Jobs, funds make nuclear waste enticing

Communities in Mississippi have expressed a preliminary interest in storing nuclear waste on an interim basis and reprocessing it, members of the Senate Economic Development Committee were told Monday.

“You are talking about thousands of jobs, billions of dollars of investment. We want to have a conversation,” Jason Dean, a private consultant representing the Mississippi Energy Institute, said of the proposal.

The issue of disposing of the nuclear waste generated by the nation’s power plants has been an ongoing dilemma. At one point in the 1980s, the salt dome near Richton in southeast Mississippi was viewed as a prime location to permanently store the radioactive waste.

But Dean and Patrick Sullivan, the director of the Energy Institute, said now there is a belief that because of a change in attitude on the federal level and technological advances that instead of permanently storing all nuclear waste in geological formations there might be an opportunity to reprocess it and use it in other nuclear power plants or even for medical purposes.

Daily Journal
8/27/13