A Nuclear Regulatory Commission task force has called for tightening safety regulations at the nation’s 104 nuclear powerplants and requiring plants to make upgrades when necessary, in areas such as seismic protection, electric power and cooling water for spent-fuel pools. Related Links: NRC task force report In a 90-day report released on July 13, the NRC panel concludes that a sequence of events like those following the Japanese accident is “unlikely to occur” in the United States. Still, the existing U.S. regulatory approach, developed piece by piece over decades, is a “patchwork,” and needs to be improved, the task force
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.