Resolution Urging the President and Congress to Act Expeditiously in Procuring a Site or Sites for the Storage of High-Level Radioactive Waste


ALEC’s model Resolution Urges the President and Congress to act expeditiously in procuring a site or sites for the storage of high-level radioactive waste.

Model Resolution

WHEREAS, decades into the commercial use of nuclear power the federal government has failed to establish a permanent high-level radioactive waste disposal facility; and

WHEREAS, nuclear power facilities must store high-level nuclear waste on-site; and

WHEREAS, currently 25 nuclear facilities in the United States will be forced to expand on-site storage capacity by 1996; and

WHEREAS, Congress enacted the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 and directed the Department of Energy (DOE), through its Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management, to establish a program for the management of the nation’s high-level waste, including high-level radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel, and for its permanent disposal in a deep geologic repository; and

WHEREAS, the Nuclear Waste Policy Act created the Nuclear Waste Fund to pay for the development of a waste depository program through the collection of fees on electricity generated by nuclear energy plants; and

WHEREAS, while present contributions are adequate, the current practice of allocating these funds for purposes other than what they were intended, has artificially depleted this essential resource, thereby jeopardizing DOE’s high-level waste program; and

WHEREAS, both the National Academy of Sciences and the Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board, which were established to provide Congress and the Administration with sound scientific and technical advice, have recommended continued study of Yucca Mountain, Nevada, including a determination of its sustainability as an underground repository; and

WHEREAS, DOE is prepared to make substantial progress in the study of Yucca Mountain if adequate funding is available; in fact, DOE has begun constructing the experimental studies facility and broke ground on November 30, 1992, at the Yucca Mountain site for the surface facilities needed to support the experimental studies;

NOW THEREFORE LET IT BE RESOLVED, that the American Legislative Exchange Council hereby urges the President and Congress to take action and explore options to ensure that a timely and comprehensive study at sites, including the site at Yucca Mountain, be conducted and concluded to establish a site for a permanent repository and a centralized interim spent fuel storage facility, including addressing the funding mechanism created by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act so that already adequate funds are appropriately allocated for DOE’s high level waste program when needed so that DOE can meet its obligation and satisfy the requirement set forth in the Nuclear Waste Policy Act and contained in its contract with nuclear facilities to receive spent fuel from utilities beginning in 1998.

  Approved by ALEC Board of Directors in 1995.

Reapproved by ALEC Board of Directors on January 28, 2013.

Keyword Tags: Energy, Environmental Health, Nuclear