Emergency Action Level (EAL) is an effective basis and criteria for nuclear power plant emergency classification which is a pre-determined, site specific, observable threshold for a plant initiating condition that places the plant in a given emergency classification level. Systematic approaches have built a set of generic EAL guidelines, together with the basis for each, such that they could be used and adapted by each utility on a consistent basis. EALs information is presented by Recognition Categories (RC), in which “A” Recognition Category refers to abnormal Rad levels/Radiological effluent. The methodology of EALs development is reviewed first and the technical bases for “A” Recognition Category according to classic EAL methodology, i.e. NEI 99-01 series and IAEA-TECDOC-955 are introduced. The statue of Chinese nuclear power plants’ “A” Recognition Category EALs development is summarized after that, which intends to raise some challenging questions for classic “A” Recognition Category EALs development. One opinion is that some “A” Recognition Category EALs in NEI 99-01 series are not conservative. To explain the reason, the discussion mainly focuses on the interpretation and comparison of NEI 99-01 and IAEA-TECDOC-955 technical bases. Finally, it is recommended to select one suitable guideline as reference when developing plant specific EALs.

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