Christopher Hanson appointed chairman of US Nuclear Regulatory Commission

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Highlights

Replaces Kristine Svinicki

technologies are “evolving”: Hanson

Hanson had worked in Senate staff

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Christopher Hanson was appointed by Joe Biden to serve as chairman of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the NRC said Jan. 23 in a statement.

“I remain committed to ensuring that we continue to work collaboratively under our authorities established by Congress to assure the public adequate protection of and safety in carrying out our regulatory responsibilities,” Hanson said in the statement. He has been a member of the commission since June, and replaces Kristine Svinicki, a Republican, left the commission Jan. 20 after serving as chairman since 2017. She did not announce her future plans.

Svinicki was originally appointed as a commissioner in 2007 by then President George W. Bush, making her the longest serving member of the commission in the agency’s history.

Hanson said Jan. 23: “I look forward to building on Chairman Svinicki’s many accomplishments as the commission takes on new challenges and faces new opportunities as nuclear technologies continue to evolve and uses of nuclear materials expand in the future.”

The White House has not announced who will be appointed to fill the vacant fifth seat on the commission. The commission can continue to conduct with a quorum of at least three commissioners.

Before joining the commission, Hanson was most recently a professional staff member on the Senate appropriations committee. Hanson was a senior adviser in the Office of Nuclear Energy at the US Department of Energy, and prior to that was a consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton.

Under the Atomic Energy Act, there can be no more than three NRC commissioners from any single party and they serve staggered five-year terms. Commissioner Jeff Baran is a Democrat. Commissioners Annie Caputo and David Wright are Republicans.

Caputo’s term expires June 30. Baran’s and Wright’s terms expire in 2023 and 2025, respectively.

NRC commissioners must be confirmed by the US Senate, but the president has discretion to appoint any currently serving commissioner chairman without further congressional approval.

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Steven Dolley

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Claudia Carpenter

Electric

Source: Platts

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