Thursday, August 30, 2007

NRDC's Cochran on Dry Cask Storage and Earthquakes

Got an interesting piece of information I wanted to pass along. Back on June 28, Tom Cochran Director of the Natural Resources Defense Council's nuclear program, testified before the California Energy Commission. Following his testimony, Commissioner James D. Boyd asked Cochran whether or not storing used nuclear fuel in dry casks was safe given California's history with earthquakes.

Here's how he answered:

As an organization we haven't developed a view but I'll give you my personal view. First of all I think it's nonsense to think that an earthquake is going to damage a dry cask storage container. I think you can shake those as long as you want to and you're not going to -- you might want to go back and re-rack or something in a safe facility but I cannot envision it being shaken open. So I don't think that's an argument, seismicity, for moving dry casks.

I think it makes sense to have a place to move spent fuel and store it in dry casks from site you want to decommission so you can make them greenfields and the company is not left holding the bag at that particular site.


And I think it could be transported safely.
Click here to read the proceedings online. For more on used fuel storage from NEI, click here.

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