U.S. Sens. Catherine Cortez Masto (D., Nev.) and Jacky Rosen (D., Nev.) sent a letter to Sen. Lamar Alexander (R., Tenn.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development, and ranking member Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D., Calif.) to reiterate their annual request that zero funds be appropriated to support licensing activities for the proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository in fiscal year 2021.
Earlier this year, Cortez Masto along with a majority of Nevada’s congressional delegation, including Rosen, reintroduced the Nuclear Waste Informed Consent Act. The bill would require the secretary of energy to obtain the consent of affected state and local governments, as well as tribal leaders, before making expenditures from the Nuclear Waste Fund for a nuclear waste repository.
Quote: In the letter, dated November 6, the senators asked that funding for any nuclear waste initiative be used to support a consent-based siting process.
“As the subcommittee continues to consider short- and long-term solutions to address the storage and disposal of our nation’s nuclear waste, we respectfully underscore the need to establish a consent-based siting process—such as that laid out in the Nuclear Waste Informed Consent Act (S. 649/H.R. 1544),” the letter states. “Consent is the only viable path forward to guarantee the responsible stewardship of taxpayer dollars and our nation’s nuclear waste.”