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Nevada: Feds should restudy seismic risk at nuke dump site

Posted at 4:31 PM, Jul 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-17 19:31:11-04

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nevada's governor and congressional delegation say recent earthquakes should make the U.S. Energy Department look again at seismic risks at a site eyed as the place to bury the nation's nuclear waste.

Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak tells Energy Secretary Rick Perry in a letter made public Wednesday the 6.4 and 7.1 magnitude quakes during the July Fourth holiday in Ridgecrest, California, underscore safety concerns that Nevada raised about the Yucca Mountain project in 2008.

Ridgecrest is 108 miles (174 kilometers) west of Yucca Mountain.

The Energy Department acknowledges receiving the letter and says it will respond.

Nevada contends in stalled Nuclear Regulatory Commission proceedings the Energy Department improperly downplayed seismic hazards at the site where it wants to entomb tens-of-thousands of tons of highly radioactive spent nuclear reactor fuel.