Clinch River Nuclear Site is located in Roane County, Tennessee, about 25 miles from Knoxville. In 2016 Tennessee Valley Authority submitted an application asking for approval of its Clinch River site near Oak Ridge National Laboratory. They want early permission in order to place so-called small modular reactors (SMRs) on the site whenever and if ever there were to be a design for them and the licensing could be obtained, years down the road.
On April 13, 2017, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission published in the Federal Register (82 FR 17885) its intent to prepare an EIS for the Tennessee Valley Authority’s (TVA) early site permit for the Clinch River Nuclear Site. TVA’s request identified the Clinch River site as suitable for two or more so-called small modular reactors, experimental nuclear power plants which range from 50 megawatts to 300 megawatts, about one-third the power of conventional nuclear power plants.