WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, welcomed news today that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) docketed the Department of Energy’s (DOE) license application to build a repository at Yucca Mountain in Nevada. The NRC staff has determined that application contains sufficient information to begin the technical review; a long, exhaustive analysis of 10,000 pages reflecting work by some of the very best scientists and laboratories in the country.
“Today’s docketing decision by the NRC reflects DOE’s submission a high-quality application,” Senator Inhofe said. “This achievement was 25 years in the making and is a tribute to Ward Sproat’s leadership, and to the hard work and commitment of all those working on the repository program. I have supported this program for years and will continue to do so because I believe it is essential to the rebirth of nuclear energy and to the clean up of the nuclear wastes resulting from the Cold War.”
“The technical review should take three to four years, in accordance with the Nuclear Waste Policy Act. However, Congressional attempts to limit funding for the NRC’s review could stretch the process out even longer. Regardless of anyone’s opposition to or support for the repository itself, all stakeholders are best served by a rigorous and timely review of the application. However, the NRC should not, and will not, compromise safety and security by rushing its decision-making process. Starving the NRC of the needed funding only serves the interests of those who profit from prolonged indecision.”