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The Columbia Generating Station nuclear reactor (formerly WPPSS Nuclear Project 2) produces large quantities of high-level radioactive waste, with no disposal site. Over three million pounds of high-level radioactive waste has been generated by the CGS nuclear plant since it began operation in 1984. All of it is stored on site at Hanford, and it is roughly equal in combined radioactivity to the remaining US Department of Energy defense waste generated by Cold War nuclear weapons manufacturing there. Despite years of study, no repository for this high-level radioactive waste, which must be kept out of the environment for hundreds of thousands of years, has been established by the federal government.

SOS - The San Onofre Syndrome: Nuclear Power's Legacy (movie) Filmed over 12 years, SOS dramatically chronicles how Southern California residents came together to force the shutdown of an aging nuclear power plant only to be confronted by an alarming reality: tons of nuclear waste left near a popular beach, only 100 feet from the rising sea, that — with radioactivity lasting millions of years — menaces present and future generations. Interview with Mary Beth Brangan, producer and co-director of SOS about the making of the film and its message. June 2024

Radioactive waste from Three Mile Island sits in unlined trenches at Hanford Hanford facilities with massive amounts of radiation could cause large scale catastrophic releases in an earthquake. By Gerald Pollet, Heart of America Northwest, April 23, 2020

The Staggering Timescales of Nuclear Waste Disposal Prospects for long-term storage. By Christine Ro, Forbes, November 26, 2019

The worst accidental release of nuclear waste in US history In 1979, just 14 weeks after the Three Mile Island reactor accident, 90 million gallons of liquid nuclear waste, and 1100 tons of radioactive solid waste, broke through a dam at the Church Rock uranium mine and mill facility in New Mexico. Beyond Nuclear International, July 16, 2018

The Downside of High Burnup Fuel The storage risks of high-burnup nuclear waste. By Robert Alvarez, Nuclear Intelligence Weekly, July 15, 2016

Former US Department of Energy Official Warns of Radioactive Waste Hazard at Nuclear Plant on the Columbia River Robert Alvarez, a former policy advisor to the U.S. Secretary of Energy during the Clinton Administration, released a report entitled
The Hazards of High-Level Radioactive Waste in the Pacific Northwest: A Review of Spent Nuclear Fuel Management at the Columbia Generating Station (PDF). November 19, 2014

Radioactive Waste No safe, permanent solution has yet been found anywhere in the world - and may never be found - for the nuclear waste problem. In the U.S., the only identified and flawed high-level radioactive waste deep repository site at Yucca Mountain, Nevada has been canceled. Beyond Nuclear advocates for an end to the production of nuclear waste and for securing the existing reactor waste in hardened on-site storage. By Beyond Nuclear

Radioactive Waste Project Articles from the Nuclear Information and Resource Service

Nuclear waste storage is a multi-generational challenge Alliance for Nuclear Accountability

Yucca Mountain, Nevada: Proposed high-level radioactive waste dump Fact sheets and overview. Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS). Includes:
   The role of geology at the proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository (2014)
   Why Reviving Yucca Mountain as a Nuclear Waste Repository Will Not Work (2015)
   Yucca Mountain–a Brief History (2015)

Principles for Safeguarding Nuclear Waste at Reactors The principles are based on the urgent threats posed by the current storage of commercial irradiated fuel. Signed by a wide range of organizations nationally. March 2010

If not Yucca Mountain, then what? An alternative plan for managing highly radioactive waste in the United States. By Lisa Ledwidge, Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, 2001


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