Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Concerned about nuclear power safety? Be not ashamed.

Should an individual state be able to decide whether or not there will be an active nuclear power plant within its borders? And whether it should or not, would federal law allow it? These are questions that I am left with after a recent trip to Vermont. Any day now, a federal judge will decide …


Multiple Failures Exposed Diablo Canyon to Higher Risk

It is a coincidence that the Union of Concerned Scientists has released  a new report on nuclear power plant safety while the Japanese nuclear crisis continues to unfold. Yet, the heightened awareness that many people now have of the importance of nuclear plant cooling systems may put us in a better position to understand the …


The Great Yucca Mountain Debacle

Over twenty years ago, the Supreme Court accepted the Nuclear Regulatory Agency’s assurances that it would find a safe method for long-term disposal of nuclear waste.  Consequently, the NRC was allowed to assign a zero to the risk of any radioactive discharge.  As it turns out, this was an empty promise.  The solution that the …


NEPA and terrorism

To what extent does the Nuclear Regulatory Commission have to consider the threat of terrorist attack in the environmental analysis it undertakes for nuclear power plant licensing decisions?  A March 31 decision from the Third Circuit, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection v. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, creates a circuit split on that question. In the …