they must also stop making this radioactive trash
U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee to fight proposed Canadian nuclear waste facility on shores of Lake Huron M Live, By Sam Easter | firstname.lastname@example.org on August 28, 2014 BAY CITY, MI — Standing at the helm of the tall ship Appledore IV, U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee said the schooner based in downtown Bay City was the “perfect” place to make a few points about protecting the Great Lakes from nuclear waste.
Kildee spoke during the afternoon of Thursday, Aug. 28, addressing plans by Ontario Power Generation to build a storage facility for low- to intermediate-level nuclear waste at a proposed underground facility near Kincardine, Ontario.
“Canada is a friend, but it is a country with vast land mass, and I’m sure that the best place for a nuclear storage facility cannot be less than a mile from the shores of Lake Huron,” he said, regardless of whether officials say it’s scientifically sound. A point of contention among Michigan’s state and federal legislators for at least a year, the proposed facililty has also met strong opposition from local governments — officials from Bay County and Essexville both passed resolutions opposing the facility this month.
Kildee on Thursday announced he plant to introduce a Congressional resolution when legislators return from recess on Monday, Sept. 8, that — while lacking regulatory power — would voice the opinion of Congress on the matter. The resolution states that 40 million people in both countries depend on the Great Lakes’ drinking water, and that a nuclear spill “could have lasting and severely adverse environmental, health and economic impacts on the Great Lakes.”
If adopted, the resolution would discourage the Canadian government from building a nuclear storage site in the Great Lakes Basin and urge both President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry to work with their Canadian counterparts to find an alternate location……..
Multiple officials were present for Kildee’s announcement, including Laura Ogar, Bay County director of environmental affairs and community development, as well as Terry Miller, chairman of the local environmental group Lone Tree Council.
Shirley Roberts is the executive director of BaySail, which owns and operates the Appledore. She said that the Appledore was an appropriate place for the presentation, and that she support’s Kildee’s fight against the facility.
“I have grave concerns about the concept,” she said. http://www.mlive.com/news/bay-city/index.ssf/2014/08/us_rep_dan_kildee_announces_pl.html
USA Nuclear permits to resume , as NRC renews its religious faith in a future solution to radioactive trash problem
U.S. to Resume Nuclear Permits, Relicensing on Waste Rule http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-08-26/u-s-to-resume-nuclear-permits-relicensing-on-waste-rule.html
The commission approved a final rule addressing the environmental effects of storing spent nuclear fuel at a plant site, satisfying a court order that it needed to consider the possibility a permanent underground waste repository may never be built in the U.S., according to a statement today.
The Court of Appeals struck down the agency’s “waste confidence” rule in June 2012, saying the regulator also needed to do further studies on spent fuel pool leaks and fires. The agency suspended final licensing decisions on new reactors as well as license renewals for plants and storage facilities while it formulated its response. That suspension will be lifted once the final storage rule becomes effective, 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.
“The completion of this rulemaking is an important step that will facilitate final decisions on industry licensing actions pending,” Ellen Ginsberg, general counsel for the Washington-based industry group the Nuclear Energy Institute, said in a statement.
There are currently eight applications to build reactors awaiting agency action, according to its website. About 74 percent of the 100 operating U.S. reactors have been relicensed, allowing them to operate 20 years beyond their original 40-year lifespan.
To contact the reporter on this story: Mark Chediak in San Francisco at email@example.com
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Susan Warren at firstname.lastname@example.orgTina Davis, Robin Saponar
they must just stop making this trash!
South Korea running out of space for nuclear waste http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-08-18/south-korea-running-out-of-space-for-nuclear-waste/5679626 South Korea is running out of space to store its spent nuclear fuel, with some of its storage facilities set to reach capacity by 2016, according to an independent body that advises the government on nuclear issues.
A Public Engagement Commission, consisting of nuclear experts, professors, and officials, was set up in October 2013 to take account of public opinion on spent nuclear fuel issues and feed into policy decisions.
Commission chairman Hong Doo-seung says it is urgent to find more storage sites for spent fuel.
“We will have to stop nuclear power generation if we fail to find additional temporary space, Continue reading
Presley to Obama: Mississippi doesn’t want nuclear waste POLITICAL LEDGER Geoff Pender, The Clarion-Ledger10 August 19, 2014 Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley has forwarded to President Obama resolutions passed by the PSC in opposition to storing nuclear waste in Mississippi.
Last year, federal officials considering alternatives to plans to store the nation’s nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, mentioned Mississippi’s salt domes as a possible option. At the time, the Mississippi Energy Institute issued a report that said creating a nuclear waste center in Mississippi would “serve as a platform for significant opportunities … to develop a massive nuclear energy industry center in the state of Mississippi.”
Presley said that more recently, Assistant Secretary of Nuclear Energy Peter Lyons was quoted as calling Mississippi one of “the most public of potential hosts to express interest in taking high-level waste.”
Presley, Northern District commissioner with the three-member PSC, this week sent Obama recent unanimously-passed PSC resolutions opposing permanent nuclear waste storage in Mississippi, …….http://www.clarionledger.com/story/politicalledger/2014/08/19/nuclear-waste-presley-psc/14283689/
Lake Huron nuclear dump scheme in trouble Hamilton Spectator by Thomas Walkom 7 Aug 14, Ontario’s plan to bury nuclear waste beside Lake Huron is running into heavy weather.
Ontario Power Generation, the Crown corporation behind the proposed dump site for low and intermediate level radioactive waste, has publicly acknowledged that its long-term safety plans are based, in part, on new technologies that have not yet been invented.
As the Star’s John Spears reported this week, that explanation hasn’t endeared itself to the small but politically important aboriginal communities near the proposed Kincardine dump site.
In a brief to the federal review panel that will eventually rule on the plan, the Saugeen Ojibway Nation reminds OPG of its assurance that no nuclear waste dump will be built without aboriginal consent
Will that consent be given? The first nation doesn’t say. But in its brief, it does express profound unease with what it calls OPG’s vague and open-ended scheme.
Plans for this so-called deep geological repository at Kincardine have been in the works since 2005.
Initially, the proposed dump was supposed to house waste such as the rubber gloves used by nuclear workers — items with relatively low levels of radioactivity.
Right now, nuclear waste from Ontario atomic power generating plants is stored on the surface.
But once federal hearings started last fall, OPG changed tack. It announced it wanted to double the size of the underground dump to roughly 400,000 cubic metres in order to accommodate waste that will be produced when the province’s existing nuclear plants are taken apart.
This so-called decommissioning waste, which includes components such as pressure tubes (but not nuclear fuel), will remain highly radioactive for thousands of years.
Critics cried foul. The three-member federal panel hearing the proposal ordered OPG to better explain how it would handle this more difficult waste.
It also told the Crown utility to look into why a similar U.S. nuclear waste facility near Carlsbad New Mexico — cited by dump proponents as a model — suffered two accidents in February……….http://www.thespec.com/opinion-story/4737032-lake-huron-nuclear-dump-scheme-in-trouble/
Y-12: Poster child for a dysfunctional nuclear weapons complex Robert Alvarez, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists 6 Aug 14 “……The United States halted production of new nuclear weapons in 1989, with the end of the Cold War. But the US nuclear weapons complex—composed of eight key facilities that have an annual budget exceeding $8 billion—has stumbled on, in the form of a massive, decaying empire that in many cases does its work poorly or dangerously, or both. The Y-12 National Security Complex is the poster child for much of what ails the weapons complex. Although Y-12 has not produced weapons for some 25 years, its annual budgets have increased by nearly 50 percent since 1997, to more than $1 billion a year.
For decades, the Energy Department—which manages the weapons complex through the National Nuclear Security Agency (NNSA)—has not been able to reconcile competing objectives at the 811-acre Y-12 site, whether they involve storage areas for HEU and other fissile materials, the restarting of old weapons facilities, environmental cleanup, the building of new weapons facilities, or the downsizing of the site. As a result, costs have significantly increased, and long-standing problems have continued, unresolved, for years that have run into decades. For every dollar spent to maintain and modernize the US nuclear weapons stockpile, nearly three dollars is spent “to provide the underlying infrastructure” for maintenance and modernization at Y-12.
Long-term secrecy and isolation have created a dangerous form of hoarding at Y-12; a panoply of severe hazards continues to build up, constantly awaiting ever more costly mitigation in the future. But the stark reality is that there are no more cans to kick down the road. Y-12 has inexorably caught up with its future. Its environmental and security problems are too threatening to leave unaddressed, and questions about its mission will have to be answered definitively in an age of budgetary austerity and relatively little need for new nuclear weapons…….
During its heyday, Y-12 produced some 1,000 CSAs per year. Now, its annual production capacity has dwindled to less than 100. Though the NNSA declares that Y-12 has multiple missions, including non-proliferation efforts that involve the downblending of HEU and the provision of fuel for the Navy’s nuclear-powered submarines, nearly 99 percent of its budget comes from funds dedicated to maintain the US nuclear weapons stockpile. More than anything, Y-12 serves to stockpile thousands of CSAs from discarded nuclear weapons, as well as depleted uranium, lithium, and other hazardous chemicals…….. the Government Accountability Office finds that “NNSA’s decision to retain many CSAs … poses significant challenges to Y-12’s ability to plan its disassembly workload.” Although exact numbers have been classified since the 1990s, there are likely several thousand excess CSAs, containing hundreds of tons of HEU, awaiting dismantlement at Y-12. ……
Around New Year’s Eve of 1996, a long-awaited vulnerability assessment of HEU storage at Energy Department sites was released. Y-12 had the most significant problems. Even though fires posed the greatest danger of radiation and chemical exposure to workers and the public, buildings, mostly constructed in the 1940’s, had deteriorated and had insufficient or non-existent fire-protection systems, despite the very real possibility of a truly catastrophic fire and resulting release of radiation. It wasn’t until 14 years later that a replacement facility for the aged wooden structure serving as the main HEU storage warehouse was opened; it cost five times the original construction estimate. That facility gained notoriety in August 2012, after nonviolent peace protestors, including an 84-year-old nun, penetrated its security barriers……..
From 1997 to 2006, there were 21 fires and explosions at Y-12 involving electrical equipment, glove boxes, pumps, waste containers, and nuclear and hazardous chemicals. Several resulted in worker injuries and destruction of property. ……….. In March 2014, a large portion of a concrete ceiling collapsedin a building that was once part of the weapons operation. It was a near miss: Foot-long concrete pieces bounced onto walkways and an area where welders had been working just a day before. …..
In April 2014, the NNSA released a “red team” report, led by the director of Oak Ridge National Laboratory, on the troubled UPF. The team’s most significant recommendation was to rethink a basic, “big-box” approach that would create a UPF to serve multiple functions in one structure. Instead, to hold the line at an estimated $6.5 billion for design and construction costs, the team recommended going back to the drawing board to effectively reduce the size and scope of the project. Meanwhile, in recognition of the growing hazards associated with a deteriorating infrastructure for storing “materials at risk,” the team recommended that greater emphasis should be given to safe consolidated storage of materials, deferred maintenance, and safety upgrading……….
Regardless of the wisdom of or need for an asteroid-protection program, the future of Y-12 should be focused on earthly realities: cleaning up the environment, decontamination and decommissioning of facilities, stabilizing nuclear and other hazardous materials, and the dismantlement of a large excess stockpile of weapons components. There is a very real need to replace the collapsing infrastructure at Y-12 with facilities that can accomplish these goals.
Protecting the planet from asteroids is a poor rationale for failing to deal with the environmental, safety, financial, and health challenges the Y-12 site poses to the people who live in the area, and to the country as a whole. http://thebulletin.org/y-12-poster-child-dysfunctional-nuclear-weapons-complex7361
Lab Director: Expect radiation spikes coming from US nuclear facility — Gov’t pays for more air monitors to see impact on populated areas — DOE warns of ‘ignitability’ of 368 containers at site; “Significant fire risk” — Top Official: Material at WIPP “just disintegrated… got very hot, very quickly” (VIDEO) http://enenews.com/lab-director-radiation-spikes-expected-nuclear-facility-govt-pays-air-monitors-impact-populated-areas-doe-ignitability-368-containers-wipp-underground-significant-fire-risk-top-official-mater
Dept. of Energy – Carlsbad, NM Field Office (pdf), July 30, 2014: The purpose of this letter is to provide you [New Mexico Environmental Dept.] written notice that the Department of Energy [is] provisionally applying EPA Hazardous Waste Number (code) D001** for the characteristic of ignitability to some nitrate salt bearing waste containers that have been disposed at the WIPP facility. […] This affects up to 368 containers […] in the underground WIPP facility […] The Permittees plan to implement the [plan] to expedite closure of Panel 6 and Panel 7, Room 7 so that a potential release […] will not pose a threat to human health or the environment.
** “Significant fire risk due either to their low flash point, ability to self-combust and burn, or are able to combust or support combustion” -EPA hazardous waste specialist Daniel Stoehr
Reuters, July 26, 2014: A team of government investigators has turned its attention to Los Alamos in recent days […] to determine whether additional barrels are affected, said [New Mexico Senator Peter Wirth]. “We’re making progress in determining what happened. Now we are much more focused on the scope,” he said.
Minutes of the New Mexico Legislature (pdf), published June 26, 2014: In further explaining what occurred [at WIPP, NMED Secretary Ryan] Flynn said that the material holding the bags of magnesium oxide together that had been on top of the drums just disintegrated. By all indications, he added, the area got very hot very quickly […]
Carlsbad, NM Town Hall, July 24, 2014:
- 37:30 in – Question: Is Dr. Hardy saying that radiation from contaminated ventilation system will continue to be released to the environment periodically? Russell Hardy, director of the Carlsbad Environmental Monitoring & Research Center: That is Dr. Hardy’s assumption… we will probably see spikes at Station B, as contamination… makes its way out of the repository.
- 52:30 in – Hardy: We did receive additional funding from DOE to expand our ambient air sampling sites… very soon we will be deploying 3 additional ambient air sampling towers… one will be here in Carlsbad… we think those 3 additions will give us much better coverage in the future with respect to how this release — or the potential for future releases — may impact the area.
A proposal for radioactive waste to appear at a burial site nearby, would be likely to fill the great majority of the UK population with thoughts of danger, cancer – and falling house prices. This illustrates the huge problem of public misperception to overcome when disposing of radioactive waste. Britain’s nuclear reactors have generated low-carbon electricity since 1956, in doing so creating around 260,000m3 (about the size of 700 double-decker buses) of intermediate-level wasteand 3,000m3 of highly radioactive high-level waste, as well as spent fuel, plutonium and uranium. The price for decommissioning past and existing nuclear power plant and disposing of that waste is around £70 billion – the single largest item of expenditure for the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change.
What to do with radioactive waste is a problem that has so far proved to be intractable to successive generations of civil servants and ministers. In the mid-1970s, it was decided that deep burial would provide the optimum secure solution.
Here, radioactive waste would be packaged and contained for one million years, sealed by multiple chemical and physical barriers within a repository dug out around 500 metres below ground level. A serious attempt was made to investigate a site in West Cumbria close to Sellafield in the 1990’s, but that foundered on the complexity of the geology and flow of deep groundwater, making it difficult to predict how well sealed the waste would be into the far future……….
Another review and public consultation was undertaken during 2013-14, from which emerged the White Paper “Implementing Geological Disposal” published in July 2014. The results show the government has done some serious listening, and it provides some distinctly new approaches.
First, a new body Radioactive Waste Management Ltd will be created to pursue a disposal site. The company will be wholly owned by the government and could propose more than one facility for different types of waste. This has been tried in the 1980s and 1990s with UK Nirex – a limited company wholly owned by UK government, which spent £400m investigating just one site. Can you spot any difference? So how this operates will be more important than the definition.
Second, the government states it is keen to “listen and respond to views and concerns”. Yet in the future this search will now become defined as a nationally significant infrastructure project, which means that many powers of local people to decide or influence could be restricted or removed. Specifically, the control and influence of local councils has been removed, combined with a statement that no tier of government will have the right to veto a project. So the responsibility of regional council authorities for managing this waste, and the associated road and rail and excavation infrastructure is also removed.
Third, the search for a site will become national, with a two-year period of geological survey and screening to identify suitable regions (not specific sites). Identifying secure regions may become difficult if the extensive fracking of England goes ahead for shale gas and oil, as, any effect on the underlying geology could affect a site’s long term secure storage potential………
Potentially the most significant statement of all comes from the secretary of state for energy and climate change, Ed Davey, stating that arrangements for waste disposal have to be in place before planning consent will be given for new nuclear power stations. Does this mean that one or more sites need to be specifically identified before construction can start on the new nuclear reactors planned at Hinkley Point and elsewhere? If formal discussions with new volunteers do not even start until 2016, and could conclude as late as 2030 – by which time Hinkley Point C should be generating power – that seems impossible.
Perhaps ministers of the future be satisfied merely to know that the UK “has a plan”? If the past is any guide to the future, relying on such a plan didn’t help to find a nuclear mausoleum in 1978, 1996, or 2012. https://theconversation.com/britains-nuclear-waste-a-problem-proving-hard-to-bury-29917
Written statement to Parliament UK
Publication of Implementing Geological Disposal White Paper 2014
- Department of Energy & Climate Change and The Rt Hon Edward Davey MP
- Delivered on:
- 22 July 2014
- Published 24 July 2014
- Part of:
- Managing the use and disposal of radioactive and nuclear substances and waste, Energy, Environment and Public safety and emergencies
- Statement by Edward Davey on the publication of a white paper on geological disposal.
I am today publishing a White Paper on implementing geological disposal of higher activity radioactive waste.The White Paper – Implementing Geological Disposal -follows a public consultation that my department carried out during 2013 on potential amendments to the existing siting process established in 2008 for a geological disposal facility (GDF) and reflects key messages from that consultation, as well as lessons learned during the previous siting process.
The UK Government remains committed to geological disposal as the right policy for the long-term, safe and secure management of higher activity radioactive waste……….
- ……….With regard to new nuclear power, UK Government policy is that, before development consents for new nuclear power stations are granted, I will need to be satisfied that effective arrangements exist or will exist to manage and dispose of the waste they will produce…….
- The White Paper is issued jointly by the UK Government and the Northern Ireland Executive. The Welsh Government is currently considering a wider review of its higher activity radioactive waste management policy. The Scottish Government has a separate higher activity radioactive policy.
Today I am also publishing the latest annual report on the geological disposal programme, covering April 2013 to March 2014. This will be laid in the libraries of the House. https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/publication-of-implementing-geological-disposal-white-paper-2014
And delays keep piling up even though at least a third of the aging tanks storing 56 million gallons radioactive waste have leaked or are leaking, pouring some of the world’s most dangerous contaminants into the Columbia River.
Yet the treatment plant to create safe storage for all that waste—which will remain radioactive for hundreds of thousands of years—still isn’t built. It should have been finished three years ago. And the Environmental Protection Agency is skeptical that the plant’s current completion date of 2022 will be met.
Only Another 40 Years to Go The plant is a crucial part of a wider remediation job that’s decades from being done, according to Dennis Faulk, the EPA’s program manager for Hanford
“I think we have another 40 years to go,” Faulk told WhoWhatWhy. “And another $100 billion will be needed over that time.” It costs about $2 billion a year to keep cleaning.
The EPA oversees and enforces the cleanup efforts, which are carried out by the Department of Energy and the contractors it hires. Both Congress and the Department of Energy itself have given those efforts a failing grade.
The Department of Energy’s internal watchdog last year blamed the department and the contractor that’s building the plant, Bechtel National Inc., for the delays. The Department of Energy’s oversight lacked focus and Bechtel implemented scores of design changes without subjecting them to the required nuclear safety review, according to a report from the department’s Inspector General.
Congress’ Government Accountability Office was harsher. It recommended shutting down construction until the design work is completed safely, and said the Department of Energy was prematurely awarding millions in performance incentives to Bechtel. Meanwhile, Bechtel and another contractor are fighting whistleblower lawsuits from two former employees, and guess who’s paying for their legal fees? The Department of Energy is.
All of those complications are worsened by the fact that the search for waste keeps turning up surprises, like nearly 100 pieces of spent fuel found in Native American burial grounds. So as the Herculean task creeps forward, occasional new contamination findings like that add time to the clock, which means the projected completion dates are really only theoretical.
Hanford wasn’t built with an abundance of forethought. The job of making weapons-grade plutonium came first. Everything else, like planning for the waste and telling people about the release of radioactive materials, came second.
Most critical work on the plant has been shut down………..http://chasvoice.blogspot.com.au/2014/07/after-40-billion-americas-biggest.html
According to online newspaper, local residents did not agree to the initial plan and refused to sell their lands, even though most of them are located within 20 kilometers (12 miles) of the Fukushima-1 power plant and are still considered unfit for habitation due to their high levels of radioactive contamination.
The Japanese Environment Ministry decided to lease the land for a 30-year period instead.
Environment Minister Nobuteru Ishihara and Reconstruction Minister Takumi Nemoto explained the new proposal in a meeting with Fukushima Governor Yuhei Sato and the mayors of Okuma and Futaba, whose towns were selected as interim storage facilities……… researchers found radioactive cesium fallout in Fukushima plants and animals. http://en.ria.ru/world/20140729/191432845/Japan-Gives-Up-Plan-to-Buy-Fukushima-Lands-for-Nuclear-Waste.html
the only sane thing is to stop making the stuff
Waste Confidence Final Rule Now Before the Commission http://public-blog.nrc-gateway.gov/2014/07/24/waste-confidence-final-rule-now-before-the-commission/ July 24, 2014 Andy Imboden Communications Branch Chief Waste Confidence Directorate
After thousands of public comments, dozens of meetings and hundreds of written pages, the NRC Commissioners are now deliberating the draft final rule and draft generic environmental impact statement on the continued storage of spent nuclear fuel – what used to be called “waste confidence.”
Under NRC procedures, and in support of our agency’s transparency and openness goals, we are making three documents including the draft final rule and environmental impact statement available – you can find them on the NRC’swaste confidence webpage:
- A staff paper, SECY-14-0072: Final Rule: Continued Storage of Spent Nuclear Fuel;
- A draft Federal Register notice on the final rule; and
- A draft NUREG-2157: Generic Environmental Impact Statement for Continued Storage of Spent Nuclear Fuel – Final Report (GEIS).
To be clear, the draft final rule and draft GEIS are not yet final and are not for public comment. NUREG-2157 includes a lengthy Appendix D that summarizes and responds to more than 33,000 written comments we received when the draft GEIS and proposed rule were published for comment last year. They are “draft final” documents because they need Commission approval before they become final agency action. The Commission may approve, modify, or disapprove them.
Some important points to remember: The final Continued Storage rule represents a generic finding on the environmental impacts of continued storage of spent nuclear fuel beyond the licensed operating life of a reactor. It does not license or approve any storage facility or any nuclear power reactors. The facilities are licensed – or licenses are renewed – based on site-specific application reviews.
The rule is to be used as a part of the overall environmental review for new reactor license applications, current reactor renewal applications, and spent fuel storage facility license reviews in these site-specific proceedings. The GEIS serves as the regulatory basis for the rule, and does not replace the staff’s comprehensive environmental review in individual licensing proceedings.
The name change from “waste confidence” to “continued storage” is just one way the new rule differs from previous versions, including the 2010 version that was struck down by the D.C. Circuit U.S. Appeals Court. (That ruling two years ago prompted the current rulemaking effort.) The name change and other changes are in part due to public comment, and are further explained in the staff paper and the Federal Register notice. The latter also includes an extensive question-and-answer section about the staff’s review and conclusions.
Communities could be paid £40m for considering nuclear waste dump Damian Carrington The Guardian, Thursday 24 July 2014 Renewed effort to find site for underground disposal site will not allow veto for any one level of local government Local communities could be paid over £40m by government for simply considering the building of an underground nuclear waste disposal facility in their area, ministers announced on Thursday.
The renewed effort to find a permanent solution for the UK’s growing stockpile of nuclear waste comes after Cumbria council vetoed a proposed waste dump site in January 2013. But the new approach will not allow any one level of local government to veto future site decisions.
The plan allows for communities to get up to £1m a year for about five years whilst local consultations take place. If the community moves to accepting exploratory drilling, which would take five to 15 years, they would get up to £2.5m a year, meaning a total of over £40m before a decision is taken on whether or not to build the waste burial facility.
Additional and much higher community investment would follow a decision to build the facility. There is no cap on the number of communities that could apply for local consultation.
The Liberal Democrat energy secretary, Ed Davey, said: “Geological disposal provides the secure, long-term solution we need to deal with the radioactive waste we have been creating for more than 60 years.
“Building and running a geological disposal facility will be a multi-billion pound infrastructure project, which will bring significant economic benefits to a community.” He said the new process was “based on a fundamental principle of listening to people”.
But the plan was immediately attacked by the president of the LibDems, Tim Farron, who is a Cumbrian MP. “The geological disposal facility should not be foisted on a community without their wholehearted support. The mooted plans to remove the veto for local councils against a nuclear repository is undemocratic and makes an absolute mockery of the idea of localism.”
Anti-nuclear campaigners dismissed the “no-strings-attached” payments to local communities as “bribes”.
Following the government’s failure to persuade Cumbria to accept a deep nuclear waste disposal site, the new plan represents another return to the drawing board. Ministers have been trying without success to find a suitable site for over two decades.
David Cameron said in 2007: “The problems of nuclear waste have not been dealt with and they have got to be dealt with to make any new investment possible.” However, the government has already given the green light for a new EDF nuclear power station at Hinkley Point in Somerset…………http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/jul/24/communities-could-be-paid-40m-for-considering-nuclear-waste-dump
Chalk River nuclear shipments opposed in Washington, Ottawa Citizen, IAN MACLEOD July 25, 2014 A New York congressman says the proposed trucking of intensely radioactive liquid waste from Chalk River to the United States could cause a “mobile Chernobyl” in the event of a spill while crossing the border at Buffalo.
Representative Brian Higgins brought the issue to the floor of the House Thursday, calling on the Department of Energy to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) before the contentious shipments are allowed to proceed.
“An EIS provides a roadmap to make informed decisions on proposals and is especially warranted given the volatile substance and significant impact area involved in this case,” Higgins said in a statement.
“Without a comprehensive review and plan, they are setting us up for a mobile Chernobyl,” a reference to the 1986 nuclear accident in Ukraine.
The exact route of the proposed shipments is secret, but one of the most direct would cross the Peace Bridge linking Fort Erie, Ontario and Buffalo.
Higgins, a Democrat representing western New York State, also has written to Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz warning that a major contamination on or near the bridge would have dire health and economic consequences. The Buffalo-Niagara region, “sits along two Great Lakes which represent the largest fresh water supply in the world and serves as the centre point of a 500-mile (800-kilometre) radius that includes approximately 55 per cent of the U.S. population and 62 per cent of the Canadian population.
“It is the responsibility of the Department of Energy and all relevant agencies involved in the process to thoroughly assess the safety of this action.”
The planned armed convoys of trucks are to haul specially-designed steel casks containing 23,000 litres of highly-radioactive liquid to the Savannah River Site nuclear complex in Aiken, South Carolina for down-blending into low-enriched uranium fuel feedstock for U.S. commercial power reactors.
Based on U.S. government documents, it would take at least 179 shipments to move the entire contents over the course of at least a few years. U.S. federal budgetary estimates suggest the shipments would begin next year. None would take place in winter.
If approved by regulators on both sides of the border, it would be the first time authorities have trucked highly-enriched uranium (HEU) in a liquid solution. That has prompted nuclear safety advocacy groups to sound the alarm for greater government scrutiny. They say the weapons-grade HEU should be denatured and the liquid waste disposed of in Canada………
A crucial consideration is understanding the liquid’s unique material characteristics. It is now securely stored in a fortified, in-ground tank at Chalk River and carefully monitored, mixed and warmed to prevent the HEU particles from solidifying and – in a worst-case scenario – potentially achieving a self-sustaining chain reaction of fissioning atoms called criticality.
The energy and heat from such a chain reaction could potentially rupture the tank, release the solution into the environment and endanger anyone nearby. http://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/chalk-river-nuclear-shipments-opposed-in-washington
Communities could be paid £40m for considering nuclear waste dump Damian Carrington The Guardian, Thursday 24 July 2014 “……..The government said the new approach to waste disposal will involve two years of work to come up with a “more sophisticated” process by which the views of local communities affect decision taking, but it said the ability of a council to veto had gone.
“All levels of local government must be involved but we are keen that no one level has an absolute veto,” said a spokeswoman for the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc).
She said the new plan would give communities access to independent advice. “We hope putting in place these actions will mean volunteer communities will understand better what it is all about,” she said. “One of the lessons from our [Cumbria] experience and experience internationally is that the immediate reaction is negative, because ‘nuclear must be bad’, but once people to get to dig into the detail they get more positive.”
Construction of the underground waste dump, sited between 250m and 1000m down, will then take 10-15 years, meaning it could be almost 2050 before any waste is buried.
Germany, Sweden, Finland and the US are currently considering deep geological disposal for nuclear waste. The UK currently has around 600,000 cubic metres of nuclear waste, enough to fill the Royal Albert Hall six times over. Waste from any new nuclear plants will be more concentrated and current government projection for new reactors would mean another two more Albert Halls’ worth.
The UK underground waste site is estimated to cost £12bn, more than the £9bn Olympic Games in London in 2012. The government says the sum is already accounted for in spending plans of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority.
Despite extensive previous geological examination, a new national screening process will take place to identify suitable regions, but it will not pinpoint a site.
The chair of the campaign group Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA), councillor Mark Hackett, said: “NFLA welcomes the new policy of carrying out a national geological screening exercise, rather than assuming waste can be buried near Cumbria where the geology has been shown to be unsuitable. We also welcome the idea of assisting communities to obtain independent third party expertise………
Craig Bennett, at Friends of the Earth, said: “We’re still not even close to figuring out an adequate solution for the nuclear industry’s legacy of toxic radioactive waste. The fact that the government is now having to offer bribes to communities to even talk to them, while making it clear they will override their views anyway, makes it crystal clear that this is a technology of the past, not the future. UK governments have wasted immense amounts of money and political effort on nuclear power down the years. If even half of that had been put into renewables and energy efficiency, we’d all be in a much better place”.
Greenpeace UK’s Louise Hutchins said: “This is a bullying and bribing approach by a government that is getting desperate about solving this problem. First David Cameron reneged on his promise [on nuclear waste], now he’s resorting to bribing reluctant communities.”http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/jul/24/communities-could-be-paid-40m-for-considering-nuclear-waste-dump
- 1 NUCLEAR ISSUES
- business and costs
- climate change
- indigenous issues
- marketing of nuclear
- opposition to nuclear
- politics international
- Religion and ethics
- secrets,lies and civil liberties
- weapons and war
- 2 WORLD
- MIDDLE EAST
- NORTH AMERICA
- SOUTH AMERICA
- Christina's notes
- Christina's themes
- rare earths
- resources – print
- Resources -audiovicual