NRC's hearing for Andrews waste storage

Published: Jul. 9, 2019 at 7:44 PM CDT
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A company called Waste Control Specialists wants to build a high-level nuclear waste facility near Andrews.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission will be in Midland on Wednesday, June 10th to discuss the license needed to move the high-level waste from the east coast to Andrews.

Well over 50 people gathered at a news conference to oppose the licensing WCS is requesting from the NRC and to have their voices heard.

This license will allow the company to move 5,000 tons of nuclear waste.

Elizabeth Padilla, represents Save Andrews County and she said she wants her opinions known to the judges on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

“I was planning on living and getting old in Andrews County. I am a life-long resident of Andrews County. They are wanting to pretty much make Andrews County the nations dump,” said Padilla.

Padilla said, she cannot imagine living anywhere else but as of right now she is scared for her community.

“It is personal, I mean they are dealing and wanting to mess with my town, my county, my people and my community,” said Padilla.

Personal, because WCS along with Orana USA together want the NRC to approve licensing to store tons of spent nuclear fuel above ground in dry casks. They want to store the casks at their facility in Andrews for at least 40 years.

“That is the federal agency that is tasked with determining whether to license this proposed facility for storage of 40 thousand of metric tons of highly radioactive spent reactor fuel,” said Diane Curran attorney for Beyond Nuclear.

The companies say the canisters will contain dry used nuclear fuel that cannot explode or catch fire.

However, the people against the action said it is still dangerous.

“What will be the impact of potential accidents? What are the transportation risks. There is a whole array of concerns that have been raised by various organizations and local businesses,” said Curran.

The NRC will be hearing both sides tomorrow at 9:00 A.M. at the Midland County Courthouse.