An appellate court and a Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) board took actions recently that make it unlikely that the Department of Energy will reach its goal of completing a federal license application for the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository by this December. On Sept. 1, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia refused to hear an appeal by the Nuclear Energy Institute of an earlier decision that nullified the federal radiation standard for the repository (C&EN, July 19, page 5). Consequently, to move ahead on the repository, the federal government must develop a new radiation standard or Congress must pass legislation changing the law that determined how the standard was to be set. Or the nuclear trade group that lost the appeal could turn to the U.S. Supreme Court for a decision. Also, the NRC licensing board determined a week ago that DOE failed to meet a legal mandate that its documentary material for the repository be available to the public. Under law, the material must be publicly accessible six months before DOE submits its license application to NRC. DOE had certified that the material was available as of June 30 (July 12, C&EN, page 18). But the State of Nevada challenged that certification, saying the DOE-released data were incomplete. The licensing board agreed, and DOE has not decided if it will appeal the board's decision to the full NRC membership.