Hardened On-Site Nuclear Waste Storage

While the House of Representatives is still looking to the stalled Yucca Mountain project to solve the nation's Spent Nuclear Fuel (SNF) problem, the Senate is moving ahead in a different direction. On April 25th, 2013, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee released a "discussion draft" of a bill to begin a pilot "consolidated interim storage" program.

The Alliance for Nuclear Accountability (ANA) does not support consolidated storage of SNF, as it does not solve the problem of SNF and would actually spreads the problem to new areas. Consolidated storage will expose communities across the country to increased radiation as nuclear waste rolls down highways and train tracks. Instead of consolidated storage, ANA supports the Nuclear Regulatory Commission mandating a system of Hardened On-Site Storage (HOSS).

HOSS would keep SNF as close as safely possible to its site of generation, thereby exposing fewer people to radiation. A HOSS program utilizing passively cooled dry casks would be a solution to over-crowded spent fuel pools at reactors and provide increased protection from human or natural disasters, like terrorist attacks and earthquakes.

Find out more about the current state of nuclear waste management here.

Read the full Senate Energy and Natural Resources "discussion draft" nuclear waste bill here.

Read ANA's response to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee here

View DOE's response to public pressure on nuclear waste here

Additional Resources
  • Principles for Safeguarding Nuclear Waste at Reactors describes the technical requirements of HOSS.  Drafted by Public Citizen.
  • This fact sheet, authored by the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, deals with a similar nuclear waste management issue.
  • Dr. Gordon Thompson wrote a detailed report, which covers many of the technical aspects of HOSS, applied to storage of spent nuclear fuel. Download Robust Storage of Spent Nuclear Fuel.