose of this indicator is to monitor industry progress in minimizing outage time and power reductions that result from unplanned equipment failures, human errors or other conditions during the operating period (excluding planned outages and their possible unplanned extensions). This indicator reflects the effectiveness of plant programs and practices in maintaining systems available for electrical generation.

As shown in figure 4, the FLR in 2016 was very similar to previous years and similar across the NPPs. The results were acceptable to CNSC staff.

Figure 4: Trend details for forced loss rates for stations and industry, 2012–16
Year Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry Median
2012 1.5 1 2.3 7 0 1.7
2013 5.9 1.7 4.8 9.7 23.2 4.6
2014 9.4 0.7 1.5 10.7 1.4 2.2
2015 2.6 1.6 4.9 2.9 19.9 2.2
2016 1.9 1.9 2.2 4.09 2.5 2.5

Figure 5 below shows the FLR for the Canadian nuclear power industry in comparison to the international nuclear power industry values published by WANO. The Canadian nuclear power industry values are higher than the world median values. This difference could be due to the differences in reactor technologies and the number of operating reactors in each group (19 for Canada versus more than 400 reporting units for the WANO values). In all cases, the forced outages and outage extensions were managed safely and in accordance with regulatory requirements. Note that WANO discontinued the publication of actual forced loss rates in 2016. Instead, it published percentages of reactors that met WANO targets.

Figure 5: Trend of forced loss rates compared to WANO values, 2012–16
2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Canada 1.7 4.6 2.2 2.2 2.5
WANO 1.1 1.2 0.9 0.9 0
Reporting and trending

Licensees are required to submit quarterly reports on operations and safety performance indicators as described in REGDOC-3.1.1. Licensees are also required to follow up on all events with corrective actions and root cause analyses, when appropriate. CNSC staff found that licensees’ reporting and trending met regulatory requirements in 2016.

Safe operating envelope

CNSC staff determined that licensees have adequate safe operating envelope programs based on the requirements of CSA standard N290.15, Requirements for the safe operating envelope of nuclear power plants [11].

2.1.4 Safety analysis

This SCA pertains to maintaining the safety analysis that supports the overall safety case for each facility. Safety analysis is a systematic evaluation of the potential hazards associated with the conduct of a proposed activity or facility, and considers the effectiveness of preventive measures and strategies in reducing the effects of such hazards.

For NPPs, safety analysis is primarily deterministic in demonstrating the effectiveness of the fundamental safety functions of control, cool and contain. Risk contributors are considered by using probabilistic safety assessments. Appropriate safety margins should be applied to address uncertainties and limitations of safety analysis approaches.

In 2016, the industry average for the safety analysis SCA was “fully satisfactory”, which is an improvement on the “satisfactory” rating from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the safety analysis SCA at NPPs met or exceeded applicable regulatory requirements.

Safety analysis ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
FS FS FS FS FS FS

Safety analysis encompasses the following specific areas:

  • deterministic safety analysis
  • probabilistic safety analysis
  • criticality safety (no significant observations to report)
  • severe accident analysis
  • management of safety issues (including R&D programs)
Deterministic safety analysis

CNSC staff reviewed licensee activities under this specific area and confirmed the ongoing compliance with regulatory requirements.

Safety analysis improvement program

CNSC staff observed that each licensee has developed an implementation plan for upgrading its deterministic safety analysis to demonstrate compliance with the requirements of REGDOC-2.4.1, Deterministic Safety Analysis [12]. This is a continuation of earlier work to implement RD-310, Safety Analysis for Nuclear Power Plants [13], which was replaced by REGDOC-2.4.1 in 2014.

The implementation of REGDOC-2.4.1 allows the deterministic safety analysis to be updated in a systematic and staged manner. CNSC staff have reviewed licensees’ plans to implement REGDOC-2.4.1 and found them acceptable.

In 2016, CNSC staff continued to provide feedback to licensees on their ongoing safety analyses within the framework of REGDOC-2.4.1 implementation. An area of focus is the common-mode events deterministic safety analysis, which contains some features new to the analysis of CANDU reactors. CNSC staff determined that the existing licensee deterministic safety analyses remain adequate during the continued implementation of REGDOC-2.4.1.

Impact of aging on the safety analysis

Aging changes certain characteristics of the reactor heat transport system. Such changes can result in a gradual reduction of safety margins unless compensatory measures are implemented. As the reactor ages, the impact of simultaneous aging effects in various structures, systems and components on the overall safety case of the NPP needs to be assessed and the existing safety margins quantified.

Licensees have aging management programs in place that include systematic monitoring of aging-related parameters important to safety analysis, along with assessments of the impact of the changes in reactor conditions on existing safety margins. CNSC staff reviewed the Bruce Power and OPG programs to monitor, assess and mitigate the impact of heat-transport-system aging on safety analysis and found them satisfactory. Since Point Lepreau was refurbished and returned to service in 2012, there are currently no aging-related concerns with its heat transport system.

Large-break loss-of-coolant accident: safety margin

In late 2013, OPG, NB Power and Bruce Power submitted their proposed composite analytical approach (CAA) for CNSC staff review. The CAA uses modern techniques for assessing and accounting for uncertainties as well as more advanced pipe-failure frequency and rupture-progression models. It is intended to demonstrate that larger safety margins exist for large-break loss-of-coolant accidents (LBLOCAs) than those shown in traditional safety analysis results. (See the description of management of safety issues below for further details.)

CNSC staff acknowledged that the proposed CAA methodology was consistent with the requirements set out in REGDOC-2.4.1; however, the methodology required further validation and refinement before it could be accepted for regulatory application. Since then, a number of key activities have been identified that would lead to CNSC staff acceptance of the CAA methodology.Overall, industry continues to progress well with all identified activities.

Bruce Power submitted a work plan intending to use the CAA methodology to demonstrate quantitatively that the LBLOCA safety margins are greater than represented in the current analysis. The work plan has been reviewed by CNSC staff.Overall, CNSC staff have concluded that the proposed work is acceptable, subject to further clarifications in some areas. OPG continues to cooperate with Bruce Power on the generic aspects of this project and will consider adopting elements of the CAA methodology once accepted by the CNSC. OPG has proposed its own methodology and identified its own limit of operating envelope methodology to address the LBLOCA safety margin issue in the short term. OPG has submitted a plan outlining the proposed approach to the CNSC. CNSC staff completed their review in March 2017 and concluded that the proposed work is acceptable, subject to further clarifications in some areas.

NB Power may also consider submitting a CAA-based analysis in the future. In the meantime, it has submitted an updated LBLOCA analysis using the traditional analysis methodology. CNSC staff have reviewed and accepted the updated NB Power LBLOCA analysis.

While development of advanced analytical methods such as CAA continues, CNSC staff have confirmed that all operating NPPs have sufficient LBLOCA safety margins.

Independent technical panel on shutdown system effectiveness criteria

In 2015, CNSC staff completed a review of the technical basis for a new set of derived acceptance criteria (DAC) for design-basis accidents covered under the CNSC regulatory guide G-144, Trip Parameter Acceptance Criteria for the Safety Analysis of CANDU Nuclear Power Plants [14]. The new DAC were developed by industry in accordance with REGDOC-2.4.1. G-144 is no longer applicable and has been superseded by REGDOC-2.4.1.

In 2016, CNSC staff accepted the application of the new DAC to events covered under G-144.

The new DAC maintain the safety margins outlined in the current licensing bases of the NPPs. However, if any updated analyses lead to changes to the safe operating envelope, licensees will notify CNSC staff in accordance with the requirement set out in their licence conditions handbooks.

CNSC staff determined that the new DAC addressed long-standing issues related to fuel behaviour under accident conditions, which allowed licensees to request for a re-categorization of CANDU safety issue PF 18, “Fuel bundle/element behaviour under post-dry out conditions”. As a result, in April 2016, CNSC staff re-categorized PF 18 from Category 3 to Category 2. (See appendix D for definitions of these categories.)

Hydrogen standing flame assessment

OPG and Bruce Power submitted their assessment on the effects of standing flames on structures, systems and components credited in safety analyses in containment. CNSC staff reviewed and accepted the assessment, which included an analysis for design-basis accidents. The assessment demonstrated that there will be no nuclear safety risk.

Probabilistic safety analysis

The regulatory requirements with regard to probabilistic safety assessments (PSAs) are integrated into REGDOC-2.4.2, Safety Analysis: Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [15].

CNSC staff are monitoring the licensees’ progress towards compliance with REGDOC‑2.4.2 by 2020, including the additional requirements regarding multi-unit impacts and irradiated fuel bays. OPG has entered the final phase of its pilot application of the whole-site PSA methodology at the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station. OPG is expected to complete its pilot application by the end of 2017. For this purpose, the industry has been working together on a Candu Owners Group joint project to address the issue of whole-site PSA. The status of completion of PSAs for licensed Canadian NPPs is found in section 2.2.3. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Severe accident analysis

Severe accident management and multi-unit modelling

CNSC staff have determined that all licensees have developed and implemented severe accident management guidelines (SAMGs). Licensees have also developed emergency mitigating equipment guidelines to provide instructions for the use and deployment of emergency mitigating equipment to increase their water make-up and power-supply capabilities for accident management, including severe accident management.

Licensees continue to update their existing SAMG packages to incorporate post-Fukushima lessons learned, including the addition of guidelines and strategies to deal with multi-unit events for multi-unit stations and events in irradiated fuel bays and shutdown states. A number of these updates were completed or near completion in 2016. CNSC staff were satisfied with the progress.

CNSC staff continued to perform desktop reviews and evaluations of the station-specific SAMGs and licensees’ submissions related to severe accident management. These reviews confirmed that licensees have robust and updated accident management programs.

In response to the CNSC Integrated Action Plan [16], NPP licensees have developed improved methods for probabilistic analysis of multi-unit severe accidents. In 2015, OPG and Bruce Power completed a project called Severe Accident Software Simulator Solution and submitted a summary of a detailed evaluation of the current multi-unit modelling capability. Based on this evaluation, the licensees concluded that existing approaches to modelling multi-unit events (scaled containment approach) are sufficient for PSA of multi-unit stations and will continue to be employed. On this basis, and as reported in the Regulatory Oversight Report for Canadian Nuclear Power Plants: 2015, CNSC staff had closed Fukushima action items 3.2.1 and 3.2.2, which were related to modelling of severe accidents in multi-unit NPPs. In 2016, CNSC staff continued the detailed review and discussion with the licensees on technical details. The CNSC expects to finalize its assessment in May 2017. Station-specific action items, if required, will be raised to track further activities related to severe accident modelling of multi-unit NPPs.

Management of safety issues

The CANDU safety issues (CSIs) were first classified and categorized in order of risk importance, as described in previous reports. Those that demand the greatest regulatory attention are the Category 2 and Category 3 CSIs. Category 2 CSIs are issues for which the licensees have appropriate control measures in place to address them and to maintain safety margins. Category 3 CSIs are ones for which the licensees have measures in place to maintain safety margins, but further experiments and/or analyses are required to improve knowledge and understanding of the issue, and to confirm the adequacy of the measures. See appendixD for more information on CSIs.

At the beginning of 2016, six of the original 21 Category 3 CSIs remained to be re-categorized. Three of these were related to LBLOCAs; the others were non-LBLOCA issues.

The three LBLOCA Category 3 CSIs were related to:

  • analysis for void reactivity coefficient (i.e., CSI AA 9)
  • fuel behaviour in high-temperature transients and power pulse transients (i.e., CSIs PF 9 and PF 10, respectively)

A CNSC/industry working group was set up to better define the issues pertaining to LBLOCAs and to identify effective risk-control measures (RCMs). As described in section 2.1.4 under the heading LBLOCA: safety margin subsection, the working group chose the composite analytical approach (CAA) as the most practical from the standpoint of implementation of RCMs. Bruce Power has taken the lead in this regard and intends to use the CAA methodology to demonstrate adequacy of safety margins and effectiveness of the shutdown systems and emergency core coolant design. During the continued development of the CAA, the licensing basis of existing CANDU reactors for the LBLOCA scenario will continue to be based on traditional conservative safety analysis for which the CNSC has already established clear acceptance criteria. The CNSC’s interim regulatory position is consistent with the RCMs for CSIs and will remain in effect until it accepts the use of CAA.

The three non-LBLOCA Category 3 CSIs that remained open at the beginning of 2016 were related to:

  • aging of equipment and structures (i.e., CSI GL 3)
  • systematic assessment of high-energy line-break effects (i.e., CSI IH 6)
  • fuel bundle and element behaviour under post-dryout conditions (i.e., CSI PF 18)

CSI GL 3 remained as a Category 3 CSI for Point Lepreau only.

In 2016, CNSC staff reviewed licensees’ CSIs GL 3 and PF18 submissions. They concluded that the associated RCMs were adequate, and re-categorized the CSIs from Category 3 to Category 2.

The remaining Category 3 non-LBLOCA CSI (i.e., IH 6) remains open for Pickering and Point Lepreau. OPG and NB Power have applied to re-categorize it to Category2 based on systematic analyses for protecting structures, systems and components from the effects of postulated pipe rupture. CNSC staff are reviewing the licensees’ requests. OPG has requested additional time to submit a request for re-categorization of this issue for Pickering units 1 and 4. It has targeted mid-2017 to submit this request. Licensees and CNSC staff are monitoring and coordinating the implementation plan for re-categorization of the few remaining issues.

CNSC staff are satisfied with licensees’ progress on Category 3 CSIs, as well as the other safety issues described in this report. There are no safety concerns related to the status of any of these issues or the progress made to address them.

CNSC staff updated the Commission on the status and progress towards resolution of CSIs at two public meetings held in August 2016 and March 2017. Details of these updates can be found in Commission member documents CMD 16-M34 and CMD 17-M12. The second document includes CNSC staff dispositions of comments submitted by the public. The Commission confirmed CNSC staff’s categorization of CSIs in the Minutes of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) Meeting held on March 8, 2017 [48].

2.1.5 Physical design

This SCA relates to activities that affect the ability of structures, systems and components to meet and maintain their design basis as new information arises over time and changes take place in the external environment. The industry average rating for physical design was “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the physical design SCA at NPPs met applicable regulatory requirements.

Physical design ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
SA SA SA SA SA SA

Physical design encompasses the following specific areas:

  • design governance
  • site characterization (no significant observations to report)
  • facility design (no significant observations to report)
  • structure design (no significant observations to report)
  • system design
  • components design
Design governance

CNSC staff reviewed a number of topics to develop an overall assessment of design governance. Observations from three significant topics – environmental qualification, human factors in design and pressure boundary design – are reported on below.

Environmental qualification

An environmental qualification program ensures that all required structures, systems and components are capable of performing their designated safety functions in a postulated harsh environment resulting from design-basis accidents.

Overall, CNSC staff determined that the industry continued to perform well in this area in 2016. Licensee environmental qualification programs implemented at all NPPs were judged to be compliant with CSA standard N290.13-05, environmental qualification of equipment for CANDU nuclear power plants [17]. Although all licensees have mature environmental qualification programs in place, maintaining a high standard in this area is becoming a greater challenge due to reactor aging. CNSC staff will continue to monitor the licensees’ progress in this area.

Human factors in design

The CSA standard N290.12-14, Human factors in design for nuclear power plants [18] was published in 2014. NB Power has completed the implementation of this standard at Point Lepreau. OPG completed a gap analysis and developed an implementation plan. It plans to implement the standard at Darlington by March 31, 2018. The CNSC expects Bruce Power and OPG to submit implementation plans for CSA N290.12-14 for Bruce A and B and Pickering, respectively, in their next licence renewal applications.

Pressure boundary design

In 2016, CNSC staff conducted compliance activities on licensee pressure boundary programs and found these to be compliant with the requirements of CSA standard N285.0-12, General requirements for pressure-retaining systems and components in CANDU nuclear power plants [19]. CNSC staff determined that the licensees continue to implement comprehensive pressure boundary programs and maintain formal agreements with an authorized inspection agency.

System design

CNSC staff reviewed a number of topics to develop an overall assessment of system design. These topics are discussed in greater detail below.

Reactor control, process and control, and instrumentation and control, including software

CNSC staff determined that the industry has improved the performance and reliability of instrumentation and control systems through aging management, verification of compliance with codes and standards, and the corrective maintenance program. All stations met the performance objectives in this area.

Service water, including emergency service-water systems

Service-water systems provide water to a large number of components and systems. From the nuclear safety perspective, however, the most important service-water loads are associated with:

  • removing heat from the reactor core (such as moderator heat exchanger cooling and end-shield cooling)
  • cooling functions to ensure proper functioning of structures, systems and components important to safety (such as instrument air compressors and boiler room air cooling units)

During 2016, the service-water systems functioned well at all stations. CNSC staff are satisfied with licensees’ performance in this area.

Electrical power systems

Electrical power systems are support systems necessary for the safety of an NPP. They are important in the defence-in-depth concept.

It is essential that NPPs have reliable electrical power supplies to control anticipated deviations from normal operations, and to power, control and monitor the plants during events of all types.

These electrical power systems include onsite and offsite power systems, which work together to provide necessary power in all plant conditions, so that the plant can be maintained in a safe state.

CNSC staff use CSA standard N290.5-16, Requirements for electrical power and instrument air systems of CANDU nuclear power plants [45], as guidance for NPPs.

During 2016, CNSC staff determined that the overall performance of the electrical power systems was satisfactory across all stations.

Fire protection design

In 2016, CNSC staff determined that all licensees continued to maintain satisfactory fire protection programs. The CNSC requires each licensee to have a comprehensive fire protection program (i.e., a set of planned, coordinated, controlled and documented activities). This minimizes the risk to health, safety and the environment due to fire by ensuring that each licensee is able to efficiently and effectively respond to emergency fire situations.

The CNSC requires that fire protection provisions are applicable to all work related to the design, construction, operation and maintenance of an NPP, including the structures, systems and components that directly support the plant and the protected area.

Seismic qualification

CNSC staff determined that all licensees have established seismic qualifications for their sites.

All licensees have performed site-specific probabilistic seismic hazard assessments. Staff from the CNSC and Natural Resources Canada have reviewed these assessments and found that licensees met the requirements of the applicable CSA N289 standard.

Robustness design

Robustness design and assessment covers the physical design of nuclear facilities for sufficient robustness against anticipated threats. The assessment and ratings for this specific area are based on licensee performance in meeting the commitments made to CNSC staff. The focus of the review is on mitigating the potential consequences of these accidents. CNSC staff have opened and are addressing site-specific action items as a follow-up for the implementation of the CNSC’s recommendations. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Components design

Fuel inspection program

CNSC staff determined that all licensees had well-developed reactor fuel design and inspection programs in 2016. Operational NPPs have, over the past several years, experienced challenges with fuel performance. However, licensee fuel programs and personnel have adequately managed these challenges to ensure that regulatory limits were met throughout. Licensees either have been able to completely return fuel performance to historical norms or have put in place well-developed corrective action plans and mitigation strategies. Details are provided in section 3. CNSC staff are satisfied with industry stewardship of these issues and have removed the additional monitoring and reporting requirements on affected licensees.

Cables

Cables are critical to the safe and reliable operation of NPPs due to their widespread use as a connection medium for many systems important to safety. Canada’s operating reactors are aging, and cables are affected by the aging process. The CNSC requires licensees to implement cable condition monitoring and surveillance programs, and cable aging management programs to assess, over time, the degradation of cable insulation. Based on compliance verification activities, CNSC staff concluded that the licensees have demonstrated acceptable progress in developing and implementing their respective programs, and that the cables at NPPs are safe. CNSC staff are satisfied with the licensees’ overall performance in this area.

2.1.6 Fitness for service

This SCA covers activities affecting the physical condition of structures, systems and components to ensure that they remain effective over time. This includes programs that ensure that all equipment is available to perform its intended design function when needed. The industry average rating for fitness for service in 2016 was “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the fitness for service SCA at NPPs met applicable regulatory requirements.

Fitness for service ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
SA SA SA SA SA SA

Fitness for service encompasses the following specific areas:

  • equipment fitness for service/equipment performance
  • maintenance
  • structural integrity
  • aging management
  • chemistry control
  • periodic inspection and testing
Equipment fitness for service/equipment performance

Reliability of systems important to safety

As determined through the reviews of station reports, all licensees are in compliance with the regulatory requirements described in RD/GD-98, Reliability Programs for Nuclear Power Plants [35].

In accordance with REGDOC-3.1.1, Reporting Requirements for Nuclear Power Plants[3], each NPP licensee is required to report the results of its reliability program to the CNSC annually. This includes reporting on the reliability of the multiple special safety systems available on all CANDU reactors that provide protection against unlikely (but possible) process system failures. These special safety systems include two shutdown systems that are independent of each other. The first uses shutoff rods which drop into the reactor core by gravity, with an initial spring assist. The second uses the injection of a neutron-absorbing solution into the moderator. At no time are the shutdown systems allowed to be ineffective. In some rare circumstances their capability might be reduced, but coverage is always assured by the other redundant system, and immediate actions are always taken by the operating crew to restore the capability. At least one shutdown system will operate, if required, following any process system failure. In addition to the special safety systems, the CANDU design provides other safety-related systems and features to solely perform safety functions. No reactor is allowed to operate unless the safety systems are available. If unavailability is detected, immediate actions are taken to ensure that safety is maintained at all times.

Overall, the special safety systems performed well in meeting their unavailability targets (apart from those exceptions noted in section 3 of this report). Notwithstanding backup systems in place, licensees took appropriate actions to address the incidents leading to unavailability and put in place corrective actions.

Safety systems are also tested. The term “safety system test performance” references the number of safety system tests that are required by licence conditions that were missed by licensees. It is a measure of a licensee’s ability to successfully complete routine tests on safety-related systems and calculate the predicted availability of systems. Data for the stations and the industry as a whole are shown in table 6 and figure 6.

The number of missed safety system tests remains very low. It decreased from ten in 2015 to five in 2016. In all, 49,534 tests were performed over the course of 2016. The percentage of missed tests was 0.01 percent. The impact of missing a single test is negligible because the safety systems involved in the tests have sufficiently high redundancy to ensure continuous safety system availability.

Missed tests are rescheduled and completed by licensees at an appropriate time. Missed tests are tracked by licensees and reported to the CNSC per REGDOC-3.1.1.

Table 6: Safety system test performance for 2016
Nuclear power plant Number of annual planned tests Safety system tests not completed Percent not completed
Special safety systems Standby safety systems Safety-related process systems Total
Bruce A 10,267 1 1 0 2 0.02
Bruce B 9,230 0 0 0 0 0.00
Darlington 12,669 0 0 0 0 0.00
Pickering 12,380 2 0 0 2 0.02
Point Lepreau 4,988 0 1 0 1 0.02
Industry total 49,534 3 2 0 5 0.01
Figure 6: Trend details of safety system test performance for stations and industry, 2012–16
Year Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry Median
2012 2 0 0 5 24 31
2013 14 4 3 5 2 28
2014 8 1 0 0 8 21
2015 0 3 0 0 7 10
2016 2 0 0 2 1 5
Maintenance

During maintenance inspections carried out in 2016, CNSC staff did not identify any major compliance issues. Overall, CNSC staff are satisfied with the licensees’ maintenance programs.

CNSC staff routinely monitor several maintenance safety performance indicators, including the preventive maintenance completion ratio (PMCR), maintenance backlogs and the number of preventive maintenance deferrals.

The PMCR quantifies the effectiveness of the preventive maintenance program in minimizing the need for corrective maintenance activities. The average PMCR value for Canadian NPPs was 89 percent in 2016, a slight improvement from 88percent in 2015. CNSC staff are satisfied with this value.

Although usually not safety significant, maintenance backlogs are also monitored by CNSC staff. They can be a useful indicator of overall maintenance effectiveness and plant operation. In particular, CNSC staff review the corrective critical maintenance backlog and the deficient critical maintenance backlog. A certain level of backlog is always expected, due to normal work management processes and equipment aging. The industry average maintenance backlogs and the number of critical preventive maintenance deferrals improved during 2016 (see table 7). CNSC staff will continue to focus on these safety performance indicators until all stations meet industry best practice levels. Overall, CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date. The level of the maintenance backlogs for the stations represents a negligible risk to the safe operation of the plants.

Together, corrective maintenance backlogs, deficient maintenance backlogs and deferrals of preventive maintenance provide a valuable indication of the effectiveness of the maintenance program at NPPs.

Corrective maintenance work is required when a structure, system or component has failed and can no longer perform its design function. As defined by REGDOC- 3.1.1 [3], corrective maintenance backlogs consist of all corrective work generated through work order requests and appearing in the work management system as uncompleted work.

Deficient maintenance is planned when structures, systems or components have been identified as degrading, but remain capable of performing their design functions. The deficient maintenance backlog consists of all deficient work generated through work requests and appearing in the work management system of uncompleted work [3].

Deferred preventive maintenance is preventive maintenance that has received an approved technical justification for extension prior to its late date [3].

Table 7: Industry maintenance backlogs and deferrals for critical components
Performance indicator Average work orders per unit, 2016 Average work orders per unit, 2015
Corrective maintenance backlog 8 11
Deficient maintenance backlog 111 117
Deferrals of preventive maintenance 38 49
Aging management

CNSC staff determined that all licensees have implemented processes and programs to address aging-related factors that could affect the condition of structures, systems and components important to safety. REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management [20], sets out regulatory requirements for aging management programs during each stage of an NPP’s life, including operation and safe-storage for decommissioning. All licensees are reviewing and updating their processes and programs in accordance with this regulatory document. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

The CNSC requires all licensees to have component-specific aging management programs – licensees typically refer to them as lifecycle management plans (LCMPs) – for the major primary heat transport components of their CANDU reactors (i.e., feeders, pressure tubes and steam generators) as well as for reactor internals, concrete containment structures and balance-of-plant safety-related civil structures. Compliance monitoring activities conducted by CNSC staff included desktop reviews of licensee submissions related to integrated aging management programs and component and structure-specific LCMPs, as well as onsite inspections to assess licensees’ implementation of these programs.

Aging management programs for pressure tubes are important to the ongoing safe operation of the NPPs as operating conditions in CANDU fuel channels have significant effects on the material properties and behaviours that influence safety. Pressure tube LCMP activities include inspections to verify the condition of the tubes and monitor material property changes. The CNSC requires these activities to be governed by periodic inspection programs that comply with CSA standard N285.4, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components [21]. Licensees assess the integrity of aged tubes following the approaches defined in CSA standard N285.8, Technical requirements for in-service evaluation of zirconium alloy pressure tubes in CANDU reactors [46]. Technical specialists from the CNSC actively participate in the CSA N285B technical committee and the N285.8 technical subcommittee, ensuring that regulatory requirements are considered in the development and revision of the standards.

The LCMPs are supported by research to validate engineering models for the evaluation of pressure tubes (see, for example, the description of the fuel channel life management project in section 2.2.3). The LCMPs are updated to incorporate operating experience and research findings and are submitted to the CNSC to demonstrate compliance with the requirements of REGDOC-2.6.3. Staff are actively monitoring the industry’s progress in research activities to verify that pressure tubes, especially those planned for extended operation, will continue to meet required safety margins. Overall, CNSC staff are satisfied with the LCMPs for pressure tubes and the ongoing assurance of safety they provide.

In addition to pressure tube aging, LCMPs address the aging and behaviour of fuel channel spacers, which maintain the gaps between pressure tubes and their corresponding calandria tubes. If contact were to occur between a pressure tube and the cooler calandria tube, pressure tube degradation could result. Licensees assess the possibility of spacer movement along the fuel channel (which could increase the likelihood of pressure tube to calandria tube contact) over time, and correct the positioning if necessary. CNSC staff are satisfied with licensees’ work to assure the ongoing safe functioning of fuel channel spacers.

In 2016, CNSC staff reviewed periodic inspection reports for pressure tubes. They confirmed that no new flaw degradation mechanisms were identified and there were no findings that exceeded predictions in operational assessments. CNSC staff concluded that pressure tube aging is effectively managed.

Chemistry control

CNSC staff determined that all licensees have chemistry control programs in place. These programs maintain system chemistry at conditions necessary to minimize corrosion and performance degradation during all plant states, and contribute to safe and reliable plant operation. Proper chemistry control maximizes equipment life, reliability and long-term performance. Chemistry specifications identify parameters that must be controlled within specified limits.

The CNSC requires that licensees report on the safety performance of their chemistry programs through the Chemistry Index and Chemistry Compliance Index in accordance with REGDOC‑3.1.1. The Chemistry Index is the percentage of time that the selected chemical parameters are within specification. It quantifies the long-term control of important chemical parameters in accordance with licensee requirements. The Chemistry Compliance Index is the average percentage of time that the selected chemical parameters are within specification for guaranteed shutdown state and non-guaranteed shutdown state conditions to monitor performance in meeting regulatory and licensee requirements.

Figures 7 and 8 show the values of the Chemistry Index and the Chemistry Compliance Index for the years 2012 to 2016. Based on these values, CNSC staff determined that chemistry control is maintained well for all licensees. Index values that are close to 100 indicate that measured parameters were maintained within specifications most of the time. An example of a parameter that can fall out of specification is the one for dissolved oxygen in the condenser, which can fall out of specification during unit start-ups and prolonged outages.

Chemistry Index

The decreased values for Bruce A are primarily due to elevated condensate extraction pump dissolved oxygen levels. In spite of these recent out-of-specification trends, there are no adverse effects on chemistry or corrosion control. Chemistry control parameters in the steam generator/feedwater system have been well maintained. The increased condensate extraction pump dissolved oxygen is of low safety significance. Bruce Power is currently completing work to resolve the issue.

Chemistry Compliance Index

The decreasing trend in the Chemistry Compliance Index for Bruce A for the years 2012 to 2016 is primarily due to degraded moderator isotopic. This trend is of low safety significance and the remaining chemistry parameters for the moderator have been well maintained over the last five years.

Figure 7: Chemistry Index (%) for industry, 2012–16
Year Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering 1, 4 Pickering 5-8 Point Lepreau
2012 94.58 97.52 99.71 98.59 98.22 78.42
2013 94.46 97.14 99.50 98.79 98.02 93.78
2014 94.53 96.97 99.61 98.74 98.93 96.06
2015 95.58 97.20 99.48 98.33 99.43 96.29
2016 94.51 96.72 99.51 98.17 99.62 98.05

Note: The Chemistry Index for Point Lepreau for 2012 is low due to return to service after the refurbishment.

Figure 8: Chemistry Compliance Index (%) for industry, 2012–16
Year Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering 1, 4 Pickering 5-8 Point Lepreau
2012 96.87 92.66 99.70 99.99 99.98 96.73
2013 94.77 94.00 99.69 99.86 99.99 98.17
2014 93.16 98.64 99.74 100.00 99.75 95.78
2015 92.55 97.81 99.99 99.81 99.97 98.75
2016 92.74 95.62 99.96 99.96 99.99 99.53
Structural integrity

CNSC staff determined that all licensees continued to inspect and demonstrate the structural integrity of passive NPP components and structures, including those for pressure boundary systems, containment systems and safety-significant balance-of-plant systems, in accordance with the stations’ periodic inspection programs and applicable standards.

Compliance monitoring activities conducted by CNSC staff included the review of licensee governing program documents, inspection reports and disposition of inspection findings submitted in accordance with relevant CSA standards and REGDOC-3.1.1. CNSC staff determined there was no degradation to structures, systems and components that affected nuclear safety in 2016.

In 2016, CNSC staff continued to monitor licensee utilization of results from LCMPs and supporting projects in structural integrity assessments (e.g., in development of new methodologies for probabilistic leak-before-break assessments).

Periodic inspection and testing

CNSC staff determined that all licensees have inspection and testing programs in place to provide ongoing monitoring of the fitness for service and structural integrity of safety-significant structures, systems and components. After every inspection campaign, the results of these inspections and tests are submitted to CNSC staff for review in accordance with relevant CSA Group standards and REGDOC-3.1.1. CNSC staff performed desktop reviews of the submissions to verify licensee implementation of their inspection and testing programs. During the reporting period, CNSC staff did not identify any program compliance issues affecting safety and found that the programs complied with regulatory requirements.

In 2016, CNSC staff determined that inspections and tests were performed for pressure boundary and containment components as well as for concrete containment structures at operating NPPs in accordance with CSA standards N285.4, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components [21], N285.5, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant containment components [23], and N287.7, In-service examination and testing requirements for concrete containment structures for CANDU nuclear power plants [24]. CNSC staff reviewed the results of these inspections and tests and confirmed that the programs were implemented in accordance with regulatory requirements outlined in the NPPs’ licence conditions handbooks and licensee program documents.

2.1.7 Radiation protection

This SCA covers the implementation of a radiation protection program in accordance with the Radiation Protection Regulations. This program must ensure that contamination levels and radiation doses received by individuals are monitored, controlled and maintained as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA). The industry average rating for the radiation protection SCA was “satisfactory”, the same rating from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the radiation protection SCA at NPPs met applicable regulatory requirements and that doses to workers and members of the public were below regulatory limits.

Radiation protection ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
FS FS FS SA SA SA

Radiation protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • application of ALARA
  • worker dose control
  • radiation protection program performance
  • radiological hazard control
  • estimated dose to the public

The dose data presented is based on the radiation exposure records for every individual monitored at a Canadian NPP. This report presents and analyzes these dose records in terms of annual collective doseNotes de bas de page 2 , average effective doseNotes de bas de page 3 , maximum individual effective dose and the distribution of doses among the monitored individuals.

The annual collective effective dose for monitored persons at each NPP is presented in appendix E.

Figures 9, 10 and 11 present the effective doses (i.e., average and maximum) and dose distributions to monitored persons for each NPP. The estimated dose to the public from NPPs is provided in figure 12.

Application of ALARA

CNSC staff determined that all licensees continued to implement radiation protection measures to keep the doses to persons ALARA, taking into account social and economic factors, as required by the Radiation Protection Regulations.

In 2016, the total collective dose for monitored individuals at all Canadian NPPs was 18.94 person-sieverts (p-Sv), approximately 19.6 percent higher than the industry-wide collective dose reported for the previous year (i.e., 15.84 p-Sv). As shown in appendix E, this increase was due to the scope of outage activities performed at NPPs in 2016. The routine operations dose remained fairly stable. The number of persons that received doses in 2016 (i.e., 7,697) was slightly higher than the 2015 value (i.e., 7,500).

The annual average effective dose in 2016 for all Canadian NPPs was 2.46 millisieverts (mSv), an increase of approximately 16.6 percent from the 2015 value of 2.11 mSv.

Figure 9 shows the average effective doses to monitored persons at each Canadian NPP for the period 2012 to 2016. This figure shows that for 2016 the average effective dose at each station ranged from 1.20 to 3.51 mSv per year. In general, the fluctuations in average doses observed from year to year are reflective of the type and scope of work being performed at each facility. No negative trends were identified in 2016.

The annual collective effective dose for monitored persons at each NPP is presented in appendix E. CNSC staff were satisfied with the licensees’ application of ALARA in 2016 and the resultant doses to persons.

Figure 9: Average effective doses of monitored persons at each Canadian NPP, 2012–16
Year Bruce-A et Bruce-B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau
2012 4.3 1.24 2.92 0.7
2013 2.95 2.25 1.79 0.54
2014 3.68 1.35 2.21 0.7
2015 2.78 1.18 2.31 0.7
2016 3.51 1.42 2 1.2
Worker dose control

CNSC staff determined that all licensees implemented radiation protection programs to control the occupational doses received by persons, as required by the Radiation Protection Regulations.

In addition to maintaining doses to persons below regulatory limitsNotes de bas de page 4 , all licensees have established action levelsNotes de bas de page 5 for worker exposures. During 2016, radiation doses to workers at the NPPs were below the regulatory action levels and dose limits.

The maximum annual individual effective doses as reported by each NPP for the period 2012 to 2016 are presented in figure 10. In 2016, the maximum individual effective dose received was 23.05 mSv. This dose was received by a worker at the Bruce Power site. CNSC staff continue to monitor doses to workers through the compliance verification program.

Figure 10: Maximum individual effective doses at each Canadian NPP, 2012–16
Year Bruce-A et Bruce-B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau
2012 29 11.7 19.6 5.1
2013 13.63 14.15 14.5 6.59
2014 20.17 11.13 14.5 10.2
2015 15.4 9.78 15.38 6.6
2016 23.05 9.13 18.04 14.01

Figure 11 below provides the distribution of annual effective doses to all monitored persons at all Canadian NPPs from 2012 to 2016 according to dose information provided by each licensee. Figure 11 also shows that, in 2016, there were no radiation exposures received at any Canadian NPP that exceeded regulatory dose limits. In addition, approximately 86 percent of doses reported for workers were at or below the annual regulatory dose limit of 1 mSv for non-nuclear energy workers.

Overall, CNSC staff were satisfied with the licensees’ control of worker doses.

Figure 11: Distribution of annual effective doses received by all monitored persons at Canadian NPPs, 2012–16
Year Number of Workers Monitored BRL 0.01 - 1 mSv 1 - 5 mSv 5 - 10 mSv 10 - 15 mSv 15 - 20 mSv 20 - 50 mSv > 50 mSv
2012 27532 0.667151 0.152659 0.11735435 0.04086154 0.017288973 0.003414209 0.001271 0
2013 24440 0.696154 0.140794 0.12156301 0.03739771 0.004091653 0 0 0
2014 25378 0.707975 0.137797 0.10619434 0.04275357 0.004255655 0.000945701 7.88E-05 0
2015 27229 0.72 0.14 0.1 0.03 0.003 0.0001 0 0
2016 29055 0.735089 0.126002 0.09578386 0.03875409 0.003407331 0.000653932 0.00031 0
Radiation protection program performance

CNSC staff performed regulatory oversight activities at all NPPs during 2016 to verify the effective implementation of licensees’ radiation protection programs. This regulatory oversight consisted of desktop reviews of program and performance documentation.

Routine surveillance of licensee performance in the area of radiation protection was also conducted by onsite inspectors at each NPP.

Through information gathered from these oversight activities, CNSC staff confirmed that all licensees have implemented their radiation protection programs to control occupational exposures to workers.

Radiological hazard control

CNSC staff determined that all licensees have implemented measures in their radiation protection programs to monitor and control radiological hazards in their facilities. These measures include, but are not limited to, the use of radiological zoning systems, ventilation systems to control the direction of air flow, and ambient air monitoring and radiation monitoring equipment at zone boundaries.

CNSC staff determined that in 2016 all licensees continued to implement their workplace monitoring programs to protect workers and ensure that radioactive contamination is controlled within site boundaries. In 2016, no contamination control action levels were exceeded and no safety-significant performance issues were identified at any Canadian NPP.

Estimated doses to the public

The estimated doses to the public for airborne emissions and liquid releases from 2012 to 2016 are provided in figure 12. (The airborne emissions and liquid releases of radionuclides from Canadian NPPs are shown in figures 18 and 19 in section 2.1.9.) Figure 12 shows that the doses to the public are well below the annual regulatory public dose limit of 1 mSv.

A comparison of the 2016 data to previous years indicates that the values remain within the same general range as the 2012 to 2015 values for most stations.

Note: Many of the percentages shown in the following figure is very small. The use of logarithmic scales helps to illustrate these small values and the large range of values.

Figure 12: Comparison of estimated doses to the public from Canadian NPPs 2012–16
Year Bruce site Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau
2012 0.0012 0.0006 0.0011 0.0006
2013 0.0013 0.0006 0.0011 0.0004
2014 0.002 0.0006 0.0012 0.0003
2015 0.0029 0.0005 0.0012 0.0006
2016 0.0016 0.0006 0.0015 0.0009

2.1.8 Conventional health and safety

This SCA covers the implementation of a program to manage workplace safety hazards and protect personnel and equipment. The industry average rating for conventional health and safety was “fully satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the conventional health and safety SCA at NPPs met or exceeded applicable regulatory requirements.

Conventional health and safety ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
FS SA SA FS FS FS

Conventional health and safety encompasses the following specific areas:

  • performance
  • practices (no significant observations to report)
  • awareness (no significant observations to report)
Performance

The accident severity rate (ASR), accident frequency (AF) and industrial safety accident rate (ISAR) are parameters reported by licensees that measure the effectiveness of their conventional health and safety programs with respect to worker safety. The ASR measures the total number of days lost due to injury for every 200,000 person-hours (approximately 100 person-years) worked at an NPP. The AF is a measure of the number of fatalities and injuries (i.e., lost-time and medically treated) due to accidents for every 200,000 person-hours worked at a nuclear power plant. The ISAR is a measure of the number of lost-time injuries for every 200,000 hours worked by NPP personnel.

The ASR, AF and ISAR values for the stations and industry average are presented in figures 13, 14 and 15, respectively. CNSC staff observe continuing low rates of accidents and lost time due to accidents. Although AF is defined to include fatalities, CNSC staff observed that there were no work-related fatalities at Canadian NPPs in 2016.

Figure 13: Trend details of accident severity rate for stations and Canadian industry, 2012–16
Year Bruce site Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry
2012 0.1 4.4 0.0 0.0 1.2
2013 0.0 0.2 0.0 12.0 1.4
2014 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
2015 0.0 1.4 0.5 0.0 0.5
2016 2.6 0.7 0.5 0.0 1.3
Figure 14: Trend details of accident frequency for stations and Canadian industry, 2012–16
Year Bruce site Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry
2012 0.77 0.39 0.34 0.70 0.61
2013 0.51 0.30 0.29 0.35 0.40
2014 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
2015 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
2016 0.46 0.22 0.66 0.11 0.43
Figure 15: Trend details of industrial safety accident rate for stations and Canadian industry, 2012–16
Year Bruce site Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry
2012 0.04 0.04 0.00 0.2 0.04
2013 0.00 0.08 0.00 0.25 0.06
2014 0.05 0.05 0.10 0 0.03
2015 0.00 0.09 0.04 0 0.04
2016 0.02 0.04 0.03 0.03 0.03

Figure 16 below shows the values of ISAR at Canadian NPPs in comparison to international nuclear power industry values as published by WANO. The Canadian nuclear power industry values have been significantly lower than the WANO values, indicating that the Canadian nuclear power industry provides one of the safest nuclear power work environments in the world. Note that WANO discontinued the publication of actual industrial safety accident rates in 2016. Instead, it publishes percentages of reactors that met WANO targets (i.e., 0.2lost-time injuries per 200,000 person-hours for the industry as a whole and 0.5lost-time injuries per 200,000 person-hours for individual NPPs).

Figure 16: Trend of industrial safety accident rate (lost-time injuries per 200,000 person-hours) compared to WANO values, 2012–16
Year Canada WANO
2012 0.04 0.14
2013 0.04 0.12
2014 0.06 0.13
2015 0.04 0.12
2016 0.03 0.00

Figure 17 below shows the AF values for a wide range of Canadian workplaces. The workplaces that are included are all workplaces for which the AF values are based on fatalities, lost-time injuries and medically treated injuries. As shown in figure 17, the Canadian nuclear power industry’s AF is lower than that of other Canadian workplaces. CNSC staff concluded that, for the overall nuclear power industry, the ASR, AF and ISAR remained very low during the year, indicating effective health and safety programs at the NPPs. Note that the Canadian Electricity Association discontinued the publication of data for accident frequency after 2014.

Figure 17: Trend details of accident frequency (fatalities and injuries per 200,000 person-hours) for Canadian workplaces, 2012–2016
2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Ontario Worplace Safety and Insurance Board (ON workplaces) 3.60 3.48 3.41 3.21 3.25
WorkSafe NB (NB workplaces) 3.06 2.93 2.89 2.72 3.06
WorkSafe BC (BC workplaces) 2.34 2.30 2.28 2.23 2.21
Canadian Electricity Association (CEA) 1.77 1.73 1.59
CNSC 0.80 0.72 0.48 0.35 0.70
Canadian Nuclear Power Industry 0.61 0.40 0.22 0.33 0.43

2.1.9 Environmental protection

This SCA covers programs that identify, control and monitor all releases of radioactive and hazardous substances and the effects on the environment from facilities or as a result of licensed activities. The industry average rating for environmental protection was “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the environmental protection SCA at NPPs met applicable regulatory requirements.

Environmental protection ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
SA SA SA SA SA SA

Environmental protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • effluent and emissions control (releases)
  • environmental management system
  • assessment and monitoring
  • protection of the public
  • environmental risk assessment
Effluent and emissions control (releases)

Airborne emissions and liquid releases for each NPP in 2016 are shown as percentages of derived release limits (DRLs) in figures 18 and 19. DRLs have been developed by licensees to ensure that release limits to the environment will not exceed the annual regulatory public dose limit of 1 mSv. The DRLs are stated in each operating licence/licence conditions handbook (LCH) and are given in appendix F.

Licensees establish action levels that, in 2016, were set at approximately 10 percent of the DRLs. Action levels, if reached, could indicate a loss of control of part of a licensee’s environmental program and the need for specific actions to be taken and reported to the CNSC.

Except for one monthly radiological liquid release that exceeded an action level at Pickering (see section 3.3.1.9 for additional details), both airborne emissions and liquid releases were lower than their respective action levels. No radiological releases to the environment from the stations exceeded the regulatory limits.

Note: Many of the percentages shown in the following two figures are very small. The use of logarithmic scales helps to illustrate these small values and the large range of values.

Figure 18: Radionuclides emitted to air (Emissions as % DRLs) by Canadian NPPs in 2016
Tritium (HTO) Tritium (HT) Iode-131 Gas rares Particules Radioactives Carbone-14
Bruce A 28.5859 0.0386 5.0268 0.0018 26.6562
Bruce B 18.0380 0.0000 2.4194 0.0031 14.9471
Pickering* 20.0000 1.0000 30.5000 1.0000 5.5000
Darlington* 30.0000 1.0000 1.0000 4.0000 1.0000 50.0000
Point Lepreau* 5.4000 0.0140 2.8300 0.1700
Action Levels (10% DRLs)
Figure 19: Radionuclides emitted to water (Releases as % DRLs) by Canadian NPPs in 2016
Tritium Gross Beta Gamma Carbon-14
Bruce A 1.0261 0.2175 0.0161
Bruce B 2.7554 0.2747 0.0152
Pickering 3.0000 100.0000 1.0000
Darlington 1.0000 10.0000 1.0000
Point Lepreau 0.1100 0.4950 0.1100
Environmental management system

CNSC staff determined that each licensee has established and implemented an environmental management program to assess environmental risks associated with its nuclear activities, and to ensure that these activities are conducted in a way that prevents or mitigates adverse environmental effects.

Assessment and monitoring

CNSC staff determined that environmental monitoring programs implemented by all licensees have demonstrated adequate provisions for the protection of the environment. Licensees are documenting, or have already documented, those programs in a manner consistent with CSA standard N288.4-10, Environmental monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills [25]. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Groundwater monitoring

Groundwater is monitored regularly around all stations. The results are submitted to the CNSC for review annually. CNSC staff verified monitoring results in 2016, which indicated that the operation of the stations had no adverse impact on the groundwater environment.

Protection of the public

During the reporting period, CNSC staff determined that the risks to the environment or the public and Indigenous peoples from any releases of hazardous substances from NPPs were reasonable. In 2016, the reported doses to the public from Canadian NPPs were well below the annual public dose regulatory limit of 1 mSv (see section 2.1.7).

Environmental risk assessment

CNSC staff reviewed environmental risk assessments performed at all operating stations and determined that licensees have adequate provisions for the protection of the environment and the public. Licensees have either documented, or are in the process of documenting, environmental risk assessments consistent with CSA standard N288.6-12, Environmental risk assessments at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills[26]. All are expected to be completed by the end of 2017. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date. The CNSC reviews each licensee’s environmental risk assessment on a five-year cycle or more frequently if major facility changes are proposed, or if the science upon which the conclusions are based changes.

CNSC staff determined that all licensees have developed and implemented programs to ensure that fish are being protected at all stations from the effects of thermal discharge of water as well as intake water withdrawal, and to verify that measures are in place to make sure that risks to fish and fish populations remain reasonable. This work is conducted at the request of CNSC staff with advice from agencies including Fisheries and Oceans Canada, and Environment and Climate Change Canada, through memoranda of understanding.

2.1.10 Emergency management and fire protection

This SCA covers emergency response plans and emergency preparedness programs for dealing with radiological, nuclear and conventional emergencies. It also includes the results of participation in emergency response exercises during the year. For the specific area of fire response, only the performance of the industrial fire brigade organization is addressed in this SCA. Design issues are described under section 2.1.5. Based on the data collected and the observations made during CNSC inspections, the industry average for emergency management and fire protection was rated as “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that NPP licensees continued to maintain comprehensive and well-documented emergency management programs that met applicable regulatory requirements.

Emergency management and fire protection ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
SA SA SA SA SA SA

Emergency management and fire protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conventional emergency preparedness and response
  • nuclear emergency preparedness and response
  • fire emergency preparedness and response
Conventional emergency preparedness and response

Conventional emergencies include work injuries, releases of hazardous materials or extreme weather conditions. CNSC staff determined that all licensees continued to maintain and improve their conventional emergency preparedness and response capabilities at their respective facilities. CNSC staff verified each response program against the regulatory requirements set out in the operating licences and LCHs. Maintenance of proficiency within this area was achieved through training programs, drills and exercise programs.

Nuclear emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff determined that all licensees continued to maintain and improve their nuclear emergency preparedness and response capabilities. CNSC staff verified the nuclear emergency preparedness and response programs against the regulatory requirements set out in the operating licences and LCHs. Maintenance of proficiency within this area was achieved through training programs, drills and exercise programs.

Offsite emergency preparedness and response

This area of safety focuses on protecting residences located near NPPs. In 2015, the CNSC introduced a requirement for licensees to pre-distribute iodine thyroid blockers, also known as potassium iodide (KI) tablets, in the primary zones, and to stockpile KI tablets in secondary zones. CNSC staff determined that all licensees continued to support and maintain this regulatory requirement in 2016.

CNSC staff observed that the licensees disseminated public information to provide residents with information on the KI tablets, designated evacuation routes and reception centres, and when and how to shelter in place.

Public alerting continued to be a significant item of interest in 2016. In addition to existing sirens, licensees are considering other methods of communication such as FM radio, text messages, cell broadcasts and phone dial-out systems. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Fire emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff determined that all licensees continued to maintain and improve their fire protection and response programs. CNSC staff have closely monitored the effectiveness of any corrective actions as part of their regulatory oversight activities.

2.1.11 Waste management

This SCA covers internal waste-related programs that form part of the facility’s operations up to the point where the waste is removed from the facility. This SCA also covers any planning for eventual decommissioning of the facility. The industry average rating for the waste management SCA was “fully satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the waste management SCA at NPPs met or exceeded applicable regulatory requirements.

Waste management ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
FS FS FS FS SA FS

Waste management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • waste characterization
  • waste minimization
  • waste management practices
  • decommissioning plans
Waste characterization, waste minimization and waste management practices

CNSC staff determined that all licensees have effective programs that meet or exceed CNSC expectations for managing radioactive and hazardous wastes. According to assessments of the hazard levels, all radioactive waste was disposed of appropriately in compliance with regulatory requirements and licensees’ procedures. All licensees continued to employ effective programs for the characterization, minimization, segregation, handling, storage, monitoring and processing of radioactive and hazardous wastes in 2016.

Decommissioning plans

Each licensee is required to maintain an acceptable preliminary decommissioning plan that sets out how the facility will be decommissioned. The CNSC requires this plan to be reviewed and updated by the licensee every five years. It also forms the basis of developing the cost estimate for decommissioning. The associated financial guarantee gives the assurance that funds for decommissioning will be available when the facility is ready to be dismantled.

Licensees have financial guarantees that have been accepted by the Commission. For all nuclear generating stations, each proposed decommissioning strategy allows for an extended period of storage with surveillance after the end of normal operations. This period would take place under a CNSC licence and would last for three or four decades, allowing for radioactive decay prior to the onset of active dismantling.

2.1.12 Security

This SCA covers the programs licensees are required to implement in support of the security requirements stipulated in the Nuclear Security Regulations and associated regulatory documents, in their licences, in orders, or in expectations for their facilities or activities. In 2016, all licensees continued to maintain and implement adequate security programs in accordance with CNSC requirements. The security rating determined by CNSC staff for industry was “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the security SCA at NPPs met applicable regulatory requirements.

Security ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
SA SA SA SA SA SA

Security encompasses the following specific areas:

  • facilities and equipment
  • response arrangements
  • security practices
  • drills and exercises
Facilities and equipment

CNSC staff determined that the results in this specific area are trending upwards with regard to improvements to the preventive maintenance programs for security systems at certain facilities. Licensees continue to sustain their programs through lifecycle management and modernization of security equipment. There are, however, some issues with regard to the aging of equipment and hardware. The licensees are addressing these issues in a satisfactory manner. CNSC staff found that there were no safety-significant issues for this specific area.

Security practices

CNSC staff determined that security practices were affected by reportable events related to non-adherence to security procedures at some facilities. There is a lack of vigilance in the area of security awareness at certain facilities, where employees need to better understand the rules around security. Nevertheless, CNSC staff found that there were no safety-significant issues for this specific area.

Response arrangements

CNSC staff determined that the industry continues to adequately address deficiencies in training techniques and improve procedural rigour. Corrective action plans in response to enforcement actions are being implemented and will be monitored by CNSC staff. CNSC staff found that there were no safety-significant issues for this specific area.

Drills and exercises

CNSC staff determined that licensees continue to perform these activities at acceptable levels. Improvements were realized at those facilities where this specific area was a challenge in the past. CNSC staff found that there were no safety-significant issues for this specific area.

Cyber security

CNSC staff determined that the cyber security program ensures that all cyber-essential assets used for safety, security, emergency preparedness and safeguard functions are protected from cyber attacks.

Licensees continued to maintain and improve their cyber security programs by implementing CSA standard N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities [27], by the dates given in section 3, and by working through the CANDU Owners Group cyber security peer group program to share lessons learned and develop best industry practices for implementing cyber security controls. CNSC staff were satisfied with the overall progress in this area.

2.1.13 Safeguards and non-proliferation

This SCA covers the programs and activities required for the successful implementation of Canada’s obligations arising from the Canada/International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards agreements as well as other measures arising from the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons [28]. The industry average rating for safeguards and non-proliferation was “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the safeguards and non-proliferation SCA at NPPs met applicable regulatory requirements.

Safeguards and non-proliferation ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
SA SA SA SA SA SA

The safeguards program encompasses the following specific areas:

  • nuclear material accountancy and control
  • access and assistance to the IAEA
  • operational and design information
  • safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance

The scope of the non-proliferation program for Canada’s NPPs is limited to the tracking and reporting of foreign obligations and origins of nuclear material, as specified in RD‑336, Accounting and Reporting of Nuclear Material [29]. This tracking and reporting assists the CNSC in the implementation of Canada’s bilateral nuclear cooperation agreements with other countries.

Nuclear material accountancy and control

CNSC staff determined that all licensees complied with CNSC’s regulatory requirements in accordance with RD-336.

Access and assistance to the IAEA

CNSC staff determined that all licensees granted access and assistance to the IAEA for safeguard activities, including inspection and the maintenance of the IAEA’s equipment.

Operational and design information

CNSC staff determined that all licensees submitted their annual operational programs with quarterly updates, annual updates to the additional protocol, and other required information to the IAEA and the CNSC in a timely manner.

Safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance

There were no major IAEA equipment installations in 2016. However, CNSC staff determined that all licensees were cooperative in supporting the maintenance, repair and upgrade of IAEA equipment, including the VXI Integrated Fuel Monitor and digital multi-camera optical surveillance systems, as applicable.

2.1.14 Packaging and transport

This SCA pertains to programs that cover the safe packaging and transport of nuclear substances to and from licensed facilities. The industry average rating for this SCA was “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

CNSC staff concluded that the packaging and transport SCA at NPPs met applicable regulatory requirements.

Packaging and transport ratings
Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average
SA SA SA SA SA SA

Packaging and transport encompasses the following specific areas:

  • package design and maintenance
  • packaging and transport
  • registration for use
Package design and maintenance

CNSC staff determined that nuclear substances originating from NPPs were transported using packages that met regulatory requirements. In some cases, these package designs were certified by the CNSC. Common shipments from NPPs include substances contaminated with radioactive materials (in liquid and solid forms), samples containing nuclear substances,and tritiated heavy water. Many licensees maintain fleets of vehicles that are used to transport nuclear substances.

Packaging and transport

The CNSC determined that all licenseeshave programs in place to ensure compliance with the requirements of both the Packaging and Transport of Nuclear Substances Regulations, 2015 [30] and the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations [31] for all shipments of nuclear substances leaving their sites.

The CNSC requires all licensees to have appropriate trainingfor personnel involved in the handling, offering for transport, and transport of dangerous goods. Licensees are also required to issue a training certificate to those workers in accordance with the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations.

Many licensees also maintain lists of third-party carriers to ship nuclear substances.

Registration for use

The CNSC requires all licensees that use certified packages register their use in accordance with the requirements of the Packaging and Transport of Nuclear Substances Regulations, 2015.

2.2 Regulatory developments

2.2.1 Licensing and introduction of new requirements

The Point Lepreau nuclear power reactor operating licence (PROL) was scheduled to expire on June 30, 2017. The two-part public hearing for the Point Lepreau licence renewal was held in January and May 2017.

In June 2017, the Commission renewed the PROL for the period covering July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2022.

As part of the Point Lepreau licence renewal, the CNSC introduced updated several CNSC regulatory documents and CSA standards into the LCH, as shown in tables 8 and 9, respectively. The documents support the practice of continuous operational and regulatory improvement.

CNSC staff will continue to verify the implementation plan for regulatory documents and CSA standards, as outlined in the CNSC licence renewal Commission member document for NB Power. CNSC staff will report to the Commission on any issues that arise from the implementation. Existing requirements are still valid until NB Power fully implements the requirements set out in the implementation plan.

Table 8: Updated requirements for CNSC regulatory documents for the 2017 Point Lepreau licence renewal
CNSC regulatory document identifier and title Implementation date
REGDOC-2.2.2, Personnel Training Completed
REGDOC-2.3.3, Periodic Safety Reviews Completed
RD/GD-210, Maintenance Programs for Nuclear Power Plants Completed
REGDOC-2.4.1, Deterministic Safety Analysis Completed
REGDOC-2.4.2, Safety Analysis: Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants Completed
REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management July 31, 2017
RD/GD-98, Reliability Programs for Nuclear Power Plants Completed
REGDOC-2.9.1, Environmental Protection: Environmental Protection Policies, Programs and Procedures Completed
REGDOC-2.12.1, High-Security Sites: Nuclear Response Force Completed
REGDOC-2.12.2, Site Access Security Clearance Completed
RD/GD-99.3, Public Information and Disclosure Completed
Table 9: Updated requirements for CSA standards for the 2017 Point Lepreau licence renewal
CSA standard identifier and title Implementation date
N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities December 29, 2017
N290.11-13, Requirements for reactor heat removal capability during outage of nuclear power plants Completed
N291-08 (2011 update 1 and 2014 update 2), Requirements for safety-related structures for CANDU nuclear power plants Completed
N293-12, Fire protection for nuclear power plants Completed
N292.3-08, Management of low- and intermediate-level radioactive waste Completed
N285.0-12 (2013 Update 1and 2014 Update 2), General requirements for pressure-retaining systems and components in CANDU nuclear power plants/Material Standards for reactor components for CANDU nuclear power plants Completed
N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities December 31, 2019
N290.12-14, Human factors in design for nuclear power plants Completed
N288.4-10, Environmental monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills November 30, 2017

The 2015 Bruce Power licence renewal hearing resulted in the introduction of updated CNSC regulatory documents and CSA standards into the LCH, as shown in tables 10 and 11, respectively. The documents support the practice of continuous operational and regulatory improvement.

CNSC staff will continue to verify the implementation plan outlined in the CNSC licence renewal CMD for Bruce Power and will report to the Commission on any issues that arise from the implementation. Existing requirements are still valid until Bruce Power fully implements the requirements set out in the implementation plan.

Table 10: Updated requirements for CNSC regulatory documents for the 2015 Bruce Power licence renewal
CNSC regulatory document identifier and title Implementation date
REGDOC-2.3.2, Accident Management: Severe Accident Management Programs for Nuclear Reactors Completed
REGDOC-3.1.1, Reporting Requirements for Nuclear Power Plants Completed
RD-336, Accounting and Reporting of Nuclear Material Completed
REGDOC-2.3.3, Periodic Safety Reviews Completed
REGDOC-2.4.1, Deterministic Safety Analysis December 31, 2017
REGDOC-2.4.2, Safety Analysis: Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants June 30, 2019
RD/GD-210, Maintenance Programs for Nuclear Power Plants November 30, 2017
RD/GD-98, Reliability Programs for Nuclear Power Plants Completed
REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management July 15, 2017
REGDOC-2.9.1, Environmental Protection: Environmental Protection Policies, Programs and Procedures December 31, 2018
REGDOC-2.10.1, Nuclear Emergency Preparedness and Response August 31, 2018
REGDOC-2.12.1, High-Security Sites: Nuclear Response Force Completed
REGDOC-2.12.2, Site Access Security Clearance Completed
RD-321, Criteria for Physical Protection Systems and Devices at High-Security Sites Completed
RD-361, Criteria for Explosive Substance Detection, X-ray Imaging, and Metal Detection Devices at High-Security Sites Completed
RD-327, Nuclear Criticality Safety Completed
Table 11: Updated requirements for CSA standards for the 2015 Bruce Power licence renewal
CSA standard identifier and title Implementation date
N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities December 31, 2018
N290.15-10, Requirements for the safe operating envelope of nuclear power plants Completed
N285.4-09, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components December 31, 2017
N285.0-12, General requirements for pressure-retaining systems and components in CANDU nuclear power plants Completed
N290.13-10, Environmental qualification of equipment for CANDU nuclear power plants Completed
N285.4-11, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components December 31, 2018
N288.1-14, Guidelines for calculating derived release limits for radioactive materials in airborne and liquid effluents for normal operation of nuclear facilities January 1, 2020
N288.4-10, Environmental monitoring programs at ClassI nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills December 31, 2018
N288.5-11, Effluent monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills December 31, 2018
N288.6-12, Environmental risk assessments at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills December 31, 2018
N293-12, Fire protection for nuclear power plants Completed

The 2015 Darlington licence renewal hearing resulted in the introduction of updated CNSC regulatory documents and CSA standards into the LCH, as shown in tables 12 and 13, respectively. The documents support the practice of continuous operational and regulatory improvement. Existing requirements are still valid until OPG fully implements the requirements set out in the implementation plan.

CNSC staff will continue to verify the implementation plan outlined in the CNSC licence renewal CMD for Darlington and will report to the Commission on any issues that arise from the implementation.

Table 12: Updated requirements for CNSC regulatory documents for the 2016 Darlington licence renewal
CNSC regulatory document identifier and title Implementation date
REGDOC-2.2.2, Personnel Training Completed
REGDOC-2.3.2, Accident Management Completed
REGDOC-2.3.3, Periodic Safety Reviews Completed
RD/GD-210, Maintenance Programs for Nuclear Power Plants Completed
REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management July 15, 2017
REGDOC-2.9.1, Environmental Protection: Environmental Protection Policies, Programs and Procedures Completed
REGDOC-2.10.1, Nuclear Emergency Preparedness and Response September 29, 2017
REGDOC-2.12.1, High-Security Sites: Nuclear Response Force Completed
REGDOC-2.12.2, Site Access Security Clearance Completed
Table 13: Updated requirements for CSA standards for the Darlington licence renewal
CSA standard identifier and title Implementation date
N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities Completed
N290.0-11, General requirements for safety systems of nuclear power plants Completed
N291-08, Requirements for safety-related structures for CANDU nuclear power plants Completed
N289.1-08, General requirements for seismic design and qualification of CANDU nuclear power plants Completed
N285.0-12, General requirements for pressure-retaining systems and components in CANDU nuclear power plants (annex N only) Completed
N285.4-14, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components July 1, 2019
N288.4-10, Environmental monitoring programs at ClassI nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills Completed
N288.5-11, Effluent monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills Completed
N288.6-12, Environmental risk assessments at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills Completed
N292.3-08, Management of low and intermediate level waste Completed
N293-12, Fire protection for nuclear power plants Completed

Although Pickering’s licence was last renewed in 2013, the CNSC requires licensees to continually improve, which sometimes involves implementing updated CNSC regulatory documents and CSA standards. Tables 14 and 15 indicate the requirements that were implemented in 2016 or are scheduled for future implementation.

Table 14: Updated requirements for CNSC regulatory documents for Pickering in 2016
CNSC regulatory document identifier and title Implementation date
REGDOC-2.2.2, Personnel Training Completed
REGDOC-2.12.1, High-Security Sites: Nuclear Response Force Completed
REGDOC-2.12.2, Site Access Security Clearance Completed
Table 15: Updated requirements for CSA standards for Pickering in 2016
CSA standard identifier and title Implementation date
N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities Completed
N288.5-11, Effluent monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills Completed
N290.7-14 Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities November 30, 2019

2.2.2 Updates on significant regulatory developments

Independent Environmental Monitoring Program

Under the Nuclear Safety and Control Act, the CNSC requires each nuclear facility licensee to develop, implement and maintain an environmental monitoring program to demonstrate that the public and the environment are protected from emissions related to the facility’s nuclear activities. The results of these monitoring programs are submitted to the CNSC to ensure compliance with applicable guidelines and limits, as set out in regulations that oversee Canada’s nuclear industry.

The CNSC has implemented its Independent Environmental Monitoring Program (IEMP) to verify that the public and the environment around licensed nuclear facilities are protected. The IEMP is a regulatory tool that complements the CNSC’s ongoing compliance verification program. It involves taking samples from publicly accessible areas around the facilities, and measuring and analyzing the amount of radiological (i.e., nuclear) and non-radiological (i.e., hazardous) substances in those samples.

CNSC staff conducted independent environmental monitoring at Point Lepreau and Bruce Power in 2016. The results are available on the CNSC’s website. The IEMP results from 2016 indicate that the public and the environment in the vicinity of Bruce Power and Point Lepreau are protected from the operation of these facilities. The areas around Darlington and Pickering were not sampled through the IEMP in 2016. However, results from previous IEMP sampling campaigns are available on the CNSC’s website for all NPPs, including Darlington and Pickering.

Update on periodic safety reviews

A periodic safety review (PSR) is a forward-looking regulatory instrument for maintaining and enhancing the safe operation of NPPs. It facilitates a comprehensive safety assessment of NPPs that provides assurance of continued plant safety and confirms the viability of its licensing basis.

A PSR relies on a systematic and comprehensive process whereby modern standards, international best practices, research findings and technological developments are factored into NPP licensing. Its objective is to identify practical improvements to the design, analysis or operational processes, and thus enhance the safety of operating NPPs.

By facilitating continuous safety improvements and focusing on risk-significant issues, the PSR improves the effectiveness and efficiency of regulatory oversight. This process reduces non-safety related administrative efforts, and clarifies regulatory requirements and expectations for a period of continued operation. Combined with the annual reporting on safety performance, it provides the necessary assurance to the public of the continuing safety of NPPs, regulatory transparency and licensee accountability.

The implementation of PSR is not a revolutionary change in the Canadian regulatory framework since it is based on existing elements of the licensing and compliance processes. Specifically, experience with the integrated safety review process for life extension of NPPs provides the CNSC and the Canadian nuclear industry insight to, and a degree of familiarity with, the PSR process.

Furthermore, incorporation of the PSR into the Canadian regulatory framework addresses a recommendation stemming from the Integrated Regulatory Review Service mission to Canada by the IAEA, and lessons learned from the 2011 Fukushima event.

CNSC requirements for PSR are found in REGDOC-2.3.3, Periodic Safety Reviews [37]. Additional information on PSRs can be found in the site-specific regulatory developments sections of this report.

2.2.3 Updates on major projects and initiatives

Fuel channel life management project

In 2016, Bruce Power and OPG continued to participate in the fuel channel life management project, which was described in previous regulatory oversight reports. The research activities support long-term operation while addressing action items related to pressure tubes and fuel channel spacers. The project results help guide the licensees’ lifecycle management plans (as described in section2.1.6), to ensure that they meet CNSC requirements. Project activities assess the material properties and potential degradation of these components, with a particular focus on the fracture toughness of pressure tube material and the properties of tight-fitting spacers made of Inconel X-750.

Pressure tubes accumulate hydrogen during reactor operation which, when combined with irradiation effects, reduce the fracture toughness of the tubes as they age. Under this program, the licensees are conducting experimental and computational research activities to assess pressure tube fracture resistance for current and future operating conditions.

The project activities related to tight-fitting spacers made of Inconel X-750 are aimed at demonstrating their structural integrity for the Darlington and Bruce A and B reactors that will be operated beyond 210,000 equivalent full-power hours. Load-carrying capacity tests were conducted on spacers removed from service. Microstructural examinations on the removed spacers and from spacers irradiated in test reactors support industry’s current understanding of their degradation mechanisms.

In 2016, the licensees fulfilled the requirement to submit an annual update of the research outcomes. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress of the fuel channel life management project to date, but conclude that further research results are required to confirm pressure tube performance for later life conditions for the extended operation of the reactors at Darlington, Pickering, and Bruce A and B.

Radio interoperability in Durham Region

The Regional Municipality of Durham provides police and fire support to OPG’s onsite security and fire response teams. The CNSC expects that the two entities’ radio systems are interoperable so that onsite and offsite responders can work together effectively.

Durham Region raised concerns regarding the interoperability of the two systems. These were discussed at several meetings in 2016 among staff from Durham Region, OPG and the CNSC.

As a result, OPG made a commitment to re-examine its existing approach by September1, 2016. It has since put its emergency responders, and security and fire personnel on the P25NextGen radio system used by Durham Region.

Since regulatory requirements on this matter are performance based, licensees and their offsite partners have the flexibility to work out suitable arrangements using evolving technology. CNSC staff agree with the OPG decision and its implementation schedule for the P25 system.

Interoperability protocols are under development in consultation with offsite emergency response agencies to ensure interoperable communications between responders during any emergency response at either nuclear site.

Commissioning of the OPG P25 radio system is planned by the end of 2017.

Update on the status of probabilistic safety assessments at all CNSC-licensed facilities

A probabilistic safety assessment (PSA) is a comprehensive and integrated assessment of the safety of a facility. The assessment considers the probability, progression and consequences of equipment failures or transient conditions to derive numerical estimates that provide a consistent measure of the safety of the plant or reactor, as follows:

  • a Level 1 PSA identifies and quantifies the sequences of events that may lead to the loss of core structural integrity and massive fuel failures
  • a Level 2 PSA starts from the Level 1 results, analyzes the containment behaviour, evaluates the radionuclides released from the failed fuel and quantifies the releases to the environment
  • a Level 3 PSA starts from the Level 2 results, analyzes the distribution of radionuclides in the environment and evaluates the resulting effect on public health

The CNSC requires regular PSA updates for each NPP. In 2016, CNSC staff received several updated PSA reports from licensees, while continuing to review several other PSA reports received prior to 2016. All licensees are currently in compliance with the requirements of regulatory standard S-294, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [32]. Bruce Power and OPG are transitioning towards compliance with the additional requirements from REGDOC-2.4.2, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [15]. NB Power is in compliance with REGDOC-2.4.2. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Table 16 indicates the year each station submitted its last PSA report, each report’s review status, and the next expected submission year for the S-294- and REGDOC-2.4.2-compliant PSA reports.

Table 16: Status of PSAs and reviews
PSA submission Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering 1, 4 Pickering 5–8 Point Lepreau
Last PSA report received 2013–14 2013–14 2015 2012–14 2012–13 2011–16
Review status Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed
Next PSA report expected 2018 2018 2020 2018 2017 2021
Expected REGDOC-2.4.2 compliant 2019 2019 2020 2020 2020 2016

Table 17 indicates the review status for each of the submitted PSA reports, by station.

Table 17: Review status of individual reports
PSA report Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering 1, 4 Pickering 5–8 Point Lepreau
Level 1 at-power internal events Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed
Level 2 at-power internal events Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed
Level 1 outage internal events Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Submitted for CNSC review
Level 2 outage internal events Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Submitted for CNSC review
Level 1 and 2 internal floods Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed
Level 1 and 2 internal fires Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed
Level 1 and 2 high wind events Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed
Level 1 and 2 external floods Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed
Level 1 and 2 PSA for seismic events Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed
Internal/ external hazard assessment Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed Completed
Update on plant data transfer systems from nuclear generating stations to the CNSC in case of emergency

Following the February 27, 2015 CNSC/Chief Nuclear Officers’ executive forum, CNSC management and the chief nuclear officers convened a working group, composed of licensees and CNSC staff representatives, to establish a more efficient and timely means of sharing plant information during nuclear emergencies with the CNSC Emergency Operations Centre (EOC).

CNSC staff expect that all licensees will implement data-sharing systems with near real-time (i.e., every 15 minutes or less), automatic posting of a set of predetermined parameters, as well as either web-based access for viewing and trending, or the ability to download the information. CNSC staff have reviewed and accepted the implementation plans proposed by OPG and NB Power. The licensees’ target completion dates (including coordination and training involving both the licensees and CNSC staff) are September 2017 and April 2018, respectively.

OPG is creating new Intranet Web pages for displaying near real-time emergency information from existing computer-based plant data sources. During a declared station emergency, CNSC staff will be able to remotely access the OPG Intranet.

OPG is adding the severe accident management guidelines forms for Pickering units 1, 4 and 5–8 and Darlington to its existing crisis-information management system (i.e., the WebEOC system). A progress update was provided to the CNSC on March 29, 2017, for the implementation of the OPG plant data transfer system project. Another update will be provided by November 30, 2017.

NB Power’s plan is similar to that of OPG.

Bruce Power’s current approach involves sharing data manually with the CNSC EOC during nuclear emergencies. However, based on lessons learned from Exercise Huron Resolve (see section 3.1.2.2), Bruce Power made a commitment to begin implementing its disaster local area network (DLAN) data transfer system for incident management in 2017.

CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date related to plant data transfer systems.

Industry disposition of intervenor comments and questions

During the Bruce Power licence renewal hearing in April 2015, an intervenor raised a number of technical issues with the CANDU design. In the intervenor’s opinion, these issues needed to be addressed by the licensees and the CNSC. In response to the President of the Commission, Bruce Power’s senior management made a commitment to meet and discuss the issues raised by the intervenor, and to agree on a path to disposition all of his questions. The Commission assigned an action to staff to update the members on progress towards the resolution of these issues.

The intervenor had raised the same and similar issues dating back to 2001. He also raised the same issues in his submissions at the Darlington relicensing hearings in November 2015. Given the generic nature of the issues, NPP licensees requested the CANDU Owners Group (COG) to establish a joint project to address his questions.

Members of the COG joint project team met with the intervenor and agreed to prioritize the list of questions. Solutions to each were developed over two phases. Phase 1 focused on four areas of major concern to the intervenor. A third-party review, arranged by the industry, was completed as part of the phase 1 report. Phase 2 of the project, completed in October 2016, provided disposition of all remaining issues. The project culminated in the issuance of COG’s final report on CANDU post-Fukushima questions. The intervenor is the primary recipient of the COG project deliverables and agreed to provide COG with written comments.

CNSC staff conducted technical reviews of the phase 1 and final reports to confirm that the industry had addressed all the questions raised by the intervenor.

In addition, CNSC staff contracted external experts to conduct third-party reviews of the technical aspects of the CNSC assessment as well as the regulatory approach taken by the CNSC. The objectives of the third-party reviews were to determine whether the CNSC staff and industry exercised due diligence in dispositioning the questions raised by the intervenor, to determine if there is an imminent safety issue that needs to be addressed by the CNSC, and to assess the CNSC’s processes in dealing with public interventions. The reviewers concluded that CNSC staff have exercised due diligence in the review, assessment and disposition of the issues raised, and that the CNSC engagement with the Canadian nuclear industry to address these issues had been appropriate and consistent with international regulatory practices.

Based on the results of third-party reviews and CNSC staff technical assessments, CNSC staff concluded that the assertions and issues raised by the intervenor have limited to no safety significance to the operation of CANDU reactors, and that the action completed by COG, at the request of the industry, is complete and all issues identified by the intervenor have been dispositioned appropriately.

CNSC staff recommended to the Commission in March 2017 that the issues raised by the intervenor be closed. This recommendation was founded on the detailed information referenced in Commission member document 17-M14. Furthermore, CNSC staff requested that the Commission accept the fact that staff will not perform further detailed reviews on the issues identified by the intervenor until such issues are backed by credible information.

The Commission concluded that the approach used by the industry and CNSC staff to address these issues was methodical and rigorous. The Commission was satisfied that there were no outstanding issues that would require further attention.

The Commission requested CNSC staff to consider specific recommendations of the third-party reviewers and develop (and present to the Commission) a transparent procedure to deal with long-standing technical issues, including those raised by stakeholders. Details of this request are found in the Minutes of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) Meeting held on March 8, 2017 [48].

Ontario’s Provincial Nuclear Emergency Response Plan

CNSC staff observed that Ontario has a comprehensive plan to deal with nuclear emergencies in the province. The Province of Ontario’s Nuclear Emergency Response Plan (PNERP) is reviewed and exercised regularly and includes planning for incidents that could occur within Ontario as well as outside Ontario, such as at the Fermi 2 NPP in Michigan.

Ontario is currently updating its nuclear emergency response plan to ensure that it reflects current best practices. The PNERP is being reviewed and updated based on new international recommended practices, CSA standards and lessons learned from provincially run nuclear exercises and past international emergencies.

Staff from the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management Ontario have been working with stakeholder partners on a review of the PNERP’s planning basis. As of May 2017, a planning basis discussion paper was to be released imminently for public consultation to ensure that all stakeholders have an opportunity to provide input. Comments from the public consultation will be dispositioned by an independent panel for approval by the province. The Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management Ontario is scheduled to complete the revised PNERP by December 2017.

2.2.4 Communication

Reports and presentations related to power reactor regulation

During 2016, the Commission was kept informed of events and activities at NPPs through a total of seven status reports on power reactors presented by CNSC staff at public meetings. These reports summarize the status of the power reactors in such areas as operations, licensing, areas of regulatory interest and significant events.

Event initial reports

Throughout the year, licensees are required to notify the CNSC of events that have a public and media interest, or that may pose risks to the health and safety of persons or the environment. CNSC staff use event initial reports to ensure that the Commission is aware of any events that may require its decision-making capacity. Two such reports were presented to the Commission during the period of January 2016 to April 2017. Details of each are provided in section 3.

Information and disclosure programs for the public and Indigenous peoples

In accordance with their PROLs, all licensees in Canada are required to implement information and disclosure programs for the public and Indigenous peoples. These programs are supported by disclosure protocols that outline the type of information on the facility and its activities to be shared (e.g., incidents, major changes to operations, and periodic environmental performance reports) and how that information will be shared. Such protocols ensure that timely information about health, safety, security and the environment and other issues associated with the lifecycle of nuclear facilities are effectively communicated.

Since the implementation of RD/GD-99.3, Public Information and Disclosure [2] in 2012, NPP licensees have been in full compliance by providing information on the status of their facilities through numerous activities. CNSC staff reviewed the communications activities during this period and noted best practices common to all NPPs including community newsletters, regular meetings with stakeholders and the general public, public emergency preparedness information products and KI pill distribution programs, public opinion surveys, use of social media, and site tours. In 2016, each NPP had its own communications activities on specific initiatives. For example:

  • Bruce Power proactively engaged with and informed community members about its full-scale emergency exercise called Exercise Huron Resolve in October 2016 to improve public awareness on emergency preparedness
  • OPG introduced new communications on the Darlington refurbishment project to engage and inform residents and stakeholders on the progress of the project
  • OPG increased the number of Pickering Community Information Sessions it holds each year to provide more opportunities for the public to learn about its current and proposed future operations of the site
  • NB Power posted on its website summaries of the Point Lepreau probabilistic safety assessment and seismic hazard assessment, and met with community members, Indigenous groups and other stakeholders to answer questions and provide further information about the safety of the site related to earthquakes, tsunamis, high winds and other hazards
CNSC outreach to the public and Indigenous peoples

In support of the CNSC mandate of disseminating objective scientific, technical and regulatory information, CNSC staff regularly visit communities to help the public and Indigenous peoples understand the CNSC’s nuclear regulatory role. One of the objectives of CNSC outreach is to maintain a dialogue with nuclear host communities, including those with NPPs.

In 2016, CNSC staff took part in more than 20 events, including open houses, information sessions and community meetings to discuss a wide variety of nuclear-related topics (including the safety performance of the nuclear facility), demystify nuclear science and answer questions on CNSC regulatory oversight. In 2016, events attended by CNSC staff included:

  • a community information session at Clinton, ON in the vicinity of Bruce A and B
  • a meeting with the Durham Nuclear Health Committee
  • a community information session at Pickering
  • a meeting with the Point Lepreau Generating Station community liaison

Outreach sessions were also held with Indigenous communities as described below.

Indigenous consultation activities

As part of the CNSC’s continued commitment to building strong relationships with First Nation and Métis communities with interest in Canada’s nuclear generating stations, copies of the Regulatory Oversight Report for Canadian Nuclear Power Plant are sent to all Indigenous groups that request to be kept informed of activities at NPPs. These groups have also been notified of the availability of the CNSC’s Participant Funding Program to support participation in the review of this 2016 report.

CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power, OPG and NB Power each have dedicated Indigenous engagement programs. Throughout 2016, they met and shared information with interested Indigenous communities about their operations, regulatory reviews and facilities plans. The discussion topics included:

  • Bruce Power’s current operations, the Fisheries Act authorization and future refurbishment plans
  • OPG’s current operations at Darlington and Pickering, the progress of refurbishment activities at Darlington, ongoing waste management licence reviews for the Pickering and Western Waste Management Facilities, and the proposed Deep Geologic Repository for low and intermediate waste
  • NB Power’s current operations and licence review to continue operations

CNSC staff have also continued regular communication with the First Nations and Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) to discuss their respective interests in the facilities within their traditional territories. CNSC staff also met with a number of the Indigenous communities to present information about its IEMP and discuss possible opportunities for future participation in the program. CNSC staff also hosted an information booth at the MNO’s Annual General Assembly in North Bay, ON in August 2016.

Moving forward, CNSC staff, along with the licensees, are committed to conducting regular engagement activities with Indigenous groups who have interest in the NPPs throughout the respective licensing periods. CNSC staff will report to the Commission annually about the activities conducted through the Regulatory Oversight Report for Canadian Nuclear Power Plants.

2.2.5 Darlington new nuclear project

On August 17, 2012, a Commission panel announced its decision to issue a nuclear power reactor site preparation licence (PRSL) to OPG for the new nuclear project at the Darlington site for a period of 10 years (i.e., from August 17, 2012 to August 17, 2022).

According to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, an environmental assessment of the project is required prior to any licensing decisions for a PRSL. The joint review panel (the panel) carried out this assessment in 2011.Notes de bas de page 6 The assessment and the PRSL were challenged through an application for judicial review before the Federal Court of Canada.

In May 2014, the court allowed the application and ordered the environmental assessment be returned to the panel for further consideration and determination of the specific issues set out in its decision. As a result, the PRSL was set aside.

The decision by the Federal Court of Canada was appealed and, on September 10, 2015 the Federal Court of Appeal set aside the judgment of the Federal Court of Canada, thereby dismissing the application for judicial review.

An application for leave to appeal the Federal Court of Appeal’s decision was filed with the Supreme Court of Canada in November 2015. In April 2016, the Supreme Court decided to not grant leave to appeal the Federal Court of Appeal’s decision.

As required in OPG’s PRSL, work activities in 2015 and 2016 were related to the panel recommendations. Specifically, work was carried out in the following areas:

  • bank swallow monitoring and mitigation
  • support for CNSC activities to engage stakeholders in developing policy for land use around nuclear generating stations
  • a methodology that will help determine potential locations for the intake and diffuser structures in Lake Ontario
Bank swallow monitoring and mitigation

The construction and operation of a new NPP at the Darlington site will require, to some extent, the removal of natural bluffs along the northern shoreline of Lake Ontario. These natural bluffs are known to provide habitats for bank swallows. These habitats could be lost by the development of a new NPP. The panel recommended that artificial bank swallow nest habitats be constructed to maintain the population as close to the original bluff site as possible.

To meet the panel recommendations, surveys of the bank swallow burrows at the Darlington site and surrounding area have been conducted since 2008 to understand the changes in the population of bank swallows in the natural bluffs at the Darlington site and vicinity over time. In March 2016, CNSC staff received and reviewed the results of OPG’s 2015 bank swallow program. This report indicated that no bank swallow nesting within the earthen embankment/mound artificial nesting habitat structure was recorded. In 2017, OPG will conduct bank swallow burrow counts along the lakeshore on the Darlington site and surrounding area, and will decide if a change to the artificial nesting structure strategy is needed.

Land use planning

Taking into consideration the lessons learned from the Fukushima Daiichi accident, the panel was of the opinion that a situation in which residential areas are located within 3kilometres of a nuclear site must be avoided. Appropriate steps must therefore be taken to evaluate and define buffer zones around nuclear facilities. Given this, the panel directed recommendations to the CNSC, the Government of Ontario and the Municipality of Clarington regarding land use planning.

Specifically, the panel’s recommendations were in relation to:

  • development of policy for land use around nuclear generating stations
  • provincial prevention of sensitive land uses within 3 kilometres of the site boundary
  • municipal prevention of sensitive land uses within 3 kilometres of the site boundary
  • management of development in the vicinity of the project site to ensure capacity for evacuation

Significant efforts have been undertaken by various levels of government following the panel recommendations. In 2013, as part of its activities to address the panel recommendations, the CNSC hosted a land use planning workshop for OPG staff as well as municipal, regional and provincial stakeholders. The CNSC continues to monitor recommendations stemming from this workshop.

Key activities and progress to date are as follows:

  • The Government of Ontario’s revised Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) came into effect on April 30, 2014. The statement includes new policy on land use compatibility, which is further supported by definitions for “sensitive land uses” and “major facilities”, including energy-generating facilities such as NPPs.
  • The Region of Durham has made a commitment to update its official plan to align with the PPS. (The next official plan revision is scheduled for 2018.)
  • The official plan for the Municipality of Clarington was passed by council on November 1, 2016. It included policies to address the PPS around land use planning. CNSC staff are coordinating with OPG to monitor the PPS implementation and ensure that the intent of the panel recommendations is met.
Methodology to determine the potential location of an intake and diffuser structure in Lake Ontario

In preparation to build the cooling structure of a new power plant, OPG is evaluating the potential impact of the future cooling intake and outtake on Lake Ontario. In 2016, OPG prepared sampling methodology for a field collection program on different fish species to assist in siting the new intake and diffuser. The CNSC, in cooperation with Environment and Climate Change Canada and Fisheries and Oceans Canada, reviewed this report and provided comments to OPG. OPG is planning to implement aquatic field studies in 2018.

The CNSC will continue to monitor all work activities related to the panel recommendations.

The work activities anticipated by OPG for 2016 and 2017 include:

  • submission of fish-sampling methodology to support the preferred location for the intake and diffuser of the plant cooling system
  • Continuing to monitor bank swallows’ natural habitats, and determining if a change to the artificial nesting structure strategy is needed
  • Continuing to monitor the implementation of the PPS at the regional and municipal levels with regard to land use planning

3 Nuclear power plant safety performance and regulatory developments

This section provides performance ratings for the 14 safety and control areas (SCAs) for each nuclear power plant (NPP) in Canada for 2016. The ratings reflect CNSC staff evaluations of how well the licensees’ programs met regulatory requirements and expectations to protect the environment and the health and safety of persons, maintain national security, and meet Canada’s international commitments on the peaceful use of nuclear energy.

The safety performance ratings were determined by using a risk-informed approach of integrating findings from surveillance, compliance verification inspections (listed in appendix H) and desktop reviews in 2016, as well as progress on enforcement actions by CNSC staff. To be considered in this evaluation, the findings had to have been communicated to the affected licensee by February 2017.

Additional information on the SCAs and the rating methodology is provided in appendices B and C, respectively.

Within this section, the “regulatory developments” subsections for each NPP provide detailed information on various regulatory developments and issues, including licensing, major projects and descriptions of event initial reports. The reporting period for these subsections is from January 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017.

3.1 Bruce A and B

Arial view of Bruce A and Bruce B The Bruce A Nuclear Generating Station and Bruce B Nuclear Generating Station are located on the shores of Lake Huron, in the Municipality of Kincardine, ON. The facility is operated by Bruce Power under a lease agreement with the owner of the facility, Ontario Power Generation (OPG).

The Bruce A station has four CANDU reactors with a gross power of 831 megawatts electrical (MWe) at units 1–4, all of which were fully operational throughout 2016. The Bruce B station has four CANDU reactors with a gross power of 872 MWe at units 5–8, all of which were fully operational throughout 2016.

This report groups the two stations together because Bruce Power uses common programs at both stations. However, the performance of each station is assessed separately due to the differences in implementation of some programs at Bruce A and Bruce B.

3.1.1 Safety assessment

The safety assessment of Bruce A and B for 2016 resulted in the performance ratings as shown in table 18. Based on CNSC compliance oversight of the SCAs, CNSC staff concluded that Bruce A and B operated safely. CNSC staff determined the integrated plant ratings to be “fully satisfactory” (FS) for Bruce A, unchanged from the previous year and “satisfactory” (SA) for Bruce B, a decrease from the previous year.

Table 18: Performance ratings for Bruce A and B, 2016
Safety and control area Bruce A Bruce B Industry average*
Management system SA SA SA
Human performance management SA SA SA
Operating performance FS FS FS
Safety analysis FS FS FS
Physical design SA SA SA
Fitness for service SA SA SA
Radiation protection FS FS SA
Conventional health and safety FS SA FS
Environmental protection SA SA SA
Emergency management and fire protection SA SA SA
Waste management FS FS FS
Security SA SA SA
Safeguards and non-proliferation SA SA SA
Packaging and transport SA SA SA
Integrated plant rating FS SA SA

* The industry average of all operating NPPs in Canada

Notes:

  • For specific areas within the SCAs where there were no significant observations from CNSC staff compliance verification activities, no information is given in this subsection of the report.
  • The information presented below is station specific. Refer to section 2 for general trends and industry-wide observations.
3.1.1.1 Management system

CNSC staff concluded that the management system SCA at Bruce A and B met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Management system encompasses the following specific areas:

  • management system
  • organization
  • performance assessment, improvement and management review (no significant observations to report)
  • operating experience (no significant observations to report)
  • change management
  • safety culture
  • configuration management
  • records management
  • management of contractors
  • business continuity
Management system

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power has implemented and complied with the requirements of CSA standard N286-05, Management system requirements for nuclear power plants [5].

In 2016, Bruce Power provided the CNSC with a detailed transition plan for the implementation of CSA standard N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities [6]. CNSC staff are monitoring the implementation which is planned to be completed by the end of 2018. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Organization

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power has an adequately defined organizational structure, and roles and responsibilities.

Change management

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power has a change management program that complies with CSA standard N286-05 requirements.

Safety culture

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power continues to follow the established processes for self-assessments of safety culture at planned intervals. In 2016, a safety culture and security assessment was undertaken at Bruce Power. That assessment included the performance of Bruce Power contractors.

CNSC staff are satisfied with Bruce Power’s safety culture and self-assessment.

Configuration management

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power’s configuration management system met regulatory requirements in 2016.

Temporary configuration changes at Bruce A have been reduced in the last 10 months, and remain below target at Bruce B. A removal strategy for the majority of the 240 installed temporary configuration changes has been submitted by Bruce Power and accepted by CNSC staff.

Records management

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power continued to maintain and implement a records management system that complied with CSA standard N286-05 requirements. In 2016, Bruce Power rolled out procedural requirements to all relevant staff and enforced the expectations for procedural use and adherence.

Management of contractors

As reported in the regulatory oversight report for 2015, CNSC staff identified minor deficiencies of an administrative nature and failure to adhere to procedures regarding the management of contractors for goods and services.

In 2016, CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power continued to improve in managing its contractors, and has provided updated documentation to CNSC staff. The Bruce Power submission on the Supply Management Program inspection is currently under review by CNSC staff. Bruce Power plans to have all corrective actions completed by the end of 2017. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Business continuity

CNSC staff concluded during compliance verification activities conducted in 2016 that Bruce Power met regulatory requirements for business continuity at Bruce A and B. Bruce Power has adequate plans in place to address events involving labour actions.

3.1.1.2 Human performance management

CNSC staff concluded that the human performance management SCA at Bruce A and B met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Human performance management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • human performance program
  • personnel training
  • personnel certification
  • initial certification examinations and requalification tests
  • work organization and job design
  • fitness for duty
Human performance program

CNSC staff assessed the Bruce Power human performance program and found that Bruce Power met applicable regulatory requirements.

In May 2016, CNSC staff performed a compliance verification inspection and identified some procedural non-compliances of low safety significance on control of operator challenges (which are impediments to the performance of operator tasks). Bruce Power addressed all non-compliances to the satisfaction of CNSC staff in 2016.

Personnel training

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power has a well-documented and robust training system based on a systematic approach to training. Implementation of this system for the training programs at Bruce A and B met regulatory requirements.

In 2016, CNSC staff performed compliance verification inspections on the mechanical maintenance and Unit 0 certified control room operator training programs. CNSC staff found that the Unit 0 certified control room operator training program is defined and documented in accordance with the Bruce Power training system. Minor procedural non-compliances of low safety significance, such as the updating of training material and training qualifications for the mechanical maintenance training program, were identified. Bruce Power has provided a corrective action plan with a target completion date of March 2018. CNSC staff will continue to monitor Bruce Power’s corrective actions in this area.

Personnel certification

In accordance with regulatory requirements, Bruce Power has a sufficient number of personnel at Bruce A and B for all certified positions. CNSC staff are satisfied that Bruce Power’s programs ensure that certified personnel at Bruce A and B possess the knowledge and skills required to perform their duties safely and competently.

Initial certification examinations and requalification tests

In 2016, CNSC staff documented the results of the 2015 inspection of acontrol room shift supervisor, simulator-based, initial certification examination at Bruce B. CNSC staff also conducted an inspection of a control room shift supervisor, simulator-based, initial certification examination at Bruce A. By the end of 2016, CNSC staff had documented the results related to the conduct of the examination. Based on the results documented in 2016, CNSC staff concluded that the initial certification examinations and requalification tests program for certified staff at Bruce A and B met all regulatory requirements.

Work organization and job design

Minimum shift complement

In 2016, Bruce Power addressed discrepancies between its minimum shift complement documentation and requirements, which are based on CNSC regulatory guide G-323, Ensuring the Presence of Sufficient Qualified Staff at Class I Nuclear FacilitiesMinimum Staff Complement [33]. Bruce Power provided CNSC staff with the technical basis for minimum shift complement and performed validation of minimum shift complement numbers. CNSC staff are satisfied that Bruce Power is compliant with the minimum shift complement program requirements, based on G-323.

In 2016, violations of minimum shift complement at Bruce were rare and did not impact safety (see section 2.1.2).

Fitness for duty

Bruce Power exceeded the hours-of-work limits at Bruce A and B for certified staff on several occasions to maintain a minimum shift complement. The exceedances were related to severe weather and sick calls. Bruce Power has submitted to the CNSC a staffing plan that will raise its shift complement to eight authorized nuclear operators per crew (currently there are seven per crew) by the end of 2017 and three shift managers/control room shift supervisors per crew by 2019. These changes are expected to reduce the number of hours-of-work exceedances. The Bruce Power plan is acceptable to CNSC staff. Overall, CNSC staff are satisfied with the fitness for duty of workers at the Bruce site.

3.1.1.3 Operating performance

CNSC staff concluded that the operating performance SCA at Bruce A and B met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a rating of “fully satisfactory” which is unchanged from the previous year.

Operating performance encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conduct of licensed activity
  • procedures
  • reporting and trending
  • outage management performance
  • safe operating envelope
  • severe accident management and recovery
  • accident management and recovery (no significant observations to report)
Conduct of licensed activities

CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power continued to operate Bruce A and B within the bounds of Bruce Power’s operating policies and principles. All reactor units operated within the power limits identified in the licence conditions handbook for Bruce A and B.

Bruce Power experienced no unplanned reactor trips in 2016 at either station, a statistic that exceeded CNSC expectations and industry performance targets. Bruce A experienced no trips, three stepbacks and five setbacks. Bruce B experienced no trips, no stepbacks and three setbacks.

CNSC staff determined that stepbacks and setbacks were controlled properly and power reductions were adequately initiated by the reactor control systems. CNSC staff verified that for all events, Bruce Power staff followed approved procedures and took appropriate corrective actions.

CNSC staff found that Bruce Power’s conduct of licensed activities met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Procedures

CNSC staff found that Bruce Power has well-defined processes for procedure preparation, review, validation, issuance and revision. CNSC staff are satisfied with the quality of the Bruce Power procedures and found they comply with regulatory requirements.

Reporting and trending

CNSC staff found that Bruce Power’s reporting and trending met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Outage management performance

Bruce Power scheduled eight planned outages for Bruce A and B and a station containment outage for Bruce A in 2016. CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power completed all outages successfully and met the requirements for verification of reactor shutdown guarantees.

In 2016, Bruce A experienced six forced outages among four reactors. Bruce B experienced seven forced outages among four reactors. CNSC staff observed that the units were safely shut down during the forced outages. The outages were mainly caused by events related to service equipment failure. The outage implementation, safety and work management met or exceeded CNSC requirements.

CNSC staff found that Bruce Power’s outage management performance met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Safe operating envelope

Bruce Power is implementing ongoing improvements of the safe operating envelope. In 2016, Bruce Power completed a review of the safe operating envelope program to identify gaps with CSA standard N290.15, Requirements for the safe operating envelope of nuclear power plants [11]. Bruce Power is currently addressing identified gaps. CNSC staff will monitor progress through normal compliance activities and are satisfied with the progress.

Severe accident management and recovery

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power continued to maintain a severe accident management program. The Bruce Power severe accident management guideline program is fully implemented.

CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power demonstrated the effectiveness of the program through ongoing exercises and plant drills at both Bruce A and Bruce B.

In October 2016, Bruce Power conducted a full-scale severe accident exercise named Exercise Huron Resolve. CNSC staff observed that the exercise demonstrated Bruce Power’s capability to deal with severe accidents effectively. Additional information on Exercise Huron Resolve can be found in section 3.1.2.2.

3.1.1.4 Safety analysis

CNSC staff concluded that the safety analysis SCA at Bruce A and B met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “fully satisfactory” rating,” an improvement on the “satisfactory” rating from the previous year.

Safety analysis encompasses the following specific areas:

  • deterministic safety analysis
  • probabilistic safety analysis
  • criticality safety
  • severe accident analysis (no significant observations to report)
  • management of safety issues (including R&D programs) (no significant observations to report)
Deterministic safety analysis

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power has a well-managed program on deterministic safety analysis. Bruce Power continues to implement REGDOC-2.4.1, Deterministic Safety Analysis [12]. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

As a key milestone for REGDOC-2.4.1 implementation, Bruce Power submitted the common-mode event identification and classification, and technical basis document for Bruce A. CNSC staff are currently reviewing these submissions. The new analysis, when completed, will be included in the safety report as an appendix.

CNSC staff determined that both Bruce A’s and B’s safety analyses predict adequate safety margins. Bruce Power met CNSC acceptance criteria for safe operation.

In 2016, Bruce Power assessed the impact of standing flames and multiple hydrogen burns on equipment in containment and determined that their effects are inconsequential for Bruce A and B. CNSC staff accepted Bruce Power’s assessment, which included an analysis for design-basis accidents.

Probabilistic safety analysis

Bruce Power is in compliance with regulatory standard S-294, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [32], and is transitioning towards implementation of the recently published REGDOC-2.4.2, Safety Analysis: Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [15]. Implementation at Bruce A and B is expected by June 2019 and CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date. CNSC staff found that Bruce Power’s performance in the PSA area met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Criticality safety

Bruce Power is required to have a criticality safety program. Bruce Power updated its criticality safety program in 2016 and CNSC staff found that it was compliant with the requirements of RD-327, Nuclear Criticality Safety [34]. CNSC staff noted that there were no criticality events at Bruce A and B during 2016.

3.1.1.5 Physical design

CNSC staff concluded that the physical design SCA at Bruce A and B met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Physical design encompasses the following specific areas:

  • design governance
  • site characterization (no significant observations to report)
  • facility design (no significant observations to report)
  • structure design
  • system design
  • components design
Design governance

Environmental qualification

An environmental qualification (EQ) program ensures that all required structures, systems and components are capable of performing their designated safety functions in a postulated harsh environment resulting from design-basis accidents.

CNSC staff determined that the EQ program is implemented in all Bruce A and B units. Bruce A and B are required to maintain program sustainability in accordance with regulatory requirements (specifically, CSA standard N290.13, Environmental qualification of equipment for CANDU nuclear power plants) and Bruce Power’s governing document. In 2016, CNSC staff conducted a compliance verification inspection of the Bruce B EQ program and identified opportunities for improvement in process documentation, steam protection barriers sustainability and other areas. Bruce Power provided a corrective action plan to the CNSC with completion of corrective actions scheduled before the end of 2017. CNSC staff have reviewed this plan and found it to be acceptable.

Pressure boundary design

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power continued to implement a comprehensive pressure boundary program at Bruce A and B. The pressure boundary program is compliant with regulatory requirements.

Structure design

In August 2016, CNSC staff conducted a compliance verification inspection on preservation of seismic design at Bruce A and identified opportunities for improvement. Bruce Power has since submitted a corrective action plan to CNSC staff. CNSC staff have reviewed this plan and found it to be acceptable. Bruce Power made a commitment to implement the corrective action plan by the end of October 2017.

System design

Electrical systems

CNSC staff observed that there were no significant reportable events during the year that had an effect on the electrical power systems at Bruce A and B. The battery capacity testing concern, described in previous regulatory oversight reports, was resolved in the reporting year to the CNSC’s satisfaction. Bruce Power ensures that the testing, monitoring and maintenance activities for battery banks are clearly defined in appropriate documentation.

In December 2016, Bruce Power completed the as-found tests of the batteries, with capacities in excess of 100 percent and submitted the test results to the CNSC. This submission met CNSC staff’s expectations with respect to battery-modified performance testing.

Fire protection design

CNSC staff determined that the Bruce Power fire protection program met applicable regulatory requirements and performance objectives.

Components design

Fuel design

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power has a well-developed reactor fuel inspection program. The defect rate for units 1 and 2 is higher than industry average due to fretting defects at recently restarted units. CNSC staff noted that this rate is trending downwards and is expected to return to the industry average. The fuel defect rate for units 3 to 8 is within the industry average of about one bundle per year. The root cause of the confirmed defects has been identified due to debris in the heat transport system resulting from issues with the foreign material exclusion program.

CNSC staff observed that the trend in observations of fuel bundle end-plate cracking has stabilized at Bruce B. Bruce Power continued to work on resolving the endplate cracking issue in the Bruce B outer-zone channels that experience pressure-pulse vibrations, caused by the primary heat transport pumps, near the natural frequencies of the fuel bundles. In 2016, CNSC staff reviewed Bruce Power’s additional defence-in-depth analyses for this safety case and concluded that the failures are still within the safety case, and would not impact accident progression or consequences. CNSC staff will continue to monitor this issue through REGDOC-3.1.1, Reporting Requirements for Nuclear Power Plants [3]. CNSC staff concluded that this issue is being effectively managed and operations remain safe.

Cables

In 2016, there were no issues found during compliance activities (e.g., desktop reviews). As a result, CNSC staff concluded that the cable management program at Bruce A and B met the applicable regulatory requirements.

3.1.1.6 Fitness for service

CNSC staff concluded that the fitness for service SCA at Bruce A and B met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Fitness for service encompasses the following specific areas:

  • equipment fitness for service/equipment performance
  • maintenance
  • structural integrity
  • aging management
  • chemistry control (no significant observations to report)
  • periodic inspection and testing
Equipment fitness for service/equipment performance

On the basis of onsite inspections and other compliance verifications in 2016, CNSC staff confirmed that overall equipment performance at Bruce A and B stations met regulatory requirements.

Reliability of systems important to safety

CNSC staff determined that the reliability program at Bruce A and B met the regulatory requirements in RD/GD-98, Reliability Programs for Nuclear Power Plants [35].

For Bruce A, all special safety systems met their unavailability targets in 2016, with the exceptions of the emergency cooling injection (ECI) for units 1 and 3 and the negative pressure containment system (NPCS) for units 1 and 4.

The ECI systems for units 1 and 3 did not meet their unavailability targets due to a water injection valve that opened too quickly during testing and appeared to not meet the acceptance criteria in the limiting water hammer analysis. Further detailed analysis revealed that the observed behaviour was within acceptable limits. There was no significant impact on nuclear safety as a result of this issue.

The NPCS did not meet its unavailability target because the power supply to the emergency filtered air discharge system was connected to Class III power rather than the qualified power supply. In the unlikely event of a secondary side line break, the transfer switches would not be able to transfer from Class III power to the qualified power supply. Bruce Power permanently configured the qualified power supply to the emergency filtered air discharge system, and completed the corrective actions to prevent recurrence.

For Bruce B, all special safety systems met their unavailability targets in 2016, with the exceptions of the NPCS for units 5 to 8.

The NPCS did not meet its unavailability target because the regulating valves for the airlocks were not environmentally qualified. This condition would render the airlocks less effective during a potential steam line break. Bruce Power took appropriate actions to address the temporary impairments, and corrective actions to prevent recurrence have been completed.

Maintenance

In 2016, CNSC staff determined that the maintenance program at Bruce A and B stations met the requirements of CNSC regulatory document RD/GD-210, Maintenance Programs for Nuclear Power Plants [36]. The preventive maintenance completion ratios were around 87.5 percent for Bruce A and Bruce B. The maintenance backlog results for Bruce A and B are provided in tables 19 and 20, respectively. CNSC staff determined that the preventive maintenance completion ratios and the backlog results were acceptable.

Table 19: Maintenance backlogs and deferrals for critical components for Bruce A, 2016
Parameter Average work orders per unit for the year Trend compared with 2015 Industry average
Corrective maintenance backlog 2 Down 8
Deficient maintenance backlog 123 Stable 111
Deferrals of preventive maintenance 12 Up 38
Table 20: Maintenance backlogs and deferrals for critical components for Bruce B, 2016
Parameter Average work orders per unit for the year Trend during the year Industry average
Corrective maintenance backlog 3 Down 8
Deficient maintenance backlog 165 Down 111
Deferrals of preventive maintenance 14 Down 38

For Bruce A, Bruce Power reduced its corrective critical maintenance backlog and reached the range of industry best practices. For Bruce B, Bruce Power continues to reduce its deficient critical maintenance backlog.

In May 2016, CNSC staff completed an inspection of Bruce Power’s outage maintenance planning and scheduling activities. Bruce Power provided an action plan to implement all resulting corrective actions by the end of 2017.

Structural integrity

Bruce Power inspected selected pressure boundary and containment components as well as containment structures in 2016. Pressure boundary inspections included elements of the primary heat transport and auxiliary systems, steam generators, feeders and pressure tubes.

In May 2016, Bruce Power conducted positive pressure tests on the containment boundary during the station containment outage of all Bruce A units. The tests were conducted to provide assurance that the likelihood of a failure of components forming extensions of the containment boundary, and containment pressure suppression systems, remains acceptably low. There was no significant in-service deterioration observed in the inspected areas. The leak rate was 1.41 percent per hour, which is well below the safety limit of 2.25 percent per hour. CNSC staff concluded that Bruce A met the acceptance criteria of CSA standard N287.7, In-service examination and testing requirements for concrete containment structures for CANDU nuclear power plants [24]. As a result of the compliance verification inspection during the Bruce A containment outage in 2016, CNSC staff found non-significant non-compliances with record-keeping practices. CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power’s corrective actions to resolve this issue were adequate. CNSC staff concluded that the structures, systems and components important for safe operation at Bruce met structural integrity requirements.

Aging management

Bruce Power has integrated aging management programs at Bruce A and B to ensure that the condition of structures, systems and components important to safety is well managed, and that all required activities are in place to assure their health as the plants age. CNSC staff found that Bruce Power’s aging management program met regulatory requirements. CNSC staff are satisfied with implementation progress.

In 2016, Bruce Power updated its aging management governance processes to comply with REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management [20], with full implementation of the REGDOC-2.6.3 compliant programs expected by July 2017.

In October 2016, CNSC staff conducted an aging management inspection at Bruce B. CNSC staff requested Bruce Power develop a corrective action plan to address the non-safety-significant procedural non-compliances observed during this inspection.

CNSC staff continued to monitor the implementation of the fuel channel life management project to further develop the analytical tools necessary to demonstrate pressure tube fitness for service for continued operation. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date. See section 2.2.3.

Periodic inspections and testing

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power has adequate and well-maintained periodic inspection programs (PIPs) in place at Bruce A and B for the pressure boundary and containment components important to safety.

Bruce Power is currently updating its PIPs for pressure boundary components to comply with the 2009 edition of CSA standard N285.4, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components [21]. In 2016, Bruce Power provided a revised feeder PIP document. CNSC staff have reviewed this PIP document and found it acceptable. Full implementation of the updated program requirements is expected by 2018 on all major reactor components, and CNSC staff are satisfied with progress to date.

3.1.1.7 Radiation protection

CNSC staff concluded that the radiation protection SCA at Bruce A and B met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, an improvement from the previous year.

Radiation protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • application of ALARA
  • worker dose control
  • radiation protection program performance
  • radiological hazard control
  • estimated dose to the public
Application of ALARA

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power continued to implement a highly effective, well-documented and mature program, based on industry best practices, to keep doses to persons as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) at Bruce A and B. Safety performance indicators related to the application of ALARA include the tracking of collective radiation exposure values for the station. In 2016, the collective doses (listed in appendix E.1) aligned with the Bruce A and B dose targets. CNSC staff concluded that the application of ALARA by Bruce Power met regulatory requirements and achieved planned goals, with a noticeable improving trend.

Worker dose control

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power continued to comply with the regulatory requirements to measure and record doses received by workers at Bruce A and B. In 2016, radiation doses to workers were below the regulatory dose limits and action levels established in the Bruce Power radiation protection program. The individual and collective dose information for workers at Bruce A and B is provided in section 2.1.7 and appendix E.1.

Safety performance indicators related to worker dose control include the tracking of occurrences involving doses received from unplanned exposures or uptakes. CNSC staff observed that there were no adverse trends or safety-significant unplanned exposures due to the licensed activities at Bruce A and B in 2016.

Radiation protection program performance

CNSC staff determined that the Bruce Power radiation protection program met the requirements of the Radiation Protection Regulations. The oversight applied by Bruce Power in implementing and improving its program was effective in protecting workers at both Bruce A and B stations. CNSC staff confirmed that Bruce Power continually measures the performance of its radiation protection program against industry-established objectives, goals and targets.

CNSC staff determined, through routine compliance verification activities, that Bruce Power is highly effective in the area of radiation protection program performance.

Radiological hazard control

CNSC staff confirmed that Bruce Power continued to meet regulatory requirements to control radiological hazards at Bruce A and B. There were no action levels exceedances for surface contamination at Bruce A or Bruce B during the reporting period.

In 2016, Bruce Power addressed to CNSC staff satisfaction an outstanding area for improvement related to calibration of radiation protection instrumentation.

Estimated dose to the public

CNSC staff confirmed that Bruce Power continued to ensure the protection of the general public in accordance with the Radiation Protection Regulations. In 2016, the reported dose to the general public from the Bruce site was 0.0016 mSv, well below the annual dose regulatory limit of 1 mSv (see section 2.1.7).

3.1.1.8 Conventional health and safety

CNSC staff concluded that the conventional health and safety SCA at Bruce A met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements, while at Bruce B it met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, Bruce A received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year and Bruce B received a “satisfactory” rating, a decrease from the “fully satisfactory” rating received in 2015.

Conventional health and safety encompasses the following specific areas:

  • performance
  • practices
  • awareness
Performance

In February 2016, a worker was performing maintenance on the Unit 8 generator rotor at Bruce B, which had been removed from the generator. The worker was drilling a hole in a component of the rotor using normal procedures when a flash occurred, likely due to a hydrogen interaction. The worker suffered burns to his arms, chest and face, and was promptly transported to hospital. Following a compliance verification inspection on this event, CNSC staff found that Bruce B performance did not meet the requirements of CSA standard N286-05, Management system requirements for nuclear power plants [5], and areas for improvement were identified. Bruce Power initiated corrective actions to address the deficiencies, putting procedures in place to prevent recurrence of a similar event. Based on this inspection, CNSC staff concluded that Bruce Power’s corrective actions to resolve this issue were adequate and should be effective at preventing recurrence. There will be an increase in regulatory oversight of this area in 2017.

CNSC staff observed that the accident severity rate (ASR) for Bruce A and B increased from 0 in 2015 to 2.55 in 2016 due to a worker injury. The accident frequency (AF) for Bruce A and B increased from 0.28 in 2015 to 0.46 in 2016 due to an increase in medically treated injuries. The AF at Bruce A and B was found to be acceptable. Although the ASR for Bruce A and B was above the industry average, CNSC staff found it to be acceptable also.

Practices

CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power was compliant with the relevant provisions of Ontario’s Occupational Health and Safety Act of Ontario and Labour Relations Act.

Awareness

CNSC staff concluded that Bruce Power met requirements in this area in 2016 at both Bruce A and B. All deficiencies from onsite inspections were adequately addressed. Despite promptly addressing these deficiencies, areas for improvement in housekeeping remain at Bruce A and B.

3.1.1.9 Environmental protection

CNSC staff concluded that the environmental protection SCA at Bruce A and B met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Environmental protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • effluent and emissions control (releases)
  • environmental management system
  • assessment and monitoring
  • protection of the public
  • environmental risk assessment
Effluent and emissions control

CNSC staff observed that all radiological releases to the environment from Bruce A and B remained well below regulatory limits (see section 2.1.9).

The derived release limits for Bruce A and B are provided in appendix F.

Environmental management system

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power has established and implemented an environmental management program at Bruce A and B to assess environmental risks associated with its nuclear activities and to ensure that these activities are conducted in a way that prevents or mitigates adverse environmental effects.

Assessment and monitoring

Using the Independent Environmental Monitoring Program results from 2016, which can be found on the CNSC website, together with Bruce Power environmental monitoring data, CNSC staff confirmed that the public and Indigenous peoples and the environment in the vicinity of the Bruce Power are protected and that any risk to health and the environment as a result of site operations was reasonable.

Protection of the public

CNSC staff determined that the risk to the environment, public or Indigenous peoples at the Bruce site from any releases of hazardous substances was reasonable. CNSC staff observed that the reported annual radiation dose to the general public from the Bruce site remained very low at 0.16 percent of the general public dose limit (see section2.1.7).

Environmental risk assessment

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power continued to implement an effective environmental risk assessment (ERA) and management program at Bruce A and B stations to assess, evaluate and mitigate environmental risks in accordance with CSA standard N288.6-12, Environmental risk assessments at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills [26].

In 2016, CNSC staff reviewed Bruce Power’s ERA report as part of the implementation of CSA standard N288.6-12 and determined it met the requirements of the standard. As part of the activities leading up to the Bruce Power major component replacement outages, Bruce Power is updating its ERA. The update is expected to be completed in 2017. Bruce Power will continue to assess thermal impacts within the updated ERA. The CNSC continues to work with Environment and Climate Change Canada and Bruce Power on the assessment.

3.1.1.10 Emergency management and fire protection

CNSC staff concluded that the emergency management and fire protection SCA at Bruce A and B met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Emergency management and fire protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conventional emergency preparedness and response
  • nuclear emergency preparedness and response
  • fire emergency preparedness and response
Conventional emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power maintained its conventional emergency preparedness and response commitments, including enhancements to its emergency (non-nuclear) drill program.

CNSC staff found that Bruce Power continued to support and maintain a comprehensive conventional emergency preparedness and response capability.

Nuclear emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power continued to support and maintain its emergency response organization, and is compliant with regulatory requirements. Bruce Power also continued to support offsite emergency management organizations and commitments, as demonstrated during Exercise Huron Resolve in October 2016.

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power showed adequate response to a nuclear emergency scenario through completion of this exercise. CNSC staff’s compliance verification inspection on the exercise identified some non-safety-significant procedural non-compliances in the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) and a finding with Bruce Power’s data-sharing system (see section 3.1.2.2).

Bruce Power will develop and implement corrective action plans to address these findings, and discussions between the CNSC and Bruce Power staff are underway to address Bruce Power’s data-sharing system finding.

CNSC staff continue to monitor this area as part of the compliance program and have concluded that Bruce Power continues to support and maintain a comprehensive nuclear emergency preparedness and response.

Fire emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power continued to improve its fire response program through multiple initiatives, including internal program reviews. By incorporating feedback into the drill and training program, the performance of the emergency response team continues to improve.

CNSC staff concluded that Bruce Power continues to support and maintain a comprehensive fire response capability.

3.1.1.11 Waste management

CNSC staff concluded that the waste management SCA at Bruce A and B met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Waste management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • waste characterization
  • waste minimization
  • waste management practices
  • decommissioning plans

Waste characterization, waste minimization and waste management practices

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power waste management programs at Bruce A and B met or exceeded expectations in all specific areas for managing radioactive waste.

Decommissioning plans

OPG maintains preliminary decommissioning plans and associated consolidated financial guarantees for all of its Ontario facilities, including Bruce A and B. These guarantees are revised on a five-year cycle. The current preliminary decommissioning plans and associated financial guarantees accepted by the Commission in 2012 remained valid during 2016. OPG holds the liability for the Bruce Power site and is therefore responsible for providing the preliminary decommissioning plans and cost estimates. OPG’s latest preliminary decommissioning plan and financial guarantee were received in January 2017. CNSC staff are evaluating OPG’s preliminary decommissioning plan. It is anticipated that the revised financial guarantee will be presented to the Commission by the end of 2017.

3.1.1.12 Security

Bruce A and B received a “satisfactory” rating in 2016 for the security SCA, a decrease from the “fully satisfactory” rating received in 2015. The security SCA at Bruce A and B met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements, while addressing some issues of low significance.

Security encompasses the following specific areas:

  • facilities and equipment
  • response arrangements
  • security practices
  • drills and exercises

While not represented as a specific area, cyber security has become an important topic that warrants a discussion in its own section.

Facilities and equipment

CNSC staff observed that in 2016, Bruce Power continued to sustain its security equipment through lifecycle management. No significant equipment failures were reported in 2016. Bruce Power has processes in place to adequately prevent security events. CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues for this specific area.

Response arrangements

The CNSC and Bruce Power are currently resolving the findings that resulted from compliance verification activities conducted in 2016. CNSC staff concluded that elements of Bruce Power’s response arrangements did not fully meet the exercise objectives that were accepted by the CNSC and which form the basis of licensee’s scenario design. CNSC staff concluded, however, that these deficiencies were of low safety significance. Bruce Power will continue to work with the CNSC to address the findings. CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues for this specific area.

Security practices

CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power has procedures in place at Bruce A and B to provide guidance to security personnel in all areas under this specific area. Bruce Power has not yet implemented the updated requirements of the site access security clearance program, which are associated with REGDOC-2.12.2, Site Access Security Clearance. CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues for this specific area.

Drills and exercises

As a result of findings made during compliance verification activities conducted in 2016, CNSC staff found some deficiencies of low safety significance related to Bruce Power’s self-evaluation of elements of its drill/exercise program. CNSC staff followed up on Bruce Power’s corrective actions during an inspection in March 2017 and will report on its findings in the next regulatory oversight report.

Cyber security

In 2016, Bruce Power submitted an implementation plan to address the identified gaps between the current Bruce Power cyber security program and the requirements of the new CSA standard N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities [27]. There were no significant issues, and the identified gaps are being addressed by Bruce Power. CNSC staff will continue to monitor the Bruce Power cyber security program until the completion of all milestones of the implementation plan. CNSC staff are satisfied with Bruce Power’s progress in this area.

3.1.1.13 Safeguards and non-proliferation

CNSC staff concluded that the safeguards and non-proliferation SCA at Bruce A and B met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Safeguards and non-proliferation encompasses the following specific areas:

  • nuclear material accountancy and control
  • access and assistance to the IAEA
  • operational and design information
  • safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance
Nuclear material accountancy and control

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power’s accountancy and control of nuclear material at the Bruce A and B stations complied with RD-336, Accounting and Reporting of Nuclear Material [29]. In November 2016, however, Bruce reported an event in which two bundles on the inventory were not in the stated location (i.e., in the bay). This issue was resolved shortly, when the bundles were identified at another location. This discrepancy was due to the current fuel accounting system missing an update of a record from the legacy accounting system that had been used to track fuel bundles in the 1980s.

Access and assistance to the IAEA

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) performed one short-notice random inspection and six unannounced inspections to verify the nuclear material inventory and assure the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities. CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power provided adequate support for the inspections. All inspection results received from the IAEA in 2016 for Bruce A and B were satisfactory.

Operational and design information

Bruce Power submitted its annual operational program for Bruce A and B to the CNSC on time, with quarterly updates and an annual update to the information provided pursuant to the IAEA Additional Protocol [28]. In all of the above, the information provided met all of the CNSC’s submission requirements.

Safeguards equipment containment and surveillance

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power adequately supported IAEA equipment operation and maintenance activities at Bruce A and B, including maintenance work on the VXI Integrated Fuel Monitor and a digital multi-camera optical surveillance upgrade to ensure the effective implementation of safeguard measures at Bruce A andB.

3.1.1.14 Packaging and transport

CNSC staff concluded that the packaging and transport SCA at Bruce A and B met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, each station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Packaging and transport encompasses the following specific areas:

  • package design and maintenance
  • packaging and transport
  • registration for use (no significant observations to report)
Package design and maintenance, packaging and transport

CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power has a packaging and transport program at Bruce A and B that ensures compliance with the Packaging and Transport of Nuclear Substances Regulations, 2015 [30] and the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations [31]. The transport of nuclear substances to and from the facility is done in a safe manner.

3.1.2 Regulatory developments

3.1.2.1 Licensing

The nuclear power reactor operating licence for Bruce A and B was renewed by the Commission in May 2015 for a period of five years. The new licence has been combined for both stations and is valid from June 1, 2015 to May 31, 2020.

In 2016, Bruce Power informed the CNSC of its plans to refurbish its reactors. These include replacing major components such as the steam generators, fuel channels and feeders. Bruce Power has requested an early licence renewal in 2018. The Commission will consider the results of Bruce Power’s periodic safety review (PSR) as part of the licence renewal process.

A PSR is a comprehensive evaluation of the design, condition and operation of an NPP. REGDOC-2.3.3, Periodic Safety Reviews [37] sets out the regulatory requirements for a PSR implementation.

The Bruce A PSR revised safety factor reports were submitted to the CNSC in August 2016. The Bruce B safety factor reports were submitted to the CNSC in September 2016. The Global Assessment Report and Integrated Implementation Plan were submitted in December 2016. These submissions are currently under review by CNSC staff.

It is expected that the licence renewal application will be submitted in June 2017.

Revisions to the licence conditions handbook

CNSC staff made one revision to the Bruce A and Bruce B licence conditions handbook in May 2016. Table G.2 of appendix G shows the change made during the reporting period.

3.1.2.2 Updates on major projects and initiatives
Bruce A environmental assessment follow-up program

Bruce Power has submitted its final environmental assessment follow-up monitoring report. This submission was reviewed by the CNSC and Environment and Climate Change Canada staff, who confirmed that all of the predictions made in the environmental assessment have been updated and that no significant adverse effects resulted from the refurbishment of Bruce A.

Going forward, CNSC regulatory oversight of environmental protection will continue under the Nuclear Safety and Control Act and the associated environmental protection programs.

Exercise Huron Resolve

In October 2016, Bruce Power, with assistance from the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management Ontario, tested its emergency response organization by simulating a multi-unit scenario during the regional Exercise Huron Resolve. During this five-day drill, there was interaction among almost 500 people from approximately 30 municipal, provincial and federal organizations, all of which tested their emergency programs.

Observed and evaluated by the CNSC, Exercise Huron Resolve put Bruce Power’s emergency response organization to the test. It featured a scenario in which multiple units in Bruce Power’s four-unit stations were impacted.

The CNSC compliance verification inspection on Exercise Huron Resolve identified some low safety-significant procedural non-compliances in the Emergency Operations Centre, and issues with Bruce Power’s non-automatic data-sharing system. In response to the CNSC inspection, Bruce Power has made a commitment to begin implementing the disaster local area network (DLAN) data transfer system for incident management in 2017. In 2016, CNSC staff continued to monitor the completion of Bruce Power’s corrective action plan in response to the inspection.

3.1.2.3 Updates on significant regulatory issues
Fisheries Act authorization

Bruce Power submitted a draft Fisheries Act authorization application to the CNSC on September 30, 2016. The CNSC completed a concordance review of the application and determined that it was incomplete. The CNSC communicated this to Bruce Power in October 2016, detailing the outstanding information requests. Bruce Power submitted a revised and complete application in May 2017 and CNSC staff are carrying out a review. CNSC staff will also share the application with interested Indigenous groups within one month of receipt of the application. CNSC staff will complete a technical review of the application within two months of the CNSC concordance review. Once the application is deemed complete by CNSC staff, Bruce Power will submit it to Fisheries and Oceans Canada, at which time regulatory timelines will start.

Large LOCA margin restoration

The Bruce A and B units remain derated from full power (Bruce A operates at 92.5percent and Bruce B at 93 percent) to ensure that adequate safety margins are maintained.

Bruce Power’s analyses on the impact of aging on safety margins for large loss-of-coolant accidents (LOCAs), small LOCAs and loss of flow covers the period up to 2019. CNSC staff continue to monitor all LOCA deliverables through normal compliance activities. During the continued development of the composite analytical approach (see section 2.1.4), the licensing basis of the operating reactors for the large LOCA scenario will continue to be based on traditional conservative safety analysis.

In November 2016, Bruce Power submitted the detailed work plan for the proposed composite analytical approach. This submission is currently under review by CNSC staff.

3.1.2.4 Communication
Event initial reports

One event initial report was submitted for Bruce A and B from January 2016 to April 2017. Details of this report are provided in table 21.

Table 21: Event initial reports for Bruce A and B
Subject Brief description

Bruce B, Unit 8.

Worker injured while working on the generator (as reported in CMD 16-M18)

On February 1, 2016, a worker was performing maintenance on the Unit 8 generator rotor, which had been removed from the generator. The worker was drilling a hole in a component of the rotor using normal procedures when a flash occurred. The flash is believed to be a result of a hydrogen interaction. The worker suffered burns to his arms, chest and face, and was promptly transported to hospital.

Work on the generator was stopped and the work area was quarantined. The Joint Health and Safety Committee and the Ontario Ministry of Labour were notified. All work at Bruce B stopped until each crew member held face-to-face safety discussions with their department managers. The Ministry of Labour’s investigation is ongoing.

This event was reported to Commission in April 2016. CNSC staff determined that Bruce Power’s corrective actions to resolve this issue were adequate.

CNSC staff performed the compliance verification inspection to follow up on this event and found that Bruce B did not meet the requirements of clause 6.27 in CSA standard N286-05, Management system requirements for nuclear power plants. In it, the licensee is required to ensure that workplace hazards are evaluated and controlled, and the consequences of exposure to personnel are minimized. This finding downgraded the Bruce B rating for the conventional health and safety SCA from “fully satisfactory” to “satisfactory” in 2016.

Indigenous consultation and engagement activities

CNSC staff observed that Bruce Power values its relationships with Indigenous peoples and communities in the Bruce Peninsula region. In particular, it strives to keep three Indigenous groups (i.e., the Saugeen Ojibway Nation, the Historic Saugeen Métis and the Métis Nation of Ontario) up to date on its operations and informed on regulatory matters. CNSC staff and Bruce Power cooperated with the various Indigenous groups with respect to nuclear projects to ensure personnel safety and environmental protection.

In September 2016, CNSC staff met with the Métis Nation of Ontario’s Georgian Bay Traditional Territory Consultation Committee to discuss various aspects of CNSC oversight activities to ensure that adequate provisions for environmental protection are in place.

Discussions have continued with the Saugeen Ojibway Nation regarding their concerns over impingement and entrainment monitoring at the Bruce Power site. A facilitator to the discussions has been tentatively selected and these discussions are expected to take place in 2017. CNSC staff are satisfied with progress to resolve this issue.

Regarding fish monitoring programs at Bruce A and B, CNSC staff have organized a workshop to be held in June 2017 with Indigenous groups, Bruce Power, government agencies and academic researchers to exchange knowledge and share and present the current state-of-knowledge of fish studies and activities in the vicinity of the Bruce site.

3.2 Darlington

Arial view of DarlingtonDarlington Nuclear Generating Stationis located on the north shore of Lake Ontario, in the Municipality of Clarington, ON. The facility is located 5kilometres outside the town of Bowmanvilleand about 10kilometressoutheastof Oshawa. The facility is owned by Ontario Power Generation (OPG).

Construction of the facility started in 1981 and the first criticality of a reactor unit was in 1989. The nuclear facility consists of four CANDU reactors, with each reactor rated at 881MWe (megawatts electrical), as well as a tritium removal facility.

3.2.1 Safety assessment

The CNSC staff safety assessment of Darlington for 2016 resulted in the performance ratings as shown in table 22. Based on the observations and assessments of the SCAs, CNSC staff concluded that Darlington operated safely. The integrated plant rating was “fully satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

Table 22: Performance ratings for Darlington, 2016
Safety and control area Rating Industry average*
Management system SA SA
Human performance management SA SA
Operating performance FS FS
Safety analysis FS FS
Physical design SA SA
Fitness for service SA SA
Radiation protection FS SA
Conventional health and safety SA FS
Environmental protection SA SA
Emergency management and fire protection SA SA
Waste management FS FS
Security SA SA
Safeguards and non-proliferation SA SA
Packaging and transport SA SA
Integrated plant rating FS SA

* The industry average of all operating NPPs in Canada

Notes:

  • For specific areas within the SCAs where there were no significant observations from CNSC staff compliance verification activities, no information is given in this subsection of the report.
  • The information presented below is station specific. Refer to section 2 for general trends and industry-wide observations.
3.2.1.1 Management system

CNSC staff concluded that the management system SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Management system encompasses the following specific areas:

  • management system
  • organization
  • performance assessment, improvement and management review (no significant observations to report)
  • operating experience (no significant observations to report)
  • change management (no significant observations to report)
  • safety culture
  • configuration management
  • records management
  • management of contractors
  • business continuity
Management system

OPG completed the transition from CSA standard N286-05, Management system requirements for nuclear power plants [5] to N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities [6] in 2016. CNSC staff reviewed the OPG governance documentation and identified that some improvements were needed to documentation of the organization structure as it relates to the implementation of the management system. CNSC staff will undertake follow-up compliance verification activities to confirm implementation of CSA N286-12.

Organization

The OPG business transformation initiative was completed. In January 2017, CNSC staff conducted an inspection on OPG organization, roles and responsibilities. The focus of the inspection was on OPG organizational documentation impacted by the business transformation initiative as it relates to the roles and responsibilities for nuclear programs and interfacing programs. During the inspection, CNSC staff found overall that OPG’s organization, roles and responsibilities supported safe operation to limit the risk to health, safety, security and the environment and respect Canada’s international obligations. The detailed results of the inspection will be included in the assessment for the regulatory oversight report for 2017.

Safety culture

CNSC staff verified that OPG follows an established process for self-assessments of safety culture at planned intervals. A nuclear project safety culture self-assessment was conducted in 2016 at Darlington which included contracting organizations working on the nuclear refurbishment project. This assessment provided an important baseline for the refurbishment project and will be useful for comparison with subsequent assessments. CNSC staff are satisfied with OPG’s safety culture and self-assessment. CNSC staff will continue to monitor these assessments and the resulting initiatives.

Configuration management

CNSC staff determined that OPG has a configuration management system that met regulatory requirements in 2016.

Records management

CNSC staff identified deficiencies of low safety significance in the area of records management at Darlington during planned inspection activities, such as in the area of correctly completing records. OPG has addressed the deficiencies to the satisfaction of CNSC staff.

Management of contractors

CNSC staff identified deficiencies of low safety significance in the area of management of contractors at Darlington during a reactive inspection on quality management and project oversight, such as in the area of maintaining documentation. The corrective action plans developed by OPG to address the deficiencies are being reviewed by CNSC staff. OPG has made a commitment to implement the corrective action plans by July 31, 2017.

Business continuity

During compliance verification activities conducted in 2016, CNSC staff found that OPG met regulatory requirements for business continuity at Darlington. OPG has adequate plans in place to address events involving labour actions.

3.2.1.2 Human performance management

CNSC staff concluded that the human performance management SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Human performance management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • human performance program
  • personnel training
  • personnel certification
  • initial certification examinations and requalification tests
  • work organization and job design
  • fitness for duty
Human performance program

CNSC staff assessed the OPG human performance program and concluded that OPG is in compliance with the regulatory requirements.

Personnel training

CNSC staff determined that OPG has a well-documented and robust fleet-wide training system based on the systematic approach to training. Implementation of this system for the training programs at Darlington met regulatory requirements.

In 2016, CNSC staff performed desktop reviews of OPG’s engineering training programs and the Darlington Unit 0 control room operator training program. Minor non-compliances of low safety significance were identified related to the documentation of knowledge and skills, and attitudes toward the performance of some tasks. OPG has provided acceptable corrective action plans for both training programs. CNSC staff also completed a compliance verification inspection of the nuclear refurbishment onboarding and oversight training programs. No non-compliances were identified. CNSC staff found that the training programs reviewed are defined and documented in accordance with the systematic approach to training and that OPG is in compliance with the regulatory requirements.

Personnel certification

In accordance with regulatory requirements, OPG has a sufficient number of personnel at Darlington for all certified positions. CNSC staff are satisfied that OPG programs ensure that certified personnel at Darlington possess the knowledge and skills required to perform their duties safely and competently.

Initial certification examinations and requalification tests

CNSC staff determined that the initial certification examinations and requalification test programs for the certified personnel at Darlington met regulatory requirements.

In 2016, CNSC staff conducted compliance verification inspections of the conduct of a written certification examination and simulator-based requalification tests. A non-compliance of low safety significances (with respect to availability of verbal communication recording devices) was observed by CNSC staff during the conduct of the simulator-based requalification tests. OPG has developed and implemented appropriate corrective actions to prevent recurrence.

Work organization and job design

Minimum shift complement

In 2016, CNSC staff verified that Darlington met the licensee’s minimum shift complement program requirements, which are based on CNSC regulatory guide G-323, Ensuring the Presence of Sufficient Qualified Staff at Class I Nuclear Facilities – Minimum Staff Complement [33].

OPG requested changes to the minimum certified personnel requirements during the nuclear refurbishment outage while a unit’s core is defuelled. This update also included a review of shift complement by work group. CNSC staff reviewed OPG’s request and found it to be acceptable. The licence conditions handbook was revised in February 2017 to reflect these changes.

In 2016, violations of minimum shift complement at Darlington did not impact safety; see section 2.1.2.

Fitness for duty

CNSC staff verified that OPG met applicable hours-of-work requirements at Darlington. Overall, CNSC staff are satisfied with the fitness for duty of workers at Darlington.

3.2.1.3 Operating performance

CNSC staff concluded that the operating performance SCA at Darlington met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Operating performance encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conduct of licensed activity
  • procedures
  • reporting and trending
  • outage management performance
  • safe operating envelope
  • severe accident management and recovery
  • accident management and recovery (no significant observations to report)
Conduct of licensed activities

CNSC staff observed that OPG continued to operate Darlington with a high level of safety performance by operating within OPG’s operating policies and principles, and its operational safety requirements.

Darlington experienced one unplanned reactor trip, two stepbacks and two setbacks.

In 2016, CNSC staff determined that the stepbacks and setbacks were controlled properly and power reduction was adequately initiated by the reactor control systems. CNSC staff verified that for all events, Darlington staff followed approved procedures and took appropriate corrective actions.

CNSC staff found that OPG’s conduct of licensed activities at Darlington met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Procedures

CNSC staff found that OPG has governance in place that ensures that procedures are written in a consistent and usable manner. Darlington has clearly documented expectations for procedural use and adherence, and a process to manage procedural change.

Reporting and trending

CNSC staff found that OPG reporting and trending met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Outage management performance

OPG scheduled four planned outages and experienced seven forced outages at Darlington. CNSC staff observed that Darlington continues to demonstrate high levels of performance and achievement of objectives during outages. OPG followed up appropriately on all planned and forced outages. CNSC staff determined that all outage-related undertakings, including heat sink strategy management at Darlington, were performed safely by OPG staff.

CNSC staff found that Darlington outage management performance met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Safe operating envelope

CNSC staff found that the Darlington safe operating envelope met regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Severe accident management and recovery

OPG continues to maintain a severe accident management program for Darlington. CNSC staff determined that the program is implemented with an organizational structure that clearly establishes the roles and responsibilities of all program participants.

Tritium removal facility

Darlington is the only NPP in Canada where the licensee also operates a tritium removal facility. Tritium builds up gradually in some plant systems as a result of day-to-day operations. Removing the tritium minimizes the amount released into the environment and reduces the potential radiation exposure of workers. The tritium is extracted from the reactor’s heavy water and stored safely in stainless steel containers within a concrete vault. CNSC staff observed that the operation of the tritium removal facility did not exceed any environmental release limits, and was operated safely.

3.2.1.4 Safety analysis

CNSC staff concluded that the safety analysis SCA at Darlington met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Safety analysis encompasses the following specific areas:

  • deterministic safety analysis
  • probabilistic safety analysis
  • criticality safety (no significant observations to report)
  • severe accident analysis (no significant observations to report)
  • management of safety issues (including R&D programs) (no significant observations to report)
Deterministic safety analysis

CNSC staff have determined that OPG has an effective, well-managed program on deterministic safety analysis. OPG continues to implement REGDOC-2.4.1, Deterministic Safety Analysis [12] and CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

CNSC staff determined that Darlington’s safety analysis predicts adequate safety margins, and met the CNSC acceptance criteria for safe operation.

CNSC staff determined that OPG adequately addressed issues related to hydrogen behaviour in containment. In 2016, CNSC staff accepted the OPG assessment for design-basis accidents that the impact of standing flames and multiple hydrogen burns on equipment is inconsequential for Darlington. Required equipment would continue to function following a design-basis accident, and the ability of the NPP to recover from such an accident is assured.

Probabilistic safety analysis

CNSC staff determined that OPG is in compliance at Darlington with regulatory standard S-294, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [32]. OPG is transitioning toward implementation at Darlington of the recently published REGDOC‑2.4.2, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [15]. CNSC staff found that OPG’s performance in the PSA area at Darlington met or exceeded regulatory requirements in 2016. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date on OPG’s transition.

3.2.1.5 Physical design

CNSC staff concluded that the physical design SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Physical design encompasses the following specific areas:

  • design governance
  • site characterization (no significant observations to report)
  • facility design (no significant observations to report)
  • structure design (no significant observations to report)
  • system design
  • components design
Design governance

Environmental qualification

An environmental qualification program ensures that all required structures, systems and components are capable of performing their designated safety functions in a postulated harsh environment resulting from design-basis accidents.

CNSC staff determined that the environmental qualification program is implemented in all Darlington units. OPG maintains program sustainability in accordance with regulatory requirements (specifically, CSA standard N290.13, Environmental qualification of equipment for CANDU nuclear power plants [17]) and its governing document.

Pressure boundary design

CNSC staff observed that OPG continued to implement a comprehensive pressure boundary program at Darlington. The program is compliant with regulatory requirements.

System design

Electrical power systems

In 2016, CNSC staff conducted desktop reviews, which included follow-up on the integrated safety reviews and on the 2014 compliance verification inspection. Based on these compliance activities, no areas of non-compliance were found. CNSC staff concluded that the electrical power systems at Darlington met the applicable regulatory compliance requirements.

Fire protection design

CNSC staff conducted ongoing oversight activities at Darlington in 2016, including specialist document reviews and inspections. CNSC staff concluded that Darlington’s fire protection program is in compliance with the requirements of CSA standard N293‑07, Fire protection for CANDU nuclear power plants [38].

Components design

Fuel design

CNSC staff determined that OPG has a well-developed reactor fuel inspection program. Fuel performance at Darlington was acceptable in 2016. CNSC staff considers the OPG fuel program to be robust and OPG to be able to adequately manage issues while maintaining safe operations.

Cables

In 2016, there were no issues found during compliance activities (i.e., desktop reviews, periodic safety reviews). As a result, CNSC staff concluded that the cable management program at Darlington met the applicable regulatory requirements.

3.2.1.6 Fitness for service

CNSC staff concluded that the fitness for service SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Fitness for service encompasses the following specific areas:

  • equipment fitness for service/equipment performance
  • maintenance
  • structural integrity
  • aging management
  • chemistry control
  • periodic inspection and testing
Equipment fitness for service and equipment performance

CNSC staff concluded that the overall equipment fitness for service and performance at Darlington was satisfactory and met regulatory requirements.

Reliability of systems important to safety

CNSC staff determined that the reliability program at Darlington met the regulatory requirements described in RD/GD-98, Reliability Programs for Nuclear Power Plants[35].

CNSC staff observed that all special safety systems for Darlington units 1–4 met their unavailability targets in 2016.

Maintenance

CNSC staff determined that the maintenance program at Darlington met regulatory requirements and performance objectives. The average preventive maintenance completion ratio for the four units at Darlington was 90.5 percent.

The 2016 maintenance backlog results for critical components at Darlington are given in table 23.

The corrective critical maintenance backlog, deficient critical maintenance backlog and number of deferrals of critical component preventive maintenance were all less than the industry average.

CNSC staff determined that the preventive maintenance completion ratio and backlog results for maintenance of critical components were acceptable.

CNSC staff will continue to monitor the trends in these indicators.

Table 23: Maintenance backlogs and deferrals for critical components for Darlington, 2016
Parameter Average work orders per unit for the year Trend compared with 2015 Industry average
Corrective maintenance backlog 6 Stable 8
Deficient maintenance backlog 48 Down 111
Deferrals of preventive maintenance 33 Up 38
Structural integrity

OPG inspected select Darlington Unit 4 pressure boundary and containment components in 2016. The pressure boundary inspections covered elements of the primary heat transport and auxiliary systems, feeders and pressure tubes. As part of their compliance monitoring activities, CNSC staff performed desktop reviews of inspection reports and concluded that the structures, systems and components important for safe operation at Darlington met structural integrity requirements.

Aging management

OPG has an integrated aging management program at Darlington to ensure that the condition of the structures, systems and components important to safety is well understood and that the required activities are in place to assure their health as the plant ages. CNSC staff concluded that OPG’s program met regulatory requirements.

OPG is currently updating its aging management governance and processes to meet the requirements of REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management[20], with full implementation expected by the end of 2017.

CNSC staff continued to monitor the implementation of the fuel channel life management project to further the development of the analytical tools necessary to demonstrate pressure tube fitness for service for continued operation. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date. See section 2.2.3.

Chemistry control

CNSC staff conducted a compliance verification inspection of chemistry control at Darlington in 2016 and found that OPG met regulatory requirements. CNSC staff identified one deficiency of low safety significance, which has been addressed by OPG to the satisfaction of CNSC staff. This deficiency was in the area of humidity monitoring in the chemistry laboratory.

Periodic inspections and testing

CNSC staff have determined that OPG has adequate periodic inspection programs in place at Darlington for the pressure boundary and containment components important to safety.

CNSC staff monitored compliance with the established regulatory requirements for periodic inspection programs during the year and concluded that their implementation met regulatory requirements.

OPG is currently updating its periodic inspection programs to comply with the 2014 edition of CSA standard N285.4, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components [21]. Full implementation of the updated program requirements is expected by 2019. CNSC staff are satisfied with progress to date and will continue to monitor it.

3.2.1.7 Radiation protection

CNSC staff concluded that the radiation protection SCA at Darlington met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Radiation protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • application of ALARA
  • worker dose control
  • radiation protection program performance
  • radiological hazard control
  • estimated dose to the public
Application of ALARA

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to implement a highly effective, well-documented and mature program, based on industry best practices, to keep doses to persons as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) at Darlington. Compliance verification activities conducted by CNSC staff verified that OPG used ALARA initiatives, work planning, and dose monitoring and control to work towards the challenging ALARA targets established by OPG.

Safety performance indicators related to the application of ALARA include tracking of collective radiation exposure values for the station. In 2016, the collective dose reported for Darlington (see appendix E.2) exceeded OPG’s established target. CNSC staff concluded that while the application of ALARA at Darlington met regulatory requirements and safety was not compromised, the failure to achieve planned goals reflects a downward performance trend in this area.

Through performance monitoring, OPG recognized this trend, identified causal factors – such as the addition of unscheduled work, performing rework, inadequate dose estimates for high-hazard work, and unavailability of tritium reduction systems with higher than anticipated airborne tritium levels in the reactor vault – and incorporated lessons learned into its 2017 planned outage and ALARA plans that aim to improve performance in this area. The CNSC will continue to monitor to confirm that those lessons are adequately addressed.

Worker dose control

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to comply with the regulatory requirements to measure and record doses received by workers at Darlington. Routine compliance verification activities conducted in 2016 confirmed that performance in the area of worker dose control at Darlington is effective. Radiation doses to workers were below the regulatory dose limits and action levels established in the Darlington radiation protection program. The data for individual and collective doses for workers at Darlington can be found in section 2.1.7 and appendix E.2.

Safety performance indicators related to worker dose control include tracking of occurrences involving doses received from unplanned exposures or uptakes. CNSC staff observed that there were no adverse trends or safety-significant unplanned exposures that resulted from the licensed activities at Darlington in 2016.

Radiation protection program performance

CNSC staff determined that the OPG corporate radiation protection program satisfies the requirements of the Radiation Protection Regulations [39]. The program includes safety performance indicators to monitor program performance. Program documents and supporting procedures are kept current, taking into consideration operating experience and industry best practices.

The CNSC’s routine compliance verification activities indicate that Darlington is highly effective in the area of radiation protection program performance.

Radiological hazard control

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to meet regulatory requirements to control radiological hazards at Darlington.

There were no action level exceedances for surface contamination as a result of licensed activities at Darlington during the reporting period.

CNSC staff confirmed that no safety-significant incidents or adverse trends regarding radiological hazard control were identified through reporting of safety performance indicators on personnel and loose-contamination events.

Estimated dose to the public

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to ensure the protection of members of the general public in accordance with the Radiation Protection Regulations. The reported estimated dose to a member of the general public from Darlington was 0.0006 mSv, well below the annual dose limit of 1 mSv.

3.2.1.8 Conventional health and safety

CNSC staff concluded that the conventional health and safety SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, a decrease from the “fully satisfactory” rating received in 2015.

Conventional health and safety encompasses the following specific areas:

  • performance
  • practices
  • awareness
Performance

CNSC staff observed that the accident severity rate for Darlington decreased from 1.4 in 2015 to 0.7 in 2016, while the accident frequency rate decreased slightly from 0.28 in 2015 to 0.22 in 2016. Darlington’s accident severity rate is below the industry average and its accident frequency rate is the lowest among Canadian NPPs.

Practices

CNSC staff observed non-compliances relating to the control and minimization of confined space entry hazards at Darlington, which were categorized as medium safety significance. CNSC staff have reviewed the OPG corrective action plan to address the non-compliances, and found it to be acceptable. CNSC staff continue to monitor the implementation of the corrective actions by OPG.

CNSC staff observed that OPG was compliant at Darlington with the relevant provisions of Ontario’s Occupational Health and Safety Act and Labour Relations Act.

Awareness

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to maintain a safe and efficient working environment at Darlington. The station was clean and tidy, although some instances of improperly stored equipment and transient material were noted. CNSC staff also noted some non-compliances of low safety significance with the licensee’s governance with respect to personal protective equipment and scaffolding. CNSC staff continue to monitor the implementation of the OPG corrective action plan to address the non-compliances.

3.2.1.9 Environmental protection

CNSC staff concluded that the environmental protection SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Environmental protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • effluent and emissions control (releases)
  • environmental management system
  • assessment and monitoring
  • protection of the public
  • environmental risk assessment
Effluent and emissions control

CNSC staff observed that all radiological releases from Darlington remained well below regulatory limits (see section 2.1.9). The derived release limits for Darlington are provided in appendix F.

Environmental management system

CNSC staff determined that OPG has established and implemented an effective environmental management program at Darlington to assess environmental risks associated with its nuclear activities and to ensure that these activities are conducted in a way that prevents or mitigates adverse environmental effects.

Assessment and monitoring

CNSC staff reviewed and assessed the Darlington environmental monitoring data and concluded that the public, Indigenous peoples and the environment in the vicinity of the site are protected and that any risk to them was reasonable.

Protection of the public

The risk to the environment, public or Indigenous peoples from any releases of hazardous substances from Darlington was reasonable. CNSC staff observed that the reported annual radiation dose to the general public from Darlington remained very low at 0.06 percent of the general public dose limit (see section 2.1.7).

Environmental risk assessment

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to maintain and implement an effective environmental risk assessment and management program at Darlington in accordance with regulatory requirements.

CNSC staff reviewed the 2016 Darlington Nuclear Environmental Risk Assessment, which was submitted by OPG in November 2016. This assessment evaluated, in accordance with CSA standard N288.6-12, Environmental risk assessment at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills [26], the risk to relevant human and ecological receptors resulting from exposure to contaminants and stressors related to the Darlington site and its activities. CNSC staff found that OPG has taken adequate measures to assess the potential effects on the general public and the environment.

3.2.1.10 Emergency management and fire protection

CNSC staff concluded that the emergency management and fire protection SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Emergency management and fire protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conventional emergency preparedness and response
  • nuclear emergency preparedness and response
  • fire emergency preparedness and response
Conventional emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff concluded that Darlington continued to support and maintain a comprehensive conventional emergency preparedness and response capability.

Nuclear emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to support and maintain its emergency response organization at Darlington, and is compliant with regulatory requirements. OPG continued to support offsite emergency management organizations and commitments as well.

CNSC staff continue to monitor this area as part of the compliance program and have concluded that Darlington continues to support and maintain a comprehensive nuclear emergency preparedness and response.

Fire emergency preparedness and response

In 2016, CNSC staff found that OPG was non-compliant with some of the regulatory requirements related to training. OPG took immediate measures to correct these regulatory non-compliances of low safety significance to the satisfaction of CNSC staff.

CNSC staff performed a fire drill compliance verification inspection to evaluate the response capabilities of the industrial fire brigade and observed non-compliances of low safety significance, such as the observation of non-optimal hose deployment. OPG is implementing a corrective action plan to address these non-compliances.

Overall, CNSC staff concluded that OPG continues to support and maintain a comprehensive fire response capability at Darlington.

3.2.1.11 Waste management

CNSC staff concluded that the waste management SCA at Darlington met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Waste management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • waste characterization
  • waste minimization
  • waste management practices
  • decommissioning plans
Waste characterization, waste minimization and waste management practices

CNSC staff determined that OPG’s waste management programs at Darlington exceeded expectations for managing radioactive waste, including waste characterization, waste minimization and waste handling and storage.

Decommissioning plans

OPG maintains preliminary decommissioning plans and associated consolidated financial guarantees for all of its Ontario facilities, including Darlington. These guarantees are revised every five years. The current preliminary decommissioning plan and associated financial guarantee accepted by the Commission in 2012 remained valid during 2016. OPG’s next submission of the preliminary decommissioning plan and financial guarantee was received on January 30, 2017. CNSC staff are currently evaluating OPG’s preliminary decommissioning plan. It is anticipated that the revised financial guarantees will be presented to the Commission by the end of 2017.

3.2.1.12 Security

CNSC staff concluded that the security SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

Security encompasses the following specific areas:

  • facilities and equipment
  • response arrangements (no significant observations to report)
  • security practices
  • drills and exercises (no significant observations to report)

While not represented as a specific area, cyber security has become an important topic that warrants a discussion in its own section.

Facilities and equipment

In 2016, CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to sustain its security equipment through lifecycle management at Darlington. No significant equipment failures were reported in 2016. OPG has processes in place to adequately prevent security events and has made improvements to the Darlington preventive maintenance program. CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues for this area.

Security practices

CNSC staff observed that OPG has procedures in place at Darlington to provide guidance to security personnel in all areas under this area. This area, however, was affected by reportable events related to non-adherence to security procedures. There are some challenges in the area of security awareness. However, CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues for this area.

Cyber security

In 2016, OPG submitted an implementation plan to address the identified gaps between the current Darlington cyber security program and the requirements of the new CSA standard N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities [27]. There were no significant issues, and the identified gaps are being addressed by OPG. CNSC staff will continue to monitor the Darlington cyber security program until the completion of all milestones of the implementation plan. CNSC staff are satisfied with OPG’s progress at Darlington in this area.

3.2.1.13 Safeguards and non-proliferation

CNSC staff concluded that the safeguards and non-proliferation SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Safeguards and non-proliferation encompasses the following specific areas:

  • nuclear material accountancy and control
  • access and assistance to the IAEA
  • operational and design information
  • safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance
Nuclear material accountancy and control

CNSC staff confirmed that OPG’s accountancy and control of nuclear material at Darlington complied with RD-336, Accounting and Reporting of Nuclear Material[29].

Access and assistance to the IAEA

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) performed a physical inventory verification, a design information verification, a complementary access and four unannounced inspections at Darlington in 2016. The goal of these compliance verification activities was to verify the nuclear material inventory and to confirm the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities. CNSC staff observed that OPG provided adequate access and support for these inspections.

All inspection results received from the IAEA in 2016 for Darlington were satisfactory.

Operational and design information

OPG submitted its annual operational program for Darlington to the CNSC on time, along with quarterly updates and the annual update to the information pursuant to the IAEA Additional Protocol [28]. In all of the above, the information provided met all of the CNSC’s submission requirements.

OPG is revising the IAEA design information questionnaire for Darlington to reflect the current state of the facility and to include information on the refurbishment project.

Safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance

CNSC staff observed that OPG adequately supported IAEA equipment operation and maintenance activities at Darlington, including maintenance and repair work on the VXI Integrated Fuel Monitor and remote monitoring communication to ensure the effective implementation of safeguards measures at Darlington.

3.2.1.14 Packaging and transport

CNSC staff concluded that the packaging and transport SCA at Darlington met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Packaging and transport encompasses the following specific areas:

  • package design and maintenance
  • packaging and transport
  • registration for use
Package design and maintenance, packaging and transport, and registration for use

CNSC staff determined that OPG has a packaging and transport program at Darlington that ensures compliance with the Packaging and Transport of Nuclear Substances Regulations, 2015 [30] and the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations [31]. The transport of nuclear substances to and from the facility is conducted in a safe manner.

In February 2017, an event occurred where four electrical motors with undetected internal contamination were shipped from Darlington to an unlicensed facility for repair. All four motors had been surveyed for contamination at Darlington and approved for unconditional transfer prior to the shipment. Following the detection of contamination at the repair facility, all four motors and contaminated materials were packaged and shipped back to Darlington by qualified shippers and in accordance with OPG procedures and Packaging and Transport Nuclear Substances Regulations, 2015. OPG is conducting an investigation of this event to prevent recurrence. CNSC staff will continue to monitor this area.

3.2.2 Regulatory developments

3.2.2.1 Licensing

OPG’s licence for Darlington was renewed in December 2015 for a 10-year period (effective until November 30, 2025). The Darlington licence has been issued with an accompanying licence conditions handbook (LCH).

Licence amendments

No amendments were made to the Darlington licence in 2016. Table G.3 in appendixG provides details on the issuance of the licence for Darlington.

Revisions to the LCH

The Darlington LCH was revised once between May 2016 and April 2017 to incorporate administrative and technical changes. Details of the significant changes are provided in table G.4 of appendix G. These changes have not resulted in an unauthorized change of scope and remain within the licensing basis.

3.2.2.2 Updates on major projects and initiatives
Refurbishment/life extension

CNSC staff are now actively monitoring and conducting compliance verification inspections of the refurbishment of Unit 2, which started its refurbishment outage on October 14, 2016. CNSC staff are focusing their regulatory oversight on regulatory deliverables specified in the Integrated Implementation Plan (IIP), implemented in accordance with licence condition (LC) 15.3. The IIP approved by the Commission during the licence renewal delegates to staff the acceptance of scheduling changes per the change control and closeout process referenced in the LCH.

Integrated Implementation Plan, LC 15.3

Work on the IIP by OPG is progressing according to schedule, with the exception of the completion of corrective actions for two code gaps and three out of five safety improvement opportunities (i.e., IIP-EA 009). These are discussed further below.

OPG requested six extensions to the IIP schedule, which were reviewed and accepted by CNSC staff in accordance with the IIP schedule change control process referenced in the LCH. The schedule changes do not have impacts on the overall IIP completion schedule or on nuclear safety.

OPG submitted its annual report on completed IIP items for 2016 in March 2017. The report is under review by CNSC staff. IIP items are closed only when CNSC staff confirm that each has met regulatory requirements.

The Darlington refurbishment environmental assessment follow-up program is contained within the IIP as items IIP EA-010, EA-011, EA-012 and EA-013. CNSC staff monitor these items as part of refurbishment compliance. The CNSC, Environment and Climate Change Canada and OPG have agreed on the thermal monitoring program, which is described in IIP EA-012, for refurbishment and continued operation, which considers the results of research on thermal effects on round whitefish eggs.

Station improvement opportunities

OPG made a commitment to address several station improvement opportunities as part of its 2012 environmental assessment. These commitments were later incorporated into the IIP to consolidate all the implementation activities.

These improvements are:

  • shield tank over-pressure (STOP) modifications in all four units
  • containment filtered venting system (CFVS)
  • emergency power generator 3
  • powerhouse steam venting system
  • emergency service water and diesel driven fire water pumps

The powerhouse steam venting system improvements and the installation of the STOP modifications on units 3 and 4 are complete.

The STOP modifications will be installed on Unit 1 during the spring outage. The Unit 2 STOP modifications will be installed during the refurbishment outage prior to unit restart in accordance with the original IIP schedule.

Delays have been experienced on the CFVS, which is intended to improve station performance for beyond-design-basis accidents. CFVS final commissioning is expected before April 30, 2017, which was accepted by CNSC staff.

Delays have also been experienced with emergency power generator 3. Construction is substantially complete and commissioning tests are underway.Final station connections and final commissioning will depend on station bus availability.OPG requested an extension to June 30, 2017.

Work on the emergency service water and fire water pump projects remains in accordance with the original IIP schedule.

The station improvement opportunities are features to further improve safety of the plant under beyond-design-basis accidents. The delays in the installation of each are not considered safety significant. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Return to service plan and removal of regulatory hold points, LCs 15.2 and 15.4

A protocol has been established between the CNSC and OPG to clarify requirements for return to service of Unit 2 and the removal of regulatory hold points.Although this protocol is fairly well developed, it is subject to ongoing refinement as refurbishment progresses, and the level of detail of the implementation plan will increase. Regular meetings are required under the protocol to monitor progress on the refurbishment.

Compliance verification inspections during refurbishment

An inspection plan for Unit 2 refurbishment is being implemented. A number of inspections related to refurbishment have been conducted since the licence (i.e., PROL 13.00/2025) came into effect on January 1, 2016. Two inspections relating to refurbishment development that were conducted in previous years are included below. Inspections that were conducted in 2016 are also included in appendix H. Their findings were considered in the safety performance assessments described in section3.2.1.

These inspections are:

  • DRPD-A-2013-012, ISR – Plant Condition Assessment (under previous licence)
  • DRPD-2015-010, Contractor Oversight and Organization (under previous licence)
  • DRPD-2016-004, Engineering Change Control for Refurbishment
  • DRPD-2016-017, Refurbishment Project Office and East Warehouse Security Inspection
  • DRPD-2016-018, Quality Management and Oversight of Project Execution
  • DRPD-2016-019, End Shield Cooling Storage Tank Over-Pressure Protection Implementation in Units 3 and 4
  • DRPD-2016-022, Nuclear Refurbishment On-boarding and Oversight Training Programs
  • DRPD-2016-029, Unit 2 Reactor Shutdown Guarantee and Heat Sink Verification
  • DRPD-2017-001, SIO Compliance Verification: Powerhouse Steam Venting System
  • DRPD-2017-002, Refurbishment Work Planning and Scheduling
  • DRPD-2017-004, Unit 2 Defuelling for Refurbishment
  • DRPD-2017-005, Transportation of Dangerous Goods Inspection
  • DRPD-2017-007, Conventional Health and Safety Inspection
  • DRPD-2017-009, Unit 2 Temporary Containment Boundary Pressure Test

CNSC staff concluded that OPG is compliant with the regulatory requirements applicable to implementation of the refurbishment activities and completion of the IIP deliverables.

End-of-commercial operations activities and periodic safety review

On December 23, 2015, the Commission renewed Darlington’s licence as the first 10-year licence issued to a Canadian NPP. This licensing period is based on work completed under the integrated safety review and the recently implemented requirements pertaining to periodic safety reviews (PSRs) as defined in REGDOC‑2.3.3, Periodic Safety Reviews [37].

The primary goal of REGDOC-2.3.3 is to perform a comprehensive evaluation of the design, conditions and operation of an NPP to obtain an overall view of plant safety and the quality of safety documentation, and to determine reasonable and practical improvements to ensure safety until the next PSR is undertaken or until the end of commercial operation. PSRs have been effective in achieving improvements in safety and in supporting licence renewal to ensure that plant safety continued to improve. The application of a PSR is seen as an evolution of current practice based on past experience with life-extension projects.

3.2.2.3 Updates on significant regulatory issues
Fisheries Act authorization

OPG submitted an application for a Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) Fisheries Act authorization in August 2013. DFO issued the Fisheries Act authorization on June 24, 2015. Under the CNSC–DFO memorandum of understanding, CNSC staff are responsible for compliance verification and monitoring of the Fisheries Act authorization. The authorization contains a reporting condition on the offset plan to both DFO and CNSC staff. Enforcement of the Fisheries Act remains the mandate of the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

The CNSC will continue to carry out regular desktop reviews and field verification activities to ensure adherence to the conditions of the Fisheries Act authorization.

3.2.2.4 Communication
Event initial reports

There was one event initial report submitted for Darlington from January 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017. Details for this report are provided in table 24.

Table 24: Event initial reports for Darlington
Subject Brief description
Contaminated motor shipped to an unlicensed vendor (as reported in CMD 17-M11) On February 3, 2017, Darlington personnel shipped four electrical motors from the confinement vapour recovery system/vault vapour recovery system to an unlicensed vendor for repair. All four motors were surveyed for contamination at Darlington and approved for unconditional transfer prior to the shipment. On February 10, a vendor employee proceeded to disassemble the motors in the presence of an OPG system-responsible engineer, an OPG intern and a second vendor employee. The first motor was disassembled without incident. When the end cover was removed from the second motor, approximately 0.5 L of tritiated water (i.e., 0.4 Ci/kg (14.8MBq/g)) was released from the motor casing, lightly wetting the OPG engineer and possibly the first vendor employee. The system responsible engineer immediately stopped the work and contacted Darlington for support. The third and fourth motors were not opened. OPG dispatched personnel and equipment to clean up the shop.The shop was subsequently confirmed free of contamination. All four motors and contaminated materials were packaged and shipped to Darlington by qualified shippers and in accordance with OPG procedures and the Packaging and Transport of Nuclear Substances Regulations, 2015. OPG is conducting an investigation of this event to prevent recurrence.Once the corrective action plan has been completed by the licensee, an update will be presented to the Commission.

3.3 Pickering

Arial view of Pickering.Pickering Nuclear Generating Station is located on the north shore of Lake Ontario in Pickering, ON. The facility lies 32 kilometres northeast of Toronto and 21 kilometres southwest of Oshawa. The facility is owned by Ontario Power Generation (OPG).

The nuclear facility consists of eight CANDU reactors. Units 1, 2, 3, and 4 went into service in 1971. In 1997, these reactors were placed in voluntary layup as part of then-licensee Ontario Hydro’s nuclear improvement program. Units 2 and 3 are not operating. These two units were defuelled in 2008 and remain in a safe shutdown state. In September 2003, Unit 4 was returned to commercial operation, as was Unit 1 in November 2005.

Units 5, 6, 7 and 8 at the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station continue to operate safely since they were brought into service in 1983.

Each operating reactor for units 1 and 4 has a gross electrical output of 542megawatts electrical (MWe). Each operating reactor for units 5–8 has a gross electrical output of 540MWe.

3.3.1 Safety assessment

The CNSC staff safety assessment of Pickering for 2016 resulted in the performance ratings as shown in table 25. Based on the observations and assessments of the SCAs, CNSC staff concluded that Pickering operated safely. The integrated plant rating was “fully satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

Table 25: Performance ratings for Pickering, 2016
Safety and control area Rating Industry average*
Management system SA SA
Human performance management SA SA
Operating performance FS FS
Safety analysis FS FS
Physical design SA SA
Fitness for service SA SA
Radiation protection SA SA
Conventional health and safety FS FS
Environmental protection SA SA
Emergency management and fire protection SA SA
Waste management FS FS
Security SA SA
Safeguards and non-proliferation SA SA
Packaging and transport SA SA
Integrated plant rating FS SA

* The industry average of all operating NPPs in Canada

Notes:

  • For specific areas within the SCAs where there were no significant observations from CNSC staff compliance verification activities, no information is given in this subsection of the report.
  • The information presented below is station specific; general trends are not identified here (refer to section2 for industry-wide observations).
3.3.1.1 Management system

CNSC staff concluded that the management system SCA at Pickering met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Management system encompasses the following specific areas:

  • management system
  • organization
  • performance assessment, improvement and management review (no significant observations to report)
  • operating experience (no significant observations to report)
  • change management
  • safety culture
  • configuration management
  • records management
  • management of contractors (no significant observations to report)
  • business continuity
Management system

OPG completed transition from CSA standard N286-05, Management system requirements for nuclear power plants [5] to N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities [6] in 2016. CNSC staff reviewed the OPG governance documentation and identified that some improvements were needed with respect to documentation of the organization structure as it relates to the implementation of the management system. CNSC staff will undertake follow-up compliance verification activities to confirm implementation of CSA standard N286‑12.

Organization

The OPG business transformation initiative has been completed. In January 2017, CNSC staff conducted an inspection of OPG’s organization, roles and responsibilities. The focus of the inspection was on OPG organizational documentation affected by the business transformation initiative as it relates to the roles and responsibilities for nuclear programs and interfacing programs. During the inspection, CNSC staff found overall that OPG’s organization, roles and responsibilities supported safe operation to limit the risk to the health and safety of persons and the environment and respect Canada’s international obligations. The detailed results of the inspection will be included in the assessment for the regulatory oversight report for 2017.

Safety culture

CNSC staff determined that OPG continues to follow established processes at Pickering for self-assessment of safety culture at planned intervals. In 2016, OPG developed an action plan resulting from its 2015 Pickering safety culture self-assessment. CNSC staff will monitor the implementation of the action plan. CNSC staff are satisfied with OPG’s efforts to foster safety culture and self-assessment.

Configuration management

CNSC staff determined that OPG has a configuration management system for Pickering that met regulatory requirements in 2016.

Records management

CNSC staff determined that OPG met the record management requirements at Pickering.

Business continuity

CNSC staff observed during compliance verification activities conducted in 2016 that OPG met regulatory requirements for business continuity at Pickering. OPG has adequate plans in place to address events involving labour actions.

3.3.1.2 Human performance management

CNSC staff concluded that the human performance management SCA at Pickering met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Human performance management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • human performance program
  • personnel training
  • personnel certification
  • initial certification examinations and requalification tests
  • work organization and job design
  • fitness for duty
Human performance program

CNSC staff determined that the OPG human performance program met applicable regulatory requirements at Pickering.

Personnel training

CNSC staff determined that OPG has a well-documented and robust fleet-wide training system based on a systematic approach to training. Implementation of this system for the training programs at Pickering met regulatory requirements.

In 2016, CNSC staff performed a desktop review of the OPG engineering training program. Minor non-compliances of low safety significance were identified related to the documentation of knowledge and skills, and attitudes toward the performance of some tasks. OPG has provided an acceptable corrective action plan for this training program with a target completion date of the end of April 2018 for the last action. CNSC staff determined that the program is defined and documented in accordance with the systematic approach to training.

Personnel certification

In accordance with regulatory requirements, OPG has a sufficient number of personnel at Pickering for all certified positions. CNSC staff are satisfied that OPG programs ensure that certified personnel at Pickering possess the knowledge and skills required to perform their duties safely and competently.

Initial certification examinations and requalification tests

CNSC staff determined that the initial certification examinations and requalification test programs for the certified personnel at Pickering met regulatory requirements.

In 2016, CNSC staff documented the results of the 2015 inspection of reactor operator simulator-based initial certification examinations at Pickering units 5–8. CNSC staff also conducted an inspection of simulator-based requalification tests at Pickering units 1, 4, and 5–8 in 2016. Two non-compliances of low safety significance (with respect to availability of communication recording devices and failure to follow rules of conduct for the examination evaluation team) were observed by CNSC staff during the conduct of the simulator-based requalification tests. OPG has developed and implemented appropriate corrective actions to prevent recurrence.

Work organization and design

Minimum shift complement

In 2016, CNSC staff verified that Pickering met OPG’s minimum shift complement program requirements, which are based on CNSC regulatory guide G-323, Ensuring the Presence of Sufficient Qualified Staff at Class I Nuclear Facilities – Minimum Staff Complement [33].

In 2016, there were no violations of minimum shift complement at Pickering. More details on minimum shift complement are provided in section 2.1.2.

Fitness for duty

CNSC staff verified that OPG met applicable hours-of-work requirements at Pickering. Overall, CNSC staff are satisfied with the fitness for duty of workers at Pickering.

3.3.1.3 Operating performance

CNSC staff concluded that the operating performance SCA at Pickering met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Operating performance encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conduct of licensed activity
  • procedures
  • reporting and trending
  • outage management performance
  • safe operating envelope
  • accident management and recovery (no significant observations to report)
  • severe accident management and recovery
Conduct of licensed activities

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to operate Pickering with a high level of safety performance. OPG operated within OPG’s operating policies and principles and its operational safety requirements.

Pickering experienced two unplanned reactor trips, one stepback and two setbacks.

CNSC staff determined that stepbacks and setbacks were controlled properly, and power reduction was adequately initiated by the reactor control systems. CNSC staff verified that for all events, Pickering staff followed approved procedures and took appropriate corrective actions.

CNSC staff found that OPG’s conduct of licensed activities at Pickering met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Procedures

CNSC staff found that OPG has governance in place that ensures that procedures are written in a consistent and usable manner. Pickering has clearly documented expectations for procedural use and adherence, and a process to manage procedural change.

Reporting and trending

CNSC staff found that OPG reporting and trending met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Outage management performance

Pickering units 1 and 4 scheduled one planned outage and experienced one forced outage. Pickering units 5–8 scheduled three planned outages and experienced one forced outage.

CNSC staff found that OPG’s outage management performance at Pickering met or exceeded regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Safe operating envelope

CNSC staff found that Pickering’s safe operating envelope met regulatory requirements and expectations in 2016.

Severe accident management and recovery

CNSC staff determined that OPG continues to maintain a robust severe accident management program for Pickering. The program is implemented with an organizational structure that clearly establishes the roles and responsibilities of all program participants.

3.3.1.4 Safety analysis

CNSC staff concluded that the safety analysis SCA at Pickering met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Safety analysis encompasses the following specific areas:

  • deterministic safety analysis
  • probabilistic safety analysis
  • criticality safety (no significant observations to report)
  • severe accident analysis (no significant observations to report)
  • management of safety issues (including R&D programs) (no significant observations to report)
Deterministic safety analysis

CNSC staff have determined that OPG has an effective, well-managed program on deterministic safety analysis. OPG continues to implement REGDOC-2.4.1, Deterministic Safety Analysis [12].

As a key project for REGDOC-2.4.1 implementation, OPG submitted the common-mode event identification and classification and technical basis document for the Pickering stations. When complete, the new analysis will be included in the Pickering safety reports. CNSC staff are currently reviewing these submissions.

CNSC staff determined that the Pickering safety analysis predicts adequate safety margins and met the CNSC acceptance criteria for safe operation.

OPG has adequately addressed issues related to hydrogen behaviour in containment. In early 2017, CNSC staff accepted OPG’s assessment for design-basis accidents, namely that the impact of standing flames and multiple hydrogen burns on equipment is inconsequential for Pickering. Required equipment would continue to function following a design-basis accident and the ability of the NPP to recover from such an accident is assured.

Probabilistic safety analysis

OPG is in compliance with S-294, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [32] for Pickering, and is transitioning toward implementation of the recently published REGDOC-2.4.2, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [15]. OPG is expected to complete the pilot application of the whole-site PSA methodology at Pickering by the end of 2017 (see section 3.3.2.3). The CNSC found that OPG’s performance in the PSA area at Pickering met or exceeded regulatory requirements in 2016.

3.3.1.5 Physical design

CNSC staff concluded that the physical design SCA at Pickering met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Physical design encompasses the following specific areas:

  • design governance
  • site characterization (no significant observations to report)
  • facility design (no significant observations to report)
  • structure design
  • system design
  • components design
Design governance

Environmental qualification

An environmental qualification program ensures that all required structures, systems and components are capable of performing their designated safety functions in a postulated harsh environment resulting from design-basis accidents.

CNSC staff determined that the environmental qualification program is implemented in all Pickering units. OPG is required to maintain program sustainability in accordance with regulatory requirements (specifically, CSA standard N290.13, Environmental qualification of equipment for CANDU nuclear power plants [17]) and its governing document.

Pressure boundary design

OPG continues to implement a comprehensive pressure boundary program at Pickering. The pressure boundary program is compliant with regulatory requirements.

Structure design

In 2016, CNSC staff conducted an inspection on the preservation of the seismic design basis at Pickering. CNSC staff concluded that OPG met regulatory requirements with the exception of some minor deficiencies related to verification of documents and to maintaining plant configuration consistent with design documents. OPG has provided a corrective action plan. CNSC staff found the plan acceptable and are monitoring its implementation.

System design

Electrical power systems

In 2016, CNSC staff conducted desktop reviews, compliance verification inspections of units 1 and 4, and periodic safety reviews. Based on these activities, CNSC staff concluded that the electrical power systems at Pickering met the applicable regulatory compliance requirements.

Component design

Fuel design

CNSC staff determined that OPG has a well-developed reactor fuel inspection program. Fuel performance at Pickering was acceptable in 2016. CNSC staff considers the OPG fuel program to be robust and OPG able to adequately manage this issue while maintaining safe operations.

Cables

In 2016, there were no issues found during compliance verification activities (i.e., desktop reviews, compliance verifications of units 1 and 4, and inspections of the electrical power systems and periodic safety reviews). As a result, CNSC staff concluded that the cable management program at Pickering met the applicable regulatory requirements.

3.3.1.6 Fitness for service

CNSC staff concluded that the fitness for service SCA at Pickering met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Fitness for service encompasses the following specific areas:

  • equipment fitness for service/equipment performance
  • maintenance
  • structural integrity
  • aging management
  • chemistry control (no significant observations to report)
  • periodic inspection and testing
Equipment fitness for service/equipment performance

CNSC staff determined that the overall equipment fitness for service and performance at Pickering was satisfactory and met regulatory requirements.

Reliability of systems important to safety

CNSC staff determined that the reliability program at Pickering met the regulatory requirements described in RD/GD-98, Reliability Programs for Nuclear Power Plants[35].

All special safety systems for Pickering units 1, 4 and 5–8 met their unavailability targets in 2016.

Maintenance

CNSC staff determined that the Pickering maintenance program met regulatory requirements and performance objectives. The average preventive maintenance completion ratio for the six units at Pickering was 85 percent.

The 2016 maintenance backlog results for critical components at Pickering are provided in table 26.

The corrective critical maintenance backlog and the number of deferrals of critical preventive maintenance were higher than the industry average, but both have improved compared to 2015. The deficient critical maintenance backlog increased, but was within the industry’s average range. Measures to reduce the maintenance backlogs are monitored by CNSC staff through routine maintenance-related desktop reviews and compliance verification inspections. A focused desktop review will be conducted in 2017 to confirm the interrelation between the maintenance backlogs and the performance of components important to safety. CNSC staff are satisfied with the preventive maintenance completion ratio and maintenance backlogs at Pickering.

CNSC staff will continue to monitor the trends in these indicators.

Table 26: Maintenance backlogs and deferrals for critical components for Pickering, 2016
Parameter Average work orders per unit for the year Trend compared with 2015 Industry average
Corrective maintenance backlog 19 down 8
Deficient maintenance backlog 109 up 111
Deferrals of preventive maintenance 110 down 38
Structural integrity

The results of OPG’s inspections of pressure boundary components completed in 2016 indicated that there was no in-service degradation that impacted safe operation of the Pickering units. OPG conducted positive pressure tests on the containment boundaries of units 4 and 8. The leak rates were 1.18 percent per hour and 0.38percent per hour for these units, respectively, well below the safety limits of 2.7 percent per hour and 2percent per hour. CNSC staff concluded that units 4 and 8 met the acceptance criteria of CSA standard N287.7, In-service examination and testing requirements for concrete containment structures for CANDU nuclear power plants[24].

Aging management

OPG has an integrated aging management program at Pickering to ensure that the condition of the structures, systems and components important to safety is well understood and that the required activities are in place to assure their health as the plant ages. CNSC staff concluded that OPG’s program met regulatory requirements.

OPG is currently updating its aging management governance and processes to meet the requirements of REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management[20], with full implementation expected by the end of 2017.

CNSC staff continued to monitor the implementation of the fuel channel life management project to further develop the analytical tools necessary to demonstrate pressure tube fitness for service for continued operation.

Periodic inspection and testing

CNSC staff have determined that OPG has adequate periodic inspection programs in place at Pickering for the pressure boundary and containment components important to safety.

CNSC staff monitored compliance with the established regulatory requirements for periodic inspection programs during the year and concluded the implementation of each met regulatory requirements.

3.3.1.7 Radiation protection

CNSC staff concluded that the radiation protection SCA at Pickering met performance objectives; however a declining trend was noted in some areas. As a result, the station rating decreased to “satisfactory” from “fully satisfactory” in 2015.

Radiation protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • application of ALARA
  • worker dose control
  • radiation protection program performance
  • radiological hazard control
  • estimated dose to the public
Application of ALARA

CNSC staff observed that OPG continued to implement a highly effective, well-documented and mature program, based on industry best practices, to keep doses as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) at Pickering. Compliance activities conducted by CNSC staff verified that Pickering used, through numerous ALARA initiatives, work planning and dose monitoring and control to work towards the challenging ALARA targets established by OPG.

Safety performance indicators related to the application of ALARA include tracking of collective radiation exposure values for the station. In 2016, the quarterly and year-end safety performance indicators reported by OPG for Pickering revealed a stable trend. CNSC staff were satisfied with the overall results.

Worker dose control

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to comply with the regulatory requirements to measure and record doses received by workers at Pickering. Routine compliance verification activities conducted in 2016 indicated that performance in the area of worker dose control at Pickering was effective. Radiation doses to workers were below the regulatory dose limits and action levels established in the Pickering radiation protection program. OPG reported that one worker received an unplanned dose from tritium of 1.16 mSv above the planned dose in the first quarter of 2016 due to cleanup activities resulting from a moderator spill. This event was of low safety significance. The data for individual and collective doses for workers at Pickering can be found in section 2.1.7 and appendix E.3.

Safety performance indicators related to worker dose control include tracking of occurrences involving doses received from unplanned exposures or uptakes. There were no inspections dedicated to worker dose control in 2016; however, compared with 2015, CNSC staff identified a declining trend in the performance of this area based on an increase in findings from baseline inspections, unscheduled reports and unplanned events. CNSC staff will continue to monitor performance in this area.

Radiation protection program performance

CNSC staff determined that OPG’s corporate radiation protection program satisfies the requirements of the Radiation Protection Regulations. The program includes safety performance indicators to monitor program performance. Program documents and supporting procedures are kept current, taking into consideration operating experience and industry best practices.

CNSC staff’s routine compliance verification activities indicate that Pickering is effective in the area of radiation protection program performance.

Radiological hazard control

CNSC staff identified a declining trend at Pickering for 2016 in the area of radiological hazard control due to ongoing issues with instrument calibrations and procedural non-compliances. In 2015, CNSC staff identified a non-compliance with regulatory requirements for using fixed-in-place and semi-portable area gamma monitors that were not calibrated in the preceding 12 months. A reactive inspection was conducted in December 2016 (see appendix H, Pickering, PRPD 2016-023) to evaluate the status of OPG’s corrective action plan to address the issue. During this inspection, it was determined that the identified fixed area gamma monitors remained uncalibrated, were still in use, and OPG had not met its own program requirements regarding compensatory measures to be taken when fixed or semi-portable gamma monitors are not available. CNSC staff confirmed that OPG has since taken corrective actions to return to regulatory compliance and meet its program requirements. There were no unplanned exposures, action level or regulatory dose limit exceedances as a result of this issue.

There were no action level exceedances for surface contamination as a result of licensed activities at Pickering in 2016.

CNSC staff confirmed that no safety-significant incidents were identified through reporting of safety performance indicators on personnel and loose-contamination events.

Estimated dose to the public

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to ensure the protection of members of the general public in accordance with the Radiation Protection Regulations. The reported estimated dose to members of the general public from Pickering was 0.0015 mSv, well below the annual dose limit of 1 mSv (see section 2.1.7).

3.3.1.8 Conventional health and safety

CNSC staff concluded that the conventional health and safety SCA at Pickering met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Conventional health and safety encompasses the following specific areas:

  • performance
  • practices
  • awareness
Performance

CNSC staff observed that the accident severity rate for Pickering was unchanged (i.e., 0.5) from 2015 to 2016. The accident frequency increased from 0.43 in 2015 to 0.66 in 2016, due to an increase in medically treated injuries that did not result in lost time. The number of lost-time injuries was unchanged from 2015 to 2016. The accident severity rate and accident frequency safety performance indicators at Pickering were found to be acceptable by CNSC staff.

Practices and awareness

CNSC staff determined that OPG exceeded requirements for practices and awareness at Pickering in 2016.

CNSC staff observed that OPG was compliant at Pickering with the relevant provisions of Ontario’s Occupational Health and Safety Act and Labour Relations Act.

CNSC staff determined that OPG has a safe and efficient working environment at Pickering, as demonstrated by numerous positive inspection findings. Continuous improvements included the installation and active management of new air monitors for hydrazine. These monitors enabled improved response time and monitoring capability – further contributing to the safety of workers. OPG conducted daily Pickering station alignment meetings during 2016. Key and emerging safety, human performance and operational issues are discussed at these meetings, documented and widely communicated. The issues discussed at these meetings have improved safety awareness at Pickering.

3.3.1.9 Environmental protection

CNSC staff concluded that the environmental protection SCA at Pickering met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Environmental protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • effluent and emissions control (releases)
  • environmental management system
  • assessment and monitoring
  • protection of the public
  • environmental risk assessment
Effluent and emissions control

CNSC staff observed that all radiological releases from Pickering remained well below the regulatory limits. Except for one month in which radiological liquid release that exceeded the action level for gross beta-gamma at Pickering, both airborne emissions and liquid releases were lower than their respective action levels (see section 2.1.9 for additional information and data).

OPG is addressing CNSC staff concerns with its effluent and emissions control program, and CNSC staff will continue to monitor the implementation of the OPG corrective action plan. These concerns were in the areas of exceedances of the environmental compliance approval limits for morpholine, and monitoring/estimating of radionuclide releases. In both cases, it is expected that OPG will respond to these concerns during 2017.

The derived release limits for Pickering are provided in appendix F.

Environmental management system

CNSC staff determined that OPG has established and implemented an effective environmental management program at Pickering to assess environmental risks associated with its nuclear activities and to ensure that these activities are conducted in a way that prevents or mitigates adverse environmental effects.

Assessment and monitoring

CNSC staff reviewed and assessed Pickering environmental monitoring data and confirmed that the risk to the public, Indigenous peoples and the environment was reasonable.

Protection of the public

One hazardous substance release from Pickering exceeded applicable regulatory limits (i.e., a morpholine release beyond the provincial regulatory limit). CNSC staff confirmed that the release did not pose a risk for the aquatic environment. Pickering has not had any other exceedances of applicable regulatory limits.

CNSC staff observed that the reported annual radiation dose to the general public from Pickering remained very low at 0.15 percent of the general public dose limit (see section 2.1.7).

Environmental risk assessment

CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to maintain and implement an effective environmental risk assessment (ERA) and management program at Pickering in accordance with regulatory requirements.

OPG completed an ERA for Pickering in 2014. It updated the ERA with environmental monitoring data from 2011 to 2015, and submitted the updated assessment to the CNSC in April 2017.CNSC staff are reviewing the updated ERA in accordance with requirements of the CSA standard N288.6‑12, Environmental risk assessments at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills [26].

3.3.1.10 Emergency management and fire protection

CNSC staff concluded that the emergency management and fire protection SCA at Pickering met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Emergency management and fire protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conventional emergency preparedness and response
  • nuclear emergency preparedness and response
  • fire emergency preparedness and response
Conventional emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff concluded that Pickering continued to support and maintain a comprehensive conventional emergency preparedness and response capability.

Nuclear emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff determined that Pickering continued to support and maintain its emergency response organization, and is compliant with regulatory requirements. OPG continued to support offsite emergency management organizations and commitments as well.

CNSC staff continue to monitor this area as part of the compliance program and conclude that Pickering continues to support and maintain a comprehensive nuclear emergency preparedness and response.

Fire emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff performed a fire drill compliance verification inspection at Pickering in 2016 to evaluate the response capabilities of the industrial fire brigade. During this inspection, CNSC staff found non-compliances of low safety significance with annual training requirements related to completion of medical evaluations and job-related physical performance testing (per the NFPA 600-05 and CSA N293-07 standards). OPG immediately implemented compensatory measures and took immediate measures to correct the regulatory non-compliances – to the satisfaction of CNSC staff.

Overall, CNSC staff concluded that Pickering continues to support and maintain a comprehensive fire response capability.

3.3.1.11 Waste management

CNSC staff concluded that the waste management SCA at Pickering met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Waste management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • waste characterization
  • waste minimization
  • waste management practices
  • decommissioning plans
Waste characterization, waste minimization and waste management practices

CNSC staff determined that OPG’s waste management programs at Pickering met CNSC expectations for managing radioactive waste, including waste characterization, waste minimization and waste handling and storage.

Decommissioning plans

OPG maintains preliminary decommissioning plans and associated consolidated financial guarantees for all of its Ontario facilities, including Pickering. These guarantees are revised every five years. The current preliminary decommissioning plan and associated financial guarantee accepted by the Commission in 2012 remained valid during 2016. OPG’s next submission of the preliminary decommissioning plan and financial guarantee was received on January 30, 2017. CNSC staff are currently evaluating OPG’s preliminary decommissioning plan. It is anticipated that the revised financial guarantee will be presented to the Commission by the end of 2017.

3.3.1.12 Security

CNSC staff concluded that the security SCA at Pickering met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Security encompasses the following specific areas:

  • facilities and equipment
  • response arrangements
  • security practices
  • drills and exercises (no significant observations to report)

While not represented as a specific area, cyber security has become an important topic that warrants a discussion in its own section.

Facilities and equipment

In 2016, CNSC staff determined that OPG continued to sustain its security equipment through lifecycle management at Pickering. No significant equipment failures were reported in 2016. OPG has processes in place to adequately prevent security events and has made improvements to the Pickering preventive maintenance program. CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues in this area.

Response arrangements

As a result of findings made during compliance verification activities, CNSC staff concluded that elements of this area did not fully meet the performance objectives. These findings were in the areas of training and decision making. Pickering is implementing corrective actions to address these outstanding items by March 30, 2018, and CNSC staff will continue to monitor the completion of the corrective actions. CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues for this specific area.

Security practices

CNSC staff observed that OPG has procedures in place at Pickering to guide security personnel in security practices. This area, however, was affected by numerous and repeated reportable events related to non-adherence to security procedures. There is a lack of vigilance in the area of security awareness. However, CNSC staff have concluded that there were no safety-significant issues for this area.

Cyber security

In 2016, OPG submitted an implementation plan to address the identified gaps between the current Pickering cyber security program and the requirements of the new CSA standard N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor Facilities[27]. There were no significant issues, and the identified gaps are being addressed by OPG. CNSC staff will continue to monitor the Pickering cyber security program until the completion of all milestones of the implementation plan. CNSC staff are satisfied with OPG’s progress at Pickering in this area.

3.3.1.13 Safeguards and non-proliferation

CNSC staff concluded that the safeguards and non-proliferation SCA at Pickering met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Safeguards and non-proliferation encompasses the following specific areas:

  • nuclear material accountancy and control
  • access and assistance to the IAEA
  • operational and design information
  • safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance
Nuclear material accountancy and control

CNSC staff confirmed that OPG’s accountancy and control of nuclear material at Pickering complied with RD-336, Accounting and Reporting of Nuclear Material [29].

Access and assistance to the IAEA

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) performed one short-notice random inspection, one physical inventory verification, one design information verification and three unannounced inspections at Pickering in 2016. The goal of these compliance verification activities was to verify the nuclear material inventory and to confirm the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities. CNSC staff observed that OPG provided adequate support for these inspections.

All inspection results received from the IAEA in 2016 for Pickering were satisfactory.

Operational and design information

OPG submitted its annual operational program for Pickering to the CNSC on time, along with quarterly updates and the annual update to the information pursuant to the IAEA Additional Protocol [28]. In all of the above, the information provided met all of the CNSC’s submission requirements.

Safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance

CNSC staff observed that OPG adequately supported IAEA equipment operation and maintenance activities, including maintenance and repairing work on the IAEA VXI Integrated Fuel Monitor, to ensure the effective implementation of safeguards measures at Pickering.

3.3.1.14 Packaging and transport

CNSC staff concluded that the packaging and transport SCA at Pickering met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Packaging and transport encompasses the following specific areas:

  • package design and maintenance
  • packaging and transport
  • registration for use
Package design and maintenance, packaging and transport, and registration for use

CNSC staff determined that OPG has a packaging and transport program at Pickering that ensures compliance with the Packaging and Transport of Nuclear Substances Regulations, 2015 [30] and the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations [31]. This program continued to be implemented in 2016, and the transport of nuclear substances to and from the facility is done in a safe manner.

3.3.2 Regulatory developments

3.3.2.1 Licensing

The Pickering nuclear power operating licence expires on August 31, 2018. In May 2016, OPG notified the CNSC of its intent to renew the Pickering licence for a 10-year period. CNSC staff have notified OPG of the licence renewal application requirements and requested that OPG submit its application on or before August 31, 2017. CNSC staff anticipate that Part 1 of the relicensing hearing will be held in Ottawa in April 2018, and Part 2 in Pickering in June 2018.

Licence amendments

The Pickering operating licence was amended once between May 1, 2016 and April 30, 2017. OPG requested a licence amendment to add a licensed activity under Part IV, Licensed Activities. The amendment allows Pickering to possess, transfer, manage and store heavy water from other nuclear facilities. The amendment was granted through an abridged hearing, effective September 29, 2016. Further details of the amendment are given in appendix G.

Revisions to the LCH

The Pickering LCH was revised once between May 2016 and April 2017 to incorporate administrative and technical changes. Details of the significant changes are provided in appendix G. These changes have not resulted in an unauthorized change of scope and remain within the licensing basis.

3.3.2.2 Updates on major projects and initiatives
Periodic safety review

OPG is performing a periodic safety review (PSR) in support of extending the operation of the six operating units of Pickering beyond 2020. This PSR is based on, and updates, earlier evaluations and assessments such as the integrated safety review that was completed in 2009 for the refurbishment of Pickering units 5–8, the safety assessment undertaken for the return to service of Pickering units 1 and 4, and elements common to Pickering from the 2014 integrated safety review conducted in support of the Darlington refurbishment. The PSR results will be used to support the application to renew Pickering’s licence (which expires in August 2018) for a period of 10 years.

Operational safety review

In the fall of 2016, OPG participated in an operational safety review of the Pickering facility that was led by the IAEA Operational Safety Review Team (OSART). The OSART program has been in place since 1982 and provides a forum for countries to share best practices and support continuous improvement. OSART is independent from

OPG and the CNSC. OSART’s operational safety review process is based on IAEA standards. The OSART team identified a number of good practices that will be shared with the nuclear industry globally, including:

  • sponsoring a community-based educational and leadership development program that engages partners such as a local university and a theatre group, that includes mentoring for high-school students and other components, and that provides a forum for the plant to educate the public on its operations while promoting environmental awareness
  • developing an effective program to manage the supply of spare parts for aging equipment, which takes into consideration long-term operation and eventual transition to decommissioning
  • ensuring that new residents who move to areas near the plant are included in the distribution of iodine tablets

OSART recommendations and suggestions are considered to be enhancements to existing safe practices. Some of the recommendations are addressed through the development and implementation of new regulatory requirements (e.g., regulatory documents on PSR and fitness for duty).

The good practices identified by OSART will be carried forward by OPG and brought to the attention of other countries through future OSART reviews.

More information on OSART missions, including the mission conducted at Pickering, can be obtained from the CNSC website.

3.3.2.3 Updates on significant regulatory issues
Annual follow-up to the Commission request from the 2014 Pickering hold point hearing

In 2014, following the CNSC’s approval of OPG’s request to remove the hold point from the Pickering operating licence, CNSC staff and OPG made a commitment to provide annual updates on the fitness for service of major components, the risk improvement plan, the whole-site-based safety goals and the probabilistic safety assessment methodology. The details for each of these issues are given below.

1. Fitness for service of major components update

On February 24, 2017, OPG submitted its annual summary report on the fitness for service of the major components at Pickering. OPG inspects each of the operating units approximately every two years during planned outages. Part of the inspection scope focuses on selected samples from all major components (i.e., fuel channels, feeders and steam generators). Inspections were completed at units 4, 7 and 8 in 2016.

CNSC staff are satisfied with the current status of the fitness for service of the major components at Pickering, and confirm that the findings meet CNSC regulatory requirements.

Fuel channels

Axial elongation in pressure tubes occurs due to irradiation-induced deformation. At present elongation rates and available maintenance strategies, it is estimated that the axial elongation limits will not be reached prior to the target operating end of life.

Diametral expansion of pressure tubes due to service-induced creep can affect design margins and neutron overpower setpoints and is therefore monitored. It is currently estimated that diametral expansion limits will not be reached until 300,000 equivalent full-power hours, which is beyond the intended operating life of the Pickering facility.

Hydrogen ingress into the pressure tube material affects the material fracture toughness, which in turn affects the material’s resistance to failure from crack-like flaws, should they develop. At the currently estimated rates of hydrogen pick-up, the limit of 80 parts per million used to establish the operating pressure temperature operating envelope for the Pickering units will not be exceeded within the expected operating life of the units. OPG conducts tube scrape sampling to monitor hydrogen uptake.

Pickering fuel channels equipped with loose-fitting garter springs continued to exhibit spacer movement. Consequently, OPG is monitoring the issue with enhanced inspections to derive the garter spring repositioning requirements. It is expected that this will result in reduced spacer movement to maintain the required gap between pressure tubes and calandria tubes. CNSC staff are continuing to follow-up with OPG on these issues.

Feeders

The feeder pipe wall thickness is reduced during operation due to various corrosion processes, in particular flow-accelerated corrosion. Through inspection activities, OPG confirmed that the three lead feeders have remaining wall thicknesses that are sufficient to maintain structural integrity for the next operating cycle. OPG concluded that there is high confidence that the Pickering feeders will remain fit for service for the planned continued operation. CNSC staff reviewed OPG’s submissions and concurred with OPG’s assessment and conclusions.

Steam generators

OPG assessed and confirmed that there are no steam generators in Pickering that exceed the limits of tube plugging, and that sufficient margins exist for future operation of these steam generators. While excessive tube plugging can cause operability issues, such as derating of reactor power, there are no safety concerns. There have been no in-service steam generator tube leaks detected in the Pickering units since 2001. CNSC staff reviewed OPG’s submissions and concurred with OPG’s assessment and conclusions.

A new tube degradation mechanism was identified during the Unit 4 steam generator inspections completed in 2016. CNSC staff determined that OPG took the necessary steps, including pulling tubes for metallurgical examination to characterize the degradation mechanism and assessing changes required for aging management strategies. Furthermore, OPG requested regulatory acceptance of a disposition of the inspection finding that covered one year of operation only. Unit 4 was shut down again in January 2017 to repeat inspections of the steam generator tubes. Based upon current information, CNSC concluded that OPG’s response to this inspection finding was appropriate and the degradation mechanism can be managed during continued operation of the Unit 4 steam generators to ensure that safe operation will be maintained. Regulatory oversight activities related to this inspection program finding will continue.

2. Pickering risk improvement plan update

On February 27, 2017, OPG submitted its annual report on the implementation of the risk-improvement plan for Pickering as well as the status of the development of whole‑site safety goals and PSA methodology.

As part of the implementation of the risk improvement plan, OPG provided a report that details phase 1 of the fire PSA modelling refinements and risk quantification at Pickering units 1 and 4. Phase 1 includes the refinements of turbine generator oil fire modelling, turbine generator hydrogen fire modelling, and other fire scenarios modelling.

In the report, the phase 1 results show that significant risk reduction is achieved due to the analytical improvements in fire hazards. Core damage frequency is reduced by 27 percent, and large-release frequency (LRF) is reduced by 40 percent compared to the 2015 improvement plan.

Phase 2 of this project will extend the scope of this work to cover additional refinements, such as an update of the Pickering units 1 and 4 fire ignition frequencies.

It is expected that the phase 2 results will be provided to the CNSC in the next risk improvement plan update.

In addition, OPG has identified other potential items to further reduce the LRF for internal events and the LRF and severe core damage frequency for fire:

  • Investigate reductions to LRF from changes to emergency mitigating equipment (EME). When the phase 2 EME modifications are complete, additional capability (such as building coolers and the powered filtered air discharge system operation) will be available to increase the capacity to remove added energy to the containment.
  • Investigate benefits from early EME deployment for both single- and multi-unit accidents, which will likely prevent early failure of the calandria vessel (successful in-vessel retention). Crediting in-vessel retention will reduce the frequency of large releases.
  • Consider EME pump suction out of the turbine hall for postulated hazards that create a harsh environment that could impede EME deployment. Also consider further EME upgrades, such as new EME pumps (dedicated to Pickering units 1 and 4) for rapid emergency moderator makeup. Any committed changes that cannot be implemented in the field before 2018 will be reported as sensitivity cases in the 2018 S-294 PARA-Fire PSA update.

OPG plans to document the results in the 2018 update of the Pickering PSA per S‑294, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [32].

CNSC staff reviewed OPG’s status report and concluded that all identified risk-improvement items were completed by December 31, 2016, except the item associated with the design and implementation of the phase I EME enhancement and phase II EME. This item is expected to be completed by the end of 2017.

CNSC staff are satisfied with the current status of the implementation of risk improvement tasks and recognize that these risk improvement items will result in further reduction of plant risk.

Table 27 below provides the details of physical and analytical risk improvement actions which had progress in 2016.

Table 27: Details of the February 2017 Pickering risk improvement update
Description of the improvement Physical or analytical improvement Timeline and status from February 2017 update
Emergency mitigating equipment modifications (phase I enhancement, e.g., quick connect and Phase II) Physical

Phase I completed.

Phase I enhancement and phase II are being completed per the plan and schedule provided for Fukushima action item 1.7.1 closure. The plan has already been provided to the CNSC.

Update risk reduction calculation for all committed improvements Analytical

Completed.

OPG has completed phase 1 of the fire PSA modelling refinement and risk quantification at Pickering units 1 and 4. The result shows there is a significant risk reduction after the consideration of new fire models and new fire hazards data.

The detailed risk re-quantification of all the physical and analytical improvements will be provided in the 2017 Pickering units 5–8 and 2018 Pickering units 1 and 4 PSA updates.

3. Whole-site-based safety goals and PSA methodology update

It should be noted that the industry is developing a whole-site PSA which is a leading-edge development in this area. The OPG plan for development of whole-site-based PSA or whole-site-based PSA methodology remains unchanged. The work will be performed in three phases:

  • phase A: safety goals framework
  • phase B: risk aggregation studies
  • phase C: pilot whole-site PSA (for Pickering, to be completed in 2017)

In 2016, work has progressed in collaboration with the industry, and the CNSC monitored the results and status. OPG has presented its approach and preliminary testing case for the risk aggregation study to the CNSC.

OPG will continue to inform CNSC staff on the progress and results of the Pickering whole-site PSA and is working with the industry to provide the CNSC with the preliminary results by the end of 2017.

Fisheries Act authorization

In March 2016, OPG announced its intention to apply for an authorization under section 35 of the Fisheries Act for Pickering. OPG aims to submit the application to DFO by the end of June 2017. Typically, DFO requires five months to assess the application and grant the authorization.

Intake fish impingement

OPG has implemented a seasonally deployed barrier net to reduce fish mortality due to impingement. In 2016, OPG continued to monitor year-round screen house fish counts and seasonal net performance to confirm the performance of the barrier net. Preliminary results show that the approximate total fish biomass impinged in 2016 was 1,035 kg. This amount represents the lowest annual biomass impingement rate since monitoring of the barrier net began in 2010. In 2015, however, a single fish impingement event occurred at Pickering affecting approximately 5,400 to 6,400 kg of biomass due to a partial failure of the barrier net.

Following the 2015 event, OPG took several corrective actions which have already been completed. CNSC staff will continue to monitor this area.

3.3.2.4 Communication
Event initial reports

No event initial reports were submitted for Pickering from January 2016 to April 2017.

3.4 Point Lepreau

Arial view of Point Lepreau.Point Lepreau Generating Station is located on the Lepreau Peninsula, 40 kilometres southwest of Saint John, NB. The station is owned and operated by NB Power and consists of a single CANDU reactor with a rated capacity of 705 megawatts electrical (MWe).

3.4.1 Safety assessment

The CNSC staff safety assessment of Point Lepreau for 2016 resulted in the performance ratings as shown in table 28. Based on the observations and assessments of the SCAs, CNSC staff concluded that Point Lepreau operated safely. The integrated plant rating was “satisfactory”, unchanged from the previous year.

Table 28: Performance ratings for Point Lepreau, 2016
Safety and control area Rating Industry average*
Management system SA SA
Human performance management SA SA
Operating performance SA FS
Safety analysis FS FS
Physical design SA SA
Fitness for service SA SA
Radiation protection SA SA
Conventional health and safety FS FS
Environmental protection SA SA
Emergency management and fire protection SA SA
Waste management SA FS
Security SA SA
Safeguards and non-proliferation SA SA
Packaging and transport SA SA
Integrated plant rating SA SA

* The industry average of all operating NPPs in Canada

Notes:

  • For specific areas within the SCAs where there were no significant observations from CNSC staff compliance verification activities, no information is given in this subsection of the report.
  • The information presented below is station specific; general trends are not identified here (refer to section2 for industry-wide observations).
3.4.1.1 Management system

CNSC staff concluded that the management system SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Management system encompasses the following specific areas:

  • management system
  • organization
  • performance assessment, improvement and management review (no significant observations to report)
  • operating experience (no significant observations to report)
  • change management (no significant observations to report)
  • safety culture
  • configuration management
  • records management
  • management of contractors (no significant observations to report)
  • business continuity
Management system

In 2016, CNSC staff continued to monitor the implementation of the NB Power corrective action plan to address non-compliances with the requirements of CSA standard N286-05, Management system requirements for nuclear power plants [5]. The remaining deficiencies being addressed are of low safety significance, such as retaining records of reviews. CNSC staff are also monitoring the transition to CSA standard N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities [6], which is expected to be completed in December 2017. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Organization, and management of contractors

In 2015, CNSC staff identified minor deficiencies with definitions in the NB Power organizational structure. Some roles, responsibilities and accountability for performing performance evaluations of contractors were not adequately defined and documented in the NB Power nuclear management manual. During the 2016 reporting period, NB Power corrected the deficiencies to the satisfaction of CNSC staff.

Safety culture

CNSC staff are satisfied with NB Power’s safety culture and self-assessment.

In 2016, a safety culture self-assessment was undertaken at Point Lepreau. NB Power plans to make the report available to the CNSC in late spring 2017.

Configuration management

CNSC staff determined that NB Power has a configuration management system that met regulatory requirements in 2016.

Records management

CNSC staff determined that NB Power met regulatory requirements for records management at Point Lepreau.

Business continuity

During their 2016 compliance verification activities, CNSC staff observed that NB Power met regulatory requirements for business continuity at Point Lepreau. NB Power has adequate plans in place to address events involving labour actions.

3.4.1.2 Human performance management

CNSC staff concluded that the human performance management SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Human performance management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • human performance program
  • personnel training
  • personnel certification
  • initial certification examinations and requalification tests
  • work organization and job design
  • fitness for duty
Human performance program

In 2016, NB Power implemented and has maintained a comprehensive human performance program. CNSC staff continue to monitor the program through the conduct of regular compliance verification activities.

Personnel training

CNSC staff determined that NB Power has a well-documented training system based on a systematic approach to training. NB Power’s implementation of this system met the regulatory requirements described in REGDOC-2.2.2, Personnel Training [8].

CNSC staff conducted desktop reviews of training programs for specific work groups in 2016 and concluded that they are defined, designed, evaluated and managed in accordance with NB Power’s systematic approach to training.

CNSC staff also performed a compliance verification activity of the fuel-handling operator training program (although the inspection was conducted in 2015, the results were not finalized until 2016). CNSC staff confirmed that the program met the regulatory requirements for personnel training. CNSC staff identified a number of findings for NB Power, e.g., related to updates of learning objectives and training material. CNSC staff reviewed and accepted NB Power’s corrective action plan, which has a target completion date of December 2018. CNSC staff are tracking the corrective actions through an existing enforcement action (related to procedural adequacy and adherence, which is discussed in section 3.4.1.3) and are satisfied with the progress to date.

Personnel certification

In accordance with regulatory requirements, NB Power has a sufficient number of personnel at Point Lepreau for all certified positions. CNSC staff are satisfied that NB Power’s programs ensure that certified personnel at Point Lepreau possess the knowledge, skills and competencies required to perform their duties safely.

Initial certification examinations and requalification tests

The initial certification examination and requalification test programs for certified personnel at Point Lepreau met all regulatory requirements.

In 2016, CNSC staff documented the results of the 2015 inspection of the conduct of the initial, simulator-based, certification examination of a control room operator. CNSC staff concluded that NB Power met regulatory requirements.

Work organization and job design

Minimum shift complement

CNSC staff have completed a review of the NB Power updated minimum shift complement assessment. CNSC staff found that NB Power met its minimum shift complement program requirements, which are based on CNSC regulatory guide G-323, Ensuring the Presence of Sufficient Qualified Staff at Class I Nuclear Facilities – Minimum Staff Complement [33].

In 2016, violations of minimum shift complement at Point Lepreau were rare and did not impact safety. See section 2.1.2 for further information.

Fitness for duty

CNSC staff determined that NB Power has a fitness-for-duty program to provide reasonable assurance that workers are psychologically and physically fit for duty.

As part of its fitness-for-duty provisions, NB Power has procedures that limit hours worked by staff. In quarterly reports submitted over the past year to the CNSC, NB Power reported its certified staff to be fully compliant with the Point Lepreau limits on hours of work.

CNSC staff have verified that NB Power has measures in place to manage worker fatigue and found that NB Power complies with all regulatory requirements.

3.4.1.3 Operating performance

Based on information assessed, CNSC staff concluded that the operating performance SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Operating performance encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conduct of licensed activity
  • procedures
  • reporting and trending
  • outage management performance
  • safe operating envelope
  • severe accident management and recovery
  • accident management and recovery
Conduct of licensed activities

CNSC staff determined that NB Power continued to operate Point Lepreau at a satisfactory level. NB Power operated within the limits of the Point Lepreau licence, NB Power’s operating policies and principles and its operational safety requirements.

In 2016, Point Lepreau experienced one stepback that was followed by an unplanned reactor trip due to a boiler level transient. There were no setbacks in 2016.

CNSC staff determined that the stepback was controlled properly and power reduction was adequately initiated by the reactor control systems. CNSC staff verified that for the event, Point Lepreau staff followed approved procedures and took appropriate corrective actions.

CNSC staff found that the Point Lepreau operating performance met or exceeded regulatory requirements in 2016.

Procedures

In 2016, CNSC staff continued to monitor the implementation of the NB Power corrective action plan to address weaknesses in the areas of procedural adequacy and adherence.

CNSC staff confirmed NB Power has implemented several improvement initiatives and undertaken a root-cause analysis. NB Power is currently updating its initiatives to include the findings of the root-cause analysis. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date. CNSC staff continue to monitor the implementation of improvements by NB Power, which are expected to be completed in 2017.

Reporting and trending

In 2016, CNSC staff found that NB Power reporting and trending at Point Lepreau met regulatory requirements.

Outage management performance

Point Lepreau completed a planned maintenance outage in 2016. CNSC staff determined that all outage safety-related undertakings, including reactivity management and heat sink management, were performed safely. CNSC staff verified that all actions were completed in accordance with CNSC requirements.

Safe operating envelope

The 2016 inspection of the containment system safe operating envelope (SOE) identified minor implementation issues where NB Power needed to improve the documentation of SOE limits for all plant conditions, including for outages. NB Power has addressed the issues and requested closure. CNSC staff are currently confirming that the issues have been resolved. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress made in this area and will continue to monitor the SOE as part of the compliance verification activities. The NB Power SOE program documents will be included in the proposed licence conditions handbook following licence renewal to ensure that CNSC staff have prior notification for SOE document updates.

Severe accident management and recovery

NB Power continues to maintain a severe accident management program and is currently implementing REGDOC-2.3.2, Accident Management, version 2 [40]. The implementation process included the development of severe accident management guidelines for outages. These were accepted by CNSC staff in May 2016.

Accident management and recovery

CNSC staff observed that NB Power has implemented a series of emergency operating procedures and abnormal plant operating procedures at Point Lepreau. NB Power continues to make improvements to enhance and update the abnormal plant operating procedures. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress being made and will continue to monitor improvements through ongoing compliance verification activities.

3.4.1.4 Safety analysis

CNSC staff concluded that the safety analysis SCA at Point Lepreau met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, an improvement from the “satisfactory” rating received in 2015.

Safety analysis encompasses the following specific areas:

  • deterministic safety analysis
  • probabilistic safety analysis
  • criticality safety (no significant observations to report)
  • severe accident analysis (no significant observations to report)
  • management of safety issues (including R&D programs) (no significant observations to report)
Deterministic safety analysis

NB Power has an extensive and well-managed program for performing deterministic safety analysis. NB Power continues to implement REGDOC-2.4.1, Deterministic Safety Analysis [12]. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

CNSC staff determined that Point Lepreau safety analysis predicts adequate safety margins and these met the CNSC’s acceptance criteria for safe operation of the NPP.

In June 2016, NB Power submitted the latest revision of the Point Lepreau Safety Report to the CNSC. This latest version includes new sections on probabilistic safety analyses (PSAs), fire hazards and severe accident management guidelines. CNSC staff completed the review of the safety report in early April 2017 and have determined that it met requirements.

Probabilistic safety analysis

NB Power is in compliance with REGDOC-2.4.2, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [15]. The PSA was updated in accordance with REGDOC‑2.4.2 in 2016. CNSC staff found that NB Power’s performance in the PSA area at Point Lepreau met or exceeded regulatory requirements.

3.4.1.5 Physical design

CNSC staff concluded that the physical design SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Physical design encompasses the following specific areas:

  • design governance
  • site characterization
  • facility design (no significant observations to report)
  • structure design (no significant observations to report)
  • system design
  • components design
Design governance

Environmental qualification

An environmental qualification program ensures that all required structures, systems and components are capable of performing their designated safety functions in a postulated harsh environment resulting from design-basis accidents.

In 2016, CNSC staff found no major issues during desktop reviews, licence renewal activities and follow-up compliance site visits. CNSC staff concluded that the environmental qualification program at Point Lepreau met the applicable regulatory requirements (specifically, CSA standard N290.13, Environmental qualification of equipment for CANDU nuclear power plants [17]).

Site characterization

In 2016, CNSC staff conducted ongoing compliance activities at Point Lepreau related to the PSA update in accordance with REGDOC-2.4.2. The update included a site response analysis, a floor response spectra and a fragility analysis, all of which were conducted as inputs for the seismic PSA.

CNSC staff concluded that the site characterization at Point Lepreau met regulatory requirements.

System design

Electrical power system

In 2016, CNSC staff conducted desktop reviews and a follow-up compliance verification inspection on open action items from an inspection of the electrical distribution system, which included the cable aging management program for non-safety related cables, documentation improvements for the emergency power system and Class I power systems, and the replacement and testing of the 250V DC battery banks. Based on these activities, no major issues were found. However, it was determined that the 250V DC battery banks had not been tested to verify they can supply loads for the required duration of 40 minutes in accordance with the design requirements. NB Power has made a commitment to replace and test the remaining battery banks during the 2018 and 2019 planned outages. CNSC staff are satisfied with progress to date. CNSC staff will continue to monitor NB Power’s progress in this area in 2017 and

2018. CNSC staff concluded that the electrical power system at Point Lepreau met the applicable regulatory compliance requirements.

Fire protection design

CNSC staff conducted ongoing compliance activities at Point Lepreau in 2016 and concluded that Point Lepreau’s fire protection program was both comprehensive and in compliance with regulatory requirements.

Component design

Fuel design

CNSC staff determined that NB Power has a well-developed reactor fuel inspection program. Fuel performance at Point Lepreau was acceptable in 2016.

Cables

In 2016, CNSC staff found no major issues during compliance activities (i.e., desktop reviews and follow-up of the compliance verification inspection of the electrical power systems).

CNSC staff concluded that the cable management program at Point Lepreau met the applicable regulatory requirements.

3.4.1.6 Fitness for service

CNSC staff concluded that the fitness for service SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Fitness for service encompasses the following specific areas:

  • equipment fitness for service/equipment performance
  • maintenance
  • structural integrity (no significant observations to report)
  • aging management
  • chemistry control (no significant observations to report)
  • periodic inspection and testing
Equipment fitness for service and equipment performance

On the basis of inspections and compliance verifications, CNSC staff concluded that the overall equipment fitness for service and performance at Point Lepreau met regulatory requirements.

Reliability of systems important to safety

CNSC staff determined that the reliability program at Point Lepreau met the regulatory requirements described in RD/GD-98, Reliability Programs for Nuclear Power Plants[35].

All special safety systems for Point Lepreau met their unavailability targets in 2016.

Maintenance

CNSC staff conducted an inspection in 2015 on the NB Power system health monitoring process. As described in the 2015 report, the inspection determined that although the safety functions of systems important to safety have been continuously maintained, the NB Power governance for the process was not compliant with regulatory requirements, and its implementation was not fully effective. NB Power developed a corrective action plan to integrate system health monitoring with its other related processes.

In 2016, the CNSC clarified the closure criteria of the open action item. The areas for improvement were determined by CNSC staff to be of low safety significance and included:

  • complete the update of the system health governance
  • improve the system health of containment isolation
  • complete the action plan for the procurement of critical spare parts

NB Power informed CNSC staff that nine out of 16 corrective actions had been completed by March 2017 and that it expects to complete all corrective actions by the end of 2017. CNSC staff will continue to monitor NB Power corrective actions through ongoing compliance verification activities. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

The NB Power preventive maintenance completion ratio at Point Lepreau was 98percent in 2016.

The 2016 maintenance backlog results for Point Lepreau are given in table 29. The corrective critical maintenance backlog and the number of deferrals of critical preventive maintenance were both kept within the range of industry best practices. The deficient maintenance backlog has improved towards the industry average. CNSC staff determined that the deficient maintenance backlog at Point Lepreau is not safety significant, considering that the safety function of the associated equipment has always been maintained. The measures taken by NB Power to reduce the deficient maintenance backlog will continue to be monitored by CNSC staff through routine compliance verification activities.

Table 29: Maintenance backlogs and deferrals for critical components for Point Lepreau, 2016
Parameter Average work orders per unit for the year Trend compared with 2015 Industry average
Corrective maintenance backlog 1 Stable 8
Deficient maintenance backlog 114 Down 111
Deferrals of preventive maintenance 6 Up 38
Aging management

CNSC staff determined that NB Power has an integrated aging management program at Point Lepreau to ensure that the condition of the structures, systems and components important to safety is well understood and the required activities are in place to assure their health as the plant ages.

NB Power is currently updating its aging management governance and processes to meet the requirements of REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management [20], with full implementation expected in 2017. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Periodic inspections and testing

CNSC staff have determined that NB Power has adequate periodic inspection and testing programs in place at Point Lepreau for the pressure boundary and containment components important to safety.

CNSC staff monitored compliance with the established regulatory requirements for the periodic inspection and testing programs during the year and concluded that their implementation met regulatory requirements.

NB Power is currently developing an implementation plan to update its periodic inspection and testing programs to comply with the 2014 edition (update 1) of CSA standard N285.4, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components [21]. NB Power will submit its implementation plan to the CNSC by October 2017.

3.4.1.7 Radiation protection

CNSC staff concluded that the radiation protection SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year. Radiation protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • application of ALARA
  • worker dose control
  • radiation protection program performance
  • radiological hazard control
  • estimated dose to the public
Application of ALARA

CNSC staff observed that NB Power continued to implement an effective, well-documented program that is based on industry best practices, to keep doses as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) at the Point Lepreau Generating Station. ALARA measures are integrated into planning, scheduling and work control.

An inspection focusing on the ALARA program was conducted by CNSC staff in 2016. CNSC staff concluded that NB Power was compliant with all regulatory requirements and approved ALARA initiatives were being effectively implemented. Two findings of low safety significance were identified requiring NB Power to improve the radiation protection program definition regarding oversight of ALARA activities and the long-term ALARA plan to provide assurance that the collective radiation exposure goals are

clearly defined and achievable. NB Power addressed these findings through improvements in ALARA program oversight and updates to its five-year ALARA plan.

Safety performance indicators related to the application of ALARA include tracking of collective doses for the station (see appendix E.4). There were no adverse trends noted and collective doses were in line with CNSC expectations.

Worker dose control

CNSC staff determined that NB Power continued to comply with the regulatory requirements to measure and record doses received by workers at Point Lepreau. In 2016, radiation doses to workers were below the regulatory dose limits and action levels established in the Point Lepreau radiation protection program. The data for individual and collective doses for workers at Point Lepreau can be found insection2.1.7 and appendix E.4.

CNSC staff conducted an inspection focused on worker dose control in 2016. Two findings of low safety significance were raised. NB Power addressed these items by improving its ALARA plans used to control higher risk work activities.

Safety performance indicators related to worker dose control include tracking of occurrences involving doses received from unplanned exposures or uptakes. CNSC staff observed no adverse trends or safety-significant unplanned exposures due to the licensed activities at Point Lepreau in 2016.

Radiation protection program performance

CNSC staff determined that NB Power has implemented a radiation protection program at Point Lepreau that satisfies the requirements of the Radiation Protection Regulations [39]. The program includes a number of safety performance indicators to continuously monitor radiation protection program performance. CNSC staff determined that the oversight applied by NB Power in implementing and improving its program was effective in protecting workers at Point Lepreau. NB Power regularly measures the performance of its radiation protection program against industry-established objectives, goals and targets.

CNSC staff determined that program documents and supporting procedures are kept current, taking into consideration operating experience and industry best practices.

Radiological hazard control

CNSC staff determined that NB Power continued to meet regulatory requirements to control radiological hazards at Point Lepreau. In 2016, surface contamination as a result of licensed activities was below the relevant action levels. NB Power continued to ensure that measures remained in place to monitor and control radiological hazards.

CNSC staff determined that the NB Power radiation protection program met regulatory requirements and radiological hazards are being monitored and controlled at Point Lepreau. No safety-significant performance issues were identified.

Estimated dose to the public

CNSC staff determined that NB Power continued to ensure the protection of members of the general public in accordance with the Radiation Protection Regulations. The reported estimated dose to members of the general public from Point Lepreau was 0.0009mSv, well below the annual dose limit of 1 mSv (see section 2.1.7).

3.4.1.8 Conventional health and safety

CNSC staff concluded that the conventional health and safety SCA at Point Lepreau met or exceeded performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “fully satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Conventional health and safety encompasses the following specific areas:

  • performance
  • practices
  • awareness
Performance

CNSC staff observed that the accident severity rate for Point Lepreau remained at zero in 2016, unchanged from 2015. Accident frequency decreased from 0.24 in 2015 to 0.11 in 2016. The ASR and AF values were found to be acceptable by CNSC staff in 2016.

Practices and awareness

CNSC staff determined that NB Power exceeded requirements for practices and awareness at Point Lepreau in 2016 in regard to practices for scaffolding and ladders and awareness for barriers and warning signs, personal protective equipment and housekeeping.

CNSC staff observed that NB Power was compliant at Point Lepreau with the relevant portions of the New Brunswick Occupational Health and Safety Act, the Worker’s Compensation Act and the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission Act.

3.4.1.9 Environmental protection

CNSC staff concluded that the environmental protection SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Environmental protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • effluent and emissions control (releases)
  • environmental management system
  • assessment and monitoring
  • protection of the public
  • environmental risk assessment
Effluent and emissions control

CNSC staff observed that all radiological releases from Point Lepreau remained well below regulatory limits (section 2.1.9).

The derived release limits are provided in appendix F.

NB Power provided a detailed implementation plan and schedule for CSA standard N288.5, Effluent monitoring programs at Class 1 nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills [41], with full implementation by June 30, 2018.

Environmental management system

CNSC staff determined that NB Power has established and implemented an environmental management program to assess environmental risks associated with its nuclear activities and to ensure that these activities are conducted in a way that prevents or mitigates adverse environmental effects.

Assessment and monitoring

CNSC staff reviewed and assessed the NB Power environmental monitoring data and concluded that the public, Indigenous peoples and the environment in the vicinity of the site are protected and that any risk to them was reasonable.

NB Power has provided a detailed implementation plan and schedule for CSA standard N288.4, Environmental monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills [25], with full implementation planned for November 30, 2017.

CNSC staff conducted independent environmental monitoring at Point Lepreau in 2016.The results are available on the CNSC website. The Independent Environmental Monitoring Program results from 2016 confirmed the assessment made by CNSC staff based on the data submitted by NB Power.

Protection of the public

CNSC staff determined that all the hazardous substances released from Point Lepreau during 2016 remained below their applicable regulatory limits. CNSC staff observed that the reported annual radiation dose to the general public from Point Lepreau remained very low, at 0.09 percent of the general public dose limit (see section 2.1.7).

Environmental risk assessment

CNSC staff determined that NB Power continued to maintain and implement an effective environmental risk assessment and management program at Point Lepreau in accordance with regulatory requirements.

NB Power has made a commitment to use the results and recommendations from the environmental risk assessment, which will be completed according to CSA standard N288.6, Environmental risk assessment at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills [26], to inform the next revision of its radiation environmental monitoring program and the development of an environmental monitoring program for Point Lepreau. NB Power will provide a plan for full implementation of CSA standard N288.6 by September 30, 2017.

Following a meeting in November 2016 and a review of comments from CNSC staff, NB Power submitted in January 2017 an updated version of its environmental risk assessment. The information provided related to fish impingement is acceptable to CNSC staff. More discussions with NB Power are planned to clarify regulatory expectations regarding modelling of the characteristics of the thermal plume, its field measurements and the risk to the temperature-sensitive biota.

3.4.1.10 Emergency management and fire protection

CNSC staff concluded that the emergency management and fire protection SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Emergency management and fire protection encompasses the following specific areas:

  • conventional emergency preparedness and response
  • nuclear emergency preparedness and response
  • fire emergency preparedness and response
Conventional emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff concluded that Point Lepreau maintained a comprehensive conventional emergency preparedness and response capability in 2016.

Nuclear emergency preparedness and response

CNSC staff determined that NB Power continued to support and maintain its emergency management organization, and met regulatory requirements.

Fire emergency preparedness and response

At Point Lepreau in 2016, CNSC staff conducted an inspection focusing on a mutual aid assistance fire drill, which demonstrated improvements in the industrial fire brigade performance. CNSC staff observed that NB Power continued to improve its fire response program through multiple initiatives which included internal program reviews, industry peer reviews, and audits by independent third parties. By incorporating feedback and peer reviews into the drill and training program, the emergency response team performance improved in 2016.

CNSC staff continue to monitor this area as part of the compliance program. CNSC staff concluded that Point Lepreau maintains comprehensive fire response capability.

3.4.1.11 Waste management

CNSC staff concluded that the waste management SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Waste management encompasses the following specific areas:

  • waste characterization
  • waste minimization
  • waste management practices
  • decommissioning plans
Waste characterization and waste minimization

All findings from CNSC staff compliance verification activities in 2016 for the waste characterization and waste minimization specific areas confirmed that Point Lepreau met regulatory requirements.

Waste management practices

CNSC staff continue to monitor non-conformances of low safety significance related to procedures and procedural adherence identified during the 2015 inspection of the conventional hazardous waste management program.

CNSC staff concluded that NB Power demonstrated consistent and compliant management and control of waste handling and storage.

NB Power is currently conducting gap analyses to support the implementation of the new CSA standard N292.0, General principles for the management of radioactive waste and irradiated fuel [42], and the revised version of CSA standard N292.3, Management of low- and intermediate-level radioactive waste [43]. NB Power also completed a gap analysis for the implementation of CSA standard N294, Decommissioning of facilities containing nuclear substances [44]. NB Power has made a commitment to complete implementation plans for these standards by September 30, 2017. CNSC staff are satisfied with the progress to date.

Decommissioning plans

NB Power submitted its preliminary decommissioning plan and associated cost estimate for CNSC review in 2015. Based on their assessment of the revised documentation, CNSC staff concluded that the NB Power preliminary decommissioning plan, cost estimate and financial guarantee remain current and meet regulatory requirements.

3.4.1.12 Security

CNSC staff concluded that the security SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a rating of “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Security encompasses the following specific areas:

  • facilities and equipment
  • response arrangements
  • security practices
  • drills and exercises

While not represented as a specific area, cyber security has become an important topic that warrants a discussion in its own section.

Facilities and equipment

In 2016, NB Power continued to sustain security equipment through lifecycle management at Point Lepreau. Results in this area are trending upwards with regard to improvements to the maintenance program for security devices. Investments were also made to build a new incident command post in 2016. Point Lepreau has processes in place to adequately prevent security events. CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues in this area.

Response arrangements

CNSC staff observed that NB Power continued to refine the operational procedures as areas for improvement have been identified. NB Power developed and completed a pilot incident command course, which provided valuable training and information from the offsite response force to the Point Lepreau onsite response force. CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues in this area.

Security practices

CNSC staff observed that NB Power has procedures in place to guide security personnel in all areas. This area was, however, affected by numerous and repetitive reportable events related to non-adherence to security procedures. There is a lack of vigilance in the area of security awareness and information security for access to sensitive documents. CNSC staff concluded that there were no safety-significant issues for this specific area.

Drills and exercises

In 2016, NB Power continued to improve its drills and exercises program and is now performing these activities at an acceptable level. NB Power is conducting additional offsite activities to enhance its drills and exercises. CNSC staff found that NB Power met all regulatory requirements in this area.

Cyber security

NB Power has implemented and continues to maintain an effective cyber security program at Point Lepreau. CNSC staff concluded that the program complied with applicable regulatory requirements. As part of its application for licence renewal, NB Power submitted an implementation plan to address the new requirements in CSA standard N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities[27]. CNSC staff will continue to monitor the cyber security program at Point Lepreau until the completion of all milestones of the implementation plan, which is expected to be in 2019.

3.4.1.13 Safeguards and non-proliferation

CNSC staff concluded that the safeguards and non-proliferation SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. The station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous year.

Safeguards and non-proliferation encompasses the following specific areas:

  • nuclear material accountancy and control
  • access and assistance to the IAEA
  • operational and design information
  • safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance
Nuclear material accountancy and control

CNSC staff confirmed that NB Power’s accountancy and control of nuclear material at Point Lepreau complied with RD-336, Accounting and Reporting of Nuclear Material[29].

Access and assistance to the IAEA

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) performed a physical inventory verification, two design information verifications, one short-notice random inspection, two unannounced inspections and one complementary access at Point Lepreau in 2016. The goal of these compliance verification activities was to verify the nuclear material inventory and to confirm the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities. CNSC staff observed that NB Power provided adequate access and support for these inspections.

All inspection results received from the IAEA in 2016 for Point Lepreau were satisfactory.

Operational and design information

NB Power submitted its annual operational program for Point Lepreau to the CNSC on time, along with quarterly updates and the annual update to the information pursuant to the IAEA Additional Protocol [28]. In all of the above, the information provided met all of the CNSC’s submission requirements.

Safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance

CNSC staff observed that NB Power adequately supported IAEA equipment operation and maintenance activities, including maintenance work on IAEA remote monitoring equipment components to ensure the effective implementation of safeguards measures at Point Lepreau.

3.4.1.14 Packaging and transport

CNSC staff concluded that the packaging and transport SCA at Point Lepreau met performance objectives and applicable regulatory requirements. As a result, the station received a “satisfactory” rating, unchanged from the previous years.

Packaging and transport encompasses the following specific areas:

  • package design and maintenance
  • packaging and transport
  • registration for use
Packaging design and maintenance, packaging and transport, and registration for use

CNSC staff determined that NB Power has a packaging and transport program that ensures compliance with the Packaging and Transport of Nuclear Substances Regulations, 2015 [30], and the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations [31]. The transport of nuclear substances to and from the facility is conducted in a safe manner. In 2016, NB Power has addressed to the satisfaction of CNSC staff minor document-control and record-keeping issues identified during previous compliance activities.

3.4.2 Regulatory developments

3.4.2.1 Licensing

The Point Lepreau nuclear power reactor operating licence (PROL) expires June 30, 2017. NB Power submitted its licence renewal application on June 30, 2016 and requested a five-year licence. The application was considered during Part 1 of the Commission hearing on January 26, 2017 and Part 2 of the hearing on May 10 and 11, 2017.

In June 2017, the Commission renewed the PROL for the period July 1, 2017 to June30, 2022.

Licence amendments

The Point Lepreau licence was not amended in 2016.

Revisions to the licence conditions handbook

The Point Lepreau licence conditions handbook was issued on February 20, 2012. Two revisions were made in 2016, and documented in the 2015 NPP Regulatory Oversight Report. There were no other revisions made in the second half of 2016.

3.4.2.2 Updates on major projects and initiatives

End of commercial operations project activities and periodic safety review

With the introduction of periodic safety reviews (PSRs) to the CNSC regulatory framework, CNSC staff recommended a five-year operating licence to provide adequate time for NB Power to complete a PSR in accordance with REGDOC-2.3.3, Periodic Safety Reviews [37]. NB Power implemented a formal and comprehensive process based upon the requirements of CNSC regulatory document RD-360, Life Extension of Nuclear Power Plants [22] for the refurbishment commissioning and restart program of the Point Lepreau. CNSC staff have included a condition in the proposed licence requiring NB Power to perform a PSR in accordance with REGDOC-2.3.3. To date, NB Power has submitted a high-level project execution plan and a PSR basis document in support of a 10-year licensing period from 2022 to 2032.

3.4.2.3 Updates on significant regulatory issues
Fisheries Act authorization

In April 2016, NB Power submitted a preliminary self-assessment of serious harm to fish due to cooling water intake according to the provisions of the Fisheries Act for CNSC staff review. CNSC staff reviewed the assessment and met with NB Power to discuss the need for additional information.

NB Power submitted a revised Fisheries Act self-assessment to the CNSC in January 2017. CNSC staff have completed its technical review of the self-assessment and concluded that an authorization is required in accordance with subsection 35(1) of the Fisheries Act. The conclusions were shared with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, and it concurred with the CNSC’s recommendation.

NB Power expects to submit the application by the fall of 2017.

3.4.2.4 Communication
Event initial reports

No event initial reports were submitted for Point Lepreau from January 2016 to April 2017.

4 Summary and conclusions

This report summarizes the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission staff’s assessment of the safety performance of nuclear power plant (NPP) licensees and the Canadian nuclear power industry as a whole in 2016. It also provides information on the CNSC staff evaluation of how well licensees met regulatory requirements and CNSC expectations for the 14 safety and control areas (SCAs) of the regulatory framework. The assessment reviews generic issues, identifies industry trends and compares Canadian NPP industry safety performance indicators with those of international NPP operators and other industries. The assessments in this report were based on the consideration of findings from inspections, desktop reviews, site surveillance activities, field rounds and other compliance verification activities against relevant requirements, expectations and performance objectives.

CNSC staff concluded that NPPs in Canada were operated safely during 2016, and that licensees made adequate provisions to protect the environment and the health and safety of persons, maintain national security, and ensure that Canada continued to meet its international obligations on the peaceful use of nuclear energy. Licensees complied with the requirements to report events requiring regulatory oversight, and followed up on these events as necessary.

These conclusions are based on the following observations:

  • There were no serious process failures at the NPPs.
  • Radiation doses to the public were well below the regulatory limits.
  • Radiation doses to workers at the NPPs were below the regulatory limits.
  • The frequency and severity of non-radiological injuries to workers were very low.
  • No radiological releases to the environment from the stations exceeded the regulatory limits.
  • Licensees met applicable requirements related to Canada’s international obligations.
  • No NPP events above Level 0 on the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale were reported to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Table 30 summarizes the 2012 to 2016 ratings for Canada’s NPPs. For each NPP, the SCAs are presented along with the industry averages and the integrated plant ratings (IPRs) that reflect a plant’s overall safety performance. Overall, the trend is one of maintaining performance with respect to the SCAs and IPRs. Specifically, in 2016, the following are noteworthy:

  • A total of 19 SCAs across the NPPs were rated as “fully satisfactory” (FS). This equals the number of fully satisfactory ratings reported in 2015 which was, at the time, the highest number of fully satisfactory ratings since the SCA Framework was introduced in 2010.
  • The Canadian nuclear power industry achieved an average rating of fully satisfactory in the operating performance, safety analysis, conventional health and safety, and waste management SCAs. For safety analysis, all stations received fully satisfactory ratings in 2016. The fully satisfactory ratings for the operating performance, conventional health and safety, and waste management SCAs remained unchanged from 2015. Furthermore, the safety analysis rating for the industry increased to fully satisfactory in 2016.
  • Bruce A, Darlington and Pickering all achieved IPRs of fully satisfactory in 2016. Point Lepreau and Bruce B received a “satisfactory” (SA) integrated plant rating.

None of the NPPs received a rating of “below expectations” (BE) or “unacceptable” (UA) in 2016. This is unchanged from the results for 2012 to 2015.

Table 30: Trends of ratings from 2012 to 2016
Safety and control area Year Bruce A Bruce B Darlington Pickering Point Lepreau Industry average*
Management system 2012 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2015 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2016 SA SA SA SA SA SA
Human performance management 2012 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2015 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2016 SA SA SA SA SA SA
Operating performance 2012 SA SA FS SA SA SA
2013 SA SA FS SA SA SA
2014 SA FS FS SA SA SA
2015 FS FS FS FS SA FS
2016 FS FS FS FS SA FS
Safety analysis 2012 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2015 SA SA FS FS SA SA
2016 FS FS FS FS FS FS
Physical design 2012 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2015 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2016 SA SA SA SA SA SA
Fitnessfor service 2012 SA SA FS SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2015 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2016 SA SA SA SA SA SA
Radiation protection 2012 SA SA FS SA SA SA
2013 SA SA FS FS SA SA
2014 SA SA FS FS SA SA
2015 SA SA FS FS SA SA
2016 FS FS FS SA SA SA
Conventional healthand safety 2012 FS FS FS SA FS FS
2013 FS FS FS SA FS FS
2014 FS FS SA SA FS FS
2015 FS FS FS FS FS FS
2016 FS SA SA FS FS FS
Environmental protection 2012 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2015 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2016 SA SA SA SA SA SA
Emergency management andfire protection 2012 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2015 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2016 SA SA SA SA SA SA
Waste management 2012 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 FS FS FS SA SA FS
2015 FS FS FS FS SA FS
2016 FS FS FS FS SA FS
Security 2012 FS FS SA SA SA SA
2013 FS FS FS FS SA FS
2014 FS FS FS FS SA FS
2015 FS FS SA SA SA SA
2016 SA SA SA SA SA SA
Safeguards and non-proliferation 2012 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2015 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2016 SA SA SA SA SA SA
Packagingand transport 2012 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2013 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2014 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2015 SA SA SA SA SA SA
2016 SA SA SA SA SA SA
Integrated plant rating 2012 SA SA FS SA SA SA
2013 SA SA FS SA SA SA
2014 SA FS FS SA SA SA
2015 FS FS FS FS SA FS
2016 FS SA FS FS SA SA

* The industry average of all operating NPPs in Canada

References

  1. Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC), INFO-0795, Licensing Basis Objective and Definition, Ottawa, Canada, 2010.
  2. CNSC, RD/GD-99.3, Public Information and Disclosure, Ottawa, Canada 2012.
  3. CNSC, REGDOC-3.1.1, Reporting Requirements for Nuclear Power Plants, Ottawa, Canada, 2014.
  4. CNSC, S-99, Reporting Requirements for Operating Nuclear Power Plants, Ottawa, Canada, 2003.
  5. CSA Group, N286-05, Management system requirements for nuclear power plants, Update 1, 2007.
  6. CSA Group, N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities, 2012.
  7. Nuclear Energy Institute, NEI 09-07 Rev. 1, Fostering a Healthy Nuclear Safety Culture, 2014.
  8. CNSC, REGDOC-2.2.2, Personnel Training, Ottawa, Canada, 2014.
  9. CNSC, REGDOC-2.2.4, Fitness for Duty, Draft, Ottawa, Canada, 2017.
  10. CNSC, REGDOC-2.2.4, Fitness for Duty: Managing Worker Fatigue, Ottawa, Canada, 2017.
  11. CSA Group, N290.15-10, Requirements for the safe operating envelope of nuclear power plants, 2010.
  12. CNSC, REGDOC-2.4.1, Deterministic Safety Analysis, Ottawa, Canada, 2014.
  13. CNSC, RD-310, Safety Analysis for Nuclear Power Plants, Ottawa, Canada, 2008.
  14. CNSC, G-144, Trip Parameter Acceptance Criteria for the Safety Analysis of CANDU Nuclear Power Plants, Ottawa, Canada, 2006.
  15. CNSC, REGDOC-2.4.2, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants, Ottawa, Canada, 2014.
  16. CNSC, CNSC Integrated Action Plan on the Lessons Learned from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident, Ottawa, Canada, 2013.
  17. CSA Group, N290.13-05 (R2010), Environmental qualification of equipment for CANDU nuclear power plants, 2005 (reaffirmed 2010).
  18. CSA Group, N290.12-14, Human factors in design for nuclear power plants, 2014.
  19. CSA Group, N285.0-12, General requirements for pressure-retaining systems and components in CANDU nuclear power plants, 2012.
  20. CNSC, REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management, Ottawa, Canada, 2014.
  21. CSA Group, N285.4, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components, 2009.
  22. CNSC, RD-360, Life Extension of Nuclear Power Plants, Ottawa, Canada, 2008
  23. CSA Group, N285.5, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant containment components, 2008.
  24. CSA Group, N287.7, In-service examination and testing requirements for concrete containment structures for CANDU nuclear power plants, 2008.
  25. CSA Group, N288.4-10, Environmental monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills, 2010.
  26. CSA Group, N288.6-12, Environmental risk assessments at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills, 2012.
  27. CSA Group, N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities, 2014.
  28. IAEA, Protocol Additional to the Agreement Between Canada and the International Atomic Energy Agency for the Application of Safeguards in Connection With the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (also referred to as the “Additional Protocol”), IAEA INFCIRC/164/Add. 1, 2000.
  29. CNSC, RD-336, Accounting and Reporting of Nuclear Material, Ottawa, Canada, 2010.
  30. Packaging and Transport of Nuclear Substances Regulations, 2015, SOR/2015-145.
  31. Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations (2001), SOR/2001-286.
  32. CNSC, S-294, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants, Ottawa, Canada, 2005.
  33. CNSC, G-323, Ensuring the Presence of Sufficient Qualified Staff at Class I Nuclear Facilities – Minimum Staff Complement, Ottawa, Canada, 2007.
  34. CNSC, RD-327, Nuclear Criticality Safety, Ottawa, Canada, 2010.
  35. CNSC, RD/GD-98, Reliability Programs for Nuclear Power Plants, Ottawa, Canada, 2005.
  36. CNSC, RD/GD-210, Maintenance Programs for Nuclear Power Plants, Ottawa, Canada, 2012.
  37. CNSC, REGDOC-2.3.3, Periodic Safety Reviews, Ottawa, Canada, 2015.
  38. CSA Group, N293-07 CONSOLIDATED, Fire protection for CANDU nuclear power plants, 2007.
  39. Radiation Protection Regulations (2000), SOR/2000-203.
  40. CNSC, REGDOC-2.3.2, Accident Management, version 2, Ottawa, Canada, 2015.
  41. CSA Group, N288.5, Effluent monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills, 2011.
  42. CSA Group, N292.0, General principles for the management of radioactive waste and irradiated fuel, 2014.
  43. CSA Group, N292.3, Management of low- and intermediate-level radioactive waste, 2008.
  44. CSA Group, N294, Decommissioning of facilities containing nuclear substances, 2009.
  45. CSA Group, N290.5-16, Requirements for electrical power and instrument air systems of CANDU nuclear power plants, 2016.
  46. CSA Group, N285.8, Technical requirements for in-service evaluation of zirconium alloy pressure tubes in CANDU reactors, 2010.
  47. CSA Group, N288.1, Guidelines for calculating derived release limits for radioactive materials in airborne and liquid effluents for normal operation of nuclear facilities, 2008.
  48. CNSC, Minutes of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) Meeting held on March 8, 2017, Ottawa, Canada, 2017.

Acronyms and abbreviations

AF
accident frequency
ALARA
as low as reasonably achievable
ASR
accident severity rate
CAA
composite analytical approach
CANDU
Canada Deuterium Uranium
CMD
Commission member document
CNSC
Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission
COG
CANDU Owners Group (Inc.)
CSA
Canadian Standards Association (as referenced in titles of standards; the association itself is now known as CSA Group)
CSI
CANDU safety issue
CVC
compliance verification criteria
CVP
compliance verification program
DAC
derived acceptance criteria
DFO
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
DRL
derived release limit
EME
emergency mitigating equipment
EPRI
Electric Power Research Institute
FLR
forced loss rate
HT
elemental tritium
HTO
tritium oxide
IAEA
International Atomic Energy Agency
IIP
integrated implementation plan
INES
International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale
IPR
integrated plant rating
ISAR
industrial safety accident rate
IST
industry standard toolset
JRP
Joint Review Panel
KI
potassium iodide
LBLOCA
large-break loss-of-coolant accident
LCH
licence conditions handbook
LCMP
lifecycle management program
LLOCA
large loss-of-coolant accident
LOCA
loss-of-coolant accident
LRF
large-release frequency
LTI
lost-time injury
MTI
medically treated injury
MWe
megawatts electrical
NB Power
New Brunswick Power Corporation
NEA
Nuclear Energy Agency
NFPA
National Fire Protection Association
NPP
nuclear power plant
NSCA
Nuclear Safety and Control Act
OPG
Ontario Power Generation Inc.
PIP
periodic inspection program
PNERP
Provincial Nuclear Emergency Response Plan
PPS
Provincial Policy Statement
PROL
nuclear power reactor operating licence
PRSL
power reactor site preparation licence
PSA
probabilistic safety assessment
R&D
research and development
RCM
risk-control measures
RD
regulatory document
RD/GD
regulatory document/guidance document
REGDOC
regulatory document
SAMG
severe accident management guideline
SAT
systematic approach to training
SCA
safety and control area
SIO
station improvement opportunity
SOE
safe operating envelope
WANO
World Association of Nuclear Operators

Glossary

For definitions of terms used in this document, see REGDOC‑3.6, Glossary of CNSC Terminology, which includes terms and definitions used in the Nuclear Safety and Control Act (NSCA) and the regulations made under it, and in CNSC regulatory documents and other publications. REGDOC‑3.6 is provided for reference and information.

The following definitions are also applicable to this document.

accident frequency
A measure of the number of fatalities and injuries (lost-time and medically treated) due to accidents for every 200,000 person-hours (approximately 100 person-years) worked.
accident severity rate
A measure of the total number of days lost due to a work-related injury for every 200,000 person-hours worked.
design life
The period specified for the safe operation of the facility, systems, structures and components.
industrial safety accident rate
A measure of the number of lost-time injuries for every 200,000 hours worked by nuclear power plant personnel.
pressure tubes
Tubes that pass through the calandria and contain 12 or 13 fuel bundles. Pressurized heavy water flows through the tubes, cooling the fuel.
safety report
A report, as described in REGDOC-3.1.1, Reporting Requirements for Nuclear Power Plants [3], which provides descriptions of the structures, systems and components of a facility, including their design and operating conditions. This includes a final safety analysis report demonstrating the adequacy of the design of the nuclear facility.
unavailability target
Unavailability targets are compared against actual plant performance to identify deviations from expected performance. Availability is the fraction of time for which the system can be demonstrated to meet all of the minimum allowable performance standards. Licensees are expected to not exceed unavailability targets.

Appendix A: Five-year trends in compliance activities

A.1 Bruce A and B

Table A.1: Five-year trend in compliance activities for Bruce A and B
Compliance activities effort (person-days) 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Inspections 2,600 1,540 1,520 1,030 1,226
Event reviews 212 234 250 198 192
Other compliance activities* 1,435 3,297 3,597 3,899 3,632
Total effort (person-days) 4,247 5,071 5,367 5,127 5,050

* Includes verification activities such as station walkdowns and reviews of licensee-submitted documents and reports.

A.2 Darlington

Table A.2: Five-year trend in compliance activities for Darlington
Compliance activities effort (person-days) 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Inspections 1,030 1,275 1,226 1,079 1,422
Event reviews 96 180 214 128 114
Other compliance activities* 1912 2,338 2,290 2,141 1,947
Total effort (person-days) 3,038 3,793 3,730 3,348 3,483

* Includes verification activities such as station walkdowns and reviews of licensee-submitted documents and reports.

A.3 Pickering

Table A.3: Five-year trend in compliance activities for Pickering
Compliance activities effort (person-days) 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Inspections 2,251 1,643 1,460 1,460 1,156
Event reviews 270 286 228 132 118
Other compliance activities* 2,041 2,702 3,245 3,453 3,659
Total effort (person-days) 4,562 4,630 4,933 5,045 4,933

* Includes verification activities such as station walkdowns and reviews of licensee-submitted documents and reports.

A.4 Point Lepreau

Table A.5: Five-year trend in compliance activities for Point Lepreau
Compliance activities effort (person-days) 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Inspections 1,324 1,520 1,079 1,030 785
Event reviews 128 82 80 58 72
Other compliance activities* 428 1,435 1,402 1,874 2,136
Total effort (person-days) 1,880 3,037 2,561 2,962 2,993

* Includes verification activities such as station walkdowns and reviews of licensee-submitted documents and reports.

A.5 Canadian NPPs

Table A.6: Five-year trend in compliance activities for Canadian NPPs
Compliance activities effort (person-days) 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Inspections 7,989 6,860 5,775 4,746 4,589
Event reviews 732 814 802 520 496
Other compliance activities* 7,163 10,463 10,833 11,783 11,374
Total effort (person-days) 15,884 18,137 17,410 17,049 16,459

* Includes verification activities such as station walkdowns and reviews of licensee-submitted documents and reports.

Appendix B: Definitions of safety and control areas

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) evaluates how well licensees meet regulatory requirements and CNSC expectations for the performance of programs in 14 safety and control areas (SCAs).

These SCAs are further divided into 69 specific areas that define the key components of the SCA. The SCAs and specific areas used in the CNSC’s safety performance evaluation for 2016 are given in tableB.1.

Table B.1: The CNSC’s SCAs and specific areas for assessing licensee safety performance
SCA Specific area
Management system
  • Management system
  • Organization
  • Change management
  • Safety culture
  • Configuration management
  • Records management
  • Management of contractors
  • Business continuity
Human performance management
  • Human performance program
  • Personnel training
  • Personnel certification
  • Initial certification examinations and requalification tests
  • Work organization and job design
  • Fitness for duty
Operating performance
  • Conduct of licensed activity
  • Procedures
  • Reporting and trending
  • Outage management performance
  • Safe operating envelope
  • Severe accident management and recovery
  • Accident management and recovery
Safety analysis
  • Deterministic safety analysis
  • Probabilistic safety analysis
  • Criticality safety
  • Severe accident analysis
  • Management of safety issues (including R&D programs)
Physical design
  • Design governance
  • Site characterizations
  • Facility design
  • Structure design
  • System design
  • Component design
Fitness for service
  • Equipment fitness for service/equipment performance
  • Maintenance
  • Structural integrity
  • Aging management
  • Chemistry control
  • Periodic inspections and testing
Radiation protection
  • Application of as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA)
  • Worker dose control
  • Radiation protection program performance
  • Radiological hazard control
  • Estimated dose to public
Conventional health and safety
  • Performance
  • Practices
  • Awareness
Environmental protection
  • Effluent and emissions control (releases)
  • Environmental management system
  • Assessment and monitoring
  • Protection of the public
  • Environmental risk assessment
Emergency management and fire protection
  • Conventional emergency preparedness and response
  • Nuclear emergency preparedness and response
  • Fire emergency preparedness and response
Waste management
  • Waste characterization
  • Waste minimization
  • Waste management practices
  • Decommissioning plans
Security
  • Facilities and equipment
  • Response arrangements
  • Security practices
  • Drills and exercises
Safeguards and non-proliferation
  • Nuclear material accountancy and control
  • Access and assistance to the International Atomic Energy Agency
  • Operational and design information
  • Safeguards equipment, containment and surveillance
Packaging and transport
  • Package design and maintenance
  • Packaging and transport
  • Registration for use

1. Management system

This SCA covers the framework that establishes the processes and programs required to ensure an organization achieves its safety objectives, continuously monitors its performance against these objectives and fosters a healthy safety culture.

Performance objectives

There is an effective management system that addresses all requirements and related objectives, enables the licensee to continuously monitor and manage performance against those objectives, and maintain a healthy safety culture.

2. Human performance management

This SCA covers activities that enable effective human performance through the development and implementation of processes that ensure licensees have sufficient personnel in all relevant job areas (i.e., people with the necessary knowledge, skills, procedures and tools to carry out their duties safely).

Performance objectives

Workers are sufficient in number, and human performance is managed so that all workers are capable, competent, qualified and supported to carry out their work tasks safely.

3. Operating performance

This SCA includes an overall review of licensed activities as well as the activities that enable effective performance.

Performance objectives

Plant operation is safe and secure, with adequate regard for health, safety, security, radiation and environmental protection, and international obligations.

4. Safety analysis

This SCA involves maintaining the safety analyses that support the overall safety case for a facility. Safety analysis involves the systematic evaluation of potential hazards associated with the conduct of a proposed activity or facility. It considers the effectiveness of preventive measures as well as strategies for reducing the effects of such hazards. For nuclear power plants, safety analysis is primarily deterministic in demonstrating the effectiveness of implementing the fundamental safety functions of “control, cool and contain” through a defence-in-depth strategy. To identify challenges to physical barriers, risk contributors are considered using probabilistic safety analysis. However, appropriate safety margins should be applied to address the uncertainties and limitations of probabilistic safety analysis.

Performance objectives

Updates to safety analysis effectively incorporate feedback from various sources to continually demonstrate the ability to adequately control power, cool the fuel and contain or limit any releases from the plant.

5. Physical design

This SCA relates to activities affecting the ability of structures, systems and components to meet and maintain their design basis, taking into account new information as it arises, as well as changes in the external environment.

Performance objectives

Structures, systems and components that are important to safety and security continue to meet their design basis.

6. Fitness for service

This SCA covers activities that affect the physical condition of structures, systems and components over time, including programs that ensure that all equipment is available to perform its intended design function.

Performance objectives

Structures, systems and components – the performance of which may affect safety or security – remain available, reliable, effective and consistent with design, analysis and quality control measures.

7. Radiation protection

This SCA covers the implementation of a radiation protection program in accordance with the Radiation Protection Regulations. This program must ensure surface contamination levels and radiation doses received by individuals are monitored, controlled and maintained as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA).

Performance objectives

The health and safety of persons are protected through the implementation of a radiation protection program that ensures that radiation doses are kept below regulatory dose limits and are optimized and maintained ALARA.

8. Conventional health and safety

This SCA covers the implementation of a program to manage workplace safety hazards and protect personnel and equipment.

Performance objectives

Conventional health and safety work practices and conditions achieve a high degree of personnel safety.

9. Environmental protection

This SCA covers programs that identify, control and monitor all releases of radioactive and hazardous substances and effects on the environment from facilities or as the result of licensed activities.

Performance objectives

The licensee takes all reasonable precautions to protect the environment and the health and safety of persons. This includes identifying, controlling and monitoring the release of nuclear and hazardous substances to the environment.

10. Emergency management and fire protection

This SCA covers emergency plans and preparedness programs for emergencies and non-routine conditions (including any results of participation in exercises).

Performance objectives

Emergency preparedness measures and fire protection response capabilities are in place to prevent and mitigate effects of nuclear and hazardous substances releases, both onsite and offsite, and fire hazards, in order to protect workers, the public and the environment.

11. Waste management

This SCA covers a facility’s internal waste-related programs up to the point where the waste is removed and transferred to a separate waste management facility. This SCA also covers planning for decommissioning.

Performance objectives

A facility- and waste stream-specific waste management program is fully developed, implemented and audited to control and minimize the volume of nuclear waste generated by the licensed activity. Waste management is included as a key component of the licensee’s corporate and safety culture. A decommissioning plan is maintained.

12. Security

This SCA covers programs required to implement and support security requirements stipulated in the regulations, in the licence, in orders, or in expectations for the facility or activity.

Performance objectives

Loss, theft or sabotage of nuclear material or sabotage of the licensed facility is prevented.

13. Safeguards and non-proliferation

This SCA covers the programs and activities required of a licensee to successfully implement the obligations arising from the Canada/International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards agreements and the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

Performance objectives

The licensee conforms with measures required to meet Canada’s international safeguards obligations through:

  • timely provision of accurate reports and information
  • provision of access and assistance to IAEA inspectors for verification activities
  • submission of annual operational information and accurate design information on plant structures, processes and procedures
  • development and satisfactory implementation of appropriate facility safeguards procedures
  • demonstration of capability, as confirmed through CNSC onsite evaluations, to meet all requirements in support of physical inventory verifications of nuclear material by the IAEA

14. Packaging and transport

This SCA covers the programs for the safe packaging and transport of nuclear substances to and from the licensed facility.

Performance objectives

Packaging and transport of nuclear substances are conducted in a safe manner.

Appendix C: Rating definitions and methodology

C.1 Definitions

Performance ratings used in this report are defined as follows:

Fully satisfactory (FS)

Safety and control measures implemented by the licensee are highly effective. In addition, compliance with regulatory requirements is fully satisfactory, and compliance within the safety and control area (SCA) or specific area exceeds requirements and CNSC expectations. Overall, compliance is stable or improving, and any problems or issues that arise are promptly addressed.

Satisfactory (SA)

Safety and control measures implemented by the licensee are sufficiently effective. In addition, compliance with regulatory requirements is satisfactory. Compliance within the SCA meets requirements and CNSC expectations. Any deviation is minor and any issues are considered to posea low risk to the achievement of regulatory objectives and CNSC expectations. Appropriate improvements are planned.

Below expectations (BE)

Safety and control measures implemented by the licensee are marginally ineffective. In addition, compliance with regulatory requirements falls below expectations. Compliance within the SCA deviates from requirements or CNSC expectations to the extent that there is a moderate risk of ultimate failure to comply. Improvements are required to address identified weaknesses. The licensee is taking appropriate corrective action.

Unacceptable (UA)

Safety and control measures implemented by the licensee are significantly ineffective. In addition, compliance with regulatory requirements is unacceptable and is seriously compromised. Compliance within the SCA is significantly below requirements or CNSC expectations, or there is evidence of overall non-compliance. Without corrective action, there is a high probability that the deficiencies will lead to unreasonable risk. Issues are not being addressed effectively, no appropriate corrective measures have been taken and no alternative plan of action has been provided. Immediate action is required.

C.2 Rating methodology

The methodology for rating licensees is detailed, relying on multiple sources of input derived primarily from CNSC staff findings. These findings are based on regulatory activities such as inspections, desktop reviews, field rounds and follow-ups on licensee progress on enforcement actions. This methodology is based on both the judgment of CNSC staff and a systematic computational roll-up of results.

The methodology is based on ratings made at three distinct levels:

  • specific areas
  • SCAs
  • overall plant (also called the integrated plant rating (IPR))

CNSC specialists consider the significance of findings within a specific area and use judgment to determine the performance rating within that specific area.

An algorithm is applied to determine the individual SCA performance ratings for each nuclear power plant (NPP). The algorithm converts each SCA’s specific area ratings to numeric values using a conversion table. It then computes the average value and converts that value (based on a rating grid) into an SCA performance rating. This results in 14 SCA performance ratings for each of the four Canadian NPPs.

Each NPP’s IPR is calculated by finding the weighted average of the 14 SCA performance ratings for that NPP. This overall value is then adjusted and converted based on the rating grid to an overall IPR for the NPP.

In addition, the numerical values for the SCA ratings and IPRs for all NPPs are averaged to generate industry averages, which are also converted to ratings based on the rating grid.

The methodology is illustrated in figure C.1. To simplify the illustration, only four specific areas and two SCAs are shown.

Figure C.1: Methodology for determining performance ratings

Figure C.1

Steps shown, from top to bottom in figure C.1, are as follows:

Step 1: Identifying the findings

Findings are identified for each specific area using information from a variety of sources, including inspections, desktop reviews, field rounds and follow-ups on the licensee’s progress on enforcement actions. Each finding for an NPP is assigned to the most applicable specific area under an SCA.

Step 2: Assessing the findings

CNSC staff evaluate the safety significance of each finding and assign it to the appropriate category: high, medium, low, negligible or compliant. The assessment depends on the degree to which a specific area’s effectiveness is negatively affected. The five categories are:

High – Licensee’s measures are absent, completely inadequate or ineffective in meeting expectations or the intent of CNSC requirements and compliance expectations.

Medium – Performance significantly deviates from expectations or from the intent or objectives of CNSC requirements and compliance expectations.

Low – Performance deviates from expectations or from the intent or objectives of CNSC requirements and compliance expectations.

Negligible – Performance insignificantly deviates from expectations or objectives of CNSC requirements and compliance expectations.

Compliant – Performance meets applicable CNSC requirements and compliance expectations.

When the finding is generated by a compliance verification program activity (such as an inspection), the significance will be determined in the context of the verification criteria for that activity.

Step 3: Rating the specific area

CNSC staff consider the safety significance of all relevant findings and assess the overall effectiveness of the safety and control measures for the specific area. The assessment is in the context of the performance objective for the relevant SCA; the result is a performance rating of FS, SA, BE or UA for each specific area for each NPP.

Step 4: Rating the SCA

Specific area ratings are converted to an integer-based value. Individual specific area values are averaged to determine the overall SCA value, which is then converted to an SCA rating using the rating grid. Figure C.2 shows the integer values assigned to specific areas on the top of the grid, and the ranges used for the conversion of numerical averages to rating categories of the SCAs on the bottom of the grid.

Figure C.2: Rating SCAs

Step 5: Determining the integrated plant rating

The numerical values of the 14 SCA ratings for each NPP are mathematically combined using weighting factors. The weighting factors for the SCAs are shown in the table C.1.

Table C.1: Weighting factors for SCAs
# SCA Weighting factor
1 Management system 0.073
2 Human performance management 0.069
3 Operating performance 0.069
4 Safety analysis 0.069
5 Physical design 0.073
6 Fitness for service 0.069
7 Radiation protection 0.081
8 Conventional health and safety 0.076
9 Environmental protection 0.069
10 Emergency management and fire protection 0.069
11 Waste management 0.071
12 Security 0.071
13 Safeguards and non-proliferation 0.071
14 Packaging and transport 0.071
Total of all weighting factors 1.00

The weighting factor for each SCA was determined in part by applying a risk-informed regulatory approach. For SCAs 1 through 10, the weighting factors were determined through a comparison of the estimated, relative risk of those SCAs to overall plant safety. SCAs 11 through 14 were not considered in this assessment since they are less directly linked to overall plant safety. For those SCAs, the weighting factors are equal and are simply equal to 1/14.

Once the weighted average is calculated, it is adjusted (increased). While the individual SCA ratings are considered an appropriate assessment against requirements and expectations at the SCA level, it is recognized that the requirements and expectations overlap between SCAs. For example, some SCAs are cross-cutting, such as management system or human performance management. It is CNSC staff’s judgment that, at the overall plant level, a weighted average of numerical SCA ratings underestimates the overall effectiveness of combined safety and control measures. The adjustment involves adding a value of 0.5 to the weighted average of the SCA rating values to obtain the final numerical value.

The final calculated value is converted to an IPR using the rating grid.

Step 6: Determining industry-average ratings

Industry-average ratings are determined by averaging the numerical values of the individual SCA ratings and IPRs for all NPPs. The averaged values are converted to rating categories using the rating grid.

Example

Steps 1 and 2: Identifying and assessing the findings

This example is for Point Lepreau, which, in 2016, had 20 low findings of safety significance, 54 findings of negligible safety significance, and 133 compliant findings. CNSC specialists identified these findings during compliance verification activities, assigned them to SCAs and specific areas, and determined their safety significance.

Step 3: Rating the specific area

The example SCA is conventional health and safety, which had a total of 10 findings for Point Lepreau spread across three specific areas. Of these findings, three were compliant, six were of negligible safety significance, and one was of low safety significance. The CNSC specialists assessed each specific area as “fully satisfactory”.

Step 4: Rating the SCA

As indicated in table C.2, the rating for each specific area was assigned a value (i.e., 10 for “fully satisfactory”). These were averaged to determine the numerical SCA rating (also 10), which was then converted to a rating category (i.e., fully satisfactory), using the rating grid.

Table C.2: Example SCA rating
Specific area rating Specific area value SCA value SCA rating
8. Conventional health and safety
H1 44 Performance FS 10
H2 45 Practices FS 10
H3 46 Awareness FS 10
SCA rating for the station 10.00 FS

Step 5: Determining the IPR

The values for all 14 SCAs are multiplied by their individual weighting factors and then added together to obtain an overall weighted average, as shown in figure C.3.

Figure C.3: Determining an NPP’s IPR

Figure C.3: Determining an NPP’s IPR

The adjustment of 0.5 is added to the weighted average to give the final numerical value (i.e., 7.34 + 0.5 = 7.84).

The value of 7.84 is converted to an IPR of “satisfactory” using the rating grid.

Appendix D: Research and development efforts in support of NPP regulation

This appendix provides information on research and development (R&D) activities being conducted by the industry and the CNSC to enhance the safety of nuclear power plant (NPP) operations, as well as information on safety issues that drive the R&D activities and which are the subject of regulatory oversight.

D.1 Industry R&D activities

The CANDU Owners Group (COG) R&D program and the Industry Standard Toolset (IST) program are sponsored by three Canadian utilities (i.e., Bruce Power, Ontario Power Generation and NB Power), the Romanian Societatea Nationala NuclearElectrica, and Canadian Nuclear Laboratories. In 2015–16 the Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power Company sponsored the Safety and Licensing and IST R&D programs.

As specified in COG-15-9007, COG R&D Program Overview: 2015/16, the COG R&D and IST programs were established to support the safe, reliable and efficient operation of CANDU reactors, and are managed under five technical areas:

  • fuel channels
  • safety and licensing
  • health, safety and the environment
  • chemistry, materials and components
  • IST

Throughout the year, the CNSC reviewed submissions from the industry on the work plans, analysis methodology and results for these ongoing programs.

In 2016, CNSC staff performed a pilot review of selected COG R&D work packages. The objectives of this regulatory evaluation of licensees R&D were as follows:

  • to confirm that the program reporting provides the information as identified in REGDOC‑3.1.1, Reporting Requirements for Nuclear Power Plants
  • to assess R&D programs for their effectiveness in resolving safety issues
  • to assess the industry R&D capability management; that is, to assess whether the continued ability exists to respond to emerging issues, to support technology improvements and to ensure preservation of the knowledge basis
  • to verify that a systematic process – that identifies areas of research that are important from the safety perspective – is in place
  • to contribute to the overall R&D program assessment in relation to the achievement of the R&D safety-support functions

CNSC staff concluded that the COG reports reviewed were found to meet expectations for all assessment elements. It was concluded that COG R&D contributes effectively to resolving safety issues.

Bruce Power and Ontario Power Generation are continuing a joint COG R&D initiative: the fuel channel life-management project. This project aims to develop the engineering methodologies and analytical tools necessary to continue demonstrating the fitness for service of fuel channels beyond their nominal design life of 210,000 equivalent full-power hours.

D.2 CNSC R&D activities

The CNSC has an active research program that focuses on regulatory issues and is managed by its Regulatory Research and Evaluation Division. Although the program includes all safety and control areas (SCAs), it largely focuses on safety analysis, physical design and fitness for service. The program also contributes to many international programs relevant to NPP safety. Examples of research activities that were active in 2016 and that are relevant to NPPs are given below. In most cases, final reports on these activities are available at the CNSC’s Scientific and technical information Web page.

Safety analysis

The CNSC has identified the need to enhance its ability to respond to a severe accident. Multiple activities respond to this need.

Analytical simulation to gain insights into effectiveness of severe accident management actions

Implementing countermeasures or actions to mitigate the consequences of a severe accident, should one occur, at an NPP is an essential part of accident management. These mitigating actions form the station-specific severe accident management guidelines (SAMGs). The generic Canadian SAMGs were based on the SAMGs originally developed by the Westinghouse Owners’ Group. The generic SAMGs formed the basis for station-specific SAMGs developed by individual licensees. This research project is intended to gain insights into the effectiveness of SAMG-specified actions to assist CNSC staff in evaluating the severe accident management program established for CANDU power plants.

Assessment of RELAP5 for natural circulation

In the event of a loss of all normal, standby and emergency power, natural circulation has to be relied upon to remove heat from the core to the boilers. The paper assesses the capability of the RELAP5 (a computer code developed by the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S. NRC)) to simulate the thermalhydraulic behaviour of CANDU primary and secondary cooling systems in natural circulation.

Analysis of severe irradiated fuel bay accident PKPIRT package

An expert panel has been formed to gather the information required to establish a code to model potential severe accidents in a CANDU irradiated fuel bay. The panel will deliver the Phenomena and Key Parameters Identification and Ranking Table (PKPIRT) and make recommendations to the CNSC on how to proceed with implementing the code.

Application of Bayes method in evaluation of ROP/NOP trip setpoint

In other safety analysis research, the CNSC has been studying the application of the Bayes method to the setting of trip setpoints for power reactors. Software based on a previously established mathematical framework is now being developed. This software will be used to help CNSC staff assess regional overpower protection (ROP) and neutron overpower protection (NOP) trip setpoints under aging conditions.

Physical design

Development of analytical tools for soil–structure analysis

The impact of earthquakes on nuclear facilities is an important part of a safety assessment. Earthquake soilstructure interaction is a key factor in predicting the impact of a seismic event. In some cases, the soil-structure interaction can be a source of overly conservative seismic margins, while in other cases the effects may be underestimated. The CNSC has been researching new methods and models to address these uncertainties in earthquake soil–structure interaction and is progressing with implementation of these methods and models in software.

Testing and development of regulatory requirements for steel plate concrete structures

Modular, composite structures are part of new-build designs, but currently there is no code provision or regulatory requirement for this type of structure. A three-year research project has recently been completed to address this gap. This research will provide valuable assistance to CNSC staff in developing regulatory requirements for composite structures.

OECD Multinational Design Evaluation Programme

The Multinational Design Evaluation Programme is a multinational safety initiative by safety authorities to develop standardized approaches that may be used to review new NPP designs. MDEP is focused on future designs, but does have some impact on quality assurance for existing NPPs.

Evaluation of uncertainty in plutonium-239 data (R599.1) and ZED-2 benchmarks and analysis methods

Fundamental research into reactor safety issues such as void reactivity is still needed. Early funding for these two research initiatives was provided by the CNSC. Research will continue at Canadian Nuclear Laboratories Ltd. through funding from the federal nuclear science and technology fund.

Fitness for service

The CNSC has identified the need to strengthen its licensing, compliance and regulatory framework in preparation for long-term operation and post-refurbishment operation of Canadian NPPs. Besides the research activities listed below, the CNSC is also providing support for the IAEA’s International Generic Ageing Lessons Learned program. Through this cooperation, the CNSC hopes to benefit from extensive international experience on the aging of NPP components.

Updates to PRO-LOCA

Risk management tools, such as probabilistic risk assessment analyses, are now frequently used in the regulatory decision-making process. Probabilistic fracture mechanics codes and databases of operating experience are being used to assess potential risks associated with the operation of aging nuclear power plants. One such code is PRO-LOCA. It was originally developed for the U.S. NRC as part of its large-break loss-of-coolant accident program. Assistance is being provided via the CANDU Owners Group to maintain the PRO-LOCA code.

Evaluation of probabilistic leak-before-break methodologies

A new probabilistic leak-before-break framework consisting of Level 1 and Level 2 methodologies has been proposed by the CANDU industry. An independent third-party assessment of the proposed probabilistic Level 1 and Level 2 methodologies for CANDU pressure tubes has been completed.

Regulatory assessment of leakage through cracks in steam generator piping components

A comprehensive database and model for the steam generator tube degradation process and resulting leak rates is being developed. This information will assist the CNSC in verifying fitness-for-service assessments for steam generator tubes as plants age.

Statistical modeling of aging effects in failure rates of piping components

The CNSC is sponsoring the development of a generic guidance document together with the methods and techniques to determine statistical operability for events involving degraded or failed metallic (e.g., carbon steel) passive components.

Review of the applicability of EPRI recommendations for a flow-accelerated corrosion program to CANDU nuclear piping systems

Flow-accelerated corrosion (FAC) has resulted in significant failures of balance-of-plant (non-nuclear) piping systems at NPPs in the United States and Japan. Both accidents resulted in a loss of life to workers in the vicinity of the piping systems at the time of the rupture. The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) undertook development of a program to manage the degradation mechanism. The recommended practices and predictive modelling software developed by EPRI have been adopted by U.S. and Canadian licensees to manage FAC-related degradation. An independent review has been completed of the EPRI-recommended practices to ensure that they fully address the FAC susceptibility of CANDU non-nuclear piping systems larger than six inches in diameter.

Analysis of degradation mechanisms of cable insulation, instrumentation and control equipment due to aging in a decommissioned NPP

The degradation of electrical cables through aging and exposure to radiation is a concern. With the cooperation of Hydro-Québec, cables from the permanently shutdown nuclear reactor at the Gentilly-2 Nuclear Generating Station are being recovered. These cables will be subject to laboratory analysis to assess the degree of degradation. The results will be used to validate codes, standards and the accelerated test procedures currently in use.

Corrosion of steel H piles at nuclear generating stations

Nuclear generating stations and related critical structures are supported by an array of steel H piles that are approaching 50 years of service. Corrosion will decrease the steel H piles’ resistance to design loads, but it is difficult to assess the degree of degradation in these piles as they are under the reactor buildings. Expert opinion was provided on how to assess the likely degradation due to corrosion, and how the extent of corrosion could be monitored.

Investigation of consequences of concrete alkali–aggregate reaction on existing nuclear structures

In considering the life extension of NPPs, there is a need to investigate the degradation mechanisms for existing civil structures. The CNSC is due to complete a comprehensive investigation into concrete degradation due to alkali–aggregate reactions in 2017.

Radiation protection

Review of eye protection provided by eyewear (R651.1)

The lens of the eye is one of the most radiosensitive tissues in the body and the main health effect of concern is its opacification, or cataract, in its advanced stages. Recently, a number of human epidemiological studies and experimental animal-based studies have suggested that the development of cataracts may occur following exposure to significantly lower doses of ionizing radiation than previously considered. As a part of the review of this issue, research is currently underway to determine the shielding factor offered by commonly used protective eyewear in the nuclear industry.

Exposure to tritium and alpha radiation hazards

Work on the toxicity of tritium and the bio-solubility of alpha-emitting radionuclides is continuing under funding from the federal nuclear science and technology fund.

The CNSC also supports the North American Technical Center, which maintains the Information System of Occupational Exposure, a program in which Canadian NPP operators also participate.

Human performance management

Draft REGDOC-2.2.4, Fitness for Duty proposed that workers identified as having substance dependencies be subjected to follow-up alcohol and drug testing, and be deemed fit by a duly qualified health professional prior to returning to safety-sensitive duties. The CNSC has identified the need to establish the competencies and certifications for health professionals working in the substance abuse field and has initiated a survey of relevant stakeholders in safety-sensitive industries across Canada.

D.3 CANDU safety issues

The CNSC has a comprehensive regulatory approach to systematically resolve safety issues as they arise in the regulation of NPPs. Most issues that arise do not involve significant uncertainty and can be resolved by licensees and overseen by the CNSC within regular programs. However, issues occasionally arise that involve a degree of uncertainty that cannot be routinely addressed. When those issues are generic in nature (i.e., common to more than one NPP), the CNSC establishes a CANDU safety issue (CSI) to define the issue, establish criteria for its closure, and track progress. CSIs are categorized according to their safety significance categories as Category 1, 2 or 3, as shown in table D.1. These categories reflect the degree of uncertainty associated with the issue.

Note that some of the safety issues identified for CANDU reactors are common to other reactor types as well.

Table D.1: Categories of CSI safety significance
Category Meaning
1 The issue has been satisfactorily addressed in Canada.
2 The issue is a concern in Canada. However, the licensees have appropriate control measures in place to address the issue and to maintain safety margins.
3 The issue is a concern in Canada. Measures are in place to maintain safety margins, but further experiments and/or analyses are required to improve knowledge and understanding of the issue, and to confirm the adequacy of the measures.

Issues identified as Category 3 CSIs should not be viewed as questioning the safety of operating reactors, which have attained very high operational safety records. Rather, these are areas where uncertainty in knowledge exists, the safety assessment has been based on conservative assumptions, and regulatory decisions are required or need to be confirmed. Further work, including experimental research, may be required to more accurately determine the overall effect of an issue on a facility’s safe operation and to confirm that adequate safety margins exist.

The CNSC maintains regulatory control of the resolution of the Category 3 CSIs by monitoring the path forward, established through mutual agreement between the CNSC and the NPP licensees. Evolution typically involves work to demonstrate and confirm that the issue can be re-categorized from Category 3 to Category 2.

The CNSC has various mechanisms for regulatory oversight of safety issues that are not Category3 CSIs. For example, once a generic issue related to uncertainty is resolved and a Category 3 CSI has been re-categorized to Category 2, the CNSC may create station-specific action items for the purpose of regulatory oversight of each licensee’s implementation, as needed, of necessary improvements at their NPPs to complete the resolution of the issue.

The resolution of other safety issues that were not Category 3 CSIs is also discussed in this report. For example, Fukushima action items were resolved with high priority following the Fukushima-Daiichi accident to enhance defence in depth without significant delays to address uncertainties (e.g., the likelihood of a station blackout event similar to Fukushima). The CNSC has raised station-specific action items to track enhancements at NPPs that address Fukushima lessons learned. As another example, the fuel channel life management project is equivalent to a Category 2 CSI for which the CNSC is performing regulatory oversight through routine monitoring and correspondence.

At the beginning of 2016, six Category 3 CSIs requiring further experimental and/or analytical studies were pending resolution, as shown in tables D.2 and D.3. Three of these were related to large-break loss-of-coolant accidents (LBLOCAs), while the remaining three belonged to the group of non-LBLOCA issues.

Table D.2: Details of Category 3 LBLOCA CANDU safety issues open during 2016
CSI Title Brief description
AA 9 Analysis for void reactivity coefficient The large loss-of-coolant accident design-basis event is one of the most difficult accidents to analyze for a CANDU reactor because many aspects of reactor behaviour under accident conditions are subject to uncertainties.
PF 9 Fuel behaviour in high-temperature transients
PF 10 Fuel behaviour in power-pulse transients
Table D.3: Details of the Category 3 non-LBLOCA CSIs open during 2016
CSI Title Brief description
GL 3 Aging of equipment and structures Safety-related functions in NPPs must remain effective throughout the life of the plant. Licensees are expected to have programs in place to prevent, detect and correct significant degradation due to aging.
IH 6 Systematic assessment of high-energy line-break effects Dynamic effects at high-energy line breaks (e.g., pipe whip, jet impingement) can cause consequential failure of structures, systems and components and impair defence in depth.
PF 18 Fuel bundle and element behaviour under post-dryout conditions Specific models, such as fuel bundle deformation, require improvements to increase confidence in the prediction of fuel element or fuel channel failure.

By the end of 2016, the non-LBLOCA CSIs GL 3 and PF 18 were re-categorized to Category 2. Details on the progress toward the resolution of the Category 3 CSIs are provided in section 2.1.4. Additional details on their resolution, and on CSIs in general, are provided in CMD 16-M34 and CMD 17-M12.

The CNSC continues to monitor safety issues and operating experience to determine if it needs to raise new Category3 CSIs.

Appendix E: Nuclear power plants collective effective dose

The following figures show the five-year trend in annual collective effective doses to workers at each station (hereafter referred to as “collective doses”). This information illustrates the reactor’s operational state when the dose was received (i.e., during operation or during outages or refurbishment) and the pathways of exposure (i.e., internal or external). The figures show the doses received by the same group of workers.

For each nuclear power plant (NPP):

  • The first figure shows collective doses received during routine, day-to-day operations versus doses received during outages or refurbishment. The collective dose shown for routine operations and outages or refurbishment includes both external and internal doses.
  • The second figure shows the collective doses received from internal and external exposures for all radiological activities performed during the year.

The annual collective dose is the sum of the effective doses received by all workers at an NPP in a year. It is measured in person-sieverts (p-Sv). There is no regulatory dose limit for the annual collective dose; however, the collective dose is used internationally as an as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) program performance indicator.

For routine operations, variations between years are attributed partly to how long the plant operated during each year as well as to typical dose rates associated with the station’s operation.

The outage dose (i.e., planned and forced) includes the dose to all personnel, including contractors. Parameters affecting the dose include the number of outages for the year, the scope and duration of the work, the number of workers involved and dose rates associated with the outage work.

The external dose is the portion of the dose received from radiation sources outside the body. The internal dose is the portion received from radioactive material taken into the body.

In 2016, approximately 88 percent of the total collective dose to workers was due to outage activities. In addition, approximately 88 percent of the total collective dose to workers came from external exposure. Of the approximately 12 percent of the dose that came from internal exposure, tritium was the main contributor.

Note: Caution should be used when comparing the collective dose data between NPPs. Such a comparison is not entirely appropriate because of differences between individual stations (e.g.,design, age, operation and maintenance).

E.1 Annual collective doses at Bruce A and B

In 2016, Bruce Power implemented work management and planning strategies at Bruce A and B to control collective dose and minimize individual exposures as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA).

Bruce A

Figures E.1 and E.2 present the collective doses at BruceA units 1–4.

At Bruce A, all four units were operational with a total of approximately 229 reactor outage days. Outage activities at Bruce A accounted for approximately 93 percent of the total collective dose. Routine operations accounted for approximately 7percent of the total collective dose.

Internal dose was approximately 7 percent of the total Bruce A collective dose. This is a slight increase from 2015 (when the internal dose was 5 percent of the total), attributed to primary heat transport leaks experienced during Unit 3 and Unit 4 forced outages.

Bruce B

Figures E.3 and E.4 reflect the collective doses at BruceB units5–8.

At Bruce B, all four units were operational, with a total of 194 outage days. Outage activities at Bruce B accounted for approximately 91 percent of the total collective dose. Routine operations accounted for approximately 9 percent of the total station collective dose.

Internal dose was approximately 3 percent of the total collective dose, a decrease from that reported in 2015 (6 percent).

Figure E.1: Collective dose (p-mSv) by operational state for Bruce A, 2012–16*
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Routine Operations 161 334 367 372 329
Refurbishment/Outage 12906 954 3385 4383 4118
Total 13077 1288 3752 4755 4447
* Refurbishment was in progress from 2010 to 2012.
Figure E.2: Collective dose (p-mSv) from internal and external exposures for Bruce A, 2012–16*
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Internal Dose 563 73 260 259 329
External Dose 12514 1215 3492 4496 4118
Total 13077 1288 3752 4755 4447
Figure E.3: Collective dose (p-mSv) by operational state for Bruce B, 2012–16
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Routine Operations 495 525 547 506 470
Outages 994 5138 4632 2149 4863
Total 1489 5663 5179 2655 5333
Figure E.4: Collective dose (p-mSv) from internal and external exposures for Bruce B, 2012–16
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Internal Dose 120 323 228 154 180
External Dose 1369 5340 4951 2501 5153
Total 1489 5663 5179 2655 5333

E.2 Annual collective doses at Darlington

In 2016, Ontario Power Generation (OPG) implemented work management and planning strategies at Darlington to control collective dose and minimize individual exposures ALARA.

Figures E.5 and E.6 show collective doses at Darlington units 1–4.

At Darlington, four units were operational with a total of 135 reactor outage days. The Unit 2 refurbishment outage started in October 2016 for a duration of 76 days.

Outage activities at Darlington accounted for approximately 84 percent of the total collective dose. This was slightly lower than that observed in 2015 and reflects the scope and type of work. Routine operations accounted for approximately 16 percent of the total collective dose.

Internal dose was approximately 17 percent of the total collective dose, a slight decrease from the internal dose percentage of 18 reported in 2015.

Figure E.5: Collective dose (p-mSv) by operational state for Darlington, 2012–16
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Routine Operations 292 382 391 329 495
Outages 1500 4067 1813 2311 2600
Total 1792 4449 2204 2640 3095
Figure E.6: Collective dose (p-mSv) from internal and external exposures for Darlington, 2012–16
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Internal Dose 246 576 338 485 519
External Dose 1546 3873 1866 2155 2576
Total 1792 4449 2204 2640 3095

E.3 Annual collective doses at Pickering

In 2016, OPG implemented work management and planning strategies at Pickering to control collective dose and minimize individual exposures ALARA.

Figures E.7 and E.8 present the collective doses at Pickering.

Pickering units 1, 4 and 5–8 were operational, with approximately 486 reactor outage days. Units 2 and 3 continued to remain in a safe storage state. Outage maintenance and inspection activities accounted for approximately 85 percent of the total station collective dose. Routine operations accounted for approximately 15 percent of the total collective dose.

Internal dose was approximately 20 percent of the total collective dose, an increase from the internal dose percentage of 15 reported in 2015. This increase is attributed in part to elevated tritium content in the heavy water of the heat transport system, elevated tritium levels in the moderator room and vaults, and outage extensions.

Figure E.7: Collective dose (p-mSv) by operational state for Pickering, 2012–16
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Routine Operations 857 682 721 747 762
Outages 7565 3764 4686 4802 4296
Total 8422 4446 5406 5549 5058
Figure E.8: Collective dose (p-mSv) from internal and external exposures for Pickering, 2012–16
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Internal Dose 921 696 915 821 991
External Dose 7501 3750 4491 4728 4067
Total 8422 4446 5406 5549 5058

E.4 Annual collective doses at Point Lepreau

In 2016, NB Power implemented work management and planning strategies at Point Lepreau to control collective dose and minimize individual exposures ALARA.

Figures E.9 and E.10 show the collective doses at Point Lepreau.

Point Lepreau is a single-unit station that was operational with 76 reactor outage days. Outage activities at Point Lepreau accounted for approximately 80 percent of the total collective dose. Routine operations accounted for approximately 20 percent of the total station collective dose. The increase in the total collective dose shown in figures E.9 and E.10 is largely attributed to the scope of the planned outage activities.

Internal dose was approximately 18 percent of the total station collective dose, which is a decrease from the internal dose percentage (20) reported in 2015. The dose contribution from tritium was largely due to radiation work on heavy water systems completed during the planned outage. These activities involved exposure of persons to tritium (e.g., the repair of a fitting on the primary heat transport system and the replacement of moderator pump seal).

Figure E.9: Collective dose (p-mSv) by operational state for Point Lepreau, 2012–16*
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Routine Operations 8 178 148 144 199
Outages 939 47 397 76 806
Total 947 225 545 220 1005
* Refurbishment was in progress 2010 to 2012.
Figure E.10: Collective dose (p-mSv) from internal and external exposures for Point Lepreau, 2012–16*
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Internal Dose 213 33 77 44 183
External Dose 734 192 468 176 822
Total 947 225 545 220 1005

E.5 Average collective doses for all Canadian NPPs in operation

Nineteen reactor units were operational across Canada in 2016.

As shown in figures E.11 and E.12, the total collective doses and average collective dose per unit at operating Canadian NPPs increased slightly from 2015. This increase reflects the type and scope of work being performed at each facility in 2016. The routine operations dose remained fairly stable.

The 2016 annual collective dose per operating unit is comparable to the average of approximately of 1 p-Sv per unit observed for the previous five years (i.e., 2011–15). Canada’s reactors have maintained an average annual collective dose per reactor unit of around 1 p-Sv for recent years with the exception of 2012, where the collective dose was higher due to refurbishment activities in progress from 2010 to 2012. The completion of refurbishment activities in 2012 removed a significant dose contribution, which resulted in lower Canadian industry averages.

The implementation of initiatives to keep doses ALARA – such as improved shielding, source term reduction activities and improved work planning – continues to maintain the overall average collective dose at 1 p-Sv per unit despite increases in outage work in 2016.

Figure E.11: Collective dose (p-Sv) by operational state for operating Canadian nuclear power plants, 2012–16
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Routine Operations 1.89 2.10 2.17 2.10 2.25
Outages 21.84 14.02 15.02 13.74 16.68
Total 23.73 16.12 17.19 15.84 18.94
Figure E.12: Average collective dose (p-Sv/Unit) for operating Canadian nuclear power plants, 2012–16
2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
All Canadian NPPs 1.32 0.85 0.90 0.83 1.00

Appendix F: Derived release limits for Canadian nuclear power plants

To calculate radiation doses received by members of the public from routine releases at nuclear power plants (NPPs), a quantity known as a derived release limit (DRL) is used. This value is based on the regulatory dose limit of 1 millisievert per year (1 mSv/y).

DRLs are required because nuclear materials released into the environment through gaseous and liquid effluents from NPPs can expose members of the public to low radiation doses via external and internal pathways. External exposure occurs from direct contact with radionuclide-contaminated ground surfaces, or by immersion into contaminated water and air clouds. Internal exposure occurs through the intake of radionuclides by inhalation or by eating contaminated foods. Such radiation doses to members of the public are subject to statutory limits set out in sections 13 and 14 of the Radiation Protection Regulations.

DRL calculations are based on a method recommended in CSA standard N288.1-08, Guidelines for calculating derived release limits for radioactive materials in airborne and liquid effluents for normal operation of nuclear facilities [47].

The annual DRLs for gaseous and liquid effluents from Canadian NPPs are shown in tables F.1 and F.2. The units of measurement for noble gases are either terabecquerel (TBq) for individual radionuclides or terabecquerel-million electron volts for mixtures of radionuclides.

Table F.1: DRLs for gaseous effluents, 2016
Nuclear power plant Tritium a (TBq) Iodine-131 (TBq) Noble gases (TBq) Particulates (TBq) Carbon-14 (TBq)
Bruce Ai 1.98 x 105 1.14 1.12 x 105 c 1.73d 6.34 x 102
Bruce Bi 3.16 x 105 1.35 2.17 x 105 c 3.61d 7.56 x 102
Darlingtonii 5.9 x 104 (HTO)
8.5 x 105 (HT) b
1.4 4.5 x 104 c 0.67 3.5 x 102
Pickering1,4iii 1.2 x 105 9.8 3.2 x 104 c 0.49 2.2 x 103
Pickering5–8iv 1.9 x 105 8.9 4.7 x 104 c 0.72 2.0 x 103
Point Lepreauv 2.8x 105 6.0 x 101 e e 6.8 x 103
  1. Tritium oxide (HTO)
  2. For elemental tritium (HT) resulting from operations at the tritium removal facility at Darlington
  3. Terabecquerel-million electron volts
  4. Particulate (beta/gamma)
  5. NB Power calculates DRLs for each radionuclide comprising the noble gas and particulates categories.
  6. Notes i through v are found under table F.2
Table F.2: DRLs for liquid effluents, 2016
Nuclear power plant

Tritium a

(TBq)

Gross beta-gamma activity

(TBq)

Carbon-14

(TBq)

Bruce Ai 2.3 x 106 4.58 x 101 1.03 x 103
Bruce Bi 1.84 x 106 5.17 x 101 1.16 x 103
Darlingtonii 5.3 x 106 7.1 x 101 9.7 x 102
Pickering1,4iii 3.7 x 105 1.7 3.2 x 101
Pickering5–8iv 7.0 x 105 3.2 6.0 x 101
Point Lepreauv 4.6 x 107 b 3.3 x 102
  1. a. Tritium oxide (HTO)
  2. b. NB Power calculates DRLs for each radionuclide comprising the gross beta-gamma category.
  3. i Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, Licence Conditions Handbook (LCH-BNGS-R002 for PROL 18.00/2020), February 2017.
  4. ii Ontario Power Generation, Derived Release Limits for Darlington Nuclear Generating Station, NK38-REP-03482-10001-R01 (as referenced in LCH-DNGS-R000 for PROL 13.00/2014), September 2011.
  5. iii Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, Licence Conditions Handbook (LCH-PNGS-R000 for PROL 48.00/2018), September 2013.
  6. iv Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, Licence Conditions Handbook (LCH-PNGS-R000 for PROL 48.00/2018), September 2013.
  7. v Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, Nuclear Power Reactor Operating Licence Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station(PROL 17.02/2017), Appendix A.3: Derived Release Limits, September 2013.

Appendix G: Licence amendments and licence conditions handbook revisions

The tables in this appendix outline amendments to the nuclear power reactor operating licence (PROL) and revisions to the licence conditions handbook (LCH) for each nuclear power plant (NPP) licensee from January 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017.

G.1 Bruce A and B

Table G.1: Amendments to the Bruce A and Bruce B PROL, 2016
Nuclear power reactor operating licence #– effective date Amendment applications
PROL 18.00/2020 June 1, 2015 No amendments were made to the Bruce A and B PROL 18.00/2020 during the reporting period.

Table G.2: Significant changes to the Bruce A and Bruce B LCH, 2016

Section Description of change Revision type

LCH-BNGS-R001

May 2, 2016

Section 2.2;

several sections and appendices

The first revision was made to the Bruce A and B LCH (LCH-BNGS-R001) during the reporting period with the following changes:

- Section 2.2. The four offsite survey teams have been removed from the minimum shift complement tables and designated as call-in staff. This change has been reviewed and accepted by CNSC staff.

- Several sections and appendices. The typos of revision R000 have been corrected and minor administrative changes that have occurred since June 1, 2015 have been made throughout the LCH text.

Administrative

LCH-BNGS-R002

February 1, 2017

Sections 4.1, 6.1, 12.1;

Part I, several sections and appendices

The second revision was made to the Bruce A and B LCH (LCH-BNGS-R002) during the reporting period, with the following changes:

- Section 4.1. The implementation strategy for transitioning to REGDOC-2.4.2, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants [15] has been updated and target date for full compliance to REGDOC-2.4.2 was set by June 30, 2019. This change has been reviewed and accepted by CNSC staff.

- Section 6.1. The expected dates for compliance with REGDOC-2.6.3, Fitness for Service: Aging Management [20] for remaining lifecycle management programs were April 2017 for the feeders and steam generators, and June 2017 for the fuel channels. This change has been reviewed and accepted by CNSC staff.

- Section 6.1. The dates for the previously completed station containment outage and vacuum building outage, including the next scheduled dates for Bruce A and B, have been updated. This change has been reviewed and accepted by CNSC staff.

- Section 12.1. A new CSA standard, N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities [27], was added to the list of documents requiring version control. The date for Bruce Power’s transition to CSA standard N290.7-14 was December 31, 2020. This change has been reviewed and accepted by CNSC staff.

- Part I, several sections and appendices. Minor editorial changes were made throughout the LCH text.

Technical/

administrative

G.2 Darlington

Table G.3: Amendments to the Darlington PROL, 2016
Nuclear power reactor operating licence #– effective date Amendment applications

PROL 13.00/2025

January 1, 2016

No amendments were made to the Darlington PROL (PROL 13.00/2025) during this reporting period.
Table G.4: Significant changes to the Darlington LCH, 2016
Section Description of change Revision type
G.1 and G.2 Updated references to, and changes in, responsibility under the Nuclear Liability Act, which was replaced by the Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act on January1, 2017. Administrative
G.5 The due date of next full update to the five-year reference plan for financial guarantee purposes was updated to 2022. Administrative
2.2 Changes to the minimum shift complement included a reduction in the minimum number of authorized nuclear operators and stock keepers while one unit’s core is defuelled. Technical
3.1 There was a clarification of the requirement for prior written notification of change to the safety and control measures listed in the safe operating envelope documentation (including operational safety requirements). Administrative
3.1 Reference to neutron overpower protection (NOP) trip set points and enhanced NOP (E-NOP) was removed as the E-NOP review was completed and accepted by CNSC staff. Technical
4.1 The compliance verification criteria (CVC) were updated to include the derived acceptance criteria for slow events that shall be used when conducting a deterministic safety analysis. Technical
5.1 The CVC were amended to correct the process for notification of design changes to fuel bundles and fuel assemblies. Administrative
5.1 CSA standard N290.12-14, Human factors in design for nuclear power plants [18], was added as recommendation and guidance. Ontario Power Generation is developing an implementation plan, which will be assessed by CNSC staff once it is submitted. Technical
5.2 Re-inserted existing exemption of sub-clause 10.2.6 of CSA standard N285.0 in the CVC, which was erroneously omitted from the previous version of the LCH. Administrative
6.1 Updated reference COG-JP-4363-V078 R01 to COG-JP-4363-V078 R02, and reference to CSA standard N285.8-15 under recommendations and guidance. Administrative
9.1 The DRL table was updated to include elemental tritium, which was erroneously omitted from the previous version of the LCH. Administrative
11.2 The date of the next preliminary decommissioning plan revision was updated to January 31, 2022. Administrative
12.1 Included cyber security CVC, including implementation strategy for CSA standard N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities [27]. Technical
13.1 Updated CVC to reflect changes in reporting requirements under RD-336, Accounting and Reporting of Nuclear Material [29]. Administrative

G.3 Pickering

Table G.5: Amendments to the Pickering PROL, 2016
Nuclear power reactor operating licence #– effective date Amendment applications

PROL 48.02/2018

September 29, 2016

The licence was amended to add a licensed activity under Part IV, Licensed Activities to allow Pickering Nuclear Generating Station to possess, transfer, manage and store heavy water from other nuclear facilities. The amendment was granted through an abridged hearing, effective September 29, 2016.
Table G.6: Significant changes to the Pickering LCH, 2016
Section Description of change Revision type
1.2 The description of written notification documents and the compliance verification criteria (CVC) related to when and how they are to be submitted were revised to align with the Darlington LCH. Administrative
2.1 CSA standard N286-05, Management system requirements for nuclear power plants to be replaced by CSA standard N286-12, Management system requirements for nuclear facilities in the version control table. Various sections throughout LCH where N286-05 was referenced were also updated to reflect the newer edition of the standard. Technical
2.1 Removed reference to submission of report on annual organizational changes. Administrative
2.1 Updated the written notification table to reflect the most recent Ontario Power Generation (OPG) letter, Persons Authorized to Act on Behalf of OPG in Dealings with the CNSC. Administrative
3.3 REGDOC-2.2.2, Personnel Training, was added to the version control table. The CVC were updated to align with REGDOC-2.2.2. Text under recommendations and guidance was removed as it is now out of date and no longer applicable. Technical
4.3 The transition strategy for REGDOC-3.1.1, Reporting Requirements for Nuclear Power Plants was removed as the transition is now complete. Added reference to the CNSC document, Interpretation of REGDOC-3.1.1. The version control table was updated to version 2 of REGDOC-3.1.1. Technical
7.1 Updated reference to COG-JP-4363-V078 R01 to COG-JP-4363-V078 R0 under recommendations and guidance. Administrative
10.1 Removed monitoring and reporting requirement for carbon-14 in sewage. Technical
10.1 The implementation strategy for CSA standard N288.5-11, Effluent monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills, was updated as implementation is now complete. Technical
13.1 Added cyber security CVC including implementation strategy for CSA standard N290.7-14, Cyber security for nuclear power plants and small reactor facilities. Technical
13.1 Added references to REGDOC-2.12.1, Nuclear Response Force, and REGDOC-2.12.2, Site Access Security Clearance, and updated CVC text related to firearm qualification. Added REGDOC-2.12.3, Security of Nuclear Substances: Sealed Sources to recommendations and guidance. Technical
14.1 Updated CVC to reflect changes in reporting requirements under RD-336, Accounting and Reporting of Nuclear Material. Administrative
Appendix D Written notice document titles and numbers updated as required. Administrative

G.4 Point Lepreau

Table G.7: Amendments to the Point Lepreau PROL, 2016
Nuclear power reactor operating licence #– effective date Amendment applications
PROL 17.04/2017 No amendments were made to the Point Lepreau PROL (PROL 17.04/2017) during the reporting period.

Table G.8: Significant changes to the Point Lepreau LCH, 2016

Section Description of change Revision type

Multiple

sections

Text was edited to reflect administrative changes and corrections, and updates to the LCH. Administrative
5.2 A revised probabilistic safety assessment (PSA) submission schedule was added. Administrative
5.2 Text was added to reflect NB Power’s commitments to submit a gap assessment and implementation plan for REGDOC-2.4.2, Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) for Nuclear Power Plants, by December 31, 2015 and to finalize and submit a PSA program for acceptance by CNSC staff by August 1, 2016. Administrative
7.3, appendix D Text was revised to incorporate the acceptance of NB Power’s fuel channel pressure tube periodic inspection plan in accordance with CSA standard N285.4-09, Periodic inspection of CANDU nuclear power plant components, and of the compliance plan for CSA standard N285.8, Technical requirements for in-service evaluation of zirconium alloy pressure tubes in CANDU reactors. Administrative
10.1 An update was included to reflect NB Power’s submission of a gap analysis and implementation plan for CSA standards N288.4, Environmental monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills and N288.5, Effluent monitoring programs at Class I nuclear facilities and uranium mines and mills (which have been reviewed and accepted by CNSC staff). Administrative

Appendix H: List of completed CNSC compliance activities in 2016

Bruce A and B

Safety and control area Inspection title Inspection report sent date
Human performance management Mechanical Maintenance Training Program Report Number: BRPD-AB-2016-001 May 5, 2016
Conduct of Bruce A Shift Supervisor Simulator Examination Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-009 October 17, 2016
Unit 0 Certified Control Room Operator Training Program Report Number: BRPD-2016-AB-006 December 22, 2016
Operating performance Bruce A and B Generating Stations Quarterly Field Inspection Report – Quarter 4, Fiscal Year 2015-2016 Report Number: BRPD-AB-2016-004 May 18, 2016
Bruce B 2016 Unit 8 Planned Outage Report Number: BRPD-B-2016-001 July 6, 2016
Operator Challenges Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-002 July 20, 2016
Bruce A 2016 Station Containment Outage and Regulatory Undertakings Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-007 August 11, 2016
Bruce A and B Generating Stations Quarterly Field Inspection Report – Quarter 1, Fiscal Year 2016-2017 Report Number: BRPD-AB-2016-005 August 11, 2016
Bruce A 2016 Unit 2 Planned Outage Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-003 September 8, 2016
Bruce A 2016 Unit 3 Planned Outage Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-006 October 31, 2016
Bruce A and B Generating Stations Quarterly Field Inspection Report – Quarter 2, Fiscal Year 2016-2017 Report Number: BRPD-AB-2016-007 December 6, 2016
Bruce B 2016 Unit 7 Planned Outage Report Number: BRPD-B-2016-008 February 14, 2017

Bruce A and B Generating Stations Quarterly Field Inspection Report – Quarter 3, Fiscal Year 2016-2017

Report Number: BRPD-AB-2016-008

February 17, 2017
Physical design Preservation of Seismic Design Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-010 October 25, 2016
Fitness for service System Inspection Pressure and Inventory Control Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-004 May 16, 2016
System Inspection Pressure and Inventory Control Report Number: BRPD-B-2016-004 May 31, 2016
Implementation of CANDU Inspection Qualification Bureau (CIQB) for Bruce Report Number: BRPD-AB-2016-003 May 25, 2016
Bruce A Work Execution MMA4 Crew Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-005 May 25, 2016

Aging Management Inspection

Report Number: BRPD-B-2016-006

December 8, 2016
Bruce B Work Execution MMBT Crew – Report Number: BPRD-B-2016-007 January 11, 2017
Conventional health and safety B-2016-28541536 – Worker Injured Working on Unit 8 Generator Report Number: BRPD-B-2016-005 August 23, 2016
Environmental protection Effluent Monitoring– Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-001 May 6, 2016
Emergency management and fire protection Huron Resolve Corporate Drill Report Number: BRPD-A-2016-011 December 23, 2016
Security Security Inspection June 9, 2016
Security Inspection August 12, 2016

Darlington

Safety and control area Inspection title Inspection report sent date
Management system Engineering Change Control For Refurbishment Report Number: DRPD-2016-004 May 19, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Quality Management and Oversight of Project Execution Report Number: DRPD-2016-018 November 1, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Problem Resolution and Effectiveness Reviews Inspection Report Report Number: DRPD-2016-028 January 9, 2017
Human performance management Darlington Nuclear Generation Station Conduct of Written Certification Examination Report Number: DRPD-2016-003 February 24, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Conduct of Written Requalification Tests Report Number: DRPD-2016-024 December 15, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Nuclear Refurbishment On-boarding and Oversight Training Programs Report Number: DRPD-2016-022 December 16, 2016
Conduct of Simulator-based Requalification Tests at Darlington Report Number: DRPD-2016-026 February 14, 2017
Operating performance Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Quarterly Field Inspection Report – Third and Fourth Quarters Fiscal Year 2015-2016 Report Number: DRPD-2016-010 June 9, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Quarterly Field Inspection Report – First Quarter, Fiscal Year 2016-2017 Report Number: DRPD-2016-013 August 23, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Unit 4 D1641 Planned Maintenance Outage Report Number: DRPD-2016-014 August 25, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Second Quarter, Fiscal Year 2016 – 2017 Report Number: DRPD-2016-021 November 30, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Unit 2 Reactor Shutdown Guarantee and Heat Sink Verification – Report Number: DRPD-2016-029 January 26, 2017
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Third Quarter, Fiscal Year 2016 – 2017 Report Number: DRPD-2016-027 To Be Determined
Physical design Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Safety Improvement Opportunity Compliance Verification: End Shield Cooling Storage Tank Over-Pressure Protection Implementation in Units 3 and 4 Report Number: DRPD-2016-019 October 14, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Safety Improvement Opportunity Compliance Verification: Powerhouse Steam Venting System Report Number: DRPD-2017-001 February 9, 2017
Fitness for service Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Heat Transport System Inspection Report Number: DRPD-2016-005 May 5, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Instrument Air System Report Number: DRPD-2016-008 June 22, 2016
Fukushima Verifications Report Number: DRPD-2016-012 June 23, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Chemistry Control Inspection Report Report Number: DRPD-2016-020 December 5, 2016
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Steam Generator Emergency Cooling System Report Number: DRPD-2016-023 January 26, 2017
Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Powerhouse Steam Venting System Report Number: DRPD-2016-030 February 9, 2017
Radiation protection Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Radiation Protection Report Number: DRPD-2016-031 January 26, 2017
Environmental protection Darlington Nuclear Generating Station Environmental Protection: Effluent Monitoring and Control Program Report Number: DRPD-2016-006 May 16, 2016
Hazardous Waste Management Report Number: DRPD-2016-025 December 28, 2016
Emergency management and fire protection Planned Fire Response Exercise Report Number: DRPD-2016-015 September 12, 2016
Security Security Inspection May 25, 2016
Security Inspection July 5, 2016
Security Inspection October 18, 2016

Pickering

Safety and control area Inspection title Inspection report sent date
Management system Configuration Management Report Number: PRPD-2016-005 May 18, 2016
Human performance management Simulator-based Initial Certification Examination for Reactor Operator Candidates at Pickering 5-8 Report Number: PRPD-2016-014

June 7, 2016

(inspection conducted in 2015)

Conduct of Simulator-based Requalification Tests at Pickering Report Number: PRPD-2016-022 February 13, 2017
Operating performance Pickering Nuclear Generating Station Quarterly Field Inspection Report – Quarter 4, Fiscal Year 2015-2016 Report Number: PRPD-2016-009 May 27, 2016
Pickering Nuclear Generating Station Quarterly Field Inspection Report – Quarter 1, Fiscal Year 2016-2017 Report Number: PRPD-2016-016 August 31, 2016
P1641 Outage Management Performance Inspection Report Number: PRPD-2016-004 September 26, 2016
P1681 Planned Maintenance Outage Report Number: PRPD-2016-013 November 18, 2016
Pickering Nuclear Generating Station Quarterly Field Inspection Report – Quarter 2, Fiscal Year 2016-2017 Report Number: PRPD-2016-02 November 28, 2016
Physical design Environmental Qualified Equipment Report Number: PRPD-2016-020 February 21, 2017
Fitness for service Emergency High Pressure Service Water Report Number: PRPD-2015-024 April 12, 2016
Implementation of CSA standard N285.4 Periodic Inspection Program (PIP) on Steam Generators during the P1681 Outage Report Number: PRPD-2016-006 June 2, 2016
Fukushima Verifications Report Number: PNGS-2016-00 June 30, 2016
Maintenance Planning and Scheduling Report Number: PRPD-2016-011 October 6, 2016
Units 1-4 Electrical Distribution System Report Number: PRPD-2016-019 February 2, 2017
Fixed Area Gamma Monitoring and Type I Semi-Portable Alarming Gamma Monitoring Systems Report Number: PRPD-2016-023 March 3, 2017
Emergency management and fire protection Planned Emergency Response Exercise Report Number: PRPD-2016-007 June 22, 2016
Planned Fire Response Exercise Report Number: PRPD-2016-010 August 11, 2016
Security Security Inspection July 12, 2016
Security Inspection January 23, 2017

Point Lepreau

Safety and control area Inspection title Inspection report sent date
Operating performance Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station Quarterly Field Inspection – Quarter 4, Fiscal Year 2015-2016 Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-005 June 2, 2016
Point Lepreau 2016 Planned Outage Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-013 September 15, 2016
Point Lepreau Generating Station Quarterly Field Inspection Quarter 1, Fiscal Year 2016-2017 Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-012 January 30, 2017
Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station Quarterly Field Inspection Quarter 2, Fiscal Year 2016-2017 Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-018 February 16, 2017
Human performance management Simulator-based Initial Certification Examination for Control Room Operator Candidates at Point Lepreau Report Number: GPLRPD-2014-22

May 3, 2016

(inspection conducted in 2015)

Fuel Handling Training Program

Report Number: GPLRPD-2015-016

(conducted in 2015 but not included in regulatory oversight report for 2015)

February 8, 2016
Physical design Implementation of the NB Power Fire Protection Program Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-004 June 2, 2016
Fitness for service

System Inspection – PLNGS Instrument Air

Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-003

May 12, 2016
Fukushima Verifications Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-014 July 6, 2016
Maintenance Work Execution Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-009 July 13, 2016
System Inspection – Annulus Gas Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-015 November 7, 2016
Containment System and Containment Safe Operating Envelope Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-019 January 24, 2017
Radiation protection Radiation Protection – As Low As Reasonably Achievable (ALARA) Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-002 May 25, 2016
Radiation Protection – Worker Dose Control Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-010 July 6, 2016
Emergency management and fire protection Mutual Aid Drill Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-016 December 13, 2016
Waste management Solid Radioactive Waste Management Facility Report Number: GPLRPD-2016-007 June 28, 2016
Security Security Inspection April 14, 2016
Security Inspection April 14, 2016

Notes de bas de page

Note de bas de page 1

This report uses the terms “NPP”, “plant” and “station” interchangeably. In the report, the term “Indigenous peoples” is meant to include First Nation, Métis and Inuit communities. The term “general public” is meant to include all people.

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Note de bas de page 2

The “annual collective dose” is the sum of the effective doses received by all the monitored persons at that NPP in a year. It is measured in person-sieverts (p-Sv).

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Note de bas de page 3

The “average effective dose” or “average effective dose – non-zero results only” is obtained by dividing the total collective dose by the total number of individuals receiving a dose above the minimum reportable level of 0.01 millisieverts (mSv).

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Note de bas de page 4

The effective dose limits for nuclear energy workers (NEWs) are 50 millisieverts (mSv) per one-year dosimetry period and 100 mSv over a five-year fixed dosimetry period.

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Note de bas de page 5

An “action level” is defined in the Radiation Protection Regulations as a specific dose of radiation or other parameter that, if reached, may indicate a loss of control of part of a licensee’s radiation protection program and triggers a requirement for specific action to be taken.

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Note de bas de page 6

This Act was replaced by the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012, but the requirement for an environmental assessment remains the same.)

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