The final rule amends the Commission's requirements for early site permits, standard design certifications, combined licenses for nuclear power plants, and for other licensing processes. The amendments are based on the NRC staff's experience with the previous design certification reviews and on discussions with stakeholders about the early site permit (ESP), design certification, and combined license (COL) processes. This action is expected to improve the effectiveness of the licensing processes for future applicants. The rulemaking also would make conforming clarifications and corrections to the NRC's regulations. The NRC has reorganized 10 CFR part 52 to establish a separate section for each of the licensing processes currently described in 10 CFR part 52 (early site permits, standard design certifications, standard design approvals, combined licenses, and manufacturing licenses). The purpose of this reorganization is to clarify that each licensing process has equal standing. The NRC has retitled 10 CFR part 52 as "Licenses, Certifications and Approvals for Nuclear Power Plants" to clarify that the licensing processes in 10 CFR part 52 are in addition to and supplement the two-step licensing process in 10 CFR part 50 and the license renewal process in 10 CFR part 54 and are not limited to the early site permit, standard design certification, and combined license processes as the current title implies. This rulemaking subsumed the rulemaking "Standardized Plant Designs, Early Review of Sites Suitability Issues; Clarifying Amendments" (RIN 3150-AE25) that would remove redundant appendices from part 50. The part 52 rulemaking plan (SECY-98-282) was approved by the Commission on January 14, 1999. As a result of the comments received and a number of other factors, the Commission decided that a substantial rewrite and expansion of the original rulemaking would be necessary to ensure that the entire body of NRC regulations is able to support the Agency's licensing and regulation of future nuclear power facilities under part 52.