Skip to main content

NEI's Marv Fertel on Where the Industry Stands on Used Nuclear Fuel

Today at the National Journal's Energy Experts Blog, the magazine is taking a closer look at how the nation will have to confront the issue of long-term storage of used nuclear fuel:
What safety, environmental, and economic factors should Washington consider as it debates the future of its nuclear-waste policy? Should Yucca Mountain be revived, or should Congress stop debating that repository site once and for all? How does the uncertain future over spent fuel affect the nation's dependence on nuclear power, which provides the nation with 20 percent of its electricity?
Marv Fertel, NEI's President and Chief Executive Office, has posted a response. Here's an excerpt:
The nuclear energy industry agrees with many of the common-sense recommendations in the Blue Ribbon Commission’s final report, which was developed after nearly two years of fact-finding, public interaction and intense study. In particular, three proposals should be given high priority:
  • prompt efforts to develop one or more consolidated interim storage facilities at volunteer sites,
  • assured access by program managers to revenues generated by payments and interest earned in the Nuclear Waste Fund,
  • establish a quasi-federal organization dedicated solely to implementing the used fuel management program, with access to the Nuclear Waste Fund.
[...]

The recent ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia that the Department of Energy failed to justify continued payments by consumers of electricity from nuclear power plants into the Nuclear Waste Fund should also help to drive the dialog. While the court did not order DOE to suspend the fee payments, the court rejected DOE’s bases for continuing to collect the fees and ordered it to conduct a complete reassessment of this fee within six months. Considering DOE has yet to move one fuel assembly as it was required by law beginning in 1998, the industry sees no justification for further collection of funds until a functioning used fuel disposal program is in place.

[...]

Now, 30 years after Congress passed the Nuclear Waste Policy Act, the development of a long-term solution to managing used nuclear fuel is long overdue. It’s time for policymakers to reexamine the program and develop a new roadmap that will meet these obligations to consumers.
For more on the safe storage of used nuclear fuel, please visit our NEI.org.

Comments

Will Davis said…
A post from yesterday on Atomic Power Review might interest Mr. Fertel:

http://atomicpowerreview.blogspot.com/2012/06/dfrp-concept-fresh-approach-to-national.html

Popular posts from this blog

Making Clouds for a Living

Donell Banks works at Southern Nuclear’s Plant Vogtle units 3 and 4 as a shift supervisor in Operations, but is in the process of transitioning to his newly appointed role as the daily work controls manager. He has been in the nuclear energy industry for about 11 years.

I love what I do because I have the unique opportunity to help shape the direction and influence the culture for the future of nuclear power in the United States. Every single day presents a new challenge, but I wouldn't have it any other way. As a shift supervisor, I was primarily responsible for managing the development of procedures and programs to support operation of the first new nuclear units in the United States in more than 30 years. As the daily work controls manager, I will be responsible for oversight of the execution and scheduling of daily work to ensure organizational readiness to operate the new units.

I envision a nuclear energy industry that leverages the technology of today to improve efficiency…

Nuclear: Energy for All Political Seasons

The electoral college will soon confirm a surprise election result, Donald Trump. However, in the electricity world, there are fewer surprises – physics and economics will continue to apply, and Republicans and Democrats are going to find a lot to like about nuclear energy over the next four years.

In a Trump administration, the carbon conversation is going to be less prominent. But the nuclear value proposition is still there. We bring steady jobs to rural areas, including in the Rust Belt, which put Donald Trump in office. Nuclear plants keep the surrounding communities vibrant.

We hold down electricity costs for the whole economy. We provide energy diversity, reducing the risk of disruption. We are a critical part of America’s industrial infrastructure, and the importance of infrastructure is something that President-Elect Trump has stressed.

One of our infrastructure challenges is natural gas pipelines, which have gotten more congested as extremely low gas prices have pulled m…

Innovation Fuels the Nuclear Legacy: Southern Nuclear Employees Share Their Stories

Blake Bolt and Sharimar Colon are excited about nuclear energy. Each works at Southern Nuclear Co. and sees firsthand how their ingenuity powers the nation’s largest supply of clean energy. For Powered by Our People, they shared their stories of advocacy, innovation in the workplace and efforts to promote efficiency. Their passion for nuclear energy casts a bright future for the industry.

Blake Bolt has worked in the nuclear industry for six years and is currently the work week manager at Hatch Nuclear Plant in Georgia. He takes pride in an industry he might one day pass on to his children.

What is your job and why do you enjoy doing it?
As a Work Week Manager at Plant Hatch, my primary responsibility is to ensure nuclear safety and manage the risk associated with work by planning, scheduling, preparing and executing work to maximize the availability and reliability of station equipment and systems. I love my job because it enables me to work directly with every department on the plant…