CARSON CITY — Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval on Wednesday hinted at using legal action as he continues fighting against potential storage of nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain.
Sandoval’s statement came two days after U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry visited the Nye County site and met with the governor. Sandoval said that he met with Robert Halstead, executive director of the Nevada Agency for Nuclear Projects, about immediate actions the state should take.
“Nevada will oppose any federal government effort to dump nuclear waste here that will threaten our health and economy for centuries to come,” Sandoval said. “We will leave no stone unturned as we pursue all viable options to defeat this ill-conceived project, including litigation.”
The entire Nevada congressional delegation opposes reopening the site, which former President Barack Obama defunded in 2012.
The visit from Perry came as President Donald Trump and key congressional lawmakers work to find permanent storage space for the country’s 77,000 metric tons of nuclear waste.
Sandoval said a “better solution” came this year, when the Nuclear Regulatory Commission accepted a private-sector application for a high-level waste storage site in Texas, with the consent of that state.
“In the wake of such developments, continuing to spend taxpayer money on Yucca Mountain is ill-advised,” he said.
Sandoval said storing nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain is problematic because of the site’s location 85 miles from downtown Las Vegas, proposed transportation corridors and the site’s geology — it sits on fractured rock atop a fault line and above an aquifer.
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