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State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 28, 2011

Contact: Lawrence Ragonese (609) 292-2994
Lawrence Hajna (609) 984-1795

DEP SEEKS INDEPENDENT EXPERT FOR OYSTER CREEK SAFETY PANEL

(11/P92) TRENTON - The DEP has issued a Request for Proposals (RFPs) from qualified experts who wish to serve as the independent expert to the Oyster Creek Safety Advisory Panel, which was created in May to supplement oversight of the safe operation of the nuclear power plant in Lacey Township leading up to its closure by the end of 2019.

The independent nuclear safety expert selected for the panel would serve as its third member, along with DEP Commissioner Bob Martin and Charles B. McKenna, Director of the State Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness. The independent expert would be chosen by Commissioner Martin in consultation with community and environmental groups.

DEP nuclear engineers and experts will provide their expertise to the panel and serve as its staff.

The Safety Advisory Panel will assist the DEP with evaluation of the continued safe operation, decommissioning planning, and cessation of operations at the Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Station. It will actively engage the public as it reviews ongoing operations and safety plans in the years leading up to plant closure. The Safety Advisory Panel also will monitor the Exelon Corporation's compliance with the Administrative Consent Order signed December 9, 2010, which is designed to ensure that the shutdown of the nuclear plant is executed in a safe, well-planned manner.

Closure of Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Station, which is the oldest nuclear reactor in the nation, is a key component of Governor Christie's comprehensive plan to restore and protect the ecologically unique and economically important Barnegat Bay.

In December, the Christie Administration negotiated an agreement with Exelon Corp. to shut down the reactor, which diverts massive volumes of cooling water from the Bay, rather than build a closed-cycle cooling system to reduce impacts to aquatic life. The deadline for shutdown is Dec. 31, 2019, ten years ahead of Oyster Creek's license expiration.

All bids for the independent expert position must be received by the Department no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Time on August 30, 2011. The RFP is available for review at
http://www.nj.gov/dep/barnegatbay/plan-oystercreek.htm

To read the Administrative Order signed by Commissioner Martin on May 6 that created the Advisory Panel, visit: http://www.nj.gov/dep/docs/ao201106.pdf

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