Many thanks to Snake River Alliance Executive Director Liz Woodruff and Ketchum City Council member Nina Jonas for a very informative event Wednesday, June 5. This spring, Nina traveled to Washington, D.C., with the Alliance to participate in the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability’s annual D.C. Days Event. The event brings people from across the country to D.C. to talk with Congress and the administration about nuclear weapons, power and waste issues.
One issue that Nina discussed at the event was her concern about the 1995 Settlement Agreement being disrupted in some fashion. Among some of the assurances specified in the agreement between the state of Idaho, U.S. Navy and U.S. Department of Energy are limiting the amount and type of spent nuclear fuel shipped to Idaho, requiring cleanup of the high-level waste currently at the Idaho National Laboratory, and requiring all spent nuclear fuel be removed from Idaho by 2035. Nuclear waste from commercial nuclear reactors is explicitly prohibited from being sent to Idaho in the agreement.
As Idaho’s only statewide nuclear watchdog and leading clean-energy advocate, the Snake River Alliance is working to make sure the agreement remains solid in order to best protect Idaho from further nuclear waste contamination.
Although it may seem far away, the INL is only 70 miles as the crow flies from the Wood River Valley. It’s even closer if you consider the fact that radioactive pollution has made it into the Snake River Plain Aquifer—the very water source that provides irrigation for much of the Magic Valley’s foodshed and thus to much of the Wood River Valley’s local food sources.
What can you do to help? You can join me and become part of the growing community of Idahoans that support the Alliance’s work for an Idaho free from the threat of radioactive contamination and for clean and renewable sources of energy by becoming a member of the group. You might also consider attending a tour of the INL cleanup effort on July 9 with the Alliance. You can find out more about the tour and how to join the Alliance at www.snakeriveralliance.org.