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Environmental Justice and Nuclear Waste: The Road from Vermont Yankee Nuclear reactor to West Texas and New Mexico
October 2, 2019 @ 12:30 am - 2:30 am UTC+0
Join us for a high level nuclear waste (HLNW) forum that addresses the abdication by the federal government and the nuclear industry to deal with HLNW stranded at nuclear sites throughout the country. Speakers will discuss the issues of nuclear waste, present federal policy and the environmental injustice. Speakers include:
- Leona Morgan, Nuclear Industry Study Group (NISG), from the Navajo Nation and a community impacted by uranium mining and the nuclear fuel cycle.
- Karen Hadden executive Director at Sustainable Energy & Economic Development (SEED) Coalition, Austin, Texas, will address the targeting of west Texas for a proposed centralized interim storage site(CIS) for HLNW in Andrews county, Texas;
- Dee D’arrigo, with Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) will address the vulnerabilities of centralized interim storage of HLNW and federal policy;
- Deb Katz, with Citizens Awareness Network (CAN) will address the issues of NorthStar, decommissioning , hardened on site storage at nuclear sites.
All will address the issues of environmental racism that pervade the nuclear industry’s “solutions” for nuclear waste. Centralized interim storage (CIS) is no solution; it’s another attempt by the industry to make its waste problem disappear. Any solution needs to be scientifically sound and environmentally just. Until the criteria of sound science & environmental justice drive any disposition, HLNW must remain onsite. We must put our best minds to create the best solution given had dangerous and long lasting this problem is.
Organized by Citizens Awareness Network,
Co-sponsored by Vermont Yankee Decommissioning Alliance and Safe and Green Coalition are organizing
Although the nuclear industry & federal government committed to create a solution for high level nuclear waste (HLW) disposal, no acceptable solution exists. Federal legislation mandated a repository; Nevada was targeted-billions expended to establish Yucca Mountain. This boondoggle failed due to site unsuitability, corruption, inadequate safeguards, Nevada’s opposition. As the wrangling over Yucca continues, the industry has a pressing need to create some solution since dangerous waste piling up at reactor sites undermines its position that nuclear is clean and safe. Interim storage sites do not have to meet the strict environmental standards that have plagued Yucca Mountain. The sites targeted for “disposal” like the sites selected for operation, are routinely low income, rural, people of color and Native American communities. The industry pits nuclear communities against each other; reactor communities fear inadequate casks, lack of onsite protections and HLW abandonment by the Feds. Targeted communities for nuclear waste disposal don’t want dangerous nuclear waste in their backyard, particularly given the abysmal record of leaks and inadequate environmental protections. Waste communities face unconscionable choices including short-term economic survival or long-term health and safety.
It is essential that reactor and waste communities work together to create effective strategies and actions to defeat industry initiatives to target vulnerable communities and provide protections for reactor communities forced to be guardians of the world’s most toxic and long-lasting waste.
In terms of help, we would appreciate help with logistics and promotion of the event. Financial contributions are welcome, but not necessary or expected. Funds will go to over night housing and food.