Please share far and wide!

Search This Blog

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

NRC Refusing to Regulate Spent Fuel Storage Systems, Instead Relying On Hope That Vendors Do The Right Thing

stock here: We know that in the interim, say 50 years, our best interests are served if the nuclear waste is put into dry cask as soon as it is cool enough, usually that is five years after the run cycle, but can be more for "high burn up fuel".

As with most things (but not nuclear reactors) the original designs of things are "over designed" because the designers want a success, so they use more factor of safety.    As time goes on, dry cask manufacturers have taken fairly robust designs and ideas, and tried to reduce in cost as much as they can get away with.    For the executives, by the time the casks are leaking or rusted through, they will be retired, or the company will be defunct, so they don't care about the future.

You would think the NRC would care about the future, but really they just care about serving their current masters, the politicians who fund them, and the nuclear industry who also funds them (using rate payer money of course).     No government department wants to see itself get smaller...that makes them less important, less ability to command large salaries and benefits.    It seems these things are self evident, but maybe it's good to review, these things are wrong and hurtful to society overall.

CaptD was a key player in Jousting San Onofre to it's conclusion.    Now they are dealing with the used fuel.    The company wants to keep the used fuel right on the corrosive ocean, prone to earthquakes, and use some questionable dry casks.   See below from CaptD.


This comment was just submitted to the NRC:

Donna Gilmore made a presentation to the NRC about these issues and she also spoke with the Director of Spent Fuel Management.  

He told her that he sets the minimum standards for dry storage and transport and refuses to increase them.  Him saying that he is  "hopeful that any problems will be solved by the vendors before it's too late", is not good enough for either the people living near all nuclear waste "dumps" or those in the future that will have to deal with any mistakes made in cask selection/regulation by the NRC. 

Current failed containments at Hanford, Savannah River and WIPP should provide the NRC with the motivation to immediately halt all cask deployments until further investigations are conducted. 

Approving casks is nothing more than yet another gift to the Nuclear Industry since "cheap" casks offer them a way to comply with nuclear waste storage and do nothing to insure that tax payers with not get stuck with huge cleanup bills in the future.  The NRC might think that they are better than the Department of Energy, but I don't agree, since the NRC has had plenty of regulatory problems.  

A great example is the RSG debacle at San Onofre, CA, where SCE used the like-for-like "loophole" to self design RSG's that failed soon after being installed, but received only a white violation from the NRC for something that will cost ratepayers billions of dollars.  

Now SCE want to spend over a billion to buy "cheap" casks.  At the very least, the NRC should require Operators fund a bond in case any problems develop in the future, so that there will be plenty of money to pay for them.

Here's a new video that Jim Heddle produced from the October 6, 2015 California Coastal Commission meeting. In it one of the Commissioners grills Mark Lombard about the inspection, cracking and transport issues.



There is huge money at play in the nuclear industry.     This 8000 lb elephant in the room (nuclear) cannot be trusted to play nice.



  1. CaptD had no role in the closing of San onofre. He is really clueless in the matter. Keep believing it. Your movement weakens our country.

    1. you have until the end of the weekend to weigh in on the hormesis questions that I have posed to you, and if not, ye shall be banned from this site.


Insightful and Relevant if Irreverent Comments