Saturday, March 24, 2012

WSJ: "Texas Nears Approval of Multistate Nuclear Waste Dump"


March 24 Wall Street Journal page A3

[excerpted] "Texas moved closer to allowing low-level radioactive waste from dozens of states to be trucked in and disposed at a site in West Texas, which would become only one of four in the nation that could take low-level radioactive waste shipped from out of state..."

[paraphrasing] Environmentalists expressed concerns that the proposed site may not be safe because the water near the location would become contaminated and because truckloads of waste would have to be transported across the state interstates (and other states as well).

Majia here: The problem of radioactive waste is at the heart of the problems with nuclear power and weapons. 

Finding places to store decades of waste is daunting. 

In this particular instance, it appears that Texas is more concerned with "creating jobs" than protecting public health.

Clearly, storage sites must be created but safety should be the number one criterion for selecting and preparing these sites.

One "solution" to the growing waste problem has been to allow the "re-cycling" of "low-level" radioactive waste, enabling the incorporation of radioactive materials into buildings and household products:

Excerpt from the IICP Public Newsletter on Free Release

[excerpted] "If the radioactivity levels of these waste materials meet or are below designated “clearance levels”, this waste is considered no longer radioactive and can be “free-released”, that is, transferred without any restriction or regulatory control, directly to landfills, to recycling streams, such as concrete, metal, soil, asphalt, etc. and ultimately into commercial and consumer products, ranging from building materials, steel, roads, vehicles, tools, utensils, furniture, playgrounds, toys, personal items etc.

"In this way, the nuclear industry has “minimized” its waste by making it available for recycling and re-use. These policies are permitting the dispersal of man-made radioactive waste to enter freely into the open marketplace and into everyday consumer products, without public knowledge or consent. There is no way of knowing what portion of recycled material contains “cleared” radioactive waste or how much is in a product...."

Majia here: Can you imagine radioactive forks?
 
Nuclear is Pandora's box, ripped apart. We need to figure out how to put that box together again and close it tight...


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