Both units at the South Texas Project (STP) nuclear power facility continue to safely operate at full power as Hurricane Harvey approaches the Texas Gulf Coast.
STP maintains a comprehensive and integrated emergency response plan that is closely coordinated with local, state and federal officials. We have implemented our Severe Weather Plan and all hurricane preparations have been completed. We are closely monitoring weather conditions.
STP operates under well-defined Nuclear Regulatory Commission guidelines and internal procedures. If the projected sustained winds on-site exceed hurricane force – 73 miles per hour (MPH) – we will take steps to safely shut down the units. Procedures ensure that the units are safely shut down prior to reaching these on-site wind speeds.
Based on current weather projections, no shut down is envisioned. STP site specific projections call for sustained on-site winds of approximately 40 MPH at the height of the storm with wind gusts up to 50 MPH.
In preparation for Hurricane Harvey, we have sequestered storm crews on-site. Approximately 175 individuals, including Operators, Engineers, Maintenance, Emergency Responders and Security personnel are on-site for the duration of the storm. This ensures that sufficient personnel with the required training, education and experience are on-site.
“At STP, the safety of our employees and neighbors in the local communities is our primary responsibility,” said STP President and CEO Dennis Koehl. “Our team has done an outstanding job in preparing for this storm. Our continued commitment and focus is to put safety first in every action we take.”
The two-unit facility has steel-reinforced concrete containment with four-foot thick walls.The buildings that house STP’s reactors, vital equipment and used fuel have steel-reinforced concrete walls, four to seven feet thick, which are built to withstand major hurricanes and the tornadoes they can spawn. The plant site is located 10 miles inland and at an elevation of 29 feet above mean sea-level (MSL), well beyond the reach of even a Category 5 storm surge.
The facility is designed with watertight buildings and doors such that emergency electric power and cooling systems remain fully functional. All buildings housing safety equipment are flood-proof to an elevation of at least 41 feet above MSL.
STP’s two-units produce 2,700 megawatts of carbon-free energy, powering more than two million homes throughout Texas. The facility is managed by STP Nuclear Operating Company and owned by Austin Energy, CPS Energy and NRG Energy.
For more information about STP, please visit our website at stpnoc.com or follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/stpnoc/