A federal appeals court panel ruled yesterday that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission acted properly in rejecting a bid for closer review of safety issues surrounding the renewal of the operating licenses for the Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant in southern Maryland. The NRC voted last month to extend the life of the Calvert Cliffs complex for another 20 years, the first such license extension in the nation. Opponents of the license renewal, including the National Whistleblower Center, argued that the NRC had rushed its decision without addressing certain safety questions or allowing adequate time for public input. The group plans to appeal the court’s decision, which it fears will give a boost to the nuclear power industry. Six more of the nation’s 103 operating nuclear reactors have filed for license renewals, and 21 more plan to do so by 2003.