Tribe to get hearing on Prairie Island nuclear waste concerns

  • Article by: DAVID SHAFFER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 26, 2012 - 9:04 PM

A federal panel will consider some of the issues raised by the nuclear plant's neighbors.

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swschradDec. 26, 12 2:40 PM

AEC/DOE have been collecting money as a tax on fuel shipments since the 1960s to build a permanent waste storage. all they've got to show for it are several fancy office buildings in Washington, DC. I humbly re-propose that they put a bucket of fuel rods under each bureaucrat's desk until they get the job done and have a place to put this stuff under military guard.

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markapDec. 26, 12 3:49 PM

Nuclear waste is forever. End nuclear power now.

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redstar321Dec. 26, 12 6:06 PM

In the United States, the Obama administration stepped back from President Bush's plans for commercial-scale reprocessing and reverted to a program focused on reprocessing-related scientific research. Nuclear fuel reprocessing is performed routinely in Europe, Russia and Japan.

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jcinmnDec. 26, 12 7:51 PM

redstar "In the United States, the Obama administration stepped back from President Bush's plans for commercial-scale reprocessing and reverted to a program focused on reprocessing-related scientific research. Nuclear fuel reprocessing is performed routinely in Europe, Russia and Japan" You must have slept through the Japan Tsunami coverage. What caused the meltdown was not the nuclear reactors but the 250+ fuel rods stored next to them. When the pumps shut down, the water turned to steam. The steam separated into hydrogen and oxygen. The Hydrogen ignited and blew the roofs off of the buildings. If the Japanese were reprocessing fuel rods why were there so many stored. The only country I've heard of reprocessing fuel rods is France. Your claims about GWB proposing reprocessing sounds a bit thin. All he would have to do would to have rescinded Gerald Ford's executive order banning the reprocessing of nuclear fuel. To my knowledge no one has attempted to do that. Could it be the fear of Al Qaeda and Iranian agents in our midst?

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jcinmnDec. 26, 12 7:54 PM

swschrad "AEC/DOE have been collecting money as a tax on fuel shipments since the 1960s to build a permanent waste storage. all they've got to show for it are several fancy office buildings in Washington, DC. I humbly re-propose that they put a bucket of fuel rods under each bureaucrat's desk until they get the job done and have a place to put this stuff under military guard" How about in your back yard? This has been the problem and the most stable place to store it is in the midwest where there is very little tectonic activity. Maybe once we sell all of the Jordan Sandstone to the Canadians we can refill the space with nuclear fuel rods. Does that appeal to you? I didn't think so

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jcinmnDec. 26, 12 7:58 PM

Let's sell the spent fuel rods to the French, have them transport it to France, reprocess it and sell reprocessed rods back to us. They've been doing it for decades safely and think nothing of it. It would help employment in Europe. They could expand their reprocessing industry, hire the Greeks, Spanish, Portuguese and every other nationality that is plagued with high unemployment and help the EU economy. As long as our government is too timid to try this we can outsource it.

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arspartzDec. 26, 12 8:52 PM

Does that appeal to you? I didn't think so

Actually, sure. Build it in my backyard. Really.

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fiveofusDec. 26, 1210:30 PM

This is an issue that lies squarely on the federal government's shoulders. They have failed miserably in developing and opening a spent fuel storage site, as they committed to do. We've also failed as a nation to complete the cycle of this material by reprocessing. This is zero-emissions dispatchable electricity, folks. With a few changes at the federal level, our energy worries in this country would be significantly addressed.

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edinawaterDec. 27, 1212:08 AM

The bureaucrats in Washington have already done their best to create a permanent storage site for spent nuclear fuel. Their plan is to store spent nuclear fuel at Yucca Mountain in Nevada. Yucca Mountain is located on the biggest military base in the US. It is a short distance from a radioactive wasteland where we tested 900 nuclear weapons. Despite these facts it is still too controversial for politicians to let the program move forward.

This is not an issue for bureaucrats in Washington to resolve. It is a political issue for your elected representatives to solve.

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alanmullerDec. 27, 1212:31 PM

In my opinion, the reason there is not a permanent dump for the fuel rods is simple enough: There is no way to store them safely for the time required and people know this. Reprocessing would just add more hazards and environmental nightmares. The sooner the nuke power industry is shut down, the better. That won't make the existing problems go away but at least the waste piles wouldn't be growing....

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