Letter: Nuclear waste is safe


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  • Dektol Powell, OH
    April 6, 2012 3:42 p.m.

    Safe or not, the wasteland that is much of Utah is the perfect place to store this stuff. Even if it leaked - who would even notice? Nothing is there to get damaged or hurt. The whole place could probably glow at night and no one would even know it because there is no one there.

  • wrz Salt Lake City, UT
    April 4, 2012 9:34 p.m.

    @The Real Maverick: "What about the message accepting waste gives to other states and countries? I don't want my state to be known as a dump."

    If you use power created by a nuke plant, you need to consider doing your part in waste disposal... would only seem fair.

    Besides, in the next few hundred years our scientists will have discovered how to neutralize ionizing radiation making it absolutely harmless.

  • Sensible Scientist Rexburg, ID
    April 4, 2012 4:33 p.m.

    Many of the comments here make the letter writer's point quite well by displaying baseless paranoia and ignorance. Those are no basis for important scientific decisions.

    The burden for education is on YOU. Go learn from authoritative sources.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    April 3, 2012 10:39 a.m.

    To "VIDAR" what are you talking about. The Clive facility is only licensed to accept Class A nuclear waste. If anything hotter is being stored there, why are you not complaining to the Utah regulators or the NRC who oversee the licensing of EnergySolutions?

    Do you have any proof that they are accepting materials that are outside the scope of their license, or are you just going off the anti-nuclear alarmist web sites?

  • VIDAR Murray, UT
    April 3, 2012 6:08 a.m.

    2 bits

    Cottonwood Heights, UT

    ok, if we know so much more now; how did the hotter nuclear waste find its way into the clive facility?

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 2, 2012 4:03 p.m.

    That was back in the 50's. We know a lot more about radio activity now, and what to do and what NOT to do.

    Constantly bringing up the scare tactics of Southern Utah in the 50s should not work anymore for anybody who knows the current state of affairs when it comes to handling radiactive waste.

    I'd never say "radioactive waste is safe", because it's not. But the low level waste they handle at Clive can be handled in a safe manner. And it's not as dangerous as open air nuclear testing (which is inherenlty dangerous, and we all know that now).

    We have learned a lot in the past 70 years. We have learned how to safely handle nuclear weapons AND nuclear waste. It's not the same as it was in the 40's and 50's. We've come a long way since then.

  • casual observer Salt Lake City, UT
    April 2, 2012 2:47 p.m.

    About 40,000 people die each year in auto accidents. Transportation is risky, but necessary and we look for ways to make it safer. We cannot have energy, whether it is carbon based or another mode, without some element of risk. A rational discussion on nuclear power compared to other "safe" options would be better than what is now in progress.

  • JoeBlow Miami Area, Fl
    April 2, 2012 11:49 a.m.


    I also support nuclear. And I do believe that some on the left are misguided in that regard (as are some on the right.)

    But, I believe that many businesses will, at times, sacrifice safety in order to increase profit.

    So, I support reasonable govt regulation. And yes, sometimes that regulation goes too far.

    I also believe that we could get rid of most regulation if C level employees were jailed when they made profit over safety decisions.

    But, the large corps will bribe our politicians to insure that does not happen.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    April 2, 2012 11:29 a.m.

    Re: LDS Liberal

    In 1968 6,000 sheep were killed during chemical warfare testing by the United States Army who then tried to cover it up. We can always trust our government to tell us the truth ..... can't we?

  • really? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 2, 2012 11:23 a.m.

    The question is not whether the blended waste is safe or not. The question is whether blended waste qualifies to be classified as other "class a" waste. The answer is a resounding no.

  • ugottabkidn Sandy, UT
    April 2, 2012 11:17 a.m.

    Bad bad bad. Have you ever been through the West Desert in a wind storm? I have and I'm sorry but between Dugway, Tooele and Energy Solutions you're going to tell me nothing strange is coming over those mountains? I was also around when we were told no problem with nukes being tested in Nevada and saw many dying from fallout and believe to this day that we are still feeling the effects. If it can be safely stored then let on site storing be a condition of approval. I think after watching what has happened in Japan we would look for alternatives.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 2, 2012 11:13 a.m.


    “The biggest reason for the stuff coming to Utah is because people such as yourself and other liberals are afraid of it because you don't understand it.”

    Why would they spend all that money just to upset people like me?

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    April 2, 2012 11:10 a.m.

    More Conservative hypocrisy….
    We can’t trust the Government of anything,
    We believe them when they tell us Nuclear waste is safe.

    Somehow – I think they dis-trust the mean old evil nasty Government,
    Unless it’s a Corporation paying that Government to tell them something they want said.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    April 2, 2012 10:39 a.m.

    Re: JoeBlow
    "people such as yourself and other liberals are afraid of it because you don't understand it."

    Actually I support nuclear energy. I just wonder why Senator Harry Reid is so opposed to storing the waste below ground in a depository that the United States has already invested over US$9B to develop? What does he know that he ain't telling the rest of us?

  • J Thompson SPRINGVILLE, UT
    April 2, 2012 10:21 a.m.

    Some don't trust the government to certify that nuclear waste can safely be stored in Utah, yet they trust the government to take 17% of our gross wages to protect our health. If the government can't be trusted, then why would we allow it to administer health-care, Social Security, Medicare and all of the other budget breaking programs?

    Either the government is trustworthy or it isn't. Either the government knows what it's doing or it doesn't. Either the government has a "track record" showing that it is totally aware of all possible problems or it doesn't have that "track record". Either Social Security is safe and secure with funds available to handle all promised payments or it is not. Either Medicare is solvent and able to handle all present and future needs or it is not.

    Which is it? Can we believe the government in all things or can't we? If we can't trust the government with a simple thing like waste disposal that can be monitored and verified, why then are there so many people clamoring for government administered health care?

  • JoeBlow Miami Area, Fl
    April 2, 2012 10:02 a.m.

    Careful Rifleman or someone might say

    "people such as yourself and other liberals are afraid of it because you don't understand it."

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    April 2, 2012 9:59 a.m.

    If nuclear waste is so safe why do they reuse to store it at the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository which was specifically designed for that purpose?

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    April 2, 2012 9:20 a.m.

    To "The Real Maverick" lets calm down. If Energy Solutions goes out of business, there is no reason to relocate the safely contained waste. Another company can easily step in and take over the operations.

    If an earthquake occurs, it isn't a big deal. The suff is already buried in an area where the water table is far away. Plus, with the liquifaction that would occur in the Sal Lake Valley, it would only bury the waste deeper, and make it even more harmless. You also forget that the containers holding the waste are designed to withstand major disasters. In other words, seismic events or natural disasters are not a problem.

    To "Ultra Bob" we get the waste because we have an area that ideally meets with federal regulations for long term storage. The stuff that isn't safe is currently stored on site at some nuclear power plants and at the Hanford site in Washington State, and some day at Yucca Mountain. The biggest reason for the stuff coming to Utah is because people such as yourself and other liberals are afraid of it because you don't understand it.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 2, 2012 8:34 a.m.

    If “Nuclear waste is safe”, why do they spend so much money to move it to Utah?

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    April 2, 2012 8:03 a.m.

    Perhaps your neighborhood would be a good place to put it.

  • JoeBlow Miami Area, Fl
    April 2, 2012 7:42 a.m.

    "As a desert is arid, co-mingling with ground water or rain is minimized"

    That is comforting.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    April 2, 2012 6:43 a.m.

    If Nuclear waste is so safe, why weren't other states jumping at the opportunity to take this stuff?

    You say that the pits are lined with clay, really? And nothing will fall through into the ground water? What happens when an earthquake occurs?

    In southern Utah, a company left radioactive ties after it went out of business. Who ended up cleaning up the mess and paying for it? Oh yeah, taxpayers. So if Energy Solutions goes out of business, will taxpayers again have to clean up after the private sector?

    What about the message accepting waste gives to other states and countries? I don't want my state to be known as a dump.


    The people don't want it. Lets not allow some folks with ties to special interest, like Mr. Michael Lee, benefit at our expense.

  • Baron Scarpia Logan, UT
    April 2, 2012 6:29 a.m.

    The problem is what happens when Energy Solutions goes out of business. Like the tailings left in Moab from bankrupt uranium mining operations, the toxic waste threatening the health and welfare of local residents was left for local government to "manage" until an earmark could be procured from the federal government to clean it up.

    It's easy for people who live far away from the nuke waste to proclaim it safe. For those of us who live near and deal with it on a daily basis, the idea of "safe and monitored" waste is not something you can trust as a long-term solution.

    Eventually Utah and American taxpayers will be the fallback on "monitoring" it for time and eternity. Just ask those of us in Moab!

  • VIDAR Murray, UT
    April 2, 2012 5:56 a.m.

    I would remind the writer of southern utah, utah has no reason to trust the government or scientist when it comes to anything nuclear. Utah has been lied to in the past; what assurance do we have we are not being lied to now?
    I also would point out that energy solutions has already been caught taking nuclear waste that is hotter then for what they were licenced for.
    They claim it was an innocent mistake; what is ask is if their act is so together how did it happen?