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senate Bill S. 1234

Should an Independent ‘Nuclear Waste Administration’ Be Established to Manage the Storage of America’s Nuclear Waste?

Argument in favor

The storage of nuclear waste in the U.S. is a growing problem because the lack of a permanent repository means waste has to be stored at sites located in 35 states across the country. Establishing an independent agency at the Dept. of Energy will help ensure that the federal government finally fulfills its legal obligation to come up with a nuclear waste storage solution.

jimK's Opinion
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10/26/2019
I agree with Rebekah that there is a great danger in appointing anyone to this role who is neither qualified nor truly motivated to do the job. It is another ‘what has trump wrought?’ concern. Anyone filling this role should be fully vetted and have non-partisan support. This is a National problem that warrants clear management. It is a tough issue; Ignoring it only makes the issue tougher. Managing spent fuel is a long-term problem that must be dealt with by having a long-term focus. Most politicians just want to kick the can down the road until someone else has to deal with it. Finding safe repository sites to collect the increasingly hazardous spent fuel dumps around most reactors is imperative. I believe having an 'administrator' to focus on finding permanent storage methods, sites and transport protocols is the only way to keep reminding Congress of it's obligations to protect our people from hazardous growing waste stockpiles that are getting too large to safely manage. I support this. I am a little concerned about relying on private interests to deal with this but agree it should be an option. Yucca mountain should be re-visited as well as other central repositories along with a highly regulated safe and reliable site-to-site transport protocol.
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eatherich's Opinion
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10/26/2019
Make it federally regulated. We cannot trust private companies to care about this if it doesn’t have to do with their profit.
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···
10/26/2019
My question is this: why do we have a carefully considered, time -consuming bipartisan bill developed 16 years ago, using the best scientific and governmental minds and experience available waiting this long to be voted on and passed? The legislators involved in this process have had plenty of time to gain sufficient experience and to have examined all the pros and cons of this situation, and they are recommending passage of this act. Surely, we cannot doubt that these elected officials have done their due diligence in 16 years? These are respected lawmakers, regardless of party affiliation, and they have committed their time and attention to meet this urgent need. They have my full and complete support. No bill is perfect, but this one has been carefully designed to address all of the currently known concerns. Please vote to support this important bill!🇺🇸
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Argument opposed

Experience has shown that a federally-controlled, centrally planned nuclear waste disposal program doesn’t work. Rather than relying on the federal government to deal with nuclear waste, we should look to the nuclear industry itself to deal with this problem as part of its business.

Rebekah 's Opinion
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10/26/2019
No. Putting this critical issue under the control of an appointed industry lobbyist would be a disaster, just as putting a career polluter in charge of the EPA, a Big Oil executive in charge of the Dept of Energy, a Verizon executive in charge of the FCC, and a billionaire neophyte in charge of the Dept of Education has been.
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Colin's Opinion
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10/26/2019
Stop wasting taxpayer’s money on creating a redundant government department. Isn’t this the responsibility of the department on energy??
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operaman's Opinion
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10/26/2019
Clearing my brains for this difficult question. The DOE has many functions, but of those, the proper disposal of nuclear materials. Should I mention Yucca Valley? Billions of dollars to build that facility and it remains the center of environmental lawsuits. I, therefore, wish to know how another new Department will accomplish nuclear waste disposal when the DOE failed. Just another expansion of government and Federal Payroll.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Energy and Natural Resources
    IntroducedApril 30th, 2019
    I agree with Rebekah that there is a great danger in appointing anyone to this role who is neither qualified nor truly motivated to do the job. It is another ‘what has trump wrought?’ concern. Anyone filling this role should be fully vetted and have non-partisan support. This is a National problem that warrants clear management. It is a tough issue; Ignoring it only makes the issue tougher. Managing spent fuel is a long-term problem that must be dealt with by having a long-term focus. Most politicians just want to kick the can down the road until someone else has to deal with it. Finding safe repository sites to collect the increasingly hazardous spent fuel dumps around most reactors is imperative. I believe having an 'administrator' to focus on finding permanent storage methods, sites and transport protocols is the only way to keep reminding Congress of it's obligations to protect our people from hazardous growing waste stockpiles that are getting too large to safely manage. I support this. I am a little concerned about relying on private interests to deal with this but agree it should be an option. Yucca mountain should be re-visited as well as other central repositories along with a highly regulated safe and reliable site-to-site transport protocol.
    Like (62)
    Follow
    Share
    No. Putting this critical issue under the control of an appointed industry lobbyist would be a disaster, just as putting a career polluter in charge of the EPA, a Big Oil executive in charge of the Dept of Energy, a Verizon executive in charge of the FCC, and a billionaire neophyte in charge of the Dept of Education has been.
    Like (36)
    Follow
    Share
    Make it federally regulated. We cannot trust private companies to care about this if it doesn’t have to do with their profit.
    Like (29)
    Follow
    Share
    Stop wasting taxpayer’s money on creating a redundant government department. Isn’t this the responsibility of the department on energy??
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    My question is this: why do we have a carefully considered, time -consuming bipartisan bill developed 16 years ago, using the best scientific and governmental minds and experience available waiting this long to be voted on and passed? The legislators involved in this process have had plenty of time to gain sufficient experience and to have examined all the pros and cons of this situation, and they are recommending passage of this act. Surely, we cannot doubt that these elected officials have done their due diligence in 16 years? These are respected lawmakers, regardless of party affiliation, and they have committed their time and attention to meet this urgent need. They have my full and complete support. No bill is perfect, but this one has been carefully designed to address all of the currently known concerns. Please vote to support this important bill!🇺🇸
    Like (15)
    Follow
    Share
    Clearing my brains for this difficult question. The DOE has many functions, but of those, the proper disposal of nuclear materials. Should I mention Yucca Valley? Billions of dollars to build that facility and it remains the center of environmental lawsuits. I, therefore, wish to know how another new Department will accomplish nuclear waste disposal when the DOE failed. Just another expansion of government and Federal Payroll.
    Like (11)
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    Murkowski’s voting record on environmental issues has undone any benefit from her work. By supporting Scott Pruitt for EPA, she helped undo the last decade’s worth of American climate policy. Murkowski did vote to confirm Pruitt for the post. Known before taking the job for his skeptical views about climate change, Pruitt oversaw perhaps the biggest rollback of regulations in the history of the Environmental Protection Agency, including several Obama-era regulations about cars and power plants that were designed to mitigate climate change. Pruitt also pushed #45 to withdraw from the Paris climate treaty. These have been enormous setbacks for the climate. She was the swing vote in favor of repealing the BLM methane rule This requires a little clarification: Murkowski indeed voted last year to overturn an Obama-era regulation that required oil and gas producers on public lands to prevent the escape of methane, a greenhouse gas that’s about 30 times more potent in its ability to trap heat than carbon dioxide. Murkowski claimed the rule was expensive and unneeded and would cost jobs. In the end, Senate Republicans fell short on their attempt to rescind the vote. (Earlier this year, though, the Trump administration relaxed the regulation.) that would limit wasteful emissions of this super greenhouse gas. Combine that with opening the Arctic Refuge for drilling, and all the little energy efficiency bills, small local hydro systems, and far distant future nuclear plants Murkowski’s support for the GOP tax bill one year ago was secured by adding a piece of pork that she and some other Alaskans had long prized: opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, allowing Alaska to extend its economy’s deep reliance on oil and to keep pushing oil out to the broader world. won’t save Alaskans from runaway warming.
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    This is a national problem and should be dealt with nationally.
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    No! No more government agencies! The bureaucracy is large enough already and needs to be cut not expanded.
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    Murkowski is not trustworthy with respect to environmental issues. She has sold out Alaskan wildlife for money. Make no mistake, that’s what this is about. This will turn into a money grab for DC cronies. The DOE should already be addressing this problem.
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    No new government departments.
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    Wrong direction. We are $21 TRILLION in debt and accelerating. We badly need a reduction in government work force, i.e. elimination of departments, not the creation of new ones.
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    Yes. However, my yes is conditional and depends on the appointment of actual scientists from a range of sciences: geology, groundwater science, geophysicists, several physicists, and perhaps structural engineers. To name a few. Please, no political hacks.
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    That’s the job of the Department Of Energy! Why create a whole new level of beurocrocy! We must shrink government! Not grow it! They are doing just fine right now! As Europe has the most nuclear power plants in the world the manage just fine with their waste! They use private companies like Veolia from France go manage it! Veolia International has a large presence here I. The U.S. as well and they do a great job! No more federal departments!
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    No. Putting this critical issue under the control of an appointed industry lobbyist would be a disaster, just as putting a career polluter in charge of the EPA, a Big Oil executive in charge of the Dept of Energy, a Verizon executive in charge of the FCC, and a billionaire neophyte in charge of the Dept of Education has been. Thank you Rebekah! You took the words right out of my brain
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    Another enlarge the government plan to establish a fund to build a pilot facility to dispose of spent fuel. We all know that when there is an idea from the government it will fail and cost the taxpayer many time the original estimate. Use the DOE and the agency already assigned to over see the nuclear industry. Require those companies that operate nuclear plants to build a facility to store the spent fuel. Do not increase the size of the government.
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    No way! I live in Las Vegas; 100 miles away from the “accident-waiting-to-happen”, built on top of fault lines, Yucca Mountain repository, which the Federal government has tried to open for years! No! We use no Nuclear Energy in Nevada! Let other States who use this dirty energy & the companies that profit off of this, figure out where they are going to store this long-term, deadly waste. The only thing our Federal Government needs to do is to keep the nuclear industry highly regulated and incentivize cleaner renewable energy sources. Neither of which, I’m afraid, this administration is unwilling & incapable of doing!
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    No more unmanageable or unstoppable independent commissions. All government bodies should have oversight by other parts of the federal government. Congress should be wary of ceding too much power.
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    How 'bout, we just STOP creating Nuclear Waste?
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    no more do nothing unaccountable govt. departments to hire more swamp creatures
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