Idahoís a dump
The out-of-sight out-of-mind technique of
dealing with serious problems has not disappeared among nuclear waste
While state and federal regulators spend
millions to find ways to sort, stabilize and remove nuclear waste from the
Idaho National Environmental and Engineering Laboratory, low-level waste
is coming into the state through the backdoor and the Nuclear Regulatory
Commission is ignoring it.
The federal NRC earlier this month refused
to close a regulatory loophole that will allow a half a million tons of
low-level radioactive waste to be brought to Idaho. The waste is going to
a private business, Envirosafe Services of Idaho, Inc. near Grand View.
The facility is not licensed to dispose of
radioactive waste. That hasnít stopped the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
from transferring waste from former Manhattan Project sites to Envirosafe
for the past 18 months.,
Ironically, if the waste had been produced
at a FERC-licensed site after 1978, it would be considered radioactive and
The Snake River Alliance, a nuclear
watchdog group, pointed out the obvious and outrageous inconsistency when
it asked the NRC to regulate disposal of the waste.
The waste slipped through a federal
loophole with nary a peep of protest from the state.
The feds are treating Idaho like a dump.
Yet, with no protest from the governor, the Legislature, or Idahoís
congressional delegation about ludicrous loopholes like this one, why
should they treat it any other way?