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Walden and Shimkus Statement on Full Committee Passage of Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act


11.20.19

WASHINGTON, DC – Energy and Commerce Committee Republican Leader Greg Walden (R-OR) and Environment and Climate Change Subcommittee Republican Leader John Shimkus (R-IL) released the following statement on passage of the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act during today’s full committee markup.

“We are once again acting in a bipartisan way at the Energy and Commerce Committee for the 121 communities in 39 states across America where nuclear waste sits idle. The Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act ensures that we are following science and the law, both of which say that Yucca Mountain is the solution to the country’s nuclear waste problem. By advancing this bipartisan bill today, we are one step closer to delivering on a long overdue promise to address this national issue. Now, it’s time to swiftly pass this legislation through the House and Senate and get it to President Trump for his signature. We are committed to seeing this through for the American people,” said Walden and Shimkus.

Background:

Today the Energy and Commerce Committee advanced the following bill to the House

H.R. 2699, the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act of 2019, introduced by Energy and Commerce Reps. John Shimkus (R-IL) and Jerry McNerney (D-CA): The bill amends the Nuclear Waste Policy Act to update the Department of Energy’s (DOE) ability to manage nuclear waste. In the near term, the bill assists the resolution of the pending safety license for Yucca Mountain and provides DOE authority to move forward with an interim storage program that would consolidate spent nuclear fuel (SNF) from decommissioned reactors while work on Yucca progresses. The program would also prioritize the transfer of SNF from seismically active areas, and permits DOE to undertake “infrastructure activities” intended to enable construction and operation of a repository at Yucca Mountain, which is situated on federal property, adjacent to the former Nevada Test Site, in the State of Nevada. Additionally, the bill establishes ratepayer protections by reforming the finance mechanism of the Nuclear Waste Fund and assures that DOE has adequate funding to construct and operate a repository.

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