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RE: Nuclear Waste,Science, & Politics: Regaining Virginity?
- To: jjcohen <jjcohen@PRODIGY.NET>, email@example.com, "Stabin, Michael" <firstname.lastname@example.org>,John Jacobus <crispy_bird@YAHOO.COM>, franz.schoenhofer@CHELLO.AT, email@example.com
- Subject: RE: Nuclear Waste,Science, & Politics: Regaining Virginity?
- From: "Dukelow, James S Jr" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Fri, 29 Oct 2004 18:29:51 -0700
- Thread-Index: AcS+F9SpRHCbYbRmR5WRgVVgHBgNVQABdCag
- Thread-Topic: Nuclear Waste,Science, & Politics: Regaining Virginity?
[mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of jjcohen
Sent: Friday, October 29, 2004 5:10 PM
To: firstname.lastname@example.org; 'Stabin, Michael'; 'John Jacobus';
Subject: Re:Nuclear Waste,Science, & Politics: Regaining Virginity?
Of course nuclear waste decisions are primarily driven by politics.
And why not? The "scientific" approach that has been applied over the
past 50 years, at a cost of billions of dollars has failed to find an
acceptable solution--- succeeding only to enrich those who have been
feeding at the research funding trough. The message to a scientifically
naive public is the problem must be extremely severe to justify such an
expenditure. Aversion to having such a deadly hazard anywhere nearby is
understandably a frightening prospect.
Given the history of this problem, any assurance by the scientific
community that the waste can be safely handled is as difficult as
regaining one's lost virginity. Maybe it is best that the politicians
deal with the problem. It is doubtful that they can do a worse job than
the scientific community has done.
I have to disagree with jjcohen. I worked on the Basalt Waste Isolation
Project and had the signal honor of being fired, along with a 1000
others, by the US Senate meeting in august dignity (primarily the
responsibility of the Senator from Louisiana, Bennett Johnston).
Senator Johnston cleverly noticed that the Nevada congressional
delegation was much smaller than those from Washington state and Texas
and figured it would be easier to steam-roll Nevada. Events have shown
him to have been naive.
The nuclear waste program is almost entirely a political failure,
including a failure to inform policy decisions with realistic risk
analyses. The scientific evidence is clear that nuclear waste can be
safely handled and stored. The failure of the program to date is
political -- executive, legislative, and judicial -- uninformed by the
scientific understanding of the problem.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
These comments are mine and have not been reviewed and/or approved by my
management or by the U.S. Department of Energy.