Issue Date: July 11, 2011
Interim Nuclear Waste Storage Plan Offered
Responding to the Obama Administration’s decision to cancel plans for a permanent nuclear waste storage facility at Nevada’s Yucca Mountain, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) has introduced legislation (S. 1320) that would require the Department of Energy to create two temporary storage sites for spent nuclear fuel at unspecified locations. The interim repositories would centralize storage of spent fuel rods, which are currently held at individual nuclear power plants around the country in pools and dry casks. “This proposal addresses one of the most glaring failures of our national nuclear policy—what to do with the used nuclear fuel that is currently being stored at over 100 sites across the country,” says Murkowski, the top Republican on the Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee. “This legislation makes good on the federal government’s promise to provide a solution to the storage question,” she adds. Congress and the Administration are still trying to find a permanent location for spent nuclear fuel. Energy Secretary Steven Chu formally withdrew the government’s application for the Yucca Mountain storage site in early 2010, after President Barack Obama indicated in 2009 that he no longer supported the Nevada site.
- Chemical & Engineering News
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