Radioactive Waste

No safe, permanent solution has yet been found anywhere in the world - and may never be found - for the nuclear waste problem. In the U.S., the only identified and flawed high-level radioactive waste deep repository site at Yucca Mountain, Nevada has been canceled. Beyond Nuclear advocates for an end to the production of nuclear waste and for securing the existing reactor waste in hardened on-site storage.



50,000 come out to protest radioactive waste transport in Germany

Inspiring stories continue to flood in from Germany where 50,000 protesters turned out on Saturday in opposition to the highly radioactive waste transport that arrived from France's La Hague reprocessing facility. Germany has already been the scene of 100,000 in the streets of Berlin to oppose reactor license extension along with the 75-mile-long human chain last April.  Although 20,000 police were deployed during the waste transport protest, National Public Radio reports that the police were largely sympathetic to the protesters' point of view. Said the NPR report: "Police trade unions complained in unusually hard terms that they have been "scapegoated" by politicians, who "made a fatal mistake" when they extended nuclear plants life spans, and that citizens are right to protest." (Photo: Copyright Martin Leers).


First footage of most radioactive transport ever as it leaves La Hague reprocessing site

In French but the pictures speak volumes. The CASTOR casks are on their way across the width of France to Germany, ultimately for the Gorleben site. Huge protests are on-going.

Convoi le plus radioactif de l'histoire : premières images
Uploaded by gpfrance. - Up-to-the minute news videos.


Plan to dump radioactive waste on Goshute reservation may not be dead

"The federal government has decided not to fight a court ruling that might allow the Skull Valley Goshute Indians to revive their plans to store reactor waste on their Tooele County reservation", reports Judy Fahys in the Salt Lake Tribune. "Two months ago, U.S. District Judge David M. Ebel threw out a pair of U.S. Interior Department decisions that, in effect, led many Utahns to believe that the storage site plans were dead four years ago. Interior officials’ decision to pass up on an appeal by Friday’s deadline has angered Utah leaders, who had urged the agency to vigorously contest the ruling. With the feds’ inaction, the issues in dispute now return to the agency “for further consideration” in light of the judge’s ruling. A spokeswoman for Gov. Gary Herbert said he believes it is inappropriate to have high-level nuclear waste stored 50 miles from downtown Salt Lake City." Read the full article. (Pictured: Margene Bullcreek, one of the leading dump opponents).


7 Great Lakes States U.S. Senators object to radioactive waste shipment from Canada to Sweden

Seven U.S. Senators from Great Lakes States -- Russell Feingold (D-WI), Robert Casey Jr. (D-PA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Carl Levin (D-MI), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Richard Durbin (D-IL, Assistant Senate Majority Leader), and Charles Schumer (D-NY) -- have written to the U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration (PHMSA) and the Canadian federal government, expressing serious concerns about a proposed shipment of 16 radioactive steam generators from Bruce Nuclear Power Plant in Ontario to Sweden for "recycling" into consumer products. The shipment, on board a single ship, would violate International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) limits for the quantity of radioactivity aboard a single vessel. The shipment would travel via Lake Huron to Lake St. Clair, Lake Erie, Lake Ontario, and connecting rivers (St. Clair, Detroit, the Welland canal, and St. Lawrence), and then across the Atlantic Ocean (see route map). Shockingly, Bruce Power's CEO, Duncan Hawthorne, has stated that there is no emergency plan for dealing with the sinking of the ship, stating there would be plenty of time to determine what to do once the ship sank. The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, as well as the US DOT PHMSA, must approve permits for the shipment before it can commence. PHMSA has recently been the subject of severe criticism for oil pipeline leak and natural gas pipeline explosion disasters, as well as for the close ties between its leadership and companies involved in these disasters. Beyond Nuclear, along with a coalition of environmental groups, has called upon PHMSA to conduct a full environmental analysis on the proposed shipment, in order to fulfill its National Environmental Policy Act federal legal obligations, before permitting the shipment to enter U.S. territorial waters on the Great Lakes -- 20% of the world's surface fresh water, drinking supply for 40 million in the U.S., Canada, and numerous Native American/First Nations, and regional engine for one of the biggest economies on the planet.


Is radioactive waste coming your way?

A primary focus of International Radioactive Waste Action Day on Sept. 29th in the U.S. and Canada is opposing the shipment of radioactive steam generators from Ontario on the Great Lakes, St. Lawrence River, and Atlantic Ocean to Sweden for "recycling" into metallic consumer products. Beyond Nuclear, working in coalition with scores of environmental groups across the U.S., is calling on concerned citizens to contact their U.S. Senators and U.S. Representative to take action to stop this shipment, and ban risky radioactive waste transportation on the Great Lakes. This shipment could set a precedent for even worse to come, such as high-level radioactive waste shipments on the Great Lakes, as well as the Chesapeake BayDelaware Bay, various waterways surrounding metro New York City and Massachusetts, the coastlines of California and Florida, and such rivers as the James in VA, the Mississippi in LA and MS, the Tennessee in AL and TN, and the Missouri in the Midwest. Those concerned about these waterways should also contact their U.S. Senators and Representative, via the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121, and urge for enactment of a law to ban such risky shipments on waterways. While those high-level radioactive waste shipping routes just named were part of the now-cancelled Yucca Mountain dump plan, any "away-from-reactor" irradiated nuclear fuel plan -- including reprocessing, as at Savannah River Site, South Carolina, or "parking lot dumps," as on Native American reservations -- could likewise launch such high-level radioactive waste shipments onto waterways, not to mention roadways and railways in most states. International Radioactive Waste Action Day events are happening in Ontario and New Brunswick, Canada; the U.S. states of MD, NJ, NY, NC, and WI; Australia; Finland; and Scotland.