Sunday, March 29, 2020

Environment and the Economy Subcommittee holds hearing on low-level radioactive waste

Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL)
Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL)
The Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy recently eld a hearing on the Low-Level Radioactive Waste (LLRW) Policy Act and issues that have arisen since its 1980 passage, such as states not having access to active disposal sites.

“DOE carefully and constructively engaged with the State of Nevada to provide for a mixed low-level waste disposal site at the Nevada National Security Site, adjacent to Yucca Mountain,” Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL), who chairs the Subcommittee, said. “We should consider how these conversations between the federal government and Nevada can continue to advance the development of a deep, geologic repository for used fuel.”

According to the Low-Level Radioactive Waste Policy Act, states are responsible for managing and disposing of LLRW, which they are meant to do through regional compacts between states. Unfortunately, today some states are not affiliated with any compacts and some compacts do not have disposal sites.

Additionally, the hearing touched on the Department of Energy and Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s plan for Greater Than Class C (GTCC) waste, which is the most dangerous category of LLRW.

“The Department benefits from the existence of multiple disposal sites, both federal and commercial,”  Department of Energy Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Management Mark Whitney said. "Our goal is to keep all waste disposal costs as low as possible. The Department is eager to work with members of Congress on the path forward for Greater Than Class C low-level radioactive waste.”

Organizations in this Story

U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce

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