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Group to explore position on bringing nuclear waste to SRS

Wednesday, July 3, 2013 5:24 PM
Last updated Saturday, July 6, 2013 1:48 AM
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Savannah River Site’s Citi­zens Advisory Board appears divided over whether to oppose or support any plan to bring spent nuclear fuel to the area for storage and possible reprocessing.

In May, the group discussed a draft recommendation that opposed using the site to store any commercial nuclear waste. Now there are two draft statements, with one offering conditional support for such efforts.

“There are two general positions the CAB can take and each has support of a segment of the community,” Ed Burke, who heads the group’s waste management committee, wrote in an e-mail to members.

One position is not to support bringing commercial waste to the site, while the other would support the idea if communities can participate through “consent-based siting,” and if “proper incentives” were provided, Burke said.

“The CAB can only support one position since these positions are diametrically opposed to each other,” Burke wrote. “The CAB can also choose to support neither of these positions.”

The group has scheduled a meeting at 6 p.m. July 15 to discuss the different versions of the draft statement.

Though there is no formal plan to bring spent commercial reactor fuel to the site, the demise of the government’s Yucca Mountain project in Nevada left the nation without options for the 75,000 tons of radioactive spent fuel accumulating at commercial nuclear plants.

A blue-ribbon committee formed to explore alternatives suggested “consolidated, interim storage” of the dangerous material until a better solution can be found. The committee did not make site recommendations, but officials say it would be difficult to explore those options without considering SRS, which has nuclear waste experience and infrastructure and is in the South, which has many commercial nuclear plants.

In March, consultants hired by the SRS Community Reuse Organization – an economic development consortium – unveiled a $200,000 study concluding that the site’s H Canyon processing facilities and history of nuclear involvement make it suitable for such storage.

“Consolidated storage would start with the spent nuclear fuel currently in South Caro­lina and Georgia and, if successful, could expand to include the remainder of the 20,000 metric tons of spent fuel in the southeastern U.S.,” the report said. Sub­sequent phases could accommodate spent fuel from Virginia and the Northeast.

Though the project would bring money and jobs to the area, it would require broad community support to be successful, the study said, noting that storage could also lead to a reprocessing complex at SRS.

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Riverman1
83771
Points
Riverman1 07/06/13 - 06:12 am
4
0
Yucca Mt. By Default

Like I've said for years SRS is going to end up becoming Yucca Mt. by default. But remember about a billion dollars was spent at Yucca Mt. After Harry Reid got the money spent there, he managed to squash the whole project. If the government bureaucrats are seriously considering SRS with all its faults (no pun intended), hopefully, they will bring the checkbook with them.

oldredneckman96
5095
Points
oldredneckman96 07/05/13 - 10:00 pm
2
2
Reprocessing
Unpublished

We recycle almost everything in the name of being "green" but take the best, cleanest, cheapest source of energy in the world and set it in "trash cans" in the "back yard" of power plants that could use it. France is not running around killing her sons in "oil" countries looking for energy, instead France is and has been recycling nuclear fuel for many years. With 80% of their energy coming from nuclear power they live very well in spite of being Socialist. When will we grow up? Jimmy Carter stopped us from being energy independent, aren’t we about over him by now?

Young Fred
17448
Points
Young Fred 07/06/13 - 06:46 am
1
2
I'm by no means an expert

I'm by no means an expert when it comes to spent nuclear fuel, but it seems to me it would have its uses. Heck if we can recycle the dreaded plastic two litter bottle, I'm sure we could find uses for recycled nuclear fuel.

But if not, maybe we should take a page from Reid's playbook. We could spend hundreds of millions of dollars preparing, constructing, subcontracting and readying the site to take this spent fuel, only to say "never mind" we don't want it.

Dixieman
14943
Points
Dixieman 07/06/13 - 06:21 pm
1
0
Got a question

Why can't the CAB do what the appellate courts do -- vote and the majority wins, but the losing side gets to file a written dissent explaining their reasons for disagreement? Supreme Court does this all the time with their 5-4, 6-3 or whatever decisions. However, this is not among the possibilities mentioned above -- why not??

oldredneckman96
5095
Points
oldredneckman96 07/06/13 - 07:27 pm
1
1
Recycle
Unpublished

Dixieman and Young Fred have good points. The recycling of used fuel should not be done by the Goverment. Before Carter we had Allied Gulf Nuclear ready to reprocess fuel. All we need the goverment to do is get out of the way, as usual.

SCEagle Eye
914
Points
SCEagle Eye 07/07/13 - 08:40 am
2
1
Reprocessing dirty, costly

Reprocessing of spent fuel to remove plutonium is a dirty, dangerous and costly process that the government isn't willing to pay for. In Europe, all countries except France have pulled out of reprocessing and it only stands because it's subsidized and because it's government policy. Reprocessing, which would create another huge mess at the Savannah River Site, isn't going anywhere. The government did get out of the way of those backing reprocessing and it died in the US.

afadel
494
Points
afadel 07/07/13 - 02:26 pm
0
0
Few Get the $, Everybody Gets the Pollution

When I hear people speculate on the money the CSRA would receive by becoming the nation's nuclear waste dump, it's important to point out that relatively few will see that money. All living creatures will suffer the effects of the contamination.

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