Dec 19, 2020
Two companies seek licenses to import thousands of tons of deadly nuclear reactor waste and store it for decades at sites in Texas and New Mexico.
Help halt these dangerous plans by writing to your Congressional Representative today!
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January 9, 2021
In Memory of Noel Marquez:
Friends pay tribute to local artist, environmentalist
Noel V. Marquez of Lake Arthur, 67, an honored New Mexico painter and a leader of environmental protection efforts, passed away Dec. 23 after a long illness, according to family members.
Marquez was the 2008 recipient of the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts. He was known for his large murals in New Mexico communities, including Carlsbad, Hobbs and Artesia, where he was born on June 4, 1953.
Sept 24, 2020
Nuclear waste could travel through Dallas-Fort Worth if West Texas plan is approved
By Haley Samsel
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
If approved by federal regulators, at least 5,000 tons of high-level nuclear waste from across the U.S. could travel through the Metroplex on its way to a West Texas storage facility that already stores low-level radioactive materials.
High-level nuclear waste refers to spent, or used, reactor fuel and waste materials that exist after the used fuel is reprocessed for disposal. The radioactive waste poses potentially harmful effects to humans and only decreases in radioactivity through decay, which can take hundreds of thousands of years, according to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the federal agency that regulates nuclear power plants and the storage and disposal of waste.
Activists who oppose the West Texas plan say the impact will not be limited to residents of Andrews County, where the toxic waste site owned by Waste Control Specialists already sits near the Texas-New Mexico border. The commission is considering a similar plan for a high-level waste storage facility in southeastern New Mexico, brought forward by the nuclear company Holtec.
September 21, 2019
Plan to transport nuclear waste to West Texas draws concern
SEED Coalition is a party in the legal case opposing high-level radioactive waste storage at WCS’ site in Andrews County, Texas and we just filed a new contention regarding significant risks of transportation of this deadly nuclear material. Hopefully, the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board will pay attention to this critical issue and the technica lhurdles that have now been documented by the U.S. Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board in a report to Congress and the DOE.
Here is the study the contention was based on, the contention we filed and the expert witness testimony that backs it up.
- Report to Congress and DOE on transport of high-level radioactive waste details serious technical hurdles.
Sept. 2019 study by Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board
- Contention that SEED Coalition filed on Oct. 23, 2019 with the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board.
- Expert testimony of Bob Alvarez in support of the contention.
A proposal to send high-level nuclear waste to West Texas may seem like something Houstonians shouldn’t worry about. But if approved, some of the state’s largest metro areas could be in the path of thousands of shipments of radioactive materials as they make their way from plants across the country.
Interim Storage Partners, formed by Orano USA and Waste Control Specialists LLC, is applying for an initial 40-year license to eventually store 40,000 metric tons of used nuclear fuel in an existing facility in Andrews County.
Those in favor say it will save taxpayers money and provide a temporary solution to the decades-old impasse over finding a permanent storage solution for the country’s nuclear waste. But critics, made up of an unlikely coalition of environmentalists, ranchers and some in the oil industry, say the plan is not worth the risk of exposure en route to, or at, the storage site
So far, the plan appears to be moving forward.
The least risky path is leaving it close to where it is until a permanent repository is available, said Karen Hadden, executive director of the Texas-based Sustainable Energy and Economic Development Coalition. “It makes no sense to ship it to consolidated interim storage sites. Why transport for this purpose alone and then transport again to a permanent repository? There is also the risk of creating a dangerous de facto permanent site, that should never happen because it could lead to disaster.”
They also call on Texas’ congressional delegation to fight the proposal. They have the power to stop the proposal from moving forward, said Tom “Smitty” Smith, with Public Citizen, the nonprofit consumer advocacy group.