IN THE NEWS...

Response to the Nevada Independent article: Concerns about government bullying and safety were the top reasons for those opposing the House Yucca bill

Before turning to the assertion of “bullying,” it is meaningful to look at the assessment of safety of the Yucca Mountain site. Demonstrations of the safety of the site have been made by several National Laboratories, the Department of Energy and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff. Although Nevada claims that the site is not safe, the State has fought every effort to have their safety concerns adjudicated in the process required by Commission regulations. Nevada’s refusal to enter into the licensing hearings before the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, where technical issues are to be adjudicated, must be viewed in this light.

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About This Website

About Yucca Mountain

Project Overview

This website is offered in order to shed light on the Yucca Mountain effort. First, we believe it is important to present factual information on Yucca Mountain, as opponents have made every effort to disassemble and erase its outstanding research record from the pages of history since the Obama Administration terminated the project in 2011.

Second, Yucca Mountain represents feats of engineering and scientific prowess that need to be more widely recognized. The facts need to be told.

And . . . the United States still needs a safe place to store its high-level nuclear waste.

The Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository, located on a piece of land adjoining the Nevada Test Site in Nye County, Nevada, was designed to be a deep geological repository storage facility for spent nuclear fuel and other high- level radioactive waste, as designated by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act amendments of 1987.

The United States currently obtains about 20 percent of its commercial electricity from nuclear energy. Waste from the more than 60 commercial nuclear power plants operating across the country is accumulating at the rate of about 2,000 tons per year. Approximately 65,000 tons are currently in temporary storage at the sites where it was produced.

In 1987, Congress singled out Yucca Mountain, located in Nye County, Nevada, adjoining the Nevada Test Site, as the site for intensive study of long-term storage of high-level nuclear waste.

As of 2011, the nation has spent as much as $15 billion on finding a permanent storage site for its high-level nuclear waste, some $9 billion on Yucca Mountain alone. Hundreds of men and women worked on the study of Yucca Mountain for decades, including some of the best scientists in the world.

In 2011, as a result of political maneuvering, funding on Yucca Mountain and the search for a permanent storage site for high-level nuclear waste came to a halt.

Yet in 2014, the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission declared that high-level nuclear waste could be safely stored at Yucca Mountain for at least 1 million years.

Dr. Voegele's talk outlined the history of the U.S. high-level radioactive waste disposal program, with particular focus on how Yucca Mountain was selected for the country's first nuclear waste repository.  The talk provided a very good outline of the legislative history of the project, along with related court decisions through the years.  He also touched on recent activities that might affect the future of Yucca Mountain.  Dr. Voegele spent 40 years working in the U.S. high-level waste disposal program, most of that time on the Yucca Mountain project.

June 12, 2018

Shimkus hopes to show House members that Yucca will work

With a dozen House lawmakers expected to visit Yucca Mountain this weekend, Illinois Republican John Shimkus, the congressional champion for building a national nuclear waste repository there, hopes seeing the site will help to broaden and consolidate support for the project.

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June 6, 2018

Nevada wants official removed from Yucca Mountain process

Nevada's office of Nuclear Projects has called on David Wright to recuse himself from any further proceedings involving the proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste dump.

 

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June 11, 2018

Nevada wants recusal from NRC member on Yucca Mountain decisions

The state of Nevada is asking a regulatory commissioner to recuse himself from any federal decision on Yucca Mountain, citing his past advocacy and public comments critical of local opposition to the controversial project.

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June 4, 2018

Historian Richard Rhodes on Nuclear Energy and Climate Change

We are undergoing probably the largest energy transition in human history. We are facing the need to decarbonize our entire energy supply. And no one seems quite prepared to take it seriously.

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June 9, 2018

Longtime Yucca Mountain supporter eyes site as funding fight simmers

A group of lawmakers will reconcile Yucca Mountain money approved in the House with a lack of funding out of the Senate. The funding debate is unfolding amid a failed effort by Nevada to get a Nuclear Regulatory Commissioner to recuse himself from the process.

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June 20, 2018

House to vote on energy spending bill with Yucca Mountain funds

A $44.7 billion spending package for energy programs, including the Yucca Mountain project, is scheduled for a vote in the House this week.

 

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June 7, 2018

Move to strip Yucca Mountain funds from Energy spending bill fails

An amendment backed by Nevada Democrats that would have stripped money for the proposed Yucca Mountain project from a spending bill for the Department of Energy died in the House on Thursday.

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June 3, 2018

Congress works to revive long-delayed plan to store nuclear waste in Yucca Mountain

The federal government’s dormant plan to store nuclear waste in Nevada’s Yucca Mountain is showing signs of life amid a new push by the Trump administration and some members of Congress to revive the long-delayed project.

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June 7, 2018

Las Vegas officials vote against reviving Yucca Mountain

For the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority Tuesday, it was Yucca Mountain deja vu.

Board members unanimously approved a resolution opposing the revival of federal funding for the nuclear waste repository 100 miles from Las Vegas.

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June 17, 2018

Heller, Rosen tangle over who can stop Yucca Mountain revival

A pivotal Senate race in Nevada that Republicans and Democrats covet for control of the upper chamber of Congress has become ground zero in the Yucca Mountain debate.

 

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June 4, 2018

House to vote on energy spending bill with Yucca Mountain funds

A $44.7 billion spending package for energy programs, including the Yucca Mountain project, is scheduled for a vote in the House this week.

 

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June 1, 2018

Texas’ lawsuit to force Yucca Mountain dismissed

Nevada Attorney General Adam Paul Laxalt announced on Friday the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals granted his office's motion to dismiss the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste lawsuit filed by the State of Texas.

 

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May 31, 2018

Native Perception of the Yucca’n Nuclear Waste Conversation

 

This paper focuses on how environmental justice, the media, and science influences perception of the proposed high-level radioactive nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain.

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May 29, 2018

Concerns about government bullying and safety

Only a small slice of House membership joined the Nevada delegation earlier this month in voting against legislation to restart the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository. But in siding with the Battle Born State, those lawmakers revealed how the policy fight touches nerves around the country.

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May 25, 2018

Senate panel again drops Yucca Mountain licensing funding from budget

Senate appropriators on Thursday deleted a Trump administration budget request for $120 million to restart licensing on the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository, setting up another impasse with the House.

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May 20, 2018

Knee-jerk reaction against Yucca Mountain is unfortunate

In his May 10 article “Yucca unity among players” the Review-Journal’s Gary Martin made the following observation: “Amodei’s amendment contained a hodgepodge of items, including one requiring a reprocessing study for spent nuclear fuel at Yucca Mountain.”

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May 17, 2018

Still time to negotiate on Yucca Mountain

The U.S. House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly, 340-72, this past week to restart the licensing process to make Yucca Mountain in Nye County the nation’s permanent repository of nuclear waste.

 

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May 16, 2018

Quarter of U.S. nuclear fleet at risk of closure; Lawmakers pass pro-Yucca Mountain bill

More than a quarter of U.S. nuclear power plants do not earn enough revenue to cover operating costs, according to a report published by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) on May 15.

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May 15, 2018

The Danger Within: Nevada ready to argue Yucca's risks

“I'm not happy about that. I don't want that stuff here,” local Grace McKown told me Friday as we stood outside Henderson’s Paseo Verde Library.

 

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May 14, 2018

Revive Yucca Mountain plan and buy time with interim storage

The intentionally becalmed move of spent nuclear fuel to a permanent repository from "temporary" storage at the power plants where it was generated finally got a nudge forward last week.

 

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May 11, 2018

Nevada Has Never Consented to the Yucca Mountain Project- We Refuse to be an Unwilling Host

Rep. Ruben J. Kihuen spoke on the House floor ahead of a vote on H.R. 3053, the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act, despite the outspoken objections from a majority of Nevadans.

 

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May 11, 2018

House Votes To Advance Yucca Nuclear Site

The House voted overwhelmingly Thursday to pass a bill that seeks to move forward a process toward building the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste facility.

 

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May 9, 2018

Heller, like Reid, opposes Yucca but takes money from those who support it

Like Harry Reid before him, Nevada’s latest senior senator talks a good game on a proposed nuclear waste dump in Nevada.

 

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May 9, 2018

Las Vegas business leaders to House: We stand firm against Yucca Mountain

As the U.S. House prepares to hold a vote Thursday on a resolution that would restart the licensing process for the proposed national nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Las Vegas business leaders are expressing staunch opposition to the measure.

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May 8, 2018

Heller Blasts House Panel for Advancing Yucca Mountain Funds

Dean Heller (R-NV) today blasted the U.S. House of Representatives’ Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development for advancing its fiscal year 2019 energy and water-spending bill...

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May 4, 2018

Nuclear panel chair: ‘I remain adamantly opposed’ to Yucca Mountain

The chairman of the state interim legislative Committee on High-Level Radioactive Waste says he'll continue to support a 2017 legislative resolution stating opposition to the proposed national nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain.

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April 30, 2018

Analysis: Stirrings on Yucca Mountain bring out foes

Alarmed by what they feared was movement toward easing Nevada lawmakers’ long-standing opposition to the proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository, opponents of the project told a legislative panel today to keep fighting the project.

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May 3, 2018

Nye County presses for Yucca licensing

Nye County officials asked the Interim Legislative Committee on High-Level Radioactive Waste in Las Vegas to support the licensing proceeding of the proposed nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain.

 

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May 1, 2018

Yucca Mountain – an interview with Robert Halstead

Opposition to the repository has been bi-partisan, vigorous and sustained even before the passage of the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act or the Screw Nevada Bill in 1987. Under president Obama the licensing process for Yucca Mountain was defunded, but the Trump Administration has revived the project.

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April 30, 2018

Analysis: Stirrings on Yucca Mountain bring out foes

Alarmed by what they feared was movement toward easing Nevada lawmakers’ long-standing opposition to the proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository, opponents of the project told a legislative panel today to keep fighting the project.

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MORE NEWS...

April 26, 2018

Rosen Introduces Legislation to Repurpose Yucca Mountain

As outlined in the bill, the job-creating benefits and alternative uses for the Yucca Mountain site could include: defense activities, such as a command facility for unmanned aircraft systems; a secure electronic data center; the development of renewable energy sources; or scientific research.

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April 26, 2018

Rosen introduces anti-Yucca Mountain bill as state readies 2019 legislation

A group of Nevada lawmakers is preparing to request biennial legislation opposing a possible nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain while a congresswoman seeks to block action on the project.

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April 26, 2018

House bill wants study of alternative uses for Yucca Mtn

A House bill expected to be filed Thursday would prohibit the Energy Department from taking any action to license Yucca Mountain as a nuclear repository until the federal government studies alternative uses for the Nevada site.

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April 26, 2018

Yucca documentary features Pahrump tie

A former reporter for the Pahrump Valley Times has taken the topic of Yucca Mountain from print to the big screen.

 

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April 13, 2018

Heller Grills OMB Director Mulvaney on Yucca Mountain

Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee SD 538

 

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April 25, 2018

Should nuclear waste be dumped here? Sound off on Yucca Mountain

Few ideas are so bad that they can legitimately be labeled as potentially catastrophic, but that term fits the proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository like a brightly glowing glove.

 

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April 13, 2018

Chairman promises House vote on Yucca Mountain funding

A House committee chairman on Thursday vowed to take a bill to fund licensing proceedings for the Yucca Mountain nuclear repository to the floor of the House for a vote.

 

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April 12, 2018

Senators question Yucca Mountain in DOE’s proposed budget

Energy Secretary Rick Perry appeared before a skeptical Senate panel Wednesday to defend his $30 billion budget proposal, which includes money for licensing of the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository in Nevada.

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April 11, 2018

Las Vegas board to continue fight against Yucca Mountain

Fighting efforts to open the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository and lobbying to continue funding the Brand USA international tourism marketing program will be top federal legislative priorities of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority for the rest of 2018.

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March 22, 2018

Budget bill excludes money for Yucca nuke dump

A budget bill passed by the House does not include money for work to develop and build a nuclear waste dump outside Las Vegas.

 

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March 21, 2018

Pahrump officials want Yucca discussion to move forward

"Ceramic pellets for the spent fuel, and this is a big glass log within this stainless steel canister." Darrell Lacy, Director of the Nye County Nuclear Waste Office pointed out several items inside the Pahrump Valley Museum.

 

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March 13, 2018

Cortez Masto seeks details on Yucca spending since Trump's election

Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto has called on Energy Secretary Rick Perry to provide details on how the White House would spend funds requested for the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository...

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