Ameren Missouri's request for a 20-year license renewal to operate the nuclear reactor at the Callaway Energy Center has been delayed but not rejected by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
The NRC ruling issued Tuesday suspended all 19 nuclear plant license renewals and all applications for new reactors throughout the nation after a federal appeals court ruling in Washington held that the NRC's plans for long-term storage of radioactive waste at nuclear plants throughout the nation is insufficient.
Ameren Missouri's request to renew the nuclear reactor's operating permit for another 20 years was one of those license requests that were delayed Tuesday but not rejected.
Ameren Missouri's current license to operate the nuclear reactor does not expire until 2024. The utility wants to renew the operating license until 2044.
In a statement issued late Wednesday afternoon, Ameren Missouri said the NRC order applies only to final license issuance and it understands all current licensing reviews and renewal proceedings will continue to move forward.
"We support the NRC's ongoing review of our license renewal application," the Ameren Missouri statement reported.
Nuclear power opponents cheered the NRC's decision.
Ed Smith, a spokesman for the Missouri Coalition for the Environment, said "Ameren literally has tons of radioactive waste piling up at the Callaway nuclear reactor with nowhere to go."
"It's reassuring that the court realizes the significance of the radioactive waste problem that has been accumulating for more than 40 years," Smith said.