Countless studies show Yucca Mountain feasible

To the editor:

Regarding Bernard Silver’s letter on Yucca Mountain (Aug. 10 Review-Journal) on studies to determine whether the site is feasible as a repository for spent nuclear fuel rods, Mr. Silver might not be aware that over several decades, countless studies have been completed by a host of highly qualified, highly trained and well-experienced scientists and engineers, costing taxpayers millions upon millions of dollars. Results of these studies can be found on the website of the Department of Energy, Yucca Mountain Repository.

These studies found the site to be completely feasible, suitable and safe. The studies were completed not by politicians, whose lies and scare tactics we can never believe nor trust, but by scientists and engineers, such as my husband, who worked on this project for many years before it lost funding due to the political posturing of Sen. Harry Reid and others. These men and women are our friends and neighbors who live, or used to live, next door to you. They have no political agendas and would never put the lives of their own families, or those of their neighbors, in jeopardy for political reasons.

The repository at Yucca Mountain is not yet complete. Many more man hours need to be dedicated, and construction needs to be completed, before any spent nuclear rods could be stored there. However, environmental impact studies and conceptual engineering designs in support of the licensing application with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission were completed long ago and were submitted to the NRC for approval. Of course, changes always arise with advances in technology. So, yes, more money needs to be spent to complete detail design engineering, then construction.

In addition to the billions being offered to Nevada by the federal government, Nevada’s economy would also benefit greatly should work on the project resume. Many highly educated engineers, scientists, construction workers and their families would return to Nevada, bringing economic growth and development back to Clark County. Much of this economic stimulus was lost due to the work stoppage a few years ago, when hundreds of families had to leave Nevada in search of work in other parts of the world.

On a related note, many Nevada residents believe spent nuclear rods should not be stored in Nevada because we have no nuclear power plants. Those residents should be made aware that NV Energy buys energy from other states — which do have nuclear power plants — to power their homes and offices.



Energy payback

To the editor:

Regarding Charles Gould’s Aug. 10 letter on Yucca Mountain, perhaps he should have studied logic when he was gaining insight about alternative energy. I would point out that when construction of a conventional energy plant (coal, oil, natural gas) takes place, that big hole in the ground, the generator with copper, rare earth and steel, concrete materials, transmission poles and transmission lines all require energy to be expended, as well. Then there’s the mining of coal or construction of wells needed for the oil or natural gas to supply these plants. Then there are the pipelines for the gas or oil, which require energy for mining the materials to build them and to dig trenches in which to place them.

Lest we forget, there’s also a need for the train tracks and train cars to carry the coal, and the energy to power the train. And regarding subsidies, does Mr. Gould not realize the subsidies provided to mining, and big gas/oil exploration and development? Then there are the ever-ongoing increases in utility prices to the consumers to ensure that the private utility companies receive a “reasonable” rate of return for their monopolistic enterprise, because the cost of coal, oil or gas has risen.

When renewable plants are built, will consumers have to pay increases due to increases in the cost of sunshine or wind? Let’s not even begin to talk about the pollution from these plants and the fuel required. Smart and honest are where we should have been many years ago.



Performance enhancers

To the editor:

I would like to see more professional athletes use performance enhancing drugs. I enjoy seeing spectacular feats in sports, and I don’t care if the athletes are souped-up. I want to be entertained, and that’s what the players are paid, even overpaid, to do.

Show me some spectacular feats. Hit one out of the park, literally. Pedal that bike up the mountain five times faster than anyone has ever done it. Just entertain me. May the person with the best drugs win.



Horse roping

To the editor:

Sean Whaley’s reporting in the Aug. 10 Review-Journal on the horse roping controversy (“Officials can’t get rope around controversial event”) reveals the pressures brought to the Clark County Commission to reverse the ordinance prohibiting horse tripping. Those opposed to this rodeo event, part of the Mexican tradition known as Charreria, accused event promoters of practicing animal cruelty in roping and tripping the frightened horses, landing them on the dirt floor of the arena.

But wait. State Senate Majority Leader Mo Denis, a member of the Hispanic caucus, and County Commissioners Chris Giunchigliani and Tom Collins favor changing the county’s ordinance to allow horse roping, as it is part of the Mexican culture and therefore cannot be viewed as cruelty to the horses.

Following that line of justification, one would have to assume that the sport of bull fighting does not categorize the slow, agonizing death of the bulls as animal cruelty, since bull fighting could be a Mexican cultural event. Will Commissioners Collins and Giunchigliani welcome bull fighting to Clark County as an expression of Mexican culture? Would they use their votes to pander to voters?



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