More Money Needed For Yucca Mountain | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 93 Issue 11 | p. 23 | Concentrates
Issue Date: March 16, 2015

More Money Needed For Yucca Mountain

Department: Government & Policy
Keywords: Yucca Mountain, NRC, DOE, Appropriations, Congress, Nuclear Waste Fund

In its recent fiscal 2016 budget request, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission did not ask for funds it would need to finish licensing for the construction of Yucca Mountain, the nation’s proposed site for long-term nuclear waste storage. This absence raised eyebrows in a Senate appropriations hearing on March 4. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy & Water Development, suggested money could be made available to complete the licensing. The additional $330 million, if requested by the commission and provided by Congress, would cover the cost of hearings on construction and the completion of an environmental impact statement addressing groundwater issues, responded NRC Chairman Stephen G. Burns. The Department of Energy was asked to submit the impact statement in 2013 as part of its Yucca Mountain license application, but when DOE refused, NRC opted to complete the statement. The funds would not cover the cost of reviewing an operating license needed if the construction license were approved.

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