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Centralized Storage

With the scientifically unsound proposed Yucca Mountain radioactive waste dump now canceled, the danger of "interim" storage threatens. This means that radioactive waste could be "temporarily" parked in open air lots, vulnerable to accident and attack, while a new repository site is sought.

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Entries by admin (186)

Thursday
Jan242019

Summary of Holtec/ELEA CISF licensing application proceeding

Summary of Holtec International/Eddy-Lea Energy Alliance centralized interim storage facility (CISF) for irradiated nuclear fuel and Greater-Than-Class-C (GTCC) "low-level" radioactive waste licensing application proceeding, with links to more detailed information, arranged in chronological order:

Holtec International -- HI-STORE CISF [license application documents, including the Environmental Report (ER) and Safety Analysis Report (SAR), from March 31, 2017 to January 4, 2018, as posted on U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission website].

Beyond Nuclear's environmental scoping comments, submitted to NRC, opposed to the Holtec/ELEA CISF [July 30, 2018].

Broad national grassroots environmental coalition environmental scoping comments, submitted to NRC, opposed to Holtec/ELEA CISF [July 30, 2018] -- 30,000+ comments submitted opposed to CISF.

Environmental legal interventions opposing Holtec/ELEA CISF [Sept. 14, 2018 -- interventions by: Alliance for Environmental Strategies (AFES, legal counsel Nancy Simmons); Beyond Nuclear (legal counsel Diane Curran, Mindy Goldstein, and Caroline Reiser); Don't Waste Michigan et al.*; and Sierra Club (legal counsel Wally Taylor].

*This environmental coalition includes: Citizens for Alternatives to Chemical Contamination, MI; Citizens’ Environmental Coalition, NY; Don’t Waste Michigan; Nuclear Energy Information Service, IL; Nuclear Issues Study Group, NM; Public Citizen (DC, TX); San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace, (CA), with Terry Lodge of Toledo, Ohio serving as legal counsel. Dr. James David Ballard serves as expert witness. See his Sept. 2018 report, "Holtec HI-STORM UMAX Interim Storage Facility (a.k.a. CISF): Human-Initiated Events (HIE), Transportation of the Inventory, and Storage of Highly Radioactive Waste Materials."

Beyond Nuclear's motion to dismiss [Sept. 14, 2018; Errata filed Sept. 18, 2018].

Public Citizen press release [Sept. 14, 2018].

Don't Waste MI et al. press release [Sept. 17, 2018].

Holtec and NRC staff answers/responses, opposing Beyond Nuclear's motion to dismiss [Sept. 24, 2018].

Beyond Nuclear motion for leave to reply, and reply to NRC staff's and Holtec's responses to Beyond Nuclear's motion to dismiss [Sept. 28, 2018].

NRC staff and Holtec responses/answers opposing AFES, Beyond Nuclear, Don't Waste MI et al., and Sierra Club legal interventions [Oct. 9, 2018].

Replies by AFES, Beyond Nuclear, Don't Waste MI et al., and Sierra Club, to NRC staff and Holtec responses/answers opposing legal interventions [Oct. 16, 2018].

NRC Commissioners' ORDER, rejecting Beyond Nuclear's motion to dismiss [Oct. 29, 2018].

NRC establishment of Atomic Safety and Licensing Board (ASLB) [Oct. 31, 2018].

ASLB sets oral argument pre-hearings for Jan. 23-24 in Albuquerque, New Mexico [Nov. 28, 2018].

ASLB announces start time and specific location for Jan. 23-24 Albuquerque, NM oral argument pre-hearings [Dec. 14, 2018]: "The Board will hear oral argument concerning standing and the sufficiency of the hearing requests on Wednesday, January 23 and, as necessary, Thursday, January 24, 2019 in...Albuquerque, New Mexico..."

[A Jan. 10, 2019 revised Order from the ASLB announced a new venue in Albuquerque -- the previous venue inaccessible due to the partial shutdown of the federal government. The new venue is:

The Board will hear oral argument concerning standing and the sufficiency of the hearing requests on Wednesday, January 23 and, as necessary, Thursday, January 24, 2019 at the State Bar of New Mexico, 5121 Masthead Street NE, Albuquerque, New Mexico. The argument will commence at 9:00 a.m. Mountain Standard Time (MST).]

 

Beyond Nuclear files motion Petition for Review and Motion to Hold in Abeyance with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit [Dec. 27, 2018].

Joint motion by Sierra Club, and Don't Waste MI et al., to the ASLB, for the establishment of hearing procedures [Jan. 3, 2018].

Wednesday
Jan162019

Press Advisory: Coalition Defends Interventions against Holtec/ELEA Forever Deadly High-Level Radioactive Waste Mega-Dump Targeted at Southeastern New Mexico

Press Advisory, For Immediate Release, January 16, 2019

Contact:

Legal counsel for Beyond Nuclear --

Mindy Goldstein; Turner Environmental Law Clinic, Emory University School of Law; 404-727-3432; mindy.goldstein@emory.edu

Diane Curran; Harmon, Curran, Spielberg + Eisenberg, LLP; 240-393-9285; dcurran@harmoncurran.com

Kevin Kamps, Radioactive Waste Specialist, Beyond Nuclear, (240) 462-3216, kevin@beyondnuclear.org

Legal counsel for Don't Waste Michigan, Nuclear Issues Study Group, et al. --

Terry Lodge, (419) 205-7084, tjlodge50@yahoo.com

Leona Morgan, Nuclear Issues Study Group, 505-879-8547, protectnewmexico@gmail.com

Michael Keegan, Don’t Waste Michigan, (734) 770-1441, mkeeganj@comcast.com

 

Coalition Defends Interventions against Holtec/ELEA

Forever Deadly High-Level Radioactive Waste Mega-Dump

Targeted at Southeastern New Mexico

Environmental Press Conference Jan. 22;

NRC Hearings on Trial Issues Begin Jan. 23 in Albuquerque

WHO: Environmental, and environmental justice (EJ), groups (and their legal counsel) opposing the Holtec/ELEA consolidated interim storage facility (CISF) in NM, as official parties in the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Atomic Safety and Licensing Board (ASLB) proceeding, include: Alliance for Environmental Strategies (Nancy Simmons, Albuquerque, NM), Beyond Nuclear (Diane Curran, Washington, D.C.; Mindy Goldstein, Turner Environmental Law Clinic, Emory University, Atlanta, GA); Sierra Club (Wally Taylor, Sierra Club Nuclear-Free Campaign, Cedar Rapids, IA); and a seven-group coalition including Don’t Waste Michigan, Citizens for Alternatives to Chemical Contamination (MI), Public Citizen (TX and DC), San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace (CA), Nuclear Energy Information Service (IL), Citizens’ Environmental Coalition (NY), and Nuclear Issues Study Group (NM) (Terry Lodge, Toledo, OH).

WHAT: Environmental coalition press conference -- 3:30 MST, Tuesday, Jan. 22, at the State Bar of New Mexico ("Modrall Room”) , 5121 Masthead Street NE, Albuquerque, New Mexico – to address U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Atomic Safety and Licensing Board (ASLB) oral argument pre-hearings, to be held in Albuquerque, re: the Holtec/ELEA license application to construct and operate a CISF for 173,600 metric tons of commercial irradiated nuclear fuel and other highly radioactive waste, targeted at southeastern New Mexico. (That quantity is 2.5 times the amount targeted at Yucca Mountain, Nevada for permanent burial.)

WHERE: The location of the environmental coalition press conference on Tues., Jan. 22 will be at the State Bar of New Mexico (“Modrall Room”), 5121 Masthead Street NE, Albuquerque, New Mexico. (The oral argument pre-hearings of the NRC ASLB will be at the same location, in the auditorium, on Wed., Jan. 23 and likely Thurs., Jan. 24. The NRC ASLB has made available listen-only, call-in phone lines, for taking in the proceedings: The telephone number is 1-888-790-1895 and the passcode is 5046496).

WHEN: The time of the environmental coalition press conference will be 3:30pm MST, Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2019. (The NRC ASLB hearings will begin Wed., Jan. 23, 2019, at 9:00 am MST, and will continue on Thursday, January 24, 2019, as needed.)

WHY: The environmental coalition first filed their petitions to intervene, and requests for hearing, in opposition to the Holtec/ELEA CISF proposal, on Sept. 14, 2018. 40 technical and legal contentions of opposition, many backed up by expert witness testimony, range from environmental justice violations, to lack of legal authorization for such a CISF, and a broad range of concerns regarding public health, safety, security, and the environment. (For the complete list of legal contentions, please see the OVERVIEW, below).

A comprehensive Summary of Holtec/ELEA CISF Licensing Application Proceeding is posted at the top of Beyond Nuclear’s CENTRALIZED STORAGE website section.

--End--

Overview of Environmental Coalition Contentions Opposing Holtec/ELEA’s CISF, and the NRC ASLB Licensing Proceeding:

As detailed in the environmental coalition filings, the dozens of contentions filed on September 14, 2018 include the following categories (some of the contentions were raised by multiple intervenors; the total number of contentions filed adds up to 40+):

(1) impacts on Native American and other historic and pre-historic properties on the site;

(2) insufficient assurances of financing for construction, operation, and decommissioning;

(3) underestimation of so-called “low-level” radioactive waste volumes that would be generated;

(4) improper reliance on NRC generic Environmental Impact Statement presumptions;

(5) natural gas fracking and potash mining beneath the site;

(6) cumulative risks of future reprocessing (plutonium extraction);

(7) the public health threat from the “Start Clean/Stay Clean” philosophy’s risks of shipping damaged, leaking, or contaminated casks back to the atomic reactor of origin;

(8) incomplete and inadequate disclosure of transportation routes (road, rail, and waterway), and inadequate analyses of the substantial risks of these shipments through most states, over decades;

(9) inconsistent predicted lengths for “interim storage” period, from 40 to 100, 120, or even 300 years, timeframes that could dangerously exceed the design and surface life of the containers;

(10) unmet safety and security risk analyses for the scale of transport and storage proposed; (11) troubling geological formations and conditions beneath the site;

(12) no compelling purpose and need for the CISF;

(13) risk of the CISF becoming a de facto permanent surface storage “parking lot dump”;

(14) Holtec’s improper reliance on the Blue Ribbon Commission for America’s Nuclear Future’s 2012 Final Report;

(15) earthquake risks at the site;

(16) impacts on endangered and threatened species, such as the dunes sagebrush lizard; (17) questionable credibility of sub-contractors used in the preparation of the license application, reflected in the poor quality of the submitted documents, and charges of major fraud against Tetra Tech related to a massive radioactive contamination incident in San Francisco, CA;

(18) thermal concerns associated with corrosion of the containers;

(19) groundwater and brine concerns at the site, including threats of radioactive contamination reaching area drinking and irrigation water aquifers downstream;

(20) risks of high burnup irradiated nuclear fuel degradation and failure.

The NRC ASLB oral argument pre-hearings on January 23-24, 2019 in Albuquerque will address "standing and contention admissibility."

A comprehensive Summary of Holtec/ELEA CISF Licensing Application Proceeding is posted at the top of Beyond Nuclear’s CENTRALIZED STORAGE website section.

Wednesday
Jan162019

Licensing board announces listen-only phone lines for Holtec/ELEA CISF licesning hearing beginning 1/23 in ABQ, NM

Here is the relevant info. from the U.S. Nulcear Regulatory Commission Atomic Safety and Licensing Board:

"In connection with the oral argument scheduled to begin at 9:00 a.m. MST on January 23 and continue as necessary on January 24, 2019, the Board will make available listen-only telephone lines. This should allow interested members of the public—both in New Mexico and elsewhere—to hear the arguments in real time if it is not practicable to attend in person. The telephone number is 1-888-790-1895 and the passcode is 5046496."

Here is the link to the ASLB Order.

Please spread the word to your networks re: this opportunity to listen-in, to show solidarity with the opponents to the centralized interim storage facility (CISF) for 173,600 metric tons of highly radioactive irradiated nuclear fuel targeted at southeastern New Mexico!

Monday
Jan142019

Holtec International's Answer Opposing Don't Waste Michigan, et al., and Sierra Club's Joint Motion to Adopt Hearing Procedures

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's legal pleading can be viewed at this link.

Friday
Jan112019

Sierra Club, and Don't Waste MI et al., adopt each other's contentions in Holtec/ELEA CISF licensing proceeding

Motion of DWM et al. to Adopt and Litigate Sierra Club Contentions;

Sierra Club's Motion to Adopt Contentions of Don't Waste Michigan, et al.

Don't Waste Michigan, et al. is a coaltion of seven environmental groups. Its legal counsel is Terry Lodge of Toledo, Ohio.

Sierra Club is represented by attorney Wally Taylor of Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

The Holtec International/Eddy-Lea Energy Alliance centralized interim storage facility is targeting New Mexico with 173,600 metric tons of highly radioactive irradiated nuclear fuel.