Memo casts doubt on license for Yucca repository

The Obama administration intends to stop the pursuit of a license for the planned Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository in December, according to internal budget documents from the Department of Energy obtained by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

“All license defense activities will be terminated in December 2009,” said a draft Program Decision Memorandum that was attached to an Oct. 23 memo from DOE Chief Financial Officer Steve Isakowitz.
The documents obtained by the Review-Journal said that decisions for a revised 2011 budget request “are draft until signed by the deputy secretary. … We do not expect the information to change.”
Pre-hearings began this year in Las Vegas on whether to build a maze of tunnels inside Yucca Mountain to store 77,000 tons of highly radioactive spent reactor fuel and defense waste. The location is about 100 miles northwest of Las Vegas.

Now a Las Vegas official wonders whether there was a typo in that memo.
Here’s a link to the Review-Journal’s complete coverage of Yucca Mountain.
Closer to home, here’s the San Antonio-Express News’ ongoing coverage of the expansion of the South Texas Project nuclear power plant.

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