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DOE/NRC/FIA Public Forum on a Regulatory Framework for Fusion

Updated: Aug 24, 2021

The Department of Energy and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, working with the Fusion Industry Association as a co facilitator, will host a Public Forum on a regulatory framework for Fusion on October 6 2020, from 10AM until 4PM ET.

The purpose of this DOE-NRC Public Forum is to begin a dialogue on a regulatory framework for fusion for any type of fusion energy reactor system supported by either the public sector or private sector with domestic and international regulating bodies.

The workshop will include presentations, as well as structured and open discussions with a moderator. There is flexibility built into the agenda to provide adequate time for discussions and questions for the participants and the audience. The Agenda is available online, and is subject to change.

Participants will include representatives from industry, regulatory bodies around the world, and interested stakeholders. Paul Dabbar, the Undersecretary of Science at the Department of Energy, and Kristine Svinicki, Chair of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, will give introductory remarks.

This meeting is virtual and open to the public. The FIA encourages participation by the fusion community and other stakeholders. Registration is required if you are planning on attending remotely. Please RSVP using the following link: DoE/NRC/FIA Public Forum Registration. This will help the organizers in the planning for both the forum and future activities on this subject.



Fusion Industry Association Principles for Fusion Regulation

In preparation for this event, the FIA has published a short one-pager (below) outlining the principles of a Regulatory Framework to Support the Fusion Revolution in America, as well as a longer White Paper on a Fusion Regulatory Framework. You can read the entire documents for details. The key findings are below.

Establish a broad legislative and regulatory framework that explicitly and permanently removes fusion energy from the regulatory approaches that the federal government has taken towards fission power plants.

  • The NRC’s Part 50, 52 and proposed 53 regulations for large commercial fission reactors address a different suite of risks compared to risks that fusion facilities could create and therefore are not appropriate for fusion systems.

  • Rules like the NRC’s Part 20 regulations for general radiation protection and Part 30 rules for handling byproduct material would properly address fusion facilities’ risk profiles.

  • The DOE has created a framework for safe construction and operation of experimental fusion energy devices that has worked well for decades.

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