Today, the issue of waste management is as prominent as reactor safety in the controversies surrounding nuclear power and is particularly topical in the US since the 2010 closure of the Yucca Mountain repository project. William and Rosemarie Alley provide an engaging and authoritative account of the controversies and possibilities surrounding disposal of nuclear waste in the US, with reference also to other countries around the world. The book tells the full history from the beginnings after World War II up to today, bringing to life the pioneering science, the political wrangling and media drama, and the not-in-my-backyard communities fighting to put waste elsewhere. Written in down-to-earth language, by an expert with key involvement in the Yucca Mountain project, this is a timely book for public interest groups, affected communities, policymakers, environmentalists and research scientists working in related fields and anyone interested in finding out more about this important issue.
• Provides an enjoyable synthesis of the scientific, political and social elements of the problem of high-level nuclear waste • Presents an in-depth, accessible explanation of the Yucca Mountain project, enabling readers to understand its strengths and weaknesses, and providing a substantive discussion for future proposed geologic repositories • Includes an international perspective on the difficulties and progress other countries are experiencing compared to the US with regard to high-level waste management
Acknowledgements; List of units; List of abbreviations; Introduction; Part I. The Problem: 1. The awakening; 2. Brainstorming; 3. The ocean as a dumping ground; 4. Radioactivity and atomic energy; 5. The Cold War legacy; 6. The peaceful atom and its wastes; 7. Recycling; 8. Dry cask storage; 9. Interim storage; 10. A can of worms; 11. WIPP; Part II. The Mountain: 12. The search for a geologic repository; 13. Nevada wins the lottery; 14. The Nevada test site; 15. Yucca mountain; 16. How long is long?; 17. Leaving almost no stone unturned; 18. Surprise; 19. Shake and bake; 20. The project gets into hot water; Part III. No Solution in Sight: 21. A new president, new policies; 22. Nuclear waste and our energy future; Appendix: discussion questions; References; Index.