Washington D.C. (January 29, 2010) -- The U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu today announced the formation of a “Blue Ribbon Commission on America’s Nuclear Future” to provide recommendations for developing a safe, long-term solution for management and disposal of the nation’s spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste.
Following is a response by Tom Cochran, Senior Scientist for the Nuclear Program, Natural Resources Defense Council:
"This commission has important work to do to ensure that our country's approach to nuclear waste is safe, cost-effective and environmentally sound.
"The Administration is right in recognizing that the Yucca Mountain Project represents a failed approach to the disposal of high-level nuclear waste and spent nuclear fuel -- the third such failure in the past 50 years.
"To avoid the mistakes of the past, the Blue Ribbon Commission will need to identify more effective, open and transparent processes for selecting new candidate geologic repository sites and licensing criteria that protect the health and the environment of future generations. If they are successful in this regard they will have performed a great public service."