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Utah State regulators have safety concerns about plans to bury nuclear wastes

wastes-1Flag-USARegulators question plan to store depleted uranium in Utah By MICHELLE L. PRICE, Associated Press, April 13, 2015 SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — State regulators on Monday cited a number of concerns they need resolved before approving a plan to bury in Utah’s western desert a type of nuclear waste that grows more radioactive over a million years.

The Utah Department of Environmental Qualityreleased a 250-page report Monday that examines a plan from Salt Lake City-based EnergySolutions to store depleted uranium at its site about 80 miles west of Salt Lake City. The company said its plan would allow for it to safely bury the waste in a way that weathers changes in climate, civilization and other disruptions.

The state report highlights eight areas where regulators say EnergySolutions hasn’t answered enough questions about how the storage site will hold up in various scenarios, including large-scale geologic changes to the planet.

State officials had begun accepting public comment on the plan through May and may reconsider their conclusions based on that feedback. The division will also hold public meetings in Tooele and Salt Lake City in May……..

While the Monday report from Utah’s Department of Environmental Quality doesn’t make a final conclusion about the plan, some environmental groups said they’re hopeful about the state’s response.

Matt Pacenza, the executive director of HEAL Utah, said after reading the state report that he’s optimistic that regulators may lean toward rejecting the plan.

“You can’t possibly take waste that’s dangerous for two million years,” Pacenza said, “if you have a whole host of unanswered questions and huge gaps in scientific knowledge.” http://www.greenwichtime.com/news/science/article/Regulators-question-plan-to-store-depleted-6196824.php

April 15, 2015 - Posted by | USA, wastes

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