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Thursday
Jun152017

Stop Mobile Chernobyls! Emails, calls, faxes to U.S. Representatives urgently needed ASAP!

Just say no, to Mobile Chernobyls and dangerous, environmentally unjust radioactive waste dumps!Thanks to our friends and colleagues at NIRS (Nuclear Information and Resource Service) for the heads up on this stealth rush job by U.S. House Republican leadership, to ram radioactive waste dumps down the throats of Nevada, New Mexico, and Texas, without their consent.
 
Urgent action is needed to prevent the launch of Mobile Chernobyl irradiated nuclear fuel transport risks, in unprecedented large numbers, through many states, en route to the Yucca Mountain, NV permanent burial dump, and/or de facto permanent parking lot dumps in TX and/or NM! 

Many states in the Lower 48/Continental U.S. would be impacted by trucks, trains, and/or barges carrying commercial high-level radioactive waste to NM, NV, and/or TX. Emails, phone calls, and/or faxes to U.S. Representatives are urgently needed. Please read on, or skip to the TAKE ACTION section below...


Mobile Chernobyl routes through many states:

See Mobile Chernobyl road and rail routes throughout many states, across the U.S., here. This map was published by the State of Nevada Agency for Nuclear Projects, in the context of Yucca-bound shipments by truck and train.

However, depending on the particular circumstances, there would be a lot of overlap in routing, whether shipments were headed to NV, or TX/NM (the two centralized interim storage facilities, so-called, are less than 40 miles away from each other, across the TX/NM border). Here is a map published by the Public Citizen Texas Office, showing projected routes for irradiated nuclear fuel shipments into the WCS site in west TX. And here is WCS's own map, from its license application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, showing national rail routes that would be used to ship high-level radioactive waste to west TX.

Note that the heart of many major cities would be hard hit, with rail and/or trucks routes passing though large population centers (map again provided by State of NV Agency for Nuclear Projects, in context of Yucca-bound shipments).

In addition, there is also the potential for irradiated nuclear fuel barge shipments on surface waters across the country, from the Great Lakes, to rivers, to sea coasts. Check out these backgrounders for maps and shipment numbers (published by the Department of Energy in its Yucca dump Final Environmental Impact Statement in Feb. 2002), as well as for info. on the high risks involved: 
Again, centralized interim storage facilities in TX and/or NM, would simply multiply such risks. In fact, many congressional districts could see the very same high-level radioactive waste casks pass through twice -- once en route to centralized storage, and again as they are moved to permanent disposal!


TAKE ACTION ASAP!

Please email, phone, and/or fax your U.S. Representative ASAP (snail mailed letters take a long time to arrive at the U.S. House, due to security screening, so will miss today's subcommittee action, and might even miss full committee action, but might still arrive in time for House floor action). You can reach your U.S. Rep. by phone, via the U.S. Capitol Switchboard, at 202-225-3121; their email/web forms, fax numbers, and snail mail addresses can be looked up at this U.S. House website, by entering your ZIP code in the upper right hand corner. You can contact your U.S. Representative's Washington, D.C. office, and/or their one or more district offices near you.)
 
Please urge your U.S. Representative to oppose H.R.___, the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act of 2017, and to urge all their colleagues on the U.S. House Environment and the Economy Subcommittee, the full U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee, and the full House of Representatives, on both sides of the aisle, to do the same! (Note that the bill is so half-baked, and ill-considered, it doesn't even have an H.R. bill number yet! And yet, Rep. Shimkus hopes to ram it through mark up, and pass it through the subcommittee ASAP, and send it on to the full committee and then House floor for votes ASAP after that!)

Thanks for taking action, and please spread the word!
 
News of June 15th's congressional subcommittee mark up hearing: 


As posted at E&E News:

ENERGY AND COMMERCE
Panel to vote on Yucca, ozone, brownfields bills

Published: Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Bills that would advance the long-delayed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository in Nevada, raise the federal funding cap for brownfields redevelopment and rewrite key parts of the Clean Air Act are set for a markup tomorrow morning before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Environment. [Remainder of article beyond pay wall.] 



Subject: Shimkus bill markup tomorrow (Thursday June 15th) [will be watchable live and recorded on video- follow links on committee web page]

 

As posted at Subcommittee Chairman U.S. Represenative John Shimkus's (Republican-Illinois) Energy and Commerce Committee website:  https://energycommerce.house.gov/news-center/press-releases/thursday-subenvironment-markup-three-bills-modernize-nation-s

June 13, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC - The Environment Subcommittee, chaired by Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL), today announced a markup for Thursday, June 15, 2017, at 10 a.m. in room 2123 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

H.R.___, the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act of 2017

*Spent nuclear fuel sits idle in 121 communities across 39 states because the country lacks a permanent geologic repository. The Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act provides practical reforms to the nation's nuclear waste management policy to ensure the federal government's legal obligations to dispose of spent nuclear fuel and high-level waste will be fulfilled.

*This legislation preserves Yucca Mountain as the most expeditious path for spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste disposal while authorizing interim storage, including private storage initiatives, to provide optionality until Yucca Mountain is fully licensed and prepared to receive shipments.

 

Additional background info.

 
As revealed in this Beyond Nuclear press release, subcommittee chairman Shimkus, who is advocating this bill to open the Yucca dump, as well as surface parking lot storage in TX and/or NM, is quite unfamiliar with irradiated nuclear fuel rail routes through the Chicago area, in his home state of IL. He has also inappropriately downplayed the security risks of such shipments, specifically the risk of an attack by terrorists using shoulder-fired, tripod-fired, or vehicle-mounted, anti-tank missiles, such as TOWs, all too available on the international black market. See the full Beyond Nuclear post about the October 1, 2015 Shimkus hearing, at which we were invited (by Ranking Democrat Tonko) to testify, here.