Friday, August 11, 2006

Air Force, DOE Start Yucca Airspace Negotiations

From today's Las Vegas Review-Journal:

WASHINGTON -- The Air Force confirmed Thursday it is negotiating airspace rights over Yucca Mountain to balance pilot access to the Nellis Air Force Range and security at the nuclear waste site that has been proposed nearby.

As part of its plan to build a repository for highly radioactive used nuclear fuel, the Department of Energy has proposed controlling use of 229 square miles of land now managed by other federal agencies surrounding the Yucca site.

The department also is seeking to designate a "no-fly zone" as part of the project. Ward Sproat, director of the Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management, told Congress last week the restricted flight area would be 4 miles in radius centered on the mountain.

In a statement Thursday, the Air Force confirmed its officials and DOE counterparts are negotiating flight rules over the repository.

"Air Force and DOE representatives in Nevada continue to discuss potential control measures to accommodate both agencies' missions," the service said in a statement issued in response to a reporter's query.
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