- WEB EXCLUSIVE
- PE COFFEEHAUS
States are starting to line up to sue the federal government over the storage of nuclear waste materials. Federal regulators are allowing nuclear power plants to store radioactive wastes onsite for up to 60 years. Three Northeastern states, New York, Connecticut and Vermont, are the first to file to stop this practice declaring the rule failed to properly review public health and safety of such actions.
Currently, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission allows a nuclear power plant to store spent waste onsite for up to 30 years after the plant is decommissioned. In December, the NRC raised that to 60 years for the nation’s 100 plus facilities. NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan said that their studies supported the notion that the increased storage time would not cause problems if properly monitored.
New York’s attorney general, Eric Schneiderman, said that the NRC was required by law to conduct a site-by-site analysis before reaching such a decision.
A national storage depot had been planned for construction in Nevada that would provide storage of waste nuclear materials for up to one million years. The Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, fought successfully to derail that effort. Currently, the national repository for nuclear wastes is not an option.