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Burying Uncertainty

Risk and the Case Against Geological Disposal of Nuclear Waste

K. S. Shrader-Frechette (Author)


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Shrader-Frechette looks at current U.S. government policy regarding the nation's high-level radioactive waste both scientifically and ethically.

What should be done with our nation's high-level radioactive waste, which will remain hazardous for thousands of years? This is one of the most pressing problems faced by the nuclear power industry, and current U.S. government policy is to bury "radwastes" in specially designed deep repositories.

K. S. Shrader-Frechette argues that this policy is profoundly misguided on both scientific and ethical grounds. Scientifically—because we cannot trust the precision of 10,000-year predictions that promise containment of the waste. Ethically—because geological disposal ignores the rights of present and future generations to equal treatment, due process, and free informed consent.

Shrader-Frechette focuses her argument on the world's first proposed high-level radioactive waste facility at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Analyzing a mass of technical literature, she demonstrates the weaknesses in the professional risk-assessors' arguments that claim the site is sufficiently safe for such a plan. We should postpone the question of geological disposal for at least a century and use monitored, retrievable, above-ground storage of the waste until then. Her message regarding radwaste is clear: what you can't see can hurt you.

1. The Riddle of Nuclear Waste
2. Understanding the Origins of the Problem
3. Reliance on Value Judgements in Repository Rock Assessment
4. Subjective Estimates of Repository Risks
5. Subjective Evaluations of Repository Risks
6. Problematic Inferences in Assessing Repository Risks
7. Uncertainty: An Obstacle to Geological Disposal
8. Equity: An Obstacle to Geologic Disposal
9. An Alternative to Permanent Geological Disposal
K. S. Shrader-Frechette is Distinguished Research Professor of Philosophy at the University of South Florida and is the author of twelve books including Risk and Rationality (California, 1990).
Chapter 9. An Alternative to Permanent Geological Disposal

In 1952, four years before the United States began commercial generation of electricity by nuclear fission, James Conant—Roosevelt's wartime advisor on atomic energy and later president of Harvard University—predicted that the world would turn away from nuclear power because the problem of waste disposal would prove to be intractable. In 1957, a U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS) panel issued a similar warning: "Unlike the disposal of any other type of waste, the hazard related to radioactive wastes is so great that no element of doubt should be allowed to exist regarding safety." 1 Another NAS panel expressed reservations about solving the radwaste problem in 1960. Again in 1983, NAS scientists continued to express doubts about nuclear waste disposal when they warned that flooding a permanent radwaste repository, with subsequent "exposures after many thousands of years considerably higher than background ... could not be absolutely ruled out." 2

Conant's prediction, that the world would turn away from nuclear power, appears to be coming true—although perhaps not for the reasons he suggested. Indeed, as the first chapters of this volume have argued, the development of nuclear power is slowing down worldwide. Although this slowdown could change, perhaps because of global warming, no new commercial reactors have been ordered in the United States, for example, since 1974. Moreover, as we argued in chapter 2, the commercial nuclear programs in every developed nation, with the exception of France, have been either halted or cut back. Centralized and government owned, the French nuclear program has not proved economical and is billions of dollars in debt. Throughout the world, cost overruns, public opposition, and safety concerns—such as the 475,000 fatal cancers likely caused by the Chernobyl accident—have all caused utilities and citizens to turn away from nuclear-generated electricity. 3 The availability of cleaner, sustainable, alternative energy technologies, 4 such as solar power (which U.S. government studies claim can now supply 40 percent of U.S. energy needs at competitive prices and little risk), 5 and continuing difficulties with radioactive waste have also caused a growing rejection of commercial nuclear power. As Nobel prize-winning physicist Henry Kendall puts it, using atomic energy to generate electricity is "one of the largest-scale technological failures that has ever occurred in a major nation." 6 Despite this failure, however, we still need to deal with the problem of the wastes created by our use of commercial nuclear fission. For more than half a century, nations throughout the world have been generating radioactive waste. Even if all commercial and military nuclear programs came to an immediate halt, there would still be at least 86,000 metric tons of high-level waste (HLW) requiring permanent isolation, in addition to the low- and intermediate-level wastes and transuranics. As one author put it, the nuclear installment plan has already been rung up on the register of time. 7

Because the catastrophic-radwaste-exposure scenario of the 1983 NAS panel cannot be ruled out, at least under current U.S. plans for permanent waste disposal, Alvin Weinberg recently made a proposal to Congress. He recommended that the Department of Energy (DOE) follow the example of Sweden and exert "more effort than it is now to develop ... inherently safe waste disposal schemes ... waste packages, waste forms, canisters, and overpack, that are completely resistant even if the repository is invaded by water, for much longer than . . . 300,000 years." 8 Since the U.S. government requires the HLW package to last for only three hundred years, Weinberg's recommendation calls for 3 orders of magnitude improvement in the longevity of U.S. canisters. To employ Weinberg's scheme, he says we would have to cool the wastes for up to one hundred years above ground, rather than the planned ten years. After one hundred years, Weinberg claims, the heat generated per minute by the waste would be only one-fourth of the produced after ten years; this temporary storage would increase safety and reduce the later probability of leaks from the canisters. Storage for only fifty years would also enable the wastes to be [Illigible Text] 1.5 times more densely; it would simplify repository design and cut facility costs by more than a billion dollars. 9

Although Weinberg favors permanent HLW storage, he is a proponent of temporary, monitored, retrievable storage for the first one hundred years that the waste exists. Hence, his position is significantly opposed to that of U.S. government officials who are pursuing immediate permanent disposal. Believing that Weinberg's proposal has more merit than that of the DOE and the NRC, we argue in this chapter for above-ground, temporary management of HLW in negotiated, monitored, retrievable storage (NMRS) facilities for approximately one hundred years. At the end of that time, we can reexamine the uncertainty and inequity issues (discussed in earlier chapters of this volume) associated with permanent repositories. We argue, therefore, for using NMRS for a century, then making a decision about geological disposal. This is a wait-and-see position. Wait and see if we can develop more resistant copper canisters. Wait and see if we can prevent water from generating colloids and leaching waste from borosilicate glass. 10 Wait and see if we can devise a way to render radioactive materials less harmful. Wait and see if we can resolve some of the uncertainty and inequity problems treated earlier in this volume. At least part of the rationale for our "wait-and-see" attitude is the belief that science, especially science in the public interest, ought to be conservative. Conservative science, as I. S. Roxburgh put it, makes it prudent to assume that if high-level radwastes are buried, then groundwater will eventually come into contact with them. 11 And if groundwater will come into contact with them, then it makes sense to use the long-term copper canisters, as the Swedes do, and to defer permanent disposal until we are certain that we can deal with the problem of groundwater intrusion.

Knowing the uncertainties and inequities involved in our imposing nuclear wastes on future generations (see the previous chapters), the most rational and ethical course of action is to strive to limit both the uncertainty and the damage resulting from our actions. As A. Bates puts it: "Having recognized the fundamental unfairness of inflicting injury upon the innocent and unrepresented people of the future, we can only, in fairness, strive to limit the damage to the full extent of our natural abilities." 12 This chapter presents one option for limiting the uncertainty and damage from high-level radioactive waste: NMRS. 13 Our discussion of NMRS is not comprehensive, because the posal. Nevertheless, our argument is developed enough to show that there are probable alternatives to permanent disposal. After presenting a summary of one important alternative means of high-level waste management, negotiated monitored retrievable storage facilities (NMRS), the chapter outlines the basic arguments in favor of NMRS. The third and final section of the chapter evaluates some of the main objections that can be raised against NMRS.

Basic Principles

If our criticisms of the methodological and ethical flaws in current programs to develop permanent geological repositories are relevant to contemporary decisionmaking, then these criticisms ought to provide some suggestions for improving our public policy regarding nuclear waste. On the basis of the analyses in the eight preceding chapters, we have seven basic suggestions for alternative policies regarding high-level radioactive waste (HLW). 14 Following our conclusions (in chapters 3 through 6) regarding uncertainty, human error, value judgments, social amplification of risk, and questionable inferences, we have three proposals for reforming these aspects of current policy regarding HLW:

  1. Minimize scientific uncertainty by delaying the decision about permanent disposal and by creating technically qualified, multiple NMRS facilities. Each of these will begin accepting spent fuel, for temporary storage, with storage periods and amounts set by legal limit.
  2. Maximize methodological soundness in NMRS site studies and maximize disclosure, understanding, and consent by funding and creating independent technical and financial capabilities, as well as independent review committees in host communities. All these independent groups should be funded by the beneficiaries of nuclear power and be able to help the host community negotiate with government officials regarding HLW site selection, operation, monitoring, and maintenance.
  3. Minimize human and institutional errors in site selection by using a lottery to eliminate qualified NMRS sites. Following the discussion of risk distribution in chapters 5 and 8, we have two suggestions for alleviating inequity.

  4. Spread the geographical risk and maximize regional equity by developing a number of regional NMRS facilities.
  5. Spread the temporal risk and maximize intergenerational equity by funding a "public defender for the future," equipped with an independent technical staff and capable of challenging laws, policies, and regulations regarding HLW. Following the discussion of liability limits, compensation, and consent in chapters 5 and 8, we have two proposals for beginning to address these problems:

  6. Guarantee full liability, now and in the future, for all nuclear and waste-related accidents, deaths, and injuries.
  7. Maximize voluntariness and consent by compensating proposed host communities for the NMRS, even before the communities begin negotiating regarding the terms under which they might accept the NMRS facilities.

The NMRS Option

The first proposal, developed in response to the criticisms of existing plans for permanent HLW repositories, is to plan and build NMRS facilities. We could minimize scientific uncertainty by delaying the decision about permanent disposal for one hundred years and by creating technically qualified, multiple NMRS facilities, each of which will begin accepting spent fuel, for temporary storage, with storage periods and amounts set by legal limit. 15 The main rationale for NMRS is scientific. As Alvin Weinberg says, U.S. waste management has been like a football game. We were trying for a touchdown pass (permanent disposal), and we fumbled. Now, says Weinberg, we must try for a first down. The first down is successfully handling waste through a monitored retrievable storage facility. 16

In proposing facilities that are negotiated, monitored, retrievable forms of temporary storage, it is important to examine and defend each of the four components of the NMRS. Because the siting, operation, and management of the NMRS will be negotiated, the host communities will be better able to exercise free, informed consent over the siting process. Indeed, as we shall discuss later, a number of communities have already offered to be sites for NMRS facilities. In addition to being negotiated, another reason why NMRS installations are likely to be easier to site (than permanent repositories) is that they will be continually monitored and hence as secure as possible. They will be designed so as not to contaminate either the present or future environment. Conceivably the canisters at an NMRS site could leak, just as they might at a permanent repository. Monitoring should enable us not merely to detect and correct such leaks as rapidly as possible. Better still, monitoring should enable us to detect weak or corroding containers and replace or repair them even before they begin to leak. It is also important for HLW policy to keep open options for the future, to preserve flexibility, and to enable us to respond to mistakes. Hence, to correct gaps in our knowledge, it is important for the NMRS sites to be retrievable facilities. Later, in perhaps one hundred years, society may be better able to deal with HLW in a way that ensures long-term predictability and containment; the waste will be cooler then, and there will be safer, easier methods of permanent disposal, if that is the option we choose. 17 Retrievability simply "buys time" until our science and ethics develop to the degree that we can decide whether to continue to use the NMRS facilities or move to permanent disposal. Because there will be several NMRS installations serving as temporary storage sites for HLW, they will avoid the geographic and temporal inequities of having only one or two permanent facilities. A key component of the regional inequities associated with permanent disposal are those caused by transportation routes from reactors to the geological repositories. By having a number of NMRS facilities operating at a time, the transportation risks to states not benefiting from nuclear power would be decreased, both because the routes would be shorter and because the reactor-NMRS route would be more direct. The multiple-site argument could also be used for permanent repositories, but it is likely to be unsuccessful, both because of the greater cost of permanent sites and because of extreme public opposition to them.

Historical Context

The concept of a federal monitored retrievable storage facility for HLW is not new. It first was proposed in 1972 by Floyd Cullers after the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission abandoned the plan to build a permanent repository near Lyons, Kansas. To provide for the waste needing to be stored when this proposal was rejected, Cullers suggested above-ground radwaste structures, called "Retrievable Surface Storage Facilities" (RSSFs) for interim storage until a permanent repository became available. After U.S. Environmental Protection Agency scientists criticized the RSSF concept, saying it was dangerous because it could become a cheap permanent repository, the AEC withdrew the proposal in 1975. 18 (In subsequent pages, we shall explain proposals for avoiding this EPA objection to NMRS.)

Because of President Carter's decision not to reprocess spent fuel, the need for interim storage became greater. In his 1980 waste-policy announcement, Carter proposed a method for interim storage called the "away-from-reactor" (AFR) facility. In 1981, the Reagan administration lifted the reprocessing deferral and withdrew the AFR proposal. In the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982, the U.S. Congress gave the highest priority to permanent geological radwaste disposal but also called for the Department of Energy to study the need for one or more monitored retrievable storage (MRS) facilities. In 1985, DOE officials proposed that the MRS be used for consolidating, repackaging, and storing the radwaste until the permanent repository was ready. The DOE officials suggested three MRS sites, all in Tennessee. Tennessee authorities tried to block these selections in court, but they were unsuccessful, and the DOE gave its proposals to the U.S. Congress. Congress responded by passing the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act of 1987. The Act revoked DOE's proposal to site the three Tennessee facilities, and it directed the DOE to study only the Yucca Mountain site for a permanent repository.19 Nevertheless, the Act authorized the MRS concept, but only after the MRS Review Commission had presented its report to Congress and only with the provision that MRS planning could be linked to the permanent repository completion schedule. Hence, under current U.S. law, the MRS is tied to the permanent repository so that the former cannot become an unintended, inexpensive (therefore unsafe) permanent repository. 20

Independent Technical and Review Committees

The second proposal, developed in response to the criticisms of existing plans for permanent HLW repositories, is to tax the beneficiaries of nuclear power so as to fund independent technical and review committees (committees whose members are not employed by the DOE or nuclear-related industries) in the proposed host communities for the NMRS facilities. The purpose of such finding is to maximize the methodological soundness and objectivity of site studies, to counteract some of the negative effects of possible DOE bias and utility advertisement campaigns, and to provide persons in host communities with material that enables them to negotiate with the government regarding site selection. Meeting all three of these goals should increase both the technical quality of site studies and the disclosure, understanding, voluntariness, and competence that are essential to the free informed consent of the host NMRS communities. Moreover, by funding alternative studies and committees, we would explicitly recognize that the process of science, as exemplified in chapters 3 through 6, is unavoidably bound up with methodological value judgments. Alternative studies and committees could be expected to present opposing sides of an issue and to espouse different methodological value judgments and inferences regarding whether, how, and where to build NMRS facilities.

Calling for the beneficiaries of nuclear power to pay for actions related to waste storage is already a part of the national consensus regarding radwaste equity. Current national policy, in fact, requires that all costs of waste management be recovered through fees paid by utilities and the users of the services, those who benefit from the activities generating the wastes. 21 Some persons, however, claim that taxpayers still currently cover too great a portion of the waste-management bill. Nobel prize-winning physicist Henry Kendall of MIT claims, for example, that taxpayer subsidies of the nuclear industry are $20 billion per year and that the cost of nuclear-generated electricity would double if these subsidies were removed. 22 In the area of waste management, government officials have collected a total of $3 billion from U.S. ratepayers for radwaste management/disposal, 23 although they have spent many times that figure on activities related to caring for the nuclear wastes. Hence, requiring the beneficiaries of commercial fission (investors, industrialists, utility employees, and ratepayers) to pay for alternative studies regarding NMRS sites is justifiable by virtue of current radwaste policy. It is also justifiable in terms of the principle that all persons in this society have a right to legal representation when their interests are at stake, as they are in a siting decision.

Perhaps the core value underlying the call for alternative review committees and negotiation regarding the siting and management of NMRS facilities is democracy. In the context of high-level radioactive waste, democracy means, in part, that the people must come to understand and to have a say in accepting the risks and uncertainties associated with various radwaste management or disposal policies. 24 If democratic principles become a part of policymaking regarding highlevel nuclear waste management, then government officials, scientists, engineers, and industrialists alone will not be able to exercise all of the decisionmaking prerogatives. Instead, all the people will have a role in determining how we manage societal risks.

There are a number of models of negotiated, adversarial, and mediated decisionmaking regarding hazardous technologies. Because such models of community negotiation have been explained and evaluated elsewhere, 25 we shall not repeat here the relevant proposals and arguments. The basic idea behind having members of communities negotiate with government and industry regarding siting facilities (like those for NMRS) is that such decisions should be made in a context of participatory government, constitutional choice, and social equity. As the U.S. National Academy of Sciences put it: "Technical analysis alone cannot substitute for decisions about the degree of risk that is acceptable." 26 Because existing federal and legal frameworks for decisionmaking risks have not kept pace with the constraints of equity and citizen consent, we need to develop new concepts involving cooperative or voluntary approaches to developing risk policies. For example, H. Inhaber proposed a "reverse Dutch auction" concept that replaces technical coercion with an offer of benefits and rewards for the community where a potentially hazardous facility is sited. 27 Obviously, however, regardless of the benefits and rewards, some sorts of facilities ought never exist. Likewise, there need to be restrictions—independent of financial rewards—that enable the poor of the world to retain their rights to self-determination and to avoid their being bribed by those who would provide great incentives for acceptance of hazardous waste. There are a number of legal and regulatory vehicles for protecting the poor in such a situation. 28 Nevertheless, a necessary condition for acceptable construction and siting of repository projects should probably be that benefits and rewards be used to provide incentives for the voluntary participation of the host community. Such participation would enhance flexibility, attention to public concerns, compensation for community sacrifices, and acceptability to the persons who are impacted. In other words, by negotiating regarding NMRS sites, we would move from a context of confrontation and coercion to one of cooperation in siting controversial facilities. 29

In order for the negotiation regarding NMRS site selection and management to avoid some of the problems (mentioned in the previous chapter) with consent, compensation, and equity of risk distribution, residents of the proposed host community need to negotiate with government and industry officials to be certain that both their technical worries and their ethical, social, and political concerns are addressed. Part of the negotiating process will need to be designed to minimize the possibility of violations of equity, due process, and the free informed consent that are owed all citizens. This minimization is probably best achieved by giving persons in the host communities control of funding for siting studies, monitoring, and adversary assessment, as well as for whatever compensatory schemes can be worked out through the negotiation. A quasi-judicial process designed to call forth the best arguments and objections associated with alternative points of view on a particular position, adversary assessment is one important way to provide the information that is essential to informed consent. 30 The point of negotiation among different groups, by means of adversary assessment, is in part to weigh the merits of alternative site studies, each with different methodological value judgments and points of view. Negotiation should help insure that decisionmaking about radwaste policy does not allow politicians and industrialists to use that policy to coopt individuals who have rights to equal protection, due process, and self-determination. Negotiation should help insure that DOE officials alone do not define the constraints of justice. In a democracy, only the people themselves can determine the fairness of the burdens imposed on them.

Although U.S. National Academy of Sciences researchers did not go so far as to suggest adversary assessment in their recent report, they did recommend that the DOE include "publicly negotiated relicensing agreements" on how to deal with uncertainties, improved performance assessment, and the precise goals of programs of the EPA and the NRC. 31 Hence, although the Academy stopped short of recommending a precise form of negotiation, it is clear, from its report, that members of the NAS recognize that democracy must ultimately determine our radwaste policy. As they put it themselves: "These decisions belong to the citizenry of a democratic society." 32

A Lottery to Determine NMRS Rotations

The third principle, developed in response to our earlier criticisms of existing plans for permanent HLW repositories, is to minimize human and institutional errors in site selection by using a lottery to eliminate qualified NMRS locations. Because geology is not the main consideration in siting NMRS facilities, and because the waste would be monitored and retrievable, virtually every area that uses nuclear-generated electricity could have a potential repository for NMRS. A lottery to determine which proposed NMRS facilities ought to be developed would be desirable, in part because it would help avoid placing the entire NMRS burden on the dry, less populous, western states, instead of using the northeastern states, for example, where many of the producers and users of HLW are located. With a greater number of possible NMRS sites, there also would be a greater opportunity for the nuclear beneficiaries to share the costs and risks of radwaste storage rather than to impose them on people in areas not benefiting from nuclear power. Regional NMRS facilities likewise would provide for greater geographical and temporal equity. Geographically, the radwaste risk would be spread among the beneficiaries of nuclear energy. Because the facilities would be temporary, monitored, and compensated in full, they also would present less risk to members of future generations. An additional benefit of the lottery proposal would be to reduce unnecessary tensions over siting. It would guarantee persons in a host state that the HLW risk would actually be shared, and that they would not be alone in a dangerous situation. By providing a lottery to determine actual NMRS sites among those already judged suitable in various states, it would also be possible to reduce the fear of persons in host communities who want to avoid becoming the site for a permanent repository. In the absence of other approved facilities, for example, New Mexico residents fear the consequences of their hosting the WIPP repository for defense transuranic waste. Their worry is that persons in other states will refuse the wastes and that more radioactive materials will be stored there than have been agreed. 33 Multiple NMRS sites, determined in part by a lottery and by negotiation, would help to alleviate such fears.

Regional and Temporary NMRS

The fourth proposal, developed in response to our earlier criticisms of existing plans for permanent HLW repositories, is to spread the geographical risk of radwaste management and to maximize regional equity by developing a number of NMRS facilities. The main rationale for the multiple sites would be to achieve more equity through risk sharing and to simplify the transport system, making it more efficient. With regional NMRS facilities, fewer states and communities would be involved in waste transport, although more of them would host the facilities. Of course, as Kasperson, Derr, and Kates point out, 34 a HLW system that is too highly decentralized could enlarge the aggregate risks of spent-fuel storage and increase social conflicts and costs. Nevertheless, a recent National Academy of Sciences panel found that achieving regional equity in radwaste management may be essential to a social consensus on nuclear policy. Moreover, the panel members wrote, by moving from a single federal repository in the United States to two or three regional repositories, the annual transportation costs would decrease from about $171 million to about $71 million. The panel also concluded that having two or three regional facilities would decrease not only transportation costs but also accidents by at least a factor of 2 below those associated with a single repository. 35

Currently, there are about 20,000 MTU (equivalent to metric tons of uranium) of spent fuel needing storage and 87,000 MTU total of spent fuel likely needing to be stored for all U.S. nuclear reactors in the future. As the earlier sections of this chapter revealed, military and commercial HLW, taken together, are now about 100,000 MTU. The MRS Review Commission in 1989 recommended 5,000 MTU-capacity facilities for interim storage of high-level radwaste and spent fuel, and 2,000 MTU-capacity facilities for emergency storage facilities. The commission's rationale for these two MRS sizes is that 1,000 MTU of capacity is needed to empty a large, full, storage pool at a reactor; that dry, spent-fuel storage technology, by its nature, is modular; that significant economies of scale do not appear beyond about 2,000 MTU; and that smaller facilities are easier to site because there is less probability that they would turn into de facto permanent repositories. 36 On this basis, if each regional NMRS facility were built for a capacity of 5,000 MTU, it would take approximately four MRS facilities to store existing spent fuel now onsite at seventy reactors, and a total of approximately eighteen MRS facilities to store all present and future spent fuel from U.S. reactors. Presumably, Congress and the DOE, through the democratic process, could help determine what number and size of facilities—between four and eighteen sites—would maximize MRS safety, regional equity, economies of scale, and ease of siting and yet would minimize transportation and facility accidents.

One advantage of the regional NMRS installations is that they would probably be easier to site than permanent repositories. This is because the facilities would operate—by law—only for a specified number of years, perhaps several decades, only according to a prescribed schedule, and only for a predetermined amount of waste. Because the NMRS facilities would not be permanent, persons in the host communities would not have to make as great a commitment to waste management as they would if the waste were to be permanently stored within their jurisdictions. Also, because the waste would be monitored and would remain stored in casks that prevented pollution, there would conceivably be no onsite permanent contamination. The casks could be reinforced or replaced, on a regular schedule, that could prevent leakage. Hence, community concerns about safety would probably be less for a temporary, monitored facility than for a permanent one. Also, since a specific, limited amount of waste would be stored in an engineered, monitored vault for only a given number of years, one would not have to worry as much about the geological environment of the host community. One would need to consider only factors such as earthquakes and erosion, for example. 37 Leakage could be more easily detected than in a permanent facility, and any accidents would not be likely to affect a whole region, as they might in the case of a permanent geological facility. If it were unlikely that an entire region would be permanently affected by leakage from a monitored facility, then presumably it would be easier to find host communities such as Nye County, Nevada. Persons in this county support the location of a nuclear waste site in their backyard, 38 but because of the regional effects of a permanent repository, the opposition of the rest of Nevada will likely keep Nye County from having its way. This county might be a good candidate for an NMRS site, however, if it could be shown that the effects of such a facility would likely be localized and relatively short term. Also, state of Nevada officials have argued for using several NMRS facilities, rather than a permanent repository, for high-level waste. 39

Morgan County, Tennessee, and Yakima Indian Nation (in Washington state) also have both expressed an explicit interest in being a site for NMRS. 40 Their willingness to host such installations suggests that public opposition to temporary storage might be significantly less than opposition to a permanent facility, perhaps in part because the sites would be temporary, monitored, and negotiated with the host communities. Because some communities have offered to be NMRS sites, it appears that the policy of temporary storage of radwaste may be easier to implement—avoiding the NIMBY (Not in My Backyard) syndrome—than the policy of permanent geological disposal. Admittedly, however, in the case of one "volunteer NMRS site," state of Tennessee officials do not appear to agree with officials in Morgan County. And, admittedly, both a permanent repository and a NMRS facility face the same difficulty: the persons most likely to accept either of them would proba-bly live in communities that face great poverty and unemployment. Residents of such towns would likely see the facility as an economic boon for them. In Morgan County, Tennessee, for example, unemployment is about 14 percent, and income is small. About half of the tax rate is needed merely to service the bonded indebtedness of the county. Schools and other services are poor. In offering to be a host community for a radwaste facility, the representatives of the county made it clear that they wanted annual incentive payments from the repository to equal the total of all state and local taxes and that the facility owners should take over its obligations of bonded indebtedness. 41 Hence, it appears that the residents of Morgan County welcome a radwaste facility largely because they seek a way out of poverty. In such a situation, however, serious questions about the free informed consent of the citizens are appropriate (see chapter 8), and the negotiation process would need to be designed so as to maximize free informed consent, equity, and due process. 42

One step toward maximizing values such as equity and due process would be to guarantee the temporary nature of the NMRS facility. With only temporary NMRS sites, no community could be forced to bear permanently the HLW burden for the rest of the nation. Moreover, guaranteeing short-term NMRS facilities would also likely encourage greater safety and accountability, since few communities in the future would be willing to accept NMRS installations that had already proved unsafe. Having NMRS for only a century also would enable us to delay the decision about permanent radwaste disposal. It would provide more time for laboratory and field experiments in order to determine the reliability of permanent storage, and it would give us a firmer basis for long-term predictions. It could also happen that progress in medicine might make it possible to counteract the more damaging effects of radiation on the human body, so that some of our fears about release of radionuclides from repositories would be lessened. After all, this is the sort of reasoning that underlies Sweden's intention to keep the waste in surface storage for forty years and England's and France's goal of storing it for fifty years before attempting underground disposal. 43

Public Defender for the Future

The fifth proposal, developed in response to the criticisms of existing plans for permanent HLW repositories, is to avoid all unmonitored permanent geological disposal for the time being and to spread both the spatial and temporal risk of radwaste management. One way to help spread, and therefore equalize, the temporal risk is to maximize intergenerational equity by funding a "public defender for the future." 44 Such a person would be equipped with an independent technical staff and capable of challenging laws, policies, and regulations regarding the selection, operation, and management of NMRS facilities. The rationale for the public defender, a concept developed by Kasperson, Derr, and Kates, 45 is that most of those who will bear the risk of spent fuel cannot participate in the decision-making process regarding it. Hence, maximizing the free informed consent of future persons, via a second-party public defender, is essential to mitigating some of the ethical problems associated with equity, consent, and due process that we discussed earlier in the volume.

Full Liability

The sixth proposal, developed in response to our criticisms of existing plans for permanent HLW repositories, is to guarantee full liability for all nuclear- and waste-related accidents, deaths, and injuries. Full liability is ethically required for all the reasons already noted earlier in chapter 5. In fact, citizens living in areas where there are existing or proposed radwaste repositories have repeatedly requested full indemnification against the nuclear risk. In every case, DOE officials have denied these requests. 46 The main rationale for our demanding full liability for potential victims of any waste facility is that, consistent with the earlier discussion of types I and II risk in chapter 7, we need to place the burden of proof, in cases of technological uncertainty, on those who benefit from a technology, rather than on those who are its potential victims. For NMRS repositories and for nuclear power, the beneficiaries are largely in this, the preceding, and the next, generation, whereas the potential victims are mainly members of distant generations. In order to equalize the burden of radioactive wastes and other environmental hazards, we need to reform our procedures for siting dangerous facilities. We also need to change our manner of dealing with legal actions like "toxic torts," so that the burden of proof and liability is not placed so heavily on environmental victims. 47

Currently, even for a minor radiation-related accident involving no medical or personal injury expenses, the greatest part of the cost is borne by persons in the general public, not those individuals responsible for the injuries and damages. In such cases, accident costs are typically displaced. A recent sensitivity analysis of the Three Mile Island nuclear accident, done by the U.S. Federal Insurance Administration (FIA), for example, revealed that innocent members of the public bore substantial, uncompensated costs because of the accident. The FIA showed that even with no medical or personal injury expenses, a more severe accident involving evacuation would have caused an average Harrisburg family to lose \$67,000—with only \$2,247 recoverable from the millions of dollars in the Price-Anderson pool of benefits. 48

Moreover, the 1983 U.S. Supreme Court decision on Three Mile Island (Metropolitan Edison Co. v. People Against Nuclear Power) held that it would be almost impossible to distinguish between persons suffering genuine psychological stress, as a result of the accident, and those who merely opposed the facility. Hence, even if there were psychological (medical) costs as a result of a nuclear or radwaste accident, it would be difficult for victims to recover these damages. The problem with such a situation is not only that potential victims are likely to go uncompensated, but also that, as a factual claim, the Supreme Court decision was probably wrong. As William Freudenburg and T. Jones have demonstrated, 49 if the Supreme Court hypothesis were correct, then attitudes toward dangerous facilities would be almost perfectly correlated with stress symptomatology. They tested this correlation, using the only other nuclear host community known to have experienced as much opposition as Three Mile Island, and found it was false. In fact, the strongest attitude-stress correlation in this community was -.096, even though simple, sociodemographic variables showed far stronger correlations with the stress measures. Freudenburg and Jones have argued that there is support for an alternative hypothesis: that the risk of technological accidents is a significant predictor of psychological stress. If this hypothesis is true, then it provides additional grounds for arguing that the burden of proof and liability, in all technological situations, including NMRS and HLW facilities, ought not be on the potential victims. And if not, then there ought to be full liability for all those harmed by hazards related to such facilities. Full liability would also provide an incentive for siting the regional facilities.

Compensation from the Beginning

The seventh proposal, developed in response to our earlier criticisms of existing plans for permanent HLW repositories, is to maximize voluntariness and consent by compensating members of proposed host communities for NMRS site studies, feasibility plans, and so on, even before the citizens make a final decision as to whether they will accept the facilities. Currently under the 1987 Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act, as already mentioned earlier in the volume, members of communities hosting either a permanent repository or an NMRS site would receive \$5 million per year until the facility began operating, and \$10 million for every year thereafter. Since Congress could approve a larger amount of compensation for the host community, 50 the level of compensation ought to be raised, if necessary, in order to meet the needs of persons in the host community as expressed in negotiation about the NMRS. These needs can best be determined by means of ethical, political, and legal analysis designed to maximize consent, equity, and due process. A number of legal and ethical scholars have analyzed some of the considerations that ought to be brought to bear in determining whether, how much, and when to compensate communities for the technological risks that they bear. 51 Some members of Congress have proposed that \$50 million, for example, is an appropriate level of annual compensation. 52 Under current law, the NMRS facility and the increased compensation for it could be financed by the Nuclear Waste Fund, to which utilities pay on the basis of the amount of nuclear electricity they generate. Ultimately, however, persons in the host communities themselves ought to have the right to negotiate appropriate levels of compensation for being an NMRS site.

Negotiated Compensation

The eighth proposal, developed in response to our earlier criticisms of existing plans for permanent HLW repositories, is to maximize citizens' understanding of, and consent to, NMRS by negotiating with persons in proposed host communities. A major part of the negotiation would be the degree of citizen control over safety at the site and the level of compensation appropriate for persons in the community to receive in exchange for hosting the NMRS facility. Negotiation is important to the NMRS concept because there is neither zero risk nor perfect, free informed consent. Hence, the way to reduce risk and to heighten consent is to negotiate with persons regarding actual and potential hazards they face and to compensate them for the risks they bear. As we mentioned earlier, we shall not review here the framework for achieving negotiation and compensation, because that has been accomplished elsewhere. 53

Negotiation is necessary to the success of NMRS because a purely voluntary system, complete with state or regional veto power, would not work. Despite the fact that there are NMRS "voluteer sites," already mentioned, persons in some potential host communities might not voluntarily accept the burden of temporary storage of radioactive waste, even with great incentives and compensation. 54 Moreover, there are a number of communities that have benefited from commercial nuclear fission, and it is arguable that they ought to bear some of the costs of using this technology by hosting an NMRS site. Regardless of whether we ought to have generated the waste, we now must devise a safe and equitable means of dealing with it. Giving members of a proposed NMRS host community veto power over the facility might seem reasonable from the point of view of equity and consent—if the community were not a nuclear beneficiary. However, a veto would not be feasible. One plausible alternative to such a veto might be to maximize consent and equity by placing the burden of gaining community acceptance on the government or scientific group siting the proposed NMRS facility. This burden would mean that persons other than the builder/developer of the site would have the duty to inform the community and to achieve consent through negotiation. Both goals could be accomplished by meeting the objections and concerns of the potential victims of the NMRS. Meeting these objections and concerns, in turn, could be facilitated by improving public participation in siting decisions and by committing resources to develop alternative technical and review committees in the host communities, as was already suggested in connection with the second proposal.

As with full liability (already discussed), full compensation is especially important for members of the host community, as Kasperson, Derr, and Kates point out, 55 because of the difficulties associated with defining the pool of compensation according to a burden of uncertain risks. To accomplish full compensation, government officials could offer host NMRS communities a "rental fee" for the period during which they served as one of the sites for the HLW. This rental fee would provide an additional incentive for members of the community to accept the waste, and it would take account of the fact that many damages are unanticipated, incalculable, and often underestimated. The rental fund also could serve, in part, as an escrow fund to ameliorate the consequences of future accidents. 56

A Public-legacy Trust

The ninth proposal, developed in response to the criticisms of existing plans for permanent HLW repositories, is to maximize intergenerational equity by a public-legacy trust that is fully funded by the beneficiaries (utilities, industrialists, investors, and rate-payers) of nuclear electricity. The fund could be used for site mitigation and for compensation of future NMRS impacts. The trust could be funded by a mill rate on nuclear electricity use and by general taxes. A trust for the future is especially needed because of the likelihood of potentially poorer or delayed site management in the later years of operation of the NMRS facilities. We need an institutional mechanism, such as a public-legacy trust, both to compensate future persons and to serve the ethical principles of distributive equity, consent, and compensation. 57 Moreover, however successful we are in the future in reducing radwaste risks, we shall nevertheless have accidents, make questionable siting decisions, fall into management mistakes and human errors, and impose inequitable risk burdens. To alleviate all of these problems that we have discussed earlier in the volume, we must provide now for full compensation for those risks that cannot be mitigated. The trust might be likened to a perpetual Superfund pool, except that the main beneficiaries of nuclear power will be responsible for contributing to the fund, so that they can compensate for nuclear-waste-related harms far into the future. 58

Benefits of NMRS Facilities

Even though the outline of several proposals essential to our NMRS plan is quite brief, it is clear that the plan provides for a reallocation of a number of radwaste-related benefits and costs. This reallocation is directed both at reducing the uncertainties and inequities that might victimize members of future generations and at minimizing the effects of scientific and ethical problems associated with current plans for perpetual geological disposal of radwaste. In general, our reallocation of waste-related costs and benefits is aimed at increasing the degree to which beneficiaries of nuclear waste also bear its risks and costs. As such, our NMRS plan has a number of distinct advantages, each of which we shall discuss in subsequent paragraphs.

Because our plan calls for several NMRS facilities to operate at one time during the next one hundred years rather than for one permanent repository, such as Yucca Mountain, the radwaste risk would be spread more equitably among different states and regions. Also, by delaying the decision on a permanent repository and building several NMRS facilities, each lasting one hundred years or less, the radwaste burden would be spread more equitably across those generations benefiting from the waste, rather than imposed largely on future persons. Indeed, by waiting for one hundred years, the heat of the wastes will be reduced, making either continued NMRS or permanent repositories safer for future generations. 59 Likewise, by having the beneficiaries of nuclear power (e.g., the recipients of nuclear-generated electricity) pay for NMRS, this proposal would also have the benefit of achieving greater ratepayer equity, as well as more regional and intergenerational equity. 60

Another important benefit of having NMRS facilities is that they would provide storage for emergency purposes, in case of difficulties at a reactor or at other waste sites. Because there would be a number of NMRS installations, there would be considerable redundancy in the NMRS system, which is good in the event of unforeseen circumstances. Indeed, the U.S. Monitored Retrievable Storage Review Commission concluded that "some interim storage facilities... are in the national interest to provide for emergencies and other contingencies." 61 One such contingency could be a reactor core melt that would require us to remove the fuel and store it elsewhere, perhaps in a NMRS facility. Indeed, even the U.S. government admits that for one hundred reactors over a twenty-year period, there would be a 10 percent chance of a core melt. If the Lewis Report of the American Physical Society is correct, then the core-melt probability for this same period could be as high as 100 percent or as low as 1 percent. 62 Another contingency conceivably could be a permanent repository's being delayed or scrapped. Also, if there is no facility ready to accept spent reactor fuel, substantial amounts of it will begin to accumulate at shutdown U.S. reactors after 2015. Since fuel stored at shutdown reactors could pose a safety problem, it would be preferable to have NMRS facilities. 63

Because NMRS sites would replace planned permanent repositories, at least for the next one hundred years, using a system of regional storage facilities also would give decisionmakers more flexibility in deciding how best to manage/dispose of high-level nuclear waste. 64 Such flexibility is in short supply in the existing U.S. nuclear waste program. As the National Academy of Sciences put it:

This approach [of the US toward permanent disposal] is poorly matched to the technical task at hand. It assumes that the properties and future behavior of a geological repository can be determined and specified with a very high degree of certainty. In reality, however, the inherent variability of the geological environment will necessitate frequent changes in the specifications, with resultant delays, frustration, and loss of public confidence. The current program is not sufficiently flexible or exploratory to accommodate such changes. 65

By storing high-level radwaste in NMRS facilities for the next century, we could leave open future options that might include such programs as permanent geological disposal, continued surface storage, or subseabed disposal. 66

Yet another benefit of regional NMRS sites is that they would avoid delays in handling spent reactor fuel and would enable utilities to keep onsite fuel-storage pools empty, for use in case of emergencies. Many persons associated with the current permanent repository program of the United States have argued that it is at a standstill, largely because of opposition to geological disposal. 67 Even the NAS has argued that "It may be appropriate to delay the licensing application or even the scheduled opening of the [permanent] repository, until more of the uncertainties can be resolved." 68 Such assertions suggest that the opening of the world's first permanent repository may well be delayed beyond the year 2010. Yet it appears that some communities are ready now to accept NMRS facilities, as we have already mentioned. Apart from how the question of geological disposal ultimately is answered, using NMRS would enable dangerous radwastes not to be subject to the vagaries of the "uncertainties regarding the availability of a repository." 69 Most utility officials favor NMRS facilities because they would enable the government to begin accepting the high-level radwaste and spent fuel at the earliest possible time. Moreover, because the owners of utilities have been paying fees into the Nuclear Waste Fund, they argue that the DOE has strong contractual obligations to accept the spent fuel as soon as possible. 70

By accepting the waste, placing it in NMRS facilities, and delaying (for a century) the decision on whether to use a permanent repository, we might gain another benefit. Scientists in the future would be better able to design a safer repository. 71 They would also be able to take advantage of the waste having cooled, so that it could be stored more easily, efficiently, cheaply, and safely in the future. In other words, part of the rationale for delaying the decision on a permanent repository, so as to allow more time for better waste technology to develop, is that we would avoid the problematic current policy of the DOE, namely, "Get it right the first time." As the National Academy of Sciences put it: "The geological environment will always produce surprises... No matter what technical approach is initially adopted, the design can be improved by matching it with specific features of the site." Waste technology needs to be "robust in the face of newly discovered uncertainties in the geology." 72 One way to achieve this robustness is to move step by step, taking advantage of new scientific developments as we move.

One scientific development that might make radioactive waste storage or disposal easier and safer in the future could be transmutation. Transmutation involves showering the waste with neutrons to convert fission products to stable or short-lived radioactive isotopes. Although transmutation would not entirely neutralize the radioactivity, some scientists and engineers claim that it would be possible to store transmuted materials for several centuries in near-surface facilities, rather than having to store the original wastes for tens of thousands of years. If the volume of transmuted wastes were significantly reduced, and if the time required for isolation were cut to hundreds of years, then some scientists at Los Alamos believe that permanent disposal might become politically acceptable. Critics of transmutation, however, claim that the process is "modern alchemy": it creates more wastes than those it neutralizes, it is extraordinarily expensive and dangerous over the short term, especially to workers, and it increases the risk of proliferation. 73 Apart from whether transmutation turns out to be feasible, nonetheless, it provides an illustration of the sort of scientific development that, in the future, might make storing radioactive wastes cheaper, easier, and safer. Another development that could increase the safety and efficiency of permanent storage is improving our techniques of vitrification—storing the wastes in borosilicate glass—so that leaching of dangerous radionuclides does not occur (see note 10 in this chapter). Both transmutation and improved vitrification provide illustrations of possible scientific reasons for deferring the decision about permanent disposal of high-level nuclear wastes.

Using NMRS facilities is also reasonable on grounds of avoiding uncertainty. There are many unknowns associated with geological repositories. Earlier in the volume we outlined, for example, some of the hydrological, geological, and seismic uncertainties associated with the proposed Yucca Mountain facility, and we questioned some of the methodological and ethical value judgments used to deal with these uncertainties. Indeed, even an NAS panel concluded recently that there was "an incomplete and inadequate body of social science knowledge available to guide the formulation and implementation of an effective radioactive waste management system." 74 Because of such inadequacies and uncertainties, an important benefit of NMRS facilities is that one would not need to beg the question about a number of unknowns many years into the future. Instead, one could sidestep these uncertainties by developing NMRS sites and by continuing research into permanent repositories. 75 In fact, a reasonable principle is that HLW should be retrievable for the period of uncertainty about its effects and behavior. Something similar to this principle was articulated recently by the National Academy of Sciences: "It may even turn out to be appropriate to delay permanent closure of a waste repository until adequate assurances concerning its long-term behavior can be obtained through continued on-site geological studies." 76 Such a principle also was extremely influential in Swedish arguments for an NMRS program. 77 Not to accept this principle would be to avoid precautions against harm from what is unknown and uncertain. NMRS facilities are one such precaution.

Another benefit of using NMRS facilities is that we could learn, in stages, how best to store high-level radwaste safely, rather than having to build a permanent repository with which we would be forced to live in perpetuity. 78 If some dangerous technologies—like those for disposal of high-level nuclear waste—are unforgiving, then it makes sense to lengthen our scientific, institutional, and regulatory "learning curves" about them for as long as possible. By lengthening our learning process, we might avoid making uncorrectable mistakes with permanent repositories. Developing NMRS sites thus would provide valuable experience in siting, licensing, and operating a large-scale waste disposal facility. This experience would also enable us to learn more about the technology needed for safe disposal. 79 Indeed, when a recent panel of the NAS criticized the U.S. program of permanent waste disposal, one of its emphases was that we need to learn from experience rather than to rely on "predetermined specifications." Otherwise, we shall not learn to deal appropriately with uncertainty. 80 Although the NAS did not specifically recommend using NMRS facilities instead of permanent repositories, the NAS criticisms of the existing radwaste program—its manner of handling uncertainty and its failure to provide ways to learn from experience—suggest that building NMRS facilities might be an alternative means of achieving one of the ends promoted by the NAS.

Another benefit of using several NMRS facilities is that transportation routes from reactors would be shorter in many cases than would routes from reactors to a single, permanent repository. Also, routes to NMRS sites would more often avoid passing through states without commitments to nuclear power than would routes to a permanent repository. 81 Hence, NMRS facilities would help achieve more geographical and temporal equity than would permanent geological disposal. Obviously, however, U.S. government officials do not seem compelled by the equity argument. The United States is not following the policy of using NMRS for one hundred years. The United States is not deferring the decision on permanent geological disposal of radioactive wastes. Therefore, to understand U.S. policy, we need to understand the arguments against NMRS facilities. What are some of the main objections to use of NMRS for at least a century? And what responses can be made to them?

Objections to NMRS Facilities

Perhaps the most obvious objection to NMRS sites, proposed for at least the next one hundred years, is that the facilities are unsafe, that they are targets for terrorist attacks, and that they contribute to the proliferation problem. They may be especially vulnerable because of their not being permanent and their being retrievable facilities. This is precisely the objection to temporary facilities that has been formulated, for example, by representatives of the Sierra Club. 82 Other persons also argue against NMRS on the grounds that at-reactor storage is acceptable. They claim that NMRS sites would require additional handling of the waste and a subsequent increase in the risk. 83 In response to these safety objections, it is important to point out that, as earlier chapters of this volume have argued, permanent geological disposal is also highly questionable with respect to safety. Indeed, as D. Deere, chair of the NAS Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board, expressed it: "Many in the technical community are currently concerned about our ability to construct and license a repository in accordance with present Federal standards and regulations." 84 It is also important to note that the one-hundred-year NMRS facility locates many of the major risks of radwaste with members of the very groups that have benefited most from it. Hence, NMRS appears to be a more equitable solution to the problem of HLW than is permanent storage. Moreover, current Nuclear Regulatory Commission requirements mandate that the HLW must be retrievable for at least 110 years any-way. 85 Hence, government officials have already implicitly addressed the safety issue and decided that one-hundred-year NMRS facilities are acceptable. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the U.S. Monitored Retrievable Storage Review Commission also have affirmed that "spent fuel can be stored safely at reactor sites for as long as 100 years" if an extended period of reactor operations is included, and for at least 30 years onsite, beyond the expiration of a reactor's operat-ing license. 86 The MRS Commission affirmed that "MRS options are safe," and members of Congress specifically found that "long term storage of high-level radioactive waste or spent nuclear fuel in monitored retrievable storage facilities is an option for providing safe and reliable management of such waste or spent fuel." 87 The French have gone so far as to claim that the period of NMRS storage could be extended as long as needed, 88 and U.S. study groups at sites wishing to host NMRS facilities have argued that they are safe. 89

The MRS Review Commission has supported its arguments for NMRS safety with detailed calculations. The Commission estimated, for example, that the total radiation doses, both to the public and to workers, would be less in the case of an NMRS facility not linked to a repository than for a permanent facility handling the same amount of waste; the group indicated, however, that it did not believe that the safety differences were great between the two options. The Commission likewise emphasized that the MRS option was safer than onsite storage at reactors, in part because the MRS facility would employ experienced fuel handlers and would have a full staff available. 90 Onsite storage is also more expensive (\$2 to \$3 million per site) than NMRS. 91

If government authorities are correct that onsite reactor storage for one hundred years is safe, then there is reason to believe, as they note, that an NMRS facility is safer yet, because the latter involves more precautions and safeguards than does onsite storage. Admittedly, however, NMRS would likely involve more transportation risks than onsite storage, but onsite storage is not a feasible alternative to NMRS because storage space at reactors is already scarce and is soon to be nonexistent. Also, because permanent disposal is now being questioned so widely, and because persons in no region appear to want a permanent facility, onsite storage cannot provide the space needed for spent fuel over the next one hundred years. Moreover, because onsite storage is not meant to be permanent, it will involve some sort of transportation risks in the future, either to NMRS sites or to a permanent repository. Thus, it is not clear that onsite storage is advantageous because of its avoiding current risks associated with transportation. The MRS Review Commission also concluded that "the estimates of the radiological effects of transporting spent fuel are small, and the difference between the estimates for different alternatives is not large enough to make transportation effects significant in choosing between alternatives [no MRS versus MRS plus repository]." 92

Another safety consideration that argues for NMRS is the fact that most government authorities admit that human intrusion into a permanent repository is the event most likely to cause a significant release of radiation in the future. 93 Even the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) indicates that human intrusion is the main reason that permanent repositories may not be able to meet EPA safety standards. 94 In fact, this NAS conclusion is consistent with our earlier worries, in previous chapters, about human error and the social amplification of risk. If the concerns of the NAS, the EPA, and our earlier chapters are correct, then permanent disposal underground makes it more likely that a future person would inadvertently drill into the site. With above-ground or vaulted storage via NMRS, inadvertent drilling seems less likely, since the facility would be easy to see, not hidden underground. Moreover, continued monitoring and management of NMRS sites also argues against inadvertent intrusion. Admittedly, temporary storage facilities may be more susceptible to terrorism and sabotage than are permanent installations, but the monitoring and management of NMRS sites might make them better able to resist such attacks, once they occurred. Also, given examples like the pyramids, it should be possible to build surface structures that are extremely protective.

In response to all these safety-related arguments for NMRS, someone could object that calculations about NMRS safety and cost are just as problematic as analogous DOE estimates (for permanent repositories) that we have criticized earlier in the volume. Such an objection could be correct, because we have devoted six previous chapters to evaluating current HLW policy and only one chapter to the NMRS alternative to that policy. Nevertheless, there are several reasons for believing that the NMRS calculations are probably more accurate than those for permanent repositories: (1) The MRS Commission that performed the NMRS calculations has not come under serious attack for bias, withholding information, and so on, as has the DOE, the department responsible for QRAs of proposed permanent repositories; (2) Because the NMRS estimates of safety and cost cover a period only up to one hundred years, whereas analogous estimates for permanent repositories cover one thousand to ten thousand years, it is arguable that the shorter-term estimates are closer to being correct. Indeed, much of the methodological uncertainty in the DOE estimates arises from the attempt to make precise long-term predictions. Moreover, in earlier chapters we noted that methodological value judgments about precise long-term predictions were a fundamental problem at Yucca Mountain. Even if the NMRS estimates of safety were no better than those for permanent repositories, however, NMRS facilities would still be preferable on ethical grounds. NMRS installations would reduce problems with temporal and intergenerational equity, with due process, and with free, informed consent—three difficulties that present serious obstacles to permanent geological disposal. NMRS facilities also would not encourage us to subscribe to the belief that what we cannot see cannot hurt us.

Is a Hundred-year NMRS More Expensive?

Yet another objection to deferring the decision about a permanent repository and instead storing the HLW in NMRS facilities for a century is that such storage would be more expensive than permanent disposal over the long term. 95 The main reason why NMRS sites are viewed as more expensive, however, is that permanent disposal does not achieve the same level of pollution control. Disposal is premised on a philosophy of "dilute and disperse" the radioactivity. Dilution and dispersal of some hazardous substance is always cheaper than containment of it. Because NMRS storage is typically premised on a philosophy of containment, however, it is more expensive than allowing some eventual dispersal of the waste from a geological repository. 96

The main problem with the economic objection to NMRS sites is that economics, although an important policy determinant, ought not be the only or the primary determinant of nuclear waste policy. After all, if cost were the sole criterion for a reasonable choice, one might be able to use a purely economic criterion to argue for dumping radioactive materials into the sea or for using shallow land burial. Such a criterion is not acceptable, in part because it ignores the value of containment. Using narrow economic criteria for waste management is also undesirable because persons in this generation have produced the waste. Hence, as the waste producers, we have an obligation to do as much as is necessary and possible to protect subsequent generations. To argue that economics ought to be the sole determinant of waste policy would be to use an expediency criterion for recognition or denial of basic human rights to equal protection and to bodily security. In the Bill of Rights, for example, we do not say that we have rights to life, liberty, or the pursuit of happiness provided that it is economical to recognize them. Rather, we say that we have inalienable rights. If our nuclear waste policy is to be consistent with existing philosophical, legal, and political doctrines about human rights, then expediency ought not be our primary guide.

Apart from equity considerations, however, it is not clear that NMRS is more expensive than permanent storage, even on narrow economic criteria. A single NMRS facility is projected to cost from approximately $530 to $907 million, with an additional $73 million needed annually to operate the plant. 97 Total costs for an NMRS facility for one hundred years would be from about $7.3 billion to about $8.2 billion. A site characterization study for one permanent repository costs $1 to $3 billion dollars, 98 and there is no guarantee that other studies costing the same amount would not need to be done in order to obtain a suitable site. Even if one assumes that only one study would need to be done, one permanent repository would likely cost in the neighborhood of $13 billion, with total life-cycle costs, including burial, running from $40 billion to $51,077 billion for 100,000 MTU of spent fuel. 99 Hence, for about six or seven facilities for NMRS, the one-hundred-year costs are comparable to those for a permanent repository. Using similar reasoning, the DOE maintains that one NMRS facility represents about 5 percent of the total permanent repository waste-system costs. 100 If this is accurate, then it appears that one could build six or seven such facilities for NMRS and still have spent only one-third of the amount needed for permanent geological disposal. It is true that after one hundred years of operation of NMRS sites, one would still face the question of whether to continue using NMRS plants or to opt for a permanent repository, both of which would require additional funds. However, choosing the NMRS option, for at least one hundred years, even if we subsequently opt for permanent disposal, seems reasonable from an economic point of view. It is reasonable because once the waste is cooled the canisters would have reduced thermal requirements and thus would cost less to store than if they had been permanently stored at the outset. Reduced thermal requirements would thus make it possible to dispose of more spent fuel per unit area, given the lowered temperature. 101 Also, as the MRS Review Commission stated in its 1989 report, if a permanent repository is delayed beyond the year 2013, then it may not be more expensive to build one NMRS facility plus a permanent repository than it would be to construct merely a permanent repository. Once there is a delay in permanent disposal, the economics of NMRS appear to improve even more, because delaying a geological repository increases the price of at-reactor storage for utilities. NMRS sites could reduce these at-reactor storage costs. 102

Another factor that could drive up the costs of a permanent repository, relative to those of NMRS facilities, is that a number of authorities have claimed that, given the current impasse in the U.S. radwaste program, no amount of money alone is enough to provide an incentive for members of a community to accept a permanent repository. 103 And if no amount of money would provide enough incentive for a facility for geological disposal, then provided community acceptance is a necessary condition for the installation, permanent repository costs would be so high as to render the facility impossible to build. Hence, compensation for members of the local community could be a significant factor that might drive costs of permanent repositories far above those for NMRS.

Discounting Underestimates Repository Risks

One reason that a permanent, unmonitored, nonretrievable facility may appear to be less expensive than one for NMRS is that although the unmonitored facility is likely to cause more deaths and cancers from normal operation than is a monitored facility, these greater numbers of fatalities are typically minimized because assessors use a discount rate to calculate future costs. Economists traditionally discount costs or risks that occur in the future, especially when they are evaluating long-term environmental impacts. For example, if a radioactive waste facility is responsible for killing one person this year, and that person's life is economically counted as \$40,000 in the benefit-cost analysis, then at a 6 percent discount rate, one death thirteen years from now is economically counted as approximately \$20,000 today. Likewise, at a 6 percent discount rate, if one death now is counted at \$60,000, then one death twenty years later is counted now as \$20,000. In other words, future costs—like death or environmental pollution—are counted by economists in the present as the amount of money (e.g., \$20,000) needed to be invested now at some percent (for example, 6 percent) in order to yield approximately \$40,000 in thirteen years and approximately \$60,000 in twenty years. In the example just given, economists assume that the value of human life, at a 6 percent discount rate, is worth half as much in thirteen years, and one-third as much in twenty years. Using a higher discount rate would increase the discrepancies between the present and future value of human life. After several hundred years at a 6 percent discount rate, a human life would be counted as worth less than one-millionth of what it is worth now.

Because classical economists use social-discounting techniques for future risks and costs, they do not assume that the lives of future persons are as valuable as our own. They also make it appear that future risks, like those from a permanent repository, are less serious than they truly are because they have discounted them. Moreover, for exceedingly long-term environmental hazards, like storing high-level radioactive wastes, economists effectively count the risks as zero. This is because only a small sum—less than a dollar—invested at some traditional rate over thousands of years would be necessary to yield an amount that is valued later at billions of dollars. Philosophers such as Derek Parfit have argued that although there are reasons for economic discounting (technological progress, opportunity costs), there is no justification for temporal discounting. The moral importance of future events, he claims, does not decline at some n percent per year. As he puts it, unlike merit or compensation, there is no moral relevance in time alone. 104 Moreover, if the arguments in chapter 8 are correct, then members of future generations deserve to be treated equitably, not to have their costs and risks discounted by present generations. Because present and future persons are arguably members of the same moral community, 105 future persons ought not have permanent unmonitored radwaste facilities imposed on them if their risks will be higher than those borne by members of the present generation. Likewise, future persons ought not bear the additional risk of having their hazards discounted relative to our own. And if not, then NMRS facilities may be the best way of achieving both these demands of equity.

Does NMRS Unrealistically Seek Zero Risk?

Some experts on radioactive wastes nevertheless claim that we ought to pursue permanent disposal immediately, because the uncertainties associated with the wastes will never be removed, given the longevity of the HLW. Moreover, they say, achieving a risk-free situation is impossible. Therefore, they argue, one ought not recommend NMRS facilities on the grounds that they are safer or better than permanent disposal, because permanent disposal is "safe enough." 106

Rejecting NMRS facilities on the grounds that their proponents seek an unattainable goal of safety, however, is highly questionable. For one thing, NMRS does not mitigate all risks. As the previous discussion made clear, even NMRS sites are susceptible to threats such as terrorism. Part of what NMRS facilities do is to reduce the long-term radwaste risk and to place it on the shoulders of those who have profited from nuclear energy, instead of imposing it disproportionately on members of future generations. Second, it is ethically inappropriate to object to NMRS risks on the grounds that permanent disposal is "safe enough." Safe enough for whom? Safe enough for what generation? The problem with the "safe enough" objection is that it ignores the fact that several generations have benefited and are benefiting from nuclear waste, whereas quite different generations, under plans for permanent disposal, will bear the most significant risks and costs of the waste. It is self-serving and unjust for the beneficiaries of an inequitable and unsafe system to presuppose that the system is "safe enough" because they themselves are not harmed by the inequity and the danger. Because the "safe enough" objection contains this presupposition, it is obviously wrong. It ignores whose ox is getting gored. The "safe enough" objection is also ethically questionable because it presupposes that some ways of dealing with radwaste are safe enough, even though there are safer alternatives, and even though many of the risks of permanent disposal are avoidable, for example, through monitoring. Not to avoid imposing our risks on others is ethically questionable, especially if we might be able to reduce the risks. Situations are only "safe enough" when we have fulfilled our ethical obligations with respect to fairness, equal treatment, and safety. It is not clear that, with permanent geological disposal, we have done so.

Would NMRS Burden the Future?

Still other proponents of a permanent repository argue that we should not pursue NMRS sites because leaving the HLW in temporary facilities would burden future generations, forcing them to deal with a problem that we have imposed on them. Permanent disposal, however, might free them from this burden. 107 Indeed, this is the official position of the Sierra Club, a conservation organization that opposes NMRS and supports permanent disposal. 108

In response to the objection about burdening future persons, one important reply is that the objection begs the question. If the issue is whether or not NMRS burdens the future persons more than permanent disposal does, then to argue that NMRS poses a greater future burden is to assume that permanent disposal presents less of a burden. However, this conclusion is assumed because for permanent disposal to present less of a burden, we would need to have a reasonable guarantee that the disposal was safe, and that the canisters and site geology provided protection for many centuries. Because we do not have this reasonable guarantee, and because the permanent repository will not be monitored forever, there are strong grounds for believing that it could present a great burden to future persons. Also, if "the devil you don't know is worse than the devil you know," then unmonitored permanent facilities could be a worse burden than monitored temporary facilities. Otherwise, one would be committed to the problematic assumption that what you don't know couldn't hurt you. Indeed, what you don't know is probably more likely to hurt you. Hence, the greater future burden may lie with permanent disposal. Moreover, provided that NMRS facilities are associated with a permanent public trust to defray costs of monitoring and accidents, then the burden on future persons is likely to be minimized, or at least minimized more than a burden for which there is no permanent monitoring, no complete retrievability, no complete compensation, and no complete trust funds available. Also, because our NMRS proposal provides for retrievability and monitoring of the waste, future generations could lessen their burden through scientific developments or through a plan for ultimate geological disposal. If one pursues the permanent repository option now, however, then that decision will be, practically speaking, irreversible. Hence, NMRS repositories reduce the irreversibility burden. They reduce the burden of involuntary imposition of risks and waste-management choices on the future. Our NMRS proposal maximizes the choices of future generations more than permanent disposal does, provided that there is adequate funding to compensate future persons for caring for the waste. Our plan also leaves future options open more than does permanent disposal. For this reason it appears to maximize the consent, equity, due process, and autonomy of future persons more than permanent disposal does.

Would NMRS Facilities Become De Facto Permanent?

Just as officials of the Environmental Protection Agency warned in 1974, another objection to the NMRS concept is that in the event of scientific or political problems with permanent radwaste disposal or with some future NMRS site, any existing NMRS installations could become inexpensive, de facto permanent repositories. Indeed, this is one of the main arguments used by state of Tennessee officials when they opposed the MRS facilities proposed for the state a decade ago. 109 Critics of NMRS also fear that interest in permanent disposal will erode once an interim storage facility is available.

In response to the objection that NMRS facilities could become permanent, it is important to point out that by continuing research on geological disposal (as the Swedes are doing), we would decrease the chance of an NMRS site becoming permanent. Also, according to the plan already discussed, there would be legally enforceable maximum storage capacities and time limits set for each NMRS site. In the face of such legal constraints, it would be difficult for a nation to force a host community to use an NMRS facility as a permanent geological repository. Even if this did happen, however, the preceding plan for NMRS calls for monitoring of the waste and for compensation of members of the host community. The monitoring would protect persons in the community, and the compensation would counterbalance some of the inequities that might be associated with using an NMRS site as a permanent repository. Admittedly, the permanent repository objection is a difficult one to answer, because it presupposes that there is strong political sentiment against permanent repositories. If so, then permanent repositories will not be possible. In a situation in which no one will accept a permanent repository, the best that can be done is to use regional NMRS facilities and to site them so as to maximize regional equity and safety.

NMRS Uncertainties

Still other arguments against NMRS facilities are based on uncertainties associated with siting and developing them, just as there are unknowns in the area of permanent repositories. Because of these uncertainties, some critics have argued that the NMRS schedule might be as uncertain as the permanent-repository schedule. Hence, they say, there might be no clear advantage to attempting to site NMRS installations. 110 Arguing that NMRS is as problematic as permanent disposal, however, seems questionable because it is well known that less permanent facilities are more politically acceptable. 111 NMRS sites also are more acceptable because they are monitored, because the wastes can be retrieved in the event of a difficulty, because they provide for regional equity achieved through a number of facilities, and because they are not as dependent as permanent repositories on underlying geology for their safety. Even if difficulties arise with siting NMRS facilities, the plan outlined here calls for increasing the level of citizen participation and compensation available to the host communities. If these devices do not work to achieve acceptance, then the problem of storing or disposing of nuclear waste is likely insolvable. Given the extremely complex nature of the radwaste issue, and given the reasons surveyed earlier in this chapter and in the entire volume, the best of many bad options—and likely the least undesirable of political solutions—appears to be our NMRS proposal. The NMRS proposal is not a perfect solution. Our argument is that there are no perfect solutions to the problem of radioactive waste. NMRS is, however, the best available solution.

Do Several Sites for NMRS Create Too Much Anxiety?

Although the merit of using a number of NMRS facilities is that the risk burden is distributed more equitably, one problem with such a distribution may be, as Luther Carter says, 112 that it creates too much anxiety among possible host states. In other words, the objection is that the more sites for NMRS, the greater is the potential for political unrest. Although the objection that NMRS may create anxiety is correct, it is in part beside the point. The anxiety is acceptable in part because the NMRS sites likely will be located in states whose citizens have benefited from nuclear electricity. Hence, although the equity of this distribution of anxiety does not resolve it, considerations of equity make it clear that causing anxiety among those who are not beneficiaries of nuclear energy is more reprehensible than causing anxiety among those who are beneficiaries. Also, to site noxious facilities purely on the grounds of what decreases overall anxiety may itself be an ethically suspect criterion. It may reduce overall anxiety to have one permanent repository, but imposing one permanent repository on citizens who do not want it and who have not benefited from nuclear power may be a decision made on grounds of expediency. It always may be expedient to impose a risk on a geographical minority of persons who do not deserve a particular risk, but such an imposition does not minimize inequity just because it minimizes anxiety. Indeed, it may maximize inequity. Hence, it does not appear ethically acceptable to avoid NMRS facilities purely on the grounds of avoiding anxiety. The question is whether the anxiety deserves to be avoided, and whether there is an option that does not sacrifice equity for a reduction in overall anxiety. Moreover, inequitable distribution of radwaste risks might also create anxiety.

Does the Quantity of Waste Require Permanent Disposal?

Yet another argument against NMRS installations and in favor of permanent repositories is that because of the amounts of nuclear waste already generated, plus the quantities likely to be created in the future, permanent repositories are a virtual necessity. 113 Indeed, for the spent fuel already existing at nuclear reactors, we need at least four NMRS facilities, each with a capacity of 5,000 MTU, as earlier sections of this chapter have suggested. To handle the projected spent fuel for existing U.S. reactors, we are likely to need eighteen NMRS facilities, each with a capacity of 5,000 MTU, or six NMRS facilities, each with a capacity of 15,000 MTU, if we follow the Tennessee model. 114

The "volume objection" to NMRS is reasonable because, as the number of NMRS sites multiplies, although distributive equity increases, so also does the risk factor. There are some indications, however, that the risk factor may not need to increase, because we may not need eighteen NMRS facilities. If the nuclear reactors now in existence are abandoned—for some of the reasons surveyed in chapter 2—and if the nuclear weapons program is cut back or halted, then the amounts of high-level wastes needing storage would be drastically reduced. Such cutbacks are plausible assumptions in part because of the recent breakup of the former Soviet Union, because of the apparent turn away from the Cold War, and because, as discussed in earlier chapters, commercial nuclear electricity is being abandoned throughout the world, with the exception of perhaps France and Japan. Indeed, if some scientists and policymakers are correct, then "true progress on the waste issue may only come about once human society turns decisively away from nuclear power," 115 as has occurred in Sweden. One of the priorities of an independent Ukraine, for example, is the immediate closure of the Chernobyl reactors. 116 Faced with the massive deaths (up to 475,000) and high costs ($358 billion) of the Chernobyl accident, 117 citizens of the former Soviet Union are not likely to support further development of commercial reactors. Likewise, members of the U.K. trade unions voted for a nuclear phase-out on the grounds that men, women, and children are dying as a result of nuclear-induced cancers and leukemias. 118 Even in the United States, reactors are closing down ahead of schedule, suggesting that highlevel radioactive wastes may not be as voluminous as expected. Of the 126 U.S. reactors put into commercial operation thus far, 16 have been abandoned short of their fortieth year, the lifespan originally planned. Indian Point-1 in New York, for example, was closed down in 1974 after only twelve years because of problems with its emergency core cooling system. Dresden-1 in Illinois closed in 1978 after nineteen years because of contamination problems, and the Rancho Seco plant in California was closed after thirteen years because a citizens' referendum rejected it. Likewise, the Yankee Rowe in Massachusetts was closed, despite reliability, because of petitions initiated by the Union of Concerned Scientists. Its owners had planned to apply for a twenty-year renewal of its license. 119 All these nuclear failures suggest that the public may be coming to accept the description of commercial nuclear fission offered by MIT Nobel-prize winner and physicist, Henry Kendall. Kendall calls it a "dead-end technology . . . a loser in competition with such things as wind power." 120

Even if reactors are not shut down ahead of schedule, thus reducing the expected volume of HLW and spent fuel, another reason why the volume of nuclear waste might not require permanent disposal is that the public appears to be militantly opposed to geological repositories. 121 As previous chapters of this volume have argued, the DOE has lost much of its credibility, and the primary author of the U.S. Nuclear Waste Policy Act—that mandates permanent disposal—has concluded that the U.S. repository program needs to be scrapped. "The only fair thing to do might be to start over," said U.S. Representative Morris Udall. 122 Indeed, the discussion over siting a federal repository in some states is so extreme that even the NAS concluded that there "exists no effective means for overcoming such [state vs. federal] impasses." 123 Lawmakers throughout the country have called for an end to the permanent repository program, and some governors have explicitly demanded that we "remove DOE from the process and replace it with a new entity." 124 If the people will accept neither permanent disposal nor DOE management of the repository wastes, then regardless of the volumes of waste needing to be managed, permanent disposal may not be a solution.


If the conclusions in this chapter are correct, then they are consistent with those of the 1989 MRS Review Commission. Commission members concluded that an MRS facility linked to a permanent repository, as required by current law and as proposed by DOE, "could not be justified." Commission members affirmed, however, that a variety of reasons (flexibility, redundancy, and so on) together "justify a [MRS] facility not limited in capacity or linked to the repository schedule and operation." 125 Hence, they have argued for the desirability of an MRS, independent of a permanent repository, just as we have done. To argue for delaying the decision about permanent geological disposal is to part company with overall U.S. policy. It is consistent, at least in part, however, with the scientific recommendations of Alvin Weinberg, mentioned earlier in this chapter, and with the recommendations of several other authorities. 126 Moving to an NMRS system and deferring the decision about permanent disposal would also make U.S. radwaste policy consistent with that of most other countries in the world. As the MRS Review Commission put it: "In general deferred disposal is viewed [by most nuclear nations] as beneficial because it reduces the heat output of the waste. Only . . . Germany plans to have a repository before 2010 and that country has no plans for rapid disposal." 127

Part of the purpose of this chapter has been to spell out the main lines of one possible NMRS proposal without, at the same time, taking the time to defend the particulars of the system. Such a defense would require a longer treatment than this volume can give, and it can be accomplished better by those whose specialized knowledge enables them to analyze the details of the politics, science, and sociology of radwaste management. We have offered our considerations as one response to the problems created by geological uncertainty and by regional and temporal inequity. Because our solution calls for at least one hundred years of NMRS, it is not a permanent solution to the problem of radwaste. It is a solution based on our ability to learn from our experience. Permanent waste disposal may work in the future, but before we try to make it work, we need to learn from our mistakes, to leave our options open, and to bear our own burdens, imposing on others as little of them as possible.

Even if the uncertainty and inequity surrounding permanent disposal were not sufficient grounds for arguing in favor of NMRS facilities, the political difficulties with geological repositories might be. As this volume argued earlier, people apparently do not believe that permanent disposal is safe and, even if they are wrong, the people have the right to be wrong. Officials ought not coopt democracy. As Daniel Koshland, chair of the General Advisory Committee of the National Academy of Sciences put it: "The ultimate power in a democracy rests with the people . . . the Nuclear Regulatory Commission cannot impose something that the voters really don't want." 128 And in the case of permanent repositories, the voters apparently do not want them. If many social scientists are correct, moreover, the voters also may not want geological repositories for the future. Social scientists have shown that it is much easier to lose people's trust than to regain it, once lost. Because citizen opposition to permanent disposal is, in large part, a result of lack of trust in the federal government and in the DOE, it is questionable whether the government and its repository program can ever regain public support. 129 And if they cannot, then it may be time to stop expecting the DOE to do what may be impossible: safely store high-level wastes in perpetuity. Indeed, DOE officials may have failed us only because we asked them to perform an impossible task. Given two risky options, permanent burial or NMRS, there is no easy solution to the problem of managing radioactive wastes. NMRS has its associated problems, as this chapter has revealed. At least it does not misrepresent our scientific uncertainties or misappropriate our ethical burdens. Proponents of NMRS realize that minimal fairness requires us to clean up after ourselves or to pay our descendants, in full, to do it for us. Leaving a potential catastrophe for the future is not an ethically defensible option.


Note 1: N. Lenssen, Nuclear Waste (Washington, D.C.: Worldwatch, 1991), 35.  Back.

Note 2: A. Weinberg, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, Nuclear Waste Program, Hearings before the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, U.S. Senate, First Session, Part 2, (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1987), 2-3; hereafter cited as: Weinberg, "Statement" and NWP-2.  Back.

Note 3: See chapter 2, especially text and notes 1-9. See also C. Flavin, Nuclear Power: The Market Test (Washington, D.C.: Worldwatch Institute, December 1983).  Back.

Note 4: Although the feasibility of a variety of "soft" technologies needs to be substituted on a case by case basis, it is possible to outline some of the arguments for feasibility. See, for example, C. Flavin and S. Postel, "Developing Renewable Energy," in State of the World 1984, ed. L. R. Brown et al. (New York: Norton, 1984), 137ff.; C. Flavin, "Reforming the Electric Power Industry," in State of the World 1986, ed. L. R. Brown et al. (New York: Norton, 1986), 105-116; C. Flavin and C. Polluck, "Harnessing Renewable Energy," in State of the World 1985, ed. L. R. Brown et al. (New York: Norton, 1985), 180ff.; L. R. Brown, "The Coming Solar Age," in Environment, ed. J. Allen (Guilford, Conn.: Dushkin, 1985), 61ff.; W. U. Chandler, "Increasing Energy Efficiency," in Brown, State of the World 1985, 151-164. See Energy Future, ed. R. Stobaugh and D. Yergin (New York: Random House, 1979); and C. Flavin, "Reassessing the Economics of Nuclear Power," in State of the World 1984, ed. Brown, esp. 118-132. See also C. Flavin, "Building a Bridge to Sustainable Energy," in State of the World 1992, ed. L. R. Brown et al. (New York: Norton, 1992), 27-45.  Back.

Note 5: According to L. S. Johns and associates of the OTA Solar Energy Staff (in Application of Solar Technology to Today's Energy Needs, 2 vols. [Washington, D.C.: U.S. Office of Technology Assessment, 1978], vol. 1: 3), "Onsite solar devices could be made competitive in markets representing over 40 percent of U.S. energy demand by the mid-1980's." The OTA staff goes on to say that low-temperature solar uses, which comprise 40 percent of total U.S. energy needs, are currently competitive economically with existing alternatives (pp. 13-14), even in cities such as Boston, Alburquerque, and Omaha, where heating needs are often significant (pp. 31ff.). See also the previous note.  Back.

Note 6: H. Kendall, "Calling Nuclear Power to Account," Calypso Log 18, no. 5 (October 1991): 8.  Back.

Note 7: A. Bates, "The Karma of Kerma: Nuclear Wastes and Natural Rights," Environmental Law and Litigation 3 (1988): 39-40. Senator J. Sasser, "Testimony," in U.S. Congress, Nuclear Waste Policy Act, Hearing before the Subcommittee on Energy and the Environment of the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, House of Representatives, 100th Congress, First Session (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1988), 395 (hereafter cited as: U.S. Congress, NWPA) says that there will be between 86,200 and 130,300 MTUs needing to be stored by the year 2020. He also says that the U.S. DOE estimate of 130,300 is more than 50 percent higher than those of other experts.  Back.

Note 8: Weinberg, "Statement," 2-5; see also N. Lenssen, Nuclear Waste, 27-28.  Back.

Note 9: Weinberg, "Statement," 5. D. Vieth, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, Nuclear Waste Program, Hearing before the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, U.S. Senate, 100th Congress, First Session, 29 June 1987, Part 4 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1987), 130. See also A. Weinberg, "Statement," Civilian Radioactive Waste Disposal, Hearing before the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, U.S. Senate, 100th Congress, First Session, 16-17 July 1987 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1987), 202ff.; see also 276ff., 335ff., 387ff.; hereafter cited as: U.S. Congress, CRWD.  Back.

Note 10: As we mentioned in chapter 6, scientists have learned that, contrary to previous scientific opinion, radioactive wastes may escape from glass via a new route. They discovered a previously unknown mechanism for directly generating colloids, particles too tiny to settle out of water. By releasing only one drop of water per week over an inch-long, half-inch diameter, glassy cylinder—containing neptunium, americium, and plutonium—scientists showed that exposure to slow dripping of water can change the largely nonreactive borosilicate glass into a form that facilitates the flaking of mineralized shards containing radionuclides. Hence, any claims about the suitability or unsuitability of vitrification for controlling radwastes depend on whether we have gained closure on the problems associated with vitrification. See J. Bates, J. Bradley, A. Teetsov, C. Bradley, M. Buchholtz ten Brink, "Colloid Formation During Waste Form Reaction: Implications for Nuclear Waste Disposal," Science 256 (1 May 1992): 649-651.  Back.

Note 11: I. S. Roxburgh, Geology of High-Level Nuclear Waste Disposal (London: Chapman and Hall, 1987), 183.  Back.

Note 12: Bates, "The Karma of Kerma," 38.  Back.

Note 13: For some persons who favor this option, see, for example, L. Carter, Nuclear Imperatives and Public Trust (Washington, D.C.: Resources for the Future, 1987), 397, who argues for this option as a compromise solution between disposal and recycling. See also Weinberg, "Statement," 1-11, who argues for temporary storage for one hundred years, prior to permanent disposal. For more information on monitored retrievable storage, see Boeing Engineering and Construction Company, Monitored Retrievable Storage Conceptual System Study: Cask-in-Trench, BEC-MRS-3303 (1 November 1983); GA Technologies, Inc., Monitored Retrievable Storage Conceptual System Study: Closed-Cycle Vault, GA-A-17322 (1 February 1984); Boeing Engineering and Construction Company, Monitored Retrievable Storage Conceptual System Study: Concrete Storage Casks, BEC/MRS-3302 (1 November 1983); Raymond Kaiser Engineers, Inc., Monitored Retrievable Storage Conceptual System Study: Dry Receiving and Handling Facility, KEH/R-83-96 (1 January 1984); Westinghouse Electric Corporation, Monitored Retrievable Storage Conceptual System Study: Metal Storage Leaks, WYSD-TME010 (1 August 1983); Boeing Engineering and Construction Company, Monitored Retrievable Storage Conceptual System Study: Open Cycle Vault, BEC/MRS-3304 (1 November 1983); Westinghouse Electric Corporation, Monitored Retrievable Storage Conceptual System Study: Transportable Storage Casks, WTSD-TME-013 (1 August 1983); Westinghouse Electric Corporation, Monitored Retrievable Storage Conceptual System Study: Tunnel Drywells, WTDS-TME-012 (1 August 1983); GA Technologies, Inc., Monitored Retrievable Storage Conceptual System Study: Tunnel-Rack, GA-A-17323 (1 February 1984); Office of the Secretary, U.S. DOE, Monitored Retrievable Storage Proposal Research and Development Report, DOE/S-0021 (1 June 1983). See also U.S. DOE, Monitored Retrievable Storage Submission to Congress, 3 vols. (Washington, D.C.: U.S. DOE, 1987).  Back.

Note 14: Many of these suggestions are closely related to some of those suggested by R. Kasperson, P. Derr, and R. Kates, "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste Management: Modest Proposals for a Socially Just and Acceptable Program," in Equity Issues in Radioactive Waste Management, ed. R. Kasperson (Cambridge, Mass.: Oelgeschlager, Gunn, and Hain, 1983), 168-331.  Back.

Note 15: For discussion of the laws and policy relevant to NMRS facilities for radwaste, see C. H. Montange, "Federal Nuclear Waste Disposal Policy," Natural Resources Journal 27 (Spring 1987): 401ff.  Back.

Note 16: Weinberg, "Statement," 24.  Back.

Note 17: See K. B. Krauskopf, Radioactive Waste Disposal and Geology (London: Chapman and Hall, 1988), 23ff., 52ff., for this argument.  Back.

Note 18: A. Radin, D. Klein, and F. Parker, Monitored Retrievable Storage Review Commission, Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage? (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1989), 4.  Back.

Note 19: For discussion of the Tennessee proposals and the events surrounding them, see Montange, "Federal Nuclear Waste Disposal Policy," 403ff.  Back.

Note 20: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 4.  Back.

Note 21: Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 346.  Back.

Note 22: H. Kendall, "Calling Nuclear Power to Account," Calypso Log 18, no. 5 (October 1991): 9; see also, for example, J. Tomain, "Nuclear Catacomb," Jurimeterics Journal 29, no. 1 (Fall 1988): 103.  Back.

Note 23: J. B. Johnston, U.S. Senator, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-2.  Back.

Note 24: C. R. Malone, "High-Level Nuclear Waste Disposal," Growth and Change 22, no. 2 (Spring 1991): 72. See also, for example, D. J. Fiorino, "Environmental Risk and Democratic Process," Columbia Journal of Environmental Law 14, no. 2 (1989): 501-547; D. J. Fiorino, "Citizen Participation and Environmental Risk," Science, Technology, and Human Values 15, no. 2 (1990): 226-243; B. D. Solomon and D. M. Cameron, "Nuclear Waste Repository Siting," Energy Policy 13 (1985): 564-580; A. Kirby and G. Jacob, "The Politics of Transportation and Disposal," U.S. Policy and Politics 14, no. 1 (1986): 27-42; D. Bella, C. Mosher, and S. Calvo, "Technocracy and Trust," Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering 114, no. 1 (1988): 27-39; M. Kraft, "Evaluating Technology Through Public Participation," in Technology and Politics, ed. M. Kraft and N. Vig (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 1988), 252-277.  Back.

Note 25: See K. Shrader-Frechette, Risk, chaps. 11-12; K. Shrader-Frechette, Science Policy, Ethics, and Economic Methodology (Boston: Reidel, 1985), chaps. 8-9; hereafter cited as: Science Policy. M. Heiman, "From 'Not in My Backyard' to 'Not in Anybody's Backyard'," Journal of the American Planning Association 56 (1990): 359-362; P. Rennick and R. Greyell, "Opting for Cooperation," Waste Management 90 (1990): 307-314; Malone, "High-Level Nuclear Waste Disposal," 72.  Back.

Note 26: F. L. Parker et al., Board on Radioactive Waste Management, Rethinking High-Level Radioactive Waste Disposal (Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press, 1990), 99; hereafter cited as: U.S. NAS, HLRW.  Back.

Note 27: H. Inhaber, "Hands Up for Toxic Waste," Nature 347 (1990): 611-612. H. Inhaber, "Can an Economic Approach Solve the High-Level Nuclear Waste Problem?" Risk: Issues in Health and Safety 2, no. 4 (Fall 1991): 341-356.  Back.

Note 28: See K. Shrader-Frechette, Risk, esp. chap. 10.  Back.

Note 29: Malone, "High-Level Nuclear Waste Disposal," 72.  Back.

Note 30: Regarding adversary assessment and negotiation, see Shrader-Frechette, Risk and Rationality, chaps. 11-12; Shrader-Frechette, Science Policy, chaps. 8-9.  Back.

Note 31: Parker et al., U.S. NAS, HLRW, 29.  Back.

Note 32: Parker et al., U.S. NAS, HLRW, 11.  Back.

Note 33: See, for example, U.S. Congress, Waste Isolation Pilot Plant Land Withdrawal, Hearings before the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, U.S. Senate, 101st Congress, Second Session (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1990), especially M. Mercola, Concerned Citizens for Nuclear Safety, "Testimony," 289-296. See also Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 351; see also A. Blowers, D. Lowry, and B. Solomon, The International Politics of Nuclear Waste (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1991), 219-224. See also R. Monastersky, "Nuclear Waste Plans Blocked," Science News 141, no. 7 (15 February 1992): 101.  Back.

Note 34: Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 349.  Back.

Note 35: Kasperson et al., Social and Economic Aspects of Radioactive Waste Disposal (Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press, 1984), 62.  Back.

Note 36: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 81, I-1. For more information on the amount of waste needing to be stored, see note 7.  Back.

Note 37: See, for example, Krauskopf, Radioactive Waste Disposal and Geology, 128.  Back.

Note 38: R. Loux, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, High-Level Nuclear Waste Issues, 100th Congress, First Session (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1987), 319; hereafter cited as: U.S. Congress, HLNWI. See also Carter, Nuclear Imperatives and Public Trust, 175-176.  Back.

Note 39: H. R. Bryan, Governor of Nevada, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, Nuclear Waste Program, Hearings before the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, U.S. Senate, 100th Congress, First Session, part 3 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1987), 88ff.; hereafter cited as: U.S. Congress, NWP-3.  Back.

Note 40: T. A. Duncan et al., Morgan County MRS Study Group, "Feasibility and Desirability of Monitored Retrievable Storage System Locating in Morgan County, Tennessee," in U.S. Congress, NWP-3, 540-558. Information on the Yakima Indian Nation proposal was obtained from Dr. G. Rosa, Washington State University, Pullman, Wash., personal communication, 15 April 1992.  Back.

Note 41: Duncan et al., "Feasibility and Desirability," 547-550.  Back.

Note 42: See note 28.  Back.

Note 43: See, for example, Krauskopf, Radioactive Waste Disposal and Geology, 132.  Back.

Note 44: This suggestion comes from Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 366.  Back.

Note 45: Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 363, 368.  Back.

Note 46: See for example, U.S. DOE, Nuclear Waste Policy Act, Environmental Assessment, Yucca Mountain Site, Nevada Research and Development Area, Nevada, DOE/RW-0073, vol. 3 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. DOE, 1986), C.2-8.  Back.

Note 47: For discussion of needed improvements in this area, see C. Cranor, Regulating Toxics. . . . (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992), and Shrader-Frechette, Risk, chaps. 11-12.  Back.

Note 48: Cited in Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 348.  Back.

Note 49: W. Freudenburg and T. Jones, "Attitudes and Stress in the Presence of Technological Risk: A Test of the Supreme Court Hypothesis," Social Forces 69, no. 4 (June 1991): 1143-1168.  Back.

Note 50: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 77.  Back.

Note 51: See for example, J. W. Chapman (ed.), Compensatory Justice: NOMOS XXXIII (New York: New York University Press, 1991).  Back.

Note 52: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 77ff.  Back.

Note 53: See, for example, Shrader-Frechette, Risk, chaps. 11-12. For discussion of compensation and incentive schemes regarding high-level radwaste, see U.S. Congress, NWP-2.  Back.

Note 54: See Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 352-354.  Back.

Note 55: Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 349.  Back.

Note 56: Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 349.  Back.

Note 57: For discussion of these issues, see the two previous chapters and also U.S. NAS, HLRW, 16ff.  Back.

Note 58: Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 362, make a similar suggestion.  Back.

Note 59: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, xv, 11.  Back.

Note 60: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 79-81.  Back.

Note 61: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, xvi.  Back.

Note 62: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, I-2. See also K. Shrader-Frechette, Nuclear Power and Public Policy (Boston: Reidel, 1983).  Back.

Note 63: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 37.  Back.

Note 64: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, xvi, 11.  Back.

Note 65: Parker et al., U.S. NAS, HLRW, v.  Back.

Note 66: For discussion of subseabed disposal, see R. Kaplan, "Into the Abyss," University of Pennsylvania Law Review 139, no. 3 (January 1991): 769-800; A. G. Milnes, Geology and Radwaste (New York: Academic, 1985), 284ff.; U.S. Congress, CRWD, 259ff., 309ff.; J. Kelly, Seabed Corp., "Statement," in U.S. Congress, Nuclear Waste Policy Act, Hearing before the Subcommittee on Energy and the Environment, of the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, House of Representatives, 100th Congress, First Session (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1988), 118ff., 383ff.; hereafter cited as: U.S. Congress, NWPA.  Back.

Note 67: See Lenssen, Nuclear Waste, 7, 21, 43ff.; Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 10; M. Yates, "DOE Reassesses Civilian Radioactive Waste Management Program," Public Utilities Fortnightly (15 February 1990): 36-38. M. Yates, "Council Report Finds High-Level Nuclear Waste Repository Rules 'Unrealistic,"' Public Utilities Fortnightly (16 August 1990): 40-41. R. R. Loux, "Will the Nation's Nuclear Waste Policy Succeed at Yucca Mountain?" Public Utilities Fortnightly (22 November 1990): 27-28. See also R. E. Dunlap, M. E. Kraft, and E. A. Rosa (eds.), The Public and Nuclear Waste: Citizen's Views of Repository Siting (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 1993); hereafter cited as: Dunlap, Kraft, and Rosa, PNW.  Back.

Note 68: Parker et al., U.S. NAS, HLRW, 31.  Back.

Note 69: Radin et al. Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, xvii, 1.  Back.

Note 70: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 13.  Back.

Note 71: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, xvii.  Back.

Note 72: Parker et al., Rethinking, 29.  Back.

Note 73: D. Gibson, "Can Alchemy Solve the Nuclear Waste problem?" The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists 47 (July/August 1991): 12-17; G. Lawrence, "High-Power Proton Linac for Transmuting the Long-Lived Fission Products in Nuclear Waste," LA-UR-91-1335 (Los Alamos: Los Alamos National Laboratory, 1991); T. Pigford, "Waste Transmutation and Public Acceptance," unpublished paper, University of California, Berkeley, Department of Nuclear Energy, 1991.  Back.

Note 74: R. Kasperson et al., Social and Economic Aspects of Radioactive Waste Disposal (Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press, 1984), 2.  Back.

Note 75: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, xvii.  Back.

Note 76: Parker et al., U.S. NAS, HLRW, 4.  Back.

Note 77: A similar argument is made by Blowers et al., The International Politics of Nuclear Waste, 318.  Back.

Note 78: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, xvii, 11.  Back.

Note 79: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 13.  Back.

Note 80: Parker et al., U.S. NAS, HLRW, 4, 27.  Back.

Note 81: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 11-12.  Back.

Note 82: See B. B. Yeager, Sierra Club, "Regarding the Department of Energy's Proposal for Monitored Retrievable Storage (MRS) and the Role of MRS in the Federal High-Level Nuclear Waste Program," in U.S. Congress, NWP-2, 302-312. For variants of this argument, see Carter, Nuclear Imperatives and Public Trust, chap. 3; Krauskopf, Radioactive Waste Disposal and Geology, 21ff.; Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 361, argue that permanent disposal, after long (110 years) temporary storage is safer than indefinite short-term storage at the surface.  Back.

Note 83: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 11-12.  Back.

Note 84: D. Deere, "Statement," U.S. Congress, The Federal Program for the Disposal of Spent Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste, Hearing before the Subcommittee on Nuclear Regulation of the Committee on Environment and Public Works, U.S. Senate, 101st Congress, Second Session (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing office, 1990), 19.  Back.

Note 85: Kasperson et al., "Confronting Equity in Radioactive Waste," 362.  Back.

Note 86: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 37.  Back.

Note 87: Quoted in Montange, "Federal Nuclear Waste Disposal Policy," 401-402.  Back.

Note 88: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, xv, xvii, 10, D-5.  Back.

Note 89: T. A. Duncan and F. E. Freytag, Morgan County (Tenn.) MRS Study Group, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-2, 543ff.  Back.

Note 90: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 30-31.  Back.

Note 91: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 37.  Back.

Note 92: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 52.  Back.

Note 93: See, for example, Krauskopf, Radioactive Waste Disposal and Geology, 78-79.  Back.

Note 94: C. Fairhurst, National Research Council, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, The Federal Program for the Disposal of Spent Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste, Hearing before the Subcommittee on Nuclear Regulation of the Committee on Environment and Public Works, U.S. Senate, 101st Congress, Second Session (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing office, 1990), 35.  Back.

Note 95: For variants of this argument, for example, see Carter, Nuclear Imperatives and Public Trust, chap. 3.  Back.

Note 96: See Roxburgh, Geology of High-Level Nuclear Waste Disposal.  Back.

Note 97: For the higher figure, see B. Rusche, DOE, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-3, 167. For the lower figure, see Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, I-1.  Back.

Note 98: Johnston, "Statement," 147.  Back.

Note 99: For the $51,077 billion figure, see C. Anderson, "Why Evaluate the IWM Process?" in U.S. Congress, NWP-3, 577. See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 63, who estimate the total lifecycle costs for a permanent repository at $40 billion.  Back.

Note 100: Rusche, "Statement," 192.  Back.

Note 101: R. G. Rabben, DOE, "Answer," in U.S. Congress, NWP-3, 373.  Back.

Note 102: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, xv, 11. It is important to point out that this conclusion is based on a single NMRS facility, rather than on multiple, regional NMRS sites.  Back.

Note 103: Edison Electric Institute, American Nuclear Energy Council, Utility Nuclear Waste Management Group, Electric Utility Companies' Nuclear Transportation Group, Atomic Industrial Forum, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-3, 629.  Back.

Note 104: See D. Parfit, "The Further Future: The Social Discount Rate," in Energy and the Future, ed. D. MacLean and P. Brown (Totowa, N.J.: Rowman and Littlefield, 1983), 31-37.  Back.

Note 105: See K. S. Shrader-Frechette, Environmental Ethics (Pacific Grove, Calif.: Boxwood, 1991), esp. chap. 3.  Back.

Note 106: A similar argument is made by Blowers et al., The International Politics of Nuclear Waste, 318.  Back.

Note 107: A similar argument is made by Blowers et al., The International Politics of Nuclear Waste, 319.  Back.

Note 108: See Yeager (Sierra Club spokesperson), "Regarding the Department of Energy's Proposal," 302-312. Others who make this same argument include, for example, Krauskopf, Radioactive Waste Disposal and Geology, 23ff.  Back.

Note 109: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 4, 93, 95. See also R. F. Pruett, Mayor, Oak Ridge, Tenn., "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-2, 224-225; and B. B. Yeager, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, HLNWI, 773.  Back.

Note 110: See Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 11, 92.  Back.

Note 111: See Lenssen, Nuclear Waste, 7, 43-44; and R. Watson, "Waste, Waste, Nuclear Waste" (St. Louis: Washington University, February 1990), 13, unpublished manuscript. See also Dunlap, Kraft, and Rosa, PNW; Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, D-7.  Back.

Note 112: Carter, Nuclear Imperatives and Public Trust, 414-433.  Back.

Note 113: This argument is similar to one advanced by R. Watson, "Goals for Nuclear Waste Management," NUREG-0412 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 1978); see also J. Lemons, D. Brown, and G. Varner, "Congress, Consistency, and Environmental Law: Nuclear Waste at Yucca Mountain, Nevada," Environmental Ethics 12 (Winter 1990): 324.  Back.

Note 114: Duncan and Freytag, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-2, 541. See also note 7, this chapter, for information regarding the volume of waste needing to be stored.  Back.

Note 115: Lenssen, Nuclear Power, 8, 47.  Back.

Note 116: A. Lowry and M. Irwin, "Independent Ukraine to Shut Down Chernobyl Reactors," World Information Service on Energy (WISE) News Communique 359 (29 September 1991): 8.  Back.

Note 117: See notes 6 and 18, chapter 2, for the casualties and costs associated with Chernobyl.  Back.

Note 118: A. Lowry and M. Irwin, "UK Trade Unions Vote Nuclear Phase-Out," World Information Service on Energy (WISE) News Communique 359 (29 September 1991): 8.  Back.

Note 119: A. Lowry, M. Irwin, and C. Mercy, "Yankee Rowe Shutdown Encourages U.S. Activists," World Information Service on Energy (WISE) News Communique 361 (8 November 1991): 5-6; and A. Lowry, M. Irwin, and C. Mercy, "Aging U.S. Reactors," World Information Service on Energy (WISE) News Communique 361 (8 November 1991): 6.  Back.

Note 120: H. Kendall, "Calling Nuclear Power to Account," Calypso Log 18, no. 5 (October 1991): 8.  Back.

Note 121: Dunlap, Kraft, and Rosa, PNW. See B. B. Yeager, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWPA, 273ff.; see also 307ff. Finally, see R. H. Bryan, Governor of Nevada, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-3, 44ff.  Back.

Note 122: H. Reid, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-3, 31. See also U.S. Congress, HLNWI, 237ff.  Back.

Note 123: F. Millar, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-3, 117.  Back.

Note 124: B. Gardner, Governor of Washington, "Statement," in U.S. Congress, NWP-3, 185.  Back.

Note 125: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, 100.  Back.

Note 126: See, for example, J. Rhodes, "Nuclear Power: Waste Disposal," Address to the 102nd Annual Convention of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (Orlando, 1991), 27-28, 41; and M. Steinberg, " Transmutation of High-Level Nuclear Waste," Science (16 November 1990): 887-888. Finally see Dunlap, Kraft, and Rosa, PNW.  Back.

Note 127: Radin et al., Nuclear Waste: Is There a Need for Federal Interim Storage?, D-17. For other accounts of the actions of nuclear nations regarding radioactive waste, see Lenssen, Nuclear Waste, 37-49.  Back.

Note 128: Bates, "The Karma of Kerma," 38.  Back.

Note 129: R. Rosa and W. Freudenburg, "The Historical Development of Public Reactions to Nuclear Power: Implications for Nuclear Waste Policy," in Dunlap, Kraft, and Rosa, PNW. See also R. L. Goldsteen and J. K. Schorr, Demanding Democracy After Three Mile Island (Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1991), 117ff.  Back.

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