Republican gubernatorial candidate Mike Montandon this week will highlight his stance in favor of nuclear energy research at Yucca Mountain at the Nevada Test Site.
Montandon, whose campaign is calling this week "Nuclear Week," says his position on nuclear energy is what separates him from Republican primary candidates incumbent Gov. Jim Gibbons and leading challenger Brian Sandoval.
"Mike supports Yucca Mountain because it represents a safe opportunity to start a new industry in Nevada, akin to gaming or mining. The project will not be a dump; in fact up to 95% of used nuclear fuel can be reprocessed. Nuclear power is the future of clean energy in the world and Nevada needs to be on the forefront of this movement in order to create long term jobs," Montandon said in his "Nuclear Week" announcement.
The issue of what to do -- or not do -- at Yucca Mountain has been a flashpoint in Nevada politics for decades.
The U.S. Department of Energy has long sought to bury nuclear waste at the site, a proposal that has been opposed by most major Nevada politicians and, in recent months, nearly killed due to work by Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., and the administration of President Barack Obama.
Some Republican candidates for office have suggested that perhaps the site could be used to research technology for reprocessing such waste. Opponents say reprocessing has some of the same problems as storage, mainly the fact it could require shipping waste by rail through communities en route to the site.