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Foreign Waste Generates Heat

Fortnightly Magazine - July 15 1996

The Nuclear Waste Strategy Coalition (em a group of 36 state regulatory agencies, Attorneys General, and utilities from 20 states (em has renewed calls for storage and disposal facilities since the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) accepted 20 metric tons of radioactive waste from 41 countries. The waste derives from nuclear fuel originally provided by the United States to foreign power plants. The bulk, 19 tons, goes to the Savannah River Site in South Carolina; the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory receives the remainder. U.S. taxpayers pick up the tab: about $1 billion.

"Now we need the same leadership to deal with America's civilian spent nuclear fuel, currently stranded at 73 sites in 34 of our states," said Kris Sanda, a Minnesota commissioner and founder of the coalition. "America's electric consumers have already paid over $12 billion in fees to address this, but as recently as January, the Clinton Administration argued in federal court that the federal government has no obligation to fulfill contracts to begin removing nuclear waste from America's power plants as promised." (em LB t

Inside Washington items were reported by Joseph F. Schuler, Jr., associate editor, and Lori A. Burkhart, an associate legal editor.

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