WCS dump site in Andrews County, Texas showing canisters prior to burial in large pits. WCS photo
For Immediate Release
(Monday, May 16, 2011): For More Information:
Cyrus Reed, PhD, Conservation Director, Lone Star Chapter
of the Sierra Club, 512-740-4086,
or Donna Hoffman, Communications Director, 512-477-1729
Do You Want Texas to be the Dumping Ground for the Nation’s Radioactive Waste?
You’re right – we already knew your answer to that one.
NOW in opposition
to Senate Bill 1504 – set for action on the Texas
House Floor Tuesday, May 17.
Contact your State Representative
right away and urge him or her to vote AGAINST SB 1504. If
you’re not sure who
your Texas House member is, go toTexas Legislature Online
and you can find out there.
SB 1504 would outline the process by which Waste Control
Specialists (WCS), which has received a Texas state license
to operate a radioactive waste dump in West Texas, would
be able to take a large volume of radioactive waste generated
in states other than Texas and Vermont.
The dump was originally
authorized under Texas law and an interstate compact to
take for disposal “low-level” radioactive wastes generated
in Texas and Vermont (Maine was originally part of the
compact but later withdrew), and it was envisioned to be
limited only to wastes from those states.
But there was a loophole in the compact that allowed the Texas-Vermont Compact Commission to approve disposal of wastes from other states. However, the process for accepting other wastes has been unclear. SB 1504 would establish that process and make it easier for WCS to take those out-of-state wastes. WCS wants to do this so that they can take more wastes and make more profits.
Many environmental concerns have been raised about the
WCS dump site and its operation plans. In fact some TCEQ
staff who reviewed the WCS license application for the
dump quit the agency in protest over the agency’s actions to approve what they felt to be a faulty and environmentally questionable license. The Sierra Club is appealing the license in court. But in the meantime it is important to limit the volume of wastes that might be sent to the site and to avoid
making this dump the nation’s
dumpsite. Most of that waste will come from nuclear power
plants around the country.
SB 1504 needs to be opposed. PLEASE
ACT IMMEDIATELY to contact your House member in opposition
to the passage of this bill. Do encourage your House member
to support any amendments to the bill that would address
concerns about transportation of radioactive wastes to
the site and possible groundwater contamination from the