Reps. Mike Levin (D., Calif.) and Salud Carbajal (D., Calif.) have reintroduced the 100 Year Canister Life Act, which requires nuclear waste canisters to have a design life of at least 100 years. Levin last introduced the bill in 2022, where it died in committee.
Introduced into the House on January 31, the bill (H.R. 7172) would prohibit the Nuclear Regulatory Commission from issuing or renewing any certificate of compliance or license for a dry storage cask for spent nuclear fuel without a finding that the cask “can safely operate with spent nuclear fuel for a period of at least 100 years.” Current NRC regulations set the lifespan requirement of dry storage casks at 40 years.
The full text of the bill can be found here.
They said it: “There are over 3.5 million pounds of nuclear waste stored in my district at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station.,” Levin said. “This waste sits on the coast, next to Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, on an active fault line. While it’s essential that Congress and the Department of Energy find safe, consent-based permanent disposal solutions for this spent fuel, this bill would ensure the safe storage of spent nuclear fuel until we find a long-term solution.”
Carbajal added, “As we continue working toward long-term solutions for nuclear waste storage, it is important to raise the standards for on-site nuclear waste storage. As the representative for California’s only remaining active nuclear power plant at Diablo Canyon, I know that safety should be the paramount concern when it comes to nuclear power—and am proud to join Rep. Levin to champion this critical piece of legislation.”