WASHINGTON—The following is a statement by the Nuclear Energy Institute’s president and chief executive officer, Frank L. “Skip” Bowman, reacting to the announcement today from U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Nils J. Diaz that he will not seek a third term on the commission when his current term expires June 30:
“Dr. Diaz has served the nation exceptionally well as chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. During his tenure, the agency transitioned to a safety-focused regulatory process that is a substantial improvement over the uneven regulatory approach that preceded it. Under Chairman Diaz’s leadership, the NRC was more effective than any other federal agency in dealing with the myriad challenges posed by the terrorist attacks upon our nation in September 2001. At the time of the attacks, nuclear power plants were the best-defended facilities in the U.S. industrial infrastructure. They remain so today in no small part due to the leadership exhibited by Nils Diaz.
“I have spent countless hours in meetings and conversations, including while submerged aboard one of our nuclear-powered submarines, with Chairman Diaz. I always have found him to be fair, insightful, a man of the highest integrity and, above all, 100 percent committed to fulfilling the NRC’s mission to be an effective, impartial protector of public health and safety. He has tirelessly worked to inject fact and engineering rather than emotion into the NRC decision-making process. As the nuclear energy industry looks to launch a new era of new power plant construction to help strengthen U.S. energy security, it finds an oversight agency that Chairman Diaz is working diligently to vest with the resources needed to carry out its licensing responsibilities efficiently, rigorously and thoroughly.
“My wife, Linda, and I wish Dr. Diaz and his wife, Zeña, and family all the best in the years ahead. Given his broad experience in the public, private and academic worlds, he no doubt will continue to be a person of impact no matter what road he travels.”
The Nuclear Energy Institute is the nuclear energy industry’s policy organization. This news release and additional information about nuclear energy are available on NEI’s Internet site at http://www.nei.org.