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May 06, 2008

Nuclear waste

Just as we are awakening to being “green” conscious by doing what is good for the Earth, nuclear-waste lobbyists are intending to kill a bill that bans Italy’s 20,000 tons of low-level waste from being taken to a Utah dump (4/17, Business, “Lobbying to import nuclear waste”).

If Italy receives permission to send its waste, surely other countries will also apply.

Nuclear waste is already being transported through Missouri via rail and truck. The state does not have to receive notification of low-level waste (gloves, protective clothing, tools) before transportation. However, it does have to be notified before shipments of nuclear spent-fuel waste, which is done periodically. It was under the “Atoms for Peace” program that President Eisenhower agreed to accept such waste from foreign countries in order for them to agree to doing research work for peaceful means.

But where does this leave us? Accidents can happen from point A to B: Trucks collide, trains derail and ships sink. And politicians and corporations make money.

Laura Herdman
Lake Lotawana

Comments

jack

A whole new industry. America, the world's dump!

Stifled Freedom

Oh this bill will be killed. This is big business. They will get what they want at all cost to you and your safety. You should know that by now.

devin

Interesting timing on this letter. I've recently been researching what France does with their nuclear waste. I'm trying to keep an open mind about nuclear because it seems like an excellent energy source except for the waste issue. Apparently, the waste issue is becoming the big fly in the ointment for France as the implications of thousand-year storage requirements are starting to sink in and even areas that once willingly accepted waste "processing facilities" are starting to balk. One solution that's being attempted is the one discussed in this letter: just ship the junk to America and let them deal with it. Apparently we're short-sighted enough to accept this deal.

I really want to believe that nuclear is a viable option, but nuclear waste isn't something we can just shove under the rug and hope nobody notices. We have over ten times the energy needs of France, meaning we would generate ten times the waste if we went primarily nuclear, as they have. We can't simply start expanding our nuke program and hope solutions will fall from the sky.

 
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