Current Radioactive Waste Issues:

The proper, responsible disposal of radioactive waste is currently an unsolved problem of the Nuclear Age. Several issues have come to the forefront, in part because national legislation has been put forward to address them.

Yucca Mountain HLRW Disposal Site:

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) was supposed to have an operational, permanent, deep-geologic HLRW disposal facility in operation in 1997. It failed to do so. As a result, HLRW continues to be created and is stored at all nuclear reactor sites, with no place to go currently. One site was designated by Congress and President George Bush in 2003 to serve as the nation’s HLRW permanent dumpsite: Yucca Mountain, Nevada (See Yucca Mountain factsheet). However, the site has serious flaws making it unsuitable for the safe, long-term, permanent disposal of HLRW. The site also sits on land belonging to the Western Shoshone First Nation, who contest the DOE’s right to operate the facility there as a violation of the 1868 Treaty of Ruby Valley with the U.S. Government.

Re-starting and funding for this flawed site are proposed in current legislation, H.R. 3053, the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act of 2017 (see fact sheets below), opposed by most safe-energy groups.

Centralized Interim Storage:

Government and nuclear industry plans are looking to create new, additional radioactive waste storage sites elsewhere away from reactors – “centralized interim storage” (CIS) facilities, using dry casks. Current proposals call for siting these facilities on Indigenous lands and/or low-income communities of color in West Texas and New Mexico. Safe energy advocates call for the HLRW to remain onsite while providing the best possible. (See HOSS fact sheets).

Funding for this unnecessary and expensive plan are proposed in current legislation, H.R. 3053, the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act of 2017 (see fact sheets)

High-Level Radioactive Waste Transportation

At some point in time, whether to the nuclear industry’s CIS facilities, or to the final HLRW disposal facility, the HLRW must be transported by either truck, train or barge. However, the current unsafe conditions of the nation’s aging and decaying transportation infrastructure argue against this for the foreseeable future. Further, the shipping casks needed have not been licensed by NRC nor constructed in sufficient quantities to conduct this “Mobile-Chernobyl/Fukushima Freeway” migration of HLRW. Safe-energy advocates have argued for years for the need to improve and upgrade our roads and rails before moving any large amounts of HLRW anywhere, except in cases of imminent emergency.

Current Radioactive Waste News

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ORAL TESTIMONY IN OPPOSITION TO SB76 - The Repeal of Illinois Nuclear Construction Moratorium

ORAL TESTIMONY IN OPPOSITION TO SB76 The Repeal of Illinois Nuclear Construction Moratorium April 18, 2023 By David A. Kraft, Director Nuclear Energy Information Service (NEIS) is a 42-year old nuclear watchdog, safe-energy advocacy…
courtesy of NIRS
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NEIS ACTION ALERT: YOU have 14 days to help stop new nuclear power plants from coming to Illinois!!

Call your State Rep before April 18th, urging opposition to SB0076, a bill that repeals Illinois nuclear reactor construction moratorium On March 30th  the Illinois Senate voted 39-13 to repeal the Illinois 1987 nuclear construction moratorium. …
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NEIS ACTION ALERT: Nuclear moratorium-repeal bills to be voted on week of March 20th

Call your Senator and Rep, urging them to oppose HB1079 and SB0076, bills that  repeal Illinois nuclear reactor construction moratorium We have received word that the two proposed nuclear moratorium-repeal bills will come for a final floor…
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PRESS RELEASE: Illinois Senate “Kabuki Theater” Hearing Advances Nuclear Moratorium Repeal

Illinois Senate “Kabuki Theater” Hearing Advances Nuclear Moratorium Repeal CHICAGO—A Senate Energy and Public Utilities committee hearing held today advanced proposed legislation that would repeal Illinois nuclear construction moratorium,…
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PRESS RELEASE: Nuclear “War” Returns to Illinois

CHICAGO-- A House Public Utilities committee meeting held today was the scene of the opening rounds of the next “nuclear war” in Illinois. Committee members heard testimony and voted on HB1079, introduced by Rep. Mark Walker (D. 53rd,…
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ACTION ALERT 2 HB1079 Hearing Rescheduled! Tues. Feb. 28, 2 p.m. NEW witness slips needed

The House Public Utilities Committee has re-scheduled its hearing dealing with HB1079. NEW witness slips are required and will be needed, even if you filed one last week. Last week, opponents outnumbered proponents 8 to 1.  This week, the proponents…
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NEIS sponsors a week of activities against premature, hazardous radioactive waste transport through Illinois NEIS hosted a week of events and activities in response to recent House Congressional legislation that would prematurely place hazardous…
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What nuclear retirement could mean for Illinois & the Midwest

Written By Kari Lydersen, Energy News Network, July 13, 2018. Members of Congress are scheduled to receive a briefing next week from nuclear energy experts and watchdogs on pending nuclear waste storage proposals and the decommissioning…
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Statement About Zion Nuclear Waste Compensation

S.1903 – The Stranded Act Of 2017 NEIS would like to commend IL Sen. Tammy Duckworth and IL Rep. Brad Schneider for introduction of S.1903 and H.R. 3970 respectively – the “Stranded Act of 2017;” and acknowledge State Sen. Melinda…