The Transportation of Spent Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste

A Systematic Basis for Planning and Management at the National, Regional, and Community Levels

Prepared By
Planning Information Corporation
Denver, Colorado
September, 1996

10.   Transportation Choices

Given the factors discussed in Sections 6 through 9, how would the transportation choice actually be made? Using Monticello, Big Rock Point, Point Beach, Salem/Hope Creek, and Enrico Fermi as case study sites, this section illustrates the transportation choice decision as it might be addressed by utilities. Section 11 presents three scenarios of transportation choices for all shipment sites. Appendix A compares the three transportation choice scenarios considered in this assessment with two developed by DOE.

Monticello

Given the cask options identified in Section 6, and the factors discussed in Sections 7 through 9, how would Northern States Power (NSP) choose to ship from its Monticello plant, located on the Mississippi River about 35 miles northwest of Minneapolis? Monticello has operating onsite rail which does not require upgrade for shipment of spent nuclear fuel. It has the operating crane capacity (85 tons) but currently has neither the cask set-down diameter (6'4") nor the maximum cask length (16'5") required to load a small MPC.

The current capabilities and MPC base case scenarios assume that NSP chooses to ship by legal- weight truck. The maximum rail scenario, as well as scenarios identified by DOE, assume that NSP chooses to upgrade in order to ship by small MPC.

Big Rock Point

Given the cask options identified in Section 6, and the factors discussed in sections 7 through 9, how would Consumers Power Company choose to ship from its Big Rock Point plant, located on the upper reaches of Lake Michigan? Big Rock does not have onsite rail; rail shipments would require heavy- haul to the Tuscola and Saginaw Bay railhead in Petoskey about 13 miles east of the plant site. Neither the operating crane capacity (24 tons) nor cask set-down diameter (5'11") nor maximum cask length (15'11") at Big Rock Point currently meet requirements for loading a small MPC.

The current capabilities and MPC base case scenarios assume that Consumers Power chooses to ship by legal-weight truck. The maximum rail scenario (as well as DOE's Transportation Strategy Study 2) assumes that Consumers Power will upgrade its facilities and heavy-haul to Petoskey in order to ship small MPCs by rail.

Point Beach

Given the cask options identified in Section 6, and the factors discussed in Sections 7 through 9, how would Wisconsin Electric Power choose to ship from its Point Beach plant site, located on the western shore of Lake Michigan about 85 miles north of Milwaukee? Point Beach does not have onsite rail; rail shipment would require heavy-haul to a railhead, such as the Fox Valley and Western railhead Wisconsin Central in Kewaunee.19 It has the operating crane capacity (125 tons) and maximum cask length (18'8") but not the cask set-down diameter (7'10") required to load a large MPC.

The current capabilities scenario assumes that Wisconsin Electric chooses to ship by legal-weight truck, via I-43 from Manitowoc through Sheboygan to Milwaukee. The MPC base case and maximum rail scenarios (as well as scenarios identified by DOE) assume that Wisconsin Electric chooses to upgrade its cask loading area and heavy-haul off site in order to ship large MPCs by rail.

Salem and Hope Creek

Given the cask options identified in Section 6, and the factors discussed in Sections 7 through 9, how would Public Service Gas and Electric (PSG&E) choose to ship from its Salem and Hope Creek plants on the New Jersey side of the Delaware River, about 12 miles south of Wilmington, Delaware? The sites do not have onsite rail; rail shipment would require heavy-haul 23 miles north to a railhead on the West Jersey Railroad in the Town of Salem. Hope Creek has the cask set-down diameter (11'0"), maximum cask length (19'9") and operating crane capacity (130 tons) required to load a large MPC. Salem has the cask set-down diameter (10'0") and maximum cask length (21'4") but insufficient operating crane capacity (110 tons) to load a large MPC.

The current capabilities scenario assumes that PSG&E chooses to ship by legal-weight truck from both its Hope Creek and Salem plants. The MPC base case and maximum rail scenarios assume that PSG&E upgrades operating crane capacity at Salem in order to use the large MPC cask, which in the MPC base case would be heavy-hauled 23 miles to the Salem railhead on the West Jersey railroad, and in the maximum rail scenario would be barged up the Delaware River to a Conrail railhead in Wilmington.

Enrico Fermi

Given the cask options identified in Section 6 and the factors discussed in Section 7 through 9, how would Detroit Edison Company choose to ship from its Enrico Fermi plant on the western shore of Lake Erie, about midway between Detroit, Michigan and Toledo, Ohio? The Fermi site has onsite rail which is not operating and would require significant investment to upgrade for shipment of spent nuclear fuel. While its cask set-down diameter (9'0") meets requirements for a large MPC, its operating crane capacity (100 tons) currently meets requirements only for the small MPC, and its maximum cask length (14'9") currently meets requirements for neither the large nor small MPC.

The current capabilities scenario assumes that Detroit Edison chooses to ship by legal-weight truck, probably using I-275 to access I-94 for travel across the southern portion of the state. The MPC base case scenario assumes that Detroit Edison upgrades it facilities and rail spur in order to ship large MPCs north to Detroit and west through Lansing and Battle Creek on Grand Trunk Western rail lines. The maximum rail scenario assumes that Detroit Edison upgrades its facilities but not its rail spur at Fermi, choosing to barge rail casks east across Lake Erie to a railhead in Buffalo.

Table 10-1. Transportation Choice Factors and Scenarios: By Storage Location

        CASK LOADG FACTOR:   NEAR-SITE FACTOR:   TRANSP CHOICE:    
  WASTE SHIP   ---- --- ---- ---   --- --- --- ---   ---- ---- ---- --- ---- ----
FUEL STRG LOCATION: TYPE SITE STATE CRD CRO CDI CLG   OSR OP? OS$ OFD   CCP MPC MXR   TS2 APD
------------------- ---- ---- ----- --- --- ---- ----   --- --- --- ---   ---- ---- ----   ---- ----
MONTICELLO BWR MT MN 85 85 LWT LWT | Y Y 0 0 | LWT LWT R75   R75 R75
                |         |            
BIG ROCK 1 BWR BR MI 75 24 LWT LWT | N NA 0 13 | LWT LWT R75   R75 LWT
                |         |            
POINT BEACH 1&2 PWR PT WI 125 125 R75 R125 | N NA 0 16 | LWT R125 R125   R125 R125
POINT BEACH DRY STRG PWR PT WI NA NA NA NA | N NA 0 16 | LWT R125 R125   R125 R125
                |         |            
HOPE CREEK BWR HC NJ 150 130 R125 R125 | N NA 0 23 | LWT R125 R125   R125 R125
SALEM 1 PWR SA NJ 110 110 R125 R125 | N NA 0 23 | LWT R125 R125   R125 R75
SALEM 2 PWR SA NJ 110 110 R125 R125 | N NA 0 23 | LWT R125 R125   R125 R75
                |         |            
ENRICO FERMI 2 BWR FE MI 125 100 R125 LWT | Y N 125 0 | LWT R125 R125   R125 R125
  ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== ==== === ==== ====

Site/Facility Charac: CRD: design crane capacity (tons)
CRD: operating crane capacity (tons)
CDI: cask set-down (loading) diameter (max cask option)
CLG: cask length (loading) req (max cask option)
OSR: onsite rail (yes, no, not applic)
OP?: onsite rail operating? (yes, no, not applic)
OS$: onsite rail upgrade cost (000$)
OFD: distance to offsite rail (miles)
Shipment Cask Options: R125: Large MPC for up to 21 PWR or 40 BWR
R75: Small MPC for up to 12 PWR or 24 BWR
LWT: Legal-weight truck casks.... GA-4/9 if avail, NLI-1/2 or NAC LWT otherwise
Transp Choice: CCP: Current Capabilities (NWPO: May 1996)
MPC "Base Case" (NWPO: Jan 1994)
MXR: Maximum Rail (NWPO: May 1996)
TR2: NV Transp Stategy, Study 2 (DOE: Feb 1996, Table F-3 & PIC)
APD: MPC Prelim Evaluation (DOE: Mar 1993, Appendix D)

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