More than two dozen prominent national, state, local and Native American organizations have written to the U.S. Senate expressing their support for funding for the resumption of the Yucca Mountain Project review by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and related licensing-support activities at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).
The 26 organizations -- which comprise a cross-section of energy consumers, regulators, elected officials, Native Americans and community entities and businesses -- include the Nuclear Fuels Reprocessing Coalition, National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Prairie Island Indian Community, U.S. Nuclear Infrastructure Council, Institute for 21st Century Energy, Nuclear Waste Strategy Coalition, U.S. Nuclear Energy Foundation and the Sustainable Fuel Cycle Task Force, among others.
Citing recent findings by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Blue Ribbon Commission on America's Nuclear Future and the Senate Appropriations Committee as well as a July vote by the U.S. House of Representatives to restore funding for the review, the letter states that "we agree that the need for the Federal government to meet its responsibility for commercial spent fuel and defense waste management under the Nuclear Waste Policy Act is a matter of urgency -- and that further delay is only exacerbating taxpayer liability and diminishing confidence in resolution of this national concern.
It is increasingly clear that termination of the Yucca Mountain license application without clear legal authority and without an alternative plan has proven to be premature and unwise as well as deleterious generally to the nation's energy independence, economic competitiveness and environmental progress.
To this end, funding to facilitate resumption of the Yucca Mountain review in FY2012 - a site which heretofore has been found to be safe and viable and which is the highest confidence option currently available-- is strongly warranted.
Further Information: Edward Davis Sustainable Fuel Cycle Task Force 202-403-7711