Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Mounting storage concerns in US: Who’s responsible?

Mounting storage concerns in US: Who’s responsible? "After 50 years of generating nuclear power and with approximately 67,000 tons of fuel being temporarily stored at about 75 operating and shutdown nuclear facilities, the United States is still at crossroads regarding what will be the nation’s policy for the disposition of its spent nuclear fuel.
Since 1987, Yucca Mountain in Nevada has been the federal government’s primary choice for a nuclear waste repository. But despite the $10bn spent on the project, doubts linger over the Department of Energy’s (DOE) planned opening of the repository in 2017, after it failed to open it in 1998 – the original deadline established by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act.
A multitude of issues have delayed the project, from Nevada’s opposition to building the repository in their state, to President Obama’s withdrawal of the project’s license application. The current debate is whether to link or one or more short-term storage facilities or to build a permanent repository, similar to Yucca Mountain. Until a decision is made, however, storage concerns for utilities with used nuclear fuel (UNF) will remain. "

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