From New Mexico To Qatar: Waste Storage Issues

From the United States to Uganda, the issue of storage of radioactive waste surfaced this week, focused on proposals for storage sites in Southeastern, New Mexico, and Mukono, Uganda.

QatarThe issues are, in effect, identical. “Regrettably, the Uganda Atomic Energy Council (AEC) says our radioactive wastes are currently scattered in different parts of the country,” says an editorial published in the Daily Monitor on Wednesday. The editorial goes on to say, “the noisy quarrel in Mukono (over the site selected for a storage facility for low-level waste) should have been avoided.”

Going the other direction, in the United States, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has opened up the public comment component of their review process, which allows all the slings and arrows to come pouring in regarding a Holtec International owned and operated storage facility for nuclear waste that is considered to be a temporary storage site for up to 100,000 tons of spent fuel.

Several media outlets are pointing out that groups opposing the site are becoming very vocal.

In another corner of the world, another country with nuclear power ambitions, Saudi Arabia, is considering a solution to their future nuclear waste problem that would involve digging a canal that would sever its connection to the nation of Qatar, which is a narrowly connected peninsula in its current configuration. The Saudis would then build a military base on half of the strip of land next to the canal and a nuclear waste storage site on the other half. 

Qatar, which is approximately twice the size of Delaware (11,437 square kilometers) would become an island.

Nearing completion of the its first nuclear power plant, the United Arab Emirates would then put its nuclear waste storage facility nearby … “at the closets point near its border with Qatar,” according to a Mint News report.

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