Featured post

FWD: DOE Authorizes “Low Level” Mobile Chernobyl to Former NTS

Test run signals start of nuclear waste shipments to Nevada
[Steve Tetreault, Las Vegas [NV] Review Journal Washington Bureau, 2015-05-04]

<< WASHINGTON – After 18 months of delay to address the worries of state officials, the Department of Energy said Monday night it will ship potent uranium waste from a federal laboratory in Tennessee for disposal in Nevada.// Officials did not give a time-line for when the shipments will begin from the Oak Ridge National Laboratory to the Area 5 landfill at the Nevada National Security Site, 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas.// … The Oak Ridge waste was classified as “low level” but would be as much as 1,500 times more radioactive than contaminated debris usually buried at the Area 5 landfill. The heavily shielded waste canisters must be handled by remote-control cranes. >>

<< Contact Steve Tetreault at stetreault@reviewjournal.com or 202-783-1760. Find him on Twitter: @STetreaultDC. >>

< reviewjournal.com/news/nevada/test-run-signals-start-nuclear-waste-shipments-nevada >

– – –

ADDENDUM:

Vegas mayor will lie down on highway to block nuke shipments
[James DeHaven, Las Vegas Review-Journal, 2015-05-05]

< reviewjournal.com/politics/government/vegas-mayor-will-lie-down-highway-block-nuke-shipments >

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Genetic Damage from Radiation Continues into Second Generation

It’s Not Just Cancer! Radiation, Genomic Instability and Heritable Genetic Damage – Chris Busby, Counterpunch – 2016-03-18

[ New study examines neonatal mortality rates *and* the fact that genetic damage is not greatly diluted in the *second* generation. ]

<< Those who fear the effects of radiation always focus on cancer. But the most frightening and serious consequences of radiation are genetic. ... >>

counterpunch.org/2016/03/18/ts-not-just-cancer-radiation-genomic-instability-and-heritable-genetic-damage

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Plutonium from Japan Bound for WIPP (2016-04-02)

Plutonium from Japan to be disposed of underground in New Mexico – KYODO – APR 2, 2016
<< U.S.-bound plutonium that has recently been shipped out of Japan will be disposed of at a nuclear waste repository in New Mexico [WIPP] after being processed at the Savannah River Site facility in South Carolina, according to an official of the National Nuclear Security Administration. ... >>

< japantimes.co.jp/news/2016/04/02/national/politics-diplomacy/plutonium-japan-disposed-underground-new-mexico/ >

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DOE’s “deep borehole disposal” scheme targets AZ…

… & 25 other states for high-level waste dumps!

<< ...Battelle Memorial Institute of Columbus, OH -- has been awarded a $35 million taxpayer funded contract to drill a deep borehole, more than three miles down, into the crystalline granite of Rugby, ND. >> [ a test site for additional high level nuclear waste storage, what Beyond Nuclear refers to as a “nuclear rabbit hole” ]

<< ...each of the Lower 48 states is under consideration for the second high-level radioactive waste dump. 25 of those states are being targeted because of their granite geology. >> << Supporting references identify eight additional states under consideration by the crystalline rock program as having granitic bodies that could be adequate for investigation for siting a repository for the second repository program: [Washington; Idaho; Arizona; Wyoming; Texas; Alabama; South Dakota; Oklahoma.] (page 11, or 15 of 20 on the PDF counter) >>

Full article at: < http://www.beyondnuclear.org/radioactive-waste-whatsnew/2016/1/5/the-latest-radioactive-rabbit-hole-does-deep-borehole-dispos.html >

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GUARDIAN: NV Low Level Nukewaste Fire & Lax Oversight

Radioactive waste dump fire reveals Nevada site’s troubled past
Property that burned had regulatory troubles and lax oversight since the 1970s
Investigators taking closer look at federal and local records
< theguardian.com/us-news/2015/oct/25/radioactive-waste-dump-fire-reveals-nevada-troubled-pastt >

<< The operator of a closed radioactive waste dump that caught fire in southern Nevada last weekend was troubled over the years by leaky shipments and oversight so lax that employees took contaminated tools and building materials home, according to state and federal records. >>

<< US Ecology, formerly known as Nuclear Engineering, said this week the Nevada radiological waste facility operated “under a different name and different ownership”, and referred questions about the fire to state officials. Nuclear Engineering changed its name to US Ecology in 1981. >>

– – –

[ US Ecology has offices in PHX AX & Beatty NV as well as in Mexico, Texas and other states outside the SW US. It is not known whether the AZ office is involved in handling of nuclear materials. ]

< usecology.com/Locations/LocationsMap.aspx >

– – –

Addendum:

Date: Sun, 25 Oct 2015 13:18:23 -0600
Subject: Re: Sandia MWL Audit – Fire&Explosion Potential
From: Susan Schuurman <***>
To: David Mccoy <***>

On Sun, Oct 25, 2015 at 8:52 AM, David Mccoy <> wrote:

10/25/2015
Inspector General,

mynews4.com/news/local/story/Explosion-near-Nevada-nuclear-storage-site-watch/02psYlpQfEOFPkiPtwcmVw.cspx

The above video is of a low level nuclear waste dump explosion and fire at Beatty Nevada that occurred October 19, 2015. The dump is very similar to the Mixed Waste Landfill at Sandia National Laboratories. Disposal sheets and SNL memoranda for the MWLÂ show it contains metallic sodium in combination with high level nuclear waste from nuclear reactor meltdown tests, atomic bomb test experiment materials and nuclear rocket testing. Two uranium fires have already occurred at the MWL. A recent hearing officer report for the MWL for corrective action complete entirely ignores the presence of high level nuclear waste in the MWL and the potential for fires and explosions. The report ignores citizen concerns for the long-term dangers for the community that are only too possible as shown in the video.

As shown by the video, dirt covers do not protect against these kind of mixed wastes. Also ignored is the fact that the MWL lies above Albuquerque’s drinking water aquifer that is already severely contaminated from plumes of Ethylene Dibromide, Nitrate, Trichlorethylene, and petroleum hydrocarbons from a jet fuel spill at Kirtland AFB. It is time for the New Mexico Environment Department, Department of Energy and Sandia Labs to protect the public from the illegally disposed high level nuclear mixed waste at the MWL by excavation and safe storage.

Please add the video and this letter to the file for the MWL Audit.

Thank you.

Dave McCoy, Executive Director
Citizen Action New Mexico
818 448-9981

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Cyberattacks can really mess up our electric grid… SO Let’s just do nothing about them

(#1- 2015-09-15) Power Grids May Be Vulnerable to Cyber Attack THEREFORE (#2- 2015-09-25) Utilities Push to Weaken Proposed Security Standards

[Basically: overkill! , costs too much! , you don’t have authority! , can’t make us do it! , NYAA! NYAA! NYAA!] [One of many big questions asks what cyber attacks would to the grid infrastructure preventing nuclear power plants from melting down. I guess our safety is just too expensive and they’re protected from public liability for mistakes with our tax money footing the bill.]

#1: Are state power grids safe from cyber attacks? < wtnh.com/2015/09/15/are-state-power-grids-safe-from-cyber-attacks/ >

#2: Utility industry casts doubt on FERC’s proposed cyber standards < utilitydive.com/news/utility-industry-casts-doubt-on-fercs-proposed-cyber-standards/406253/ >

San Onofre: Radioactive Recklessness and More Radioactive Recklessness

(#1- 2015-09-22) Coverup Discovered on Mishandled Radioactive Materials at San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant THEREFORE (#2- 2015-10-06) CA Coastal Commission Approves Long Term On-Site Storage.

[ The “logic” totally escapes me! Of course, it’s totally reckless whether storing it onsite or transporting it inland to the “desert.” The only truly sane solution is to stop making the stuff and perhaps move what’s onsite at all the nuclear material sites the shortest distance possible to a less unsafe location. ]

#1: Documents Detail How Nuclear Material Was Handled at San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station – Expert tells NBC 7 Investigates handling of nuclear material was “sloppy” < nbcsandiego.com/news/local/Documents-Detail-How-Nuclear-Material-Was-Handled-at-San-Onofre-328292351.html >

#2: Coastal Commission Approves Storing Nuclear Waste at San Onofre – Residents and activists are protesting Southern California Edison’s proposal to store nuclear waste on the Pacific Coast < nbclosangeles.com/news/local/Commission-to-Discuss-Storing-Nuclear-Waste-at-San-Onofre-330956392.html >

FWD: Navajo Nation Slams Door on Deal That Would Have Allowed Uranium Mining

– Anne Minard – 8/1/14

<< The Navajo Nation has blocked a backdoor deal that would have allowed uranium mining to restart, despite lingering waste from past mining and a reservation-wide ban that’s been in place since 2005.// But opponents of the thwarted deal say they plan to stay vigilant, to make sure the uranium industry doesn’t get a foothold. >>

<< Leona Morgan, an activist with Diné NO NUKES, says her concerns reach far beyond URI’s interests in eastern Navajo. She says the past uranium boom also included exploratory drilling; today’s would-be mining companies maintain vast databases of the deposits that remain.// “I’m pretty sure in the entire United States … this is their money in the ground,” she said, referring to the Four Corners region. “They haven’t pulled it out yet, but they’re banking on all the uranium that’s underneath us.”// […] Now that the immediate threat has passed, Morgan says it’s important to continue to educate Navajos about existing and potential hazards from uranium mining across the reservation.// She said tribal members shoulder no blame for the past mining contamination, but she believes that today’s educated youth have a responsibility to insist on cleanup as well as future protections: “If we mess up our land within the Four Sacred Mountains, that’s our own fault,” she said. “Right now, we’d be stupid to let our leaders make those decisions for our future.” >>

< indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2014/08/01/navajo-nation-slams-door-deal-would-have-allowed-uranium-mining-156143 >

###

Massive Animas/San Juan Mine Waste Spill

[ This is what can happen during a *cleanup operation* for a mine. ALL MINES PUT COMMUNITIES AND THE LIVING EARTH AT RISK! Not a uranium mine so far as I can determine but whatever minerals were incidentally leached from the soil are in the spill. ]

[samples of several articles about the spill:]

EPA Causes Massive Spill of Mining Waste Water in Colorado, Turns Animas River Bright Orange – ZOË SCHLANGER – 8/7/15 AT 3:35 PM < newsweek.com/epa-causes-massive-colorado-spill-1-million-gallons-mining-waste-turns-river-361019 >
<< On Wednesday morning, an EPA crew was working on a Superfund-related project to stop historic leakage of wastewater from the mine when they “hit a spot” that destabilized a retaining dam and caused the release.// “We were up in this area doing what’s called site investigation. This is work that we do in Superfund to understand the extent of the contamination...to understand how to work to stop that flow,” McGrath said. “In doing our work up there, we hit a spot where water started coming out that we hadn’t expected. We come to find out there was quite a bit more mine waste water up there than we had expected, for sure. In fact the dam that had been holding that water back was just soils and loose materials instead of solid rocks. That started to flow out, and [the wastewater] quickly broke through and drained out.” >>

Navajo Nation Braces for a Million Gallons of Mining Wastewater – ICTMN Staff – 8/8/15 < indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2015/08/08/navajo-nation-braces-million-gallons-mining-wastewater-161325 >
<< The tainted water will flow past at least 10 Navajo chapters and hundreds of farmers who rely on the San Juan River, the Navajo Times reported. It will ultimately end up in Lake Powell. >>

Why Was The Environmental Protection Agency Messing With A Mine Above Silverton? – STEPHANIE PAIGE OGBURN – AUG 6, 2015 < kunc.org/post/why-was-environmental-protection-agency-messing-mine-above-silverton#stream/0 >
<< For most of the West’s history, miners were basically allowed to run willy-nilly across the landscape, burrowing for gold, silver, or other valuable minerals. According to Ronald Cohen, an environmental engineer at the Colorado School of Mines, whenever you dig into a mountain, “at some point you are going to hit water.”// That water, when it runs through the rocks in a mine, hits a mineral called pyrite, or iron sulfide. It reacts with air and pyrite to form sulfuric acid and dissolved iron. That acid then continues through the mine, dissolving other heavy metals, like copper and lead. Eventually, you end up with water that’s got high levels of a lot of undesirable materials in it.// Which brings us back to the historic miners, putting holes in mountains across Colorado. For years, miners were not required to do anything with this water. In fact, most of them would dump it right into a creek, or put it in ponds with their tailings, where it became even more acidic.// “In the old days there was very little control and not much attention paid to control [of acidic water from mines],” said Cohen. >>
<< Here’s what a 2014 Durango Herald article had to say about the area above Silverton, which includes Gold King, the mine that released its toxic holdings August 5: “Scientists say it’s the largest untreated mine drainage in the state, and problematic concentrations of zinc, copper, cadmium, iron, lead, manganese and aluminum are choking off the Upper Animas River’s ecosystem.” >>
<< For years, the EPA has wanted to name areas around Silverton as a Superfund site. This brings funding for cleanups. The town, in turn, has resisted, fearing the label would be toxic to tourism. (pun intended.)// Recently, the town and the agency came to a sort of detente. The EPA wouldn’t list the site as Superfund, also called the National Priority List, as long as efforts were made to improve water quality near the mines. The EPA agreed to pay for those efforts, which recently got underway.// Somewhat ironically, the Gold King mine was not the object of the cleanup. The agency had planned to plug a mine just below it, the Red and Bonita Mine, with the goal of reducing acid runoff from that mine.// Since mines are interconnected, however, and a plug in one can lead to more water flowing out the other, the agency planned to “remove the blockage and reconstruct the portal at the Gold King Mine in order to best observe possible changes in discharge caused by the installation of Red and Bonita Mine bulkhead.” >>
<< “It was known that there was a pool of water back in the mine, and EPA had a plan to remove that water and treat it, you know, slowly. But things didn’t go quite the way they planned and there was a lot more water in there then they thought, and it just kind of burst out of the mine.” >>
<< Even without agency mistakes, mines do experience blowouts from time to time -- although generally not on so large a scale, said Butler.// When asked if this would curb the appetite for additional mine cleanups, Butler said he thought it would have the opposite effect.// “I think it highlights the issues of water quality related to mines. And that getting a lot more publicity, a lot more people are going to be interested in doing stuff about mines.” >>

Access to Animas River closed after Gold King Mine spills toxic metals into water – Officials say to avoid contact with river water, test well water; city water systems safe – Dan Schwartz The Daily Times – UPDATED: 08/08/2015 01:41:43 PM MDT < daily-times.com/four_corners-news/ci_28601678/officials-declare-state-emergency-close-animas-river-san >
<< EPA officials said late Friday that the plume likely contains arsenic, lead, zinc, copper, aluminum and cadmium, but they were unable to confirm the amounts. The agency has come under fire for waiting nearly 24 hours before notifying impacted communities of the release. >>

###

Will Obama’s Final Clean Power Plan “Preserve Nuclear Power”? The Answer Might Be “Yes” (Damn!)

New Nuclear Power Seen as Big Winner in Obama’s Energy Plan
by Jonathan CrawfordMark Chediak – August 3, 2015 — 11:13 AM MST Updated on August 3, 2015 — 3:53 PM MST

<< The Obama administration is giving the struggling U.S. nuclear industry a glimmer of hope with changes to its carbon emission rules that mean new reactors will count more toward meeting federal benchmarks.// States will be able to take more credit for future carbon-free electricity to be generated by nuclear power plants still under construction when meeting their emission reduction targets, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said in a call on Sunday. [...] // [Nuclear Energy Institute president Marvin] Fertel said the industry was disappointed that existing reactors won’t get credit for their carbon-reduction value given that some plants are at risk for early retirement, according to the statement.// [...] Beneficiaries of the rule changes would include Southern Co. and Scana Corp., which are building new reactors in Georgia and South Carolina, respectively. The Tennessee Valley Authority, which is building a reactor at its Watts Bar facility near Spring City, Tennessee, would also get a boost.// “If nuclear plants already under construction can be counted toward a state’s carbon reduction goals, then those states may not have to do something else to reduce carbon,” said Paul Patterson, a New York-based utility analyst for Glenrock Associates LLC.// [...] “Nuclear facilities will be credited because it’s new, zero-carbon generation that will be credited as part of a compliance strategy,” [US EPA Administrator Gina] McCarthy said. “We think that’s entirely consistent and appropriate.” >>

FULL ARTICLE at < bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-08-03/new-nuclear-power-seen-as-big-winner-in-obama-s-power-plan >

– – –

[prior posting:]

What changes to expect from Obama’s final Clean Power Plan
BY VALERIE VOLCOVICI – Sun Aug 2, 2015 3:01am EDT

<< The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will unveil as soon as Monday the final version of a sweeping - and controversial - regulation to cut carbon emissions from the electricity sector. >>

<< The EPA set individual goals for each state to reduce the carbon intensity of their power plants based on a mix of four “building blocks”: improving efficiency of coal-fired power plants; replacing more coal with natural gas; deploying more wind, solar and hydro power and preserving nuclear power; and expanding consumer energy efficiency programs. >>

FULL ARTICLE at < reuters.com/article/2015/08/02/us-usa-climatechange-epa-idUSKCN0Q50DD20150802 >

Several Posts related to Yucca Mountain & Waste Transport to Nevada

[From the Las Vegas Review-Journal:]

Hutchison: I will talk to Rubio on Yucca (2015-05-14)
<< Lt. Gov. Mark Hutchison will continue to chair the Nevada presidential campaign of Republican Florida U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, despite the fact that Rubio has said he supports the proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository, which Hutchison opposes. >> < reviewjournal.com/columns-blogs/politics/slash-politics/hutchison-i-will-talk-rubio-yucca >

– – –

EPA plan to move radiation lab out of Vegas draws protests (2015-06-24)
<< The Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to relocate a state-of-the-art radiation monitoring laboratory from Las Vegas to Alabama, a move that has drawn protests from nuclear safety activists and officials from Nevada and California. >> < reviewjournal.com/news/las-vegas/epa-plan-move-radiation-lab-out-vegas-draws-protests >

– – –

Obama signs proclamation creating Nevada national monument (2015-07-10)
< reviewjournal.com/politics/government/obama-signs-proclamation-creating-nevada-national-monument >

New national monument blocks rail route to Yucca (2015-07-13)
< reviewjournal.com/news/new-national-monument-blocks-rail-route-yucca >

<< "It‘€™s a significant impediment to Yucca Mountain moving forward with a rail line as previously defined," said former DOE official Timothy Frazier, now senior adviser to the Bipartisan Policy Center. "Now they‘re going to have to find another rail route. To me it‘€™s delay upon delay to do that."€ // The Department of Energy was eyeing a $2 billion price tag to build an ambitious 319-mile rail line from the Lincoln County town of Caliente in eastern Nevada to the Yucca site. Frazier said there will be increased costs to change direction and update environmental documents to reflect a new choice. // "All of these things to my mind add complexity and additional costs and additional time,"€ Frazier said. "€œI‘€™ve got to agree, I think this is yet another nail in the coffin of Yucca Mountain."€ >>

– – –

Nevada’s chief attorney on Yucca retiring (2015-07-14)
<< Marta Adams, a senior attorney for the state of Nevada and its chief in-house lawyer on Yucca Mountain, has announced her retirement at the end of the month. ... "€œMost Nevadans don‘t know Marta but she has helped keep them safe,"€ said Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., a leading Yucca opponent. >> < reviewjournal.com/news/nevada/nevadas-chief-attorney-yucca-retiring >

– – –

[I’ve not yet found any updates on the nuclear transport from Tennessee to the former NTS in Nevada .]

###

FWD: DOE Will Fund $73 Million in Infrastructure for NM Radiation Leak Redress

ICTMN Staff – 5/2/15 (Indian Country Today Media Network)
< indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2015/05/02/doe-will-fund-73-million-infrastructure-nm-radiation-leak-redress-160236 >

<< The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has agreed to pay $73.25 million toward infrastructure projects in New Mexico as a way of settling $54 million in fines—and of forestalling potential future fines—levied against it for a February 2014 radiation leak that shut down the country’s only underground nuclear storage facility indefinitely. ...>

[ I find the part about “forestalling potential future fines” distressing— What if new costs arise up related to the current accident? What if NM “infrastructure projects” become inordinately dependent on DOE “largess” and the DOE refuses to issue the agreed upon fines unless they can limit their losses elsewhere (the greater expenses of remediation) — extortion leveraged by faux bribes? Corporations do this sort of thing and the DOE appears to learn behaviors from its “clients.” Optimistically, may environmental damages and costs not increase and may the DOE not try to squirm out of paying. ]

– – –

ADDITIONAL WIPP ARTICLES FROM THE SAME SOURCE:

2015-03-28: WIPP Nuclear Leak Definitely Caused by Wrong Kind of Kitty Litter: Experts
< indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2015/03/28/wipp-nuclear-leak-definitely-caused-wrong-kind-kitty-litter-experts-159793 >
<< ... The barrel contained nitrate salt residues, organic cat litter and a neutralizing agent that created a “potentially reactive chemical mixture of fuels and oxidizers,” the AP said. ... >>

2015-01-19: Cold War Waste Disposal Stalled Around U.S. as WIPP Reopening Delayed by Months
< indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2015/01/19/cold-war-waste-disposal-stalled-around-us-wipp-reopening-delayed-months-158759 >
<< ... Originally scheduled to reopen in 2016, the site will be unable to take new shipments of waste until at least 2018, said the Energy Department and Nuclear Waste Partnership, the contractor running the federal repository, last week. ... >>

2014-12-08: New Mexico Fines Feds $54 Million for Radiation Leaks at Los Alamos and WIPP
< indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2014/12/08/new-mexico-fines-feds-54-million-radiation-leaks-los-alamos-and-wipp-158182 >
<< ... It’s the biggest civil penalty ever levied by state authorities against the federal government, according to the Albuquerque Journal. ... >>

###

Sweden & Finland Plan to Bury Their Nuke Waste

[ I am not as trusting as this article claims the Scandinavians are. It is not as though any encasement is “forever” whereas a leak into the watertable is irremediable and is effectively eternal. ]

FWD: Moment of truth nears for nuclear waste time bomb
By Vera Eckert – Fri Jun 19, 2015 8:06am EDT

< reuters.com/article/2015/06/19/nuclear-waste-idUSL5N0Z42LM20150619 >

###

2015-07-02: WIPP Town Meeting, Carlsbad TX

Next WIPP Town Hall Meeting Scheduled July 2

The City of Carlsbad and DOE will co-host a Town Hall meeting featuring updates on WIPP recovery activities. The meeting is scheduled for Thursday, July 2 at 5:30 p.m. Location: Carlsbad City Council Chambers, 101 N. Halagueno Street. Live streaming of the meeting can be seen at <new.livestream.com/rrv/>.

<wipp.energy.gov/wipprecovery/recovery.html>

<livestream.com/rrv>

###

New uranium extraction method ‘could boost industry by $100 million annually’

[The “nuclear revival” continues to seek new ways to be profitable.]

FWD: New uranium extraction method ‘could boost industry by $100 million annually’
By Kathryn Diss – Posted 14 Jun 2015, 11:57pm

<< Perth researchers have discovered a method to extract uranium from a mineral long viewed as a waste product in a technique that could boost the industry's value by more than $100 million annually. >>

[More:] < http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-06-15/new-uranium-extraction-method-discovered-by-wa-researchers/6547332 >

###

FWD: Consolidated Nukewaste Site in TX? (UPDATED)

[This would only cause nuclear waste transport to travel on different routes and continue subsidy of nuclear power plants via the taxpayer-funded “externalized” expense of waste disposal and accident risk assumed by the communities along transport routes. I.e., a continuation of exactly the same disastrous shell games.]

Two steps forward on US nuclear waste storage
By Michael McMahon – June 17, 2015, 06:00 am

< thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/energy-environment/245161-two-steps-forward-on-us-nuclear-waste-storage >

– – –

UPDATE: New House bill could open nuclear waste storage opportunity in Texas
By Robert Walton – June 22, 2015

<utilitydive.com/news/new-house-bill-could-open-nuclear-waste-storage-opportunity-in-texas/401068/>

###

Would the “Nuclear Waste Informed Consent Act” Stop Interstate Transport on I-40?

Could it also be extended to stop Canyon Uranium Mine ore transport?

FWD: Nevada Democrat takes on Yucca Mountain push
By Molly K. Hooper – 05/27/15 11:26 AM EDT

Rep. Dina Titus (D-Nev.) is fighting back against emboldened Republicans pressing to restart operations for the Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository.// To counter GOP efforts, Titus introduced the Nuclear Waste Informed Consent Act, which would require the Energy Department to get the sign-off from all local entities through which the spent nuclear waste would be transported on its way to the repository.// Titus tells The Hill she will convince her colleagues to support the measure with a “not in my backyard” strategy.// “All this waste will have to be transported across [the] country, so it will go through their backyards, their schools, their stores, their churches,” Titus said in an on-camera interview. “So if you can make that argument, they start to see the danger of it.”// “Also, it’s a state’s rights argument,” she added. “Sometimes people across the aisle from me can see that argument as well, so that’s kind of how we’ve been fighting it.”//
To hear the congresswoman discuss the politics of the matter, watch the video clip above.

<thehill.com/video/in-the-news/243191-nevada-democrat-takes-on-yucca-mountain-push>

###

MEETING TONIGHT (Thu 2015-06-18, Flagstaff) on Uranium Hauling thru Valle, Williams, Parks, Flagstaff, Doney Park, Cameron, Tuba City & Navajo/Hopi lands, Bluff/UT and on to Blanding UT.

<< The Canyon Uranium Mine, located six miles from the Grand Canyon's south rim, is set to resume operations this month. If this happens, mine owner Energy Fuels plans to truck uranium through Flagstaff on I-40, continuing north into Utah via Highways 89 and 160.

Please join us for a public meeting at the Firecreek Coffee Company in downtown Flagstaff on Thursday, June 18th at 6pm to learn about the risks uranium mining near Grand Canyon poses to northern Arizona communities. This meeting, hosted by the Grand Canyon Trust, the Center for Biological Diversity and the Sierra Club, will share information and answer questions about threats to water, wildlife, human and environmental health. >>

< grandcanyontrust.org/blog/attn-flagstaff-residents >

[And don’t forget additional transport down the I-40 corridor from TN to the former NTS north of Las Vegas, NV through many many communities! SEE < nuclearfreezone.org/doe-authorizes-low-level-mobile-chernobyl >. ]

###

FWD: Grassroots receive large donation for Radiation Monitoring Project

By Leona Morgan contact@dinenonukes.org
David Kraft neis@neis.org
Yuko Tonohira SANSnuclear@gmail.com

<< CHICAGO -- The Radiation Monitoring Project, a national initiative to establish monitoring of radioactivity in communities contaminated by the nuclear fuel chain, received over half its $15,000 fundraising goal in a single anonymous donation earlier this week.// The Radiation Monitoring Project is a collaboration among three organizations: Diné No Nukes (DNN) of the Southwest region, Nuclear Energy Information Service (NEIS) located in Chicago, Illinois and Sloths Against Nuclear State (SANS) based in Brooklyn, NY. These organizations represent communities across America affected by various stages of the nuclear fuel chain—such as uranium mining and milling, waste transport and storage, and nuclear reactors. ... >>

<< dinenonukes.org/radiation-monitoring-project

MORE ON DONATIONS to the Project: In addition to info on how to donate via < dinenonukes.org/radiation-monitoring-project >, there’s a form for mail donations to NEIS at < neis.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/NEIS-Website-Memebrship-Form.pdf >. Be sure to follow/adapt instructions at the Diné NO NUKES website so that the money goes to this project!

###

Link

RESOURCE: Diné NO NUKES

<< Diné NO NUKES is a Diné-led initiative to create a Navajo Nation that is free from the dangers of radioactive contamination and nuclear proliferation, including effects from past and proposed uranium mining and processing. >>

dinenonukes.org

Fwd: Highly Radioactive Waste will Likely Ship on I-40 through Albuquerque & Flagstaff to Hwys 93/95 and Skirt Las Vegas NV (2015-05-14)

<< The trucks will almost certainly travel most of the distance across the country on I-40 through Memphis, near Oklahoma City, through Albuquerque, and then up Hwy 93 into Nevada and finally onto Hwy 95 which skirts downtown Las Vegas, but we don’t know for sure and will not know. >>

From: “Nevada Desert Experience Info” <info@nevadadesertexperience.org>
Date: Thu, 14 May 2015 13:31:46 +1000

U 233 and U 235 on their way to Nevada

Dear NDE supporters,

U 233 and U 235 are being shipped here from Tennessee to be buried in shallow trenches at the Nevada National Security Site (Nevada Test Site) 65 miles away from Las Vegas, Nevada. Judy Treichel of Nevada Nuclear Waste Task Force wrote the following white paper which gathers important information about the situation. Please read the white paper and contact NDE if you would like to be further involved. Our email address is info@nevadadesertexperience.org, and our phone number is 702-646-4814.

Thank you,
Ming Lai and Laura-Marie Taylor
Nevada Desert Experience Council Members

PS. Please also read this piece by the Review Journal wherein the Mayor of Las Vegas objects to the shipments of U 233 reviewjournal.com/politics/government/vegas-mayor-will-lie-down-highway-block-nuke-shipments and this piece on the proposed shipments reviewjournal.com/news/nevada/test-run-signals-start-nuclear-waste-shipments-nevada .

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Uranium 233 and 235 shipments

In 2013 plans were announced for a Department of Energy (DOE) program to ship U 233 and 235 from the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Tennessee to the National National Security Site (NNSS), northwest of Las Vegas, NV. The plan was met with outrage by the public and officials in Nevada for many reasons. Due to the loud outcry from Nevada, the Secretary of Energy and Governor Sandoval met and negotiated a Memorandum of Understanding that was signed in December of 2014.

The trip for the trucks coming from ORNL to NNSS is a little over 2,000 miles. When concerns were raised about the security of the trucks carrying highly radioactive, bomb grade materials, the DOE decided to use “secure transport” for the shipping campaign. The advantage of secure transport is that there is heightened security with the shipments. The huge disadvantage is that the shipments are not announced and states and localities are not alerted to the routes or schedules. If cities or towns want to make any preparations, or if the public wants to avoid the routes when trucks would be coming, they will not be able to. The trucks will almost certainly travel most of the distance across the country on I-40 through Memphis, near Oklahoma City, through Albuquerque, and then up Hwy 93 into Nevada and finally onto Hwy 95 which skirts downtown Las Vegas, but we don’t know for sure and will not know.

There are significant and bad differences between this program and the Yucca Mountain repository project. Both ORLN and NNSS are self-regulated by DOE. There is no Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) licensing required at these sites or any of the weapons production facilities. There is not even certification by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as there is at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico or EPA standards that apply to repositories. Ironically, the EPA is about to move their mobile radiation detection lab from UNLV in Las Vegas to Mobile, AL. The casks that would be used for transport and the containers to be put in the landfill are not licensed by the NRC either. All facets of this program are developed and overseen by the DOE exclusively.

A high-level waste repository would accept only specific and known waste forms. During the time that DOE was deciding to ship the U 233 and 235 wastes to NNSS, they revised the waste acceptance criteria so that this highly radioactive material, some of it weapons grade, could be considered low-level waste. So in this case, the classification fits the waste, not the other way around as Nevadans have assumed.

Any future repository is planned to be a deep geologic disposal facility. The low-level waste disposal at Area 5 at NNSS is shallow land burial in trenches. The U 233 and 235 wastes remain radioactively dangerous for hundreds of thousands of years, far longer than any metal container or trench liner would last.

The Memorandum of Agreement mentions that it would be beneficial to have an independent review of the U.S. system of waste classification. That has been said repeatedly over the years. There is no doubt that it is necessary to revise classification if waste such as this can be considered low-level and disposed of in a trench.

Officials in Nevada are saying that they are not allowed to refuse this waste into our state. When Yucca Mountain was determined to be suitable by the President in 2002, Nevada’s Governor Guinn vetoed that decision but it was overridden by the Congress. That was supposed to be the end of the story but Nevada’s opposition continued and eventually the DOE declared the Yucca Mountain Project to be unworkable.

While Nevadans continue to accept and dispose of less dangerous, actual low-level weapons waste at NNSS, we will not accept opening the door for far more radioactive materials to be thrown into our ground. We need to tell DOE that changing the rules to fit the waste is not a workable solution.

Nevada Nuclear Waste Task Force
c/o Judy Treichel

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The mission of Nevada Desert Experience (NDE) is

• to stop testing, development and use of nuclear and other weappons systems through a campaign of prayer, education, dialogue, and nonviolent direct action.

• to mobilize people of all faiths to work toward nuclear abolition and nonviolent social change.

• to support personal renewal through desert spirituality, reconnnecting with each other and the earth to end subcritical tests and other war-making preparations at the Nevada National Security Site and preventing the return of full-scale nuclear testing.

1420 West Bartlett Avenue Las Vegas, NV 89106
(702) 646-4814
info@NevadaDesertExperience.org
NevadaDesertExperience.org
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Federal ruling calls future of Diablo Canyon reactors into question (2015-05-21)

< m.foe.org/news/2015-05-federal-ruling-calls-future-of-diablo-into-question >

Posted May. 21, 2015 / Posted by: Kate Colwell

Friends of the Earth: Decision is beginning of the end for troubled nuclear plant

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In a major victory that could mark the beginning of the end for the Diablo Canyon nuclear reactors, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commissioners have ruled that an Atomic Safety Licensing Board will decide whether Pacific Gas & Electric Co. was allowed to illegally alter the plant’s license. This alteration is an attempt to hide the risk from powerful earthquake faults discovered since it was designed and built. The Commission’s referral of the issue to the licensing board parallels a move that presaged the shutdown of Southern California Edison’s San Onofre nuclear plant two years ago.

“This is a major victory that could be the turning point for a nuclear-free future for California,” said Damon Moglen of Friends of the Earth, which had petitioned the NRC, saying that the secret amendment of the license was an illegal maneuver designed to avoid holding a public hearing on the issue as required by federal law. “PG&E now is following the same path that forced Southern California Edison to pull the plug on San Onofre,” Moglen said.

In a 3 -1 ruling released today, commissioners ruled that Friends of the Earth’s petition will now be considered by an expert panel of the licensing board. Friends of the Earth alleged that PG&E is operating the 1960-era nuclear reactors at Diablo Canyon in violation of their license and called for the reactors to be closed immediately pending public hearings to prove it is safe.

The Commission did not rule on closing the reactors pending public hearings, but ruled that the safety issues should now be considered by the Commission’s executive director for operations.

Today’s decision is all but identical to that by the Commission in November 2012 in response to a similar petition from Friends of the Earth regarding the damaged nuclear reactors at San Onofre. In that case, the licensing board ruled in May 2013 that public hearings should be held as part of a formal license amendment proceeding to assess the safety of San Onofre. When Edison announced the closure of San Onofre a few weeks later, they referred to the ASLB decision.

“This decision is indeed the beginning of the end for Diablo Canyon,” said Dave Freeman, former head of the federal Tennessee Valley Authority, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power and the Sacramento Municipal Utility District. “PG&E is not going to get away with running Diablo Canyon when the plant can not withstand the ground motion from the earthquake faults we now know surround these reactors,” said Freeman, a special advisor to Friends of the Earth.

The ruling comes days after the NRC sent PG&E a letter requiring the utility to conduct further seismic risk studies to show whether Diablo Canyon — California’s last nuclear plant, on the Pacific coast near San Luis Obispo — is operating within the bounds of its license. Diablo Canyon is one of only two nuclear plants the NRC classified as high priority for the seismic risk study.

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Expert contacts:
Damon Moglen, (202) 352-4223, dmoglen@foe.org
David Freeman, (310) 902-2147, greencowboysdf@gmail.com

Communications contacts:
Bill Walker, (510) 759-9911, bw.deadline@gmail.com (West Coast)
Kate Colwell, (202) 222-0744, kcolwell@foe.org (East Coast)

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