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Letter: Lost cause

Merritt K. (Ike) Yochum

EDITOR:

Recently, Gov. Guinn announced that he was pledging $5 million to fight the establishment of a nuclear waste storage facility in Nevada. This proposal, it seems to me, is ill advised. There is no need to spend this kind of money on a lost cause. Spending money will not solve the problem. However, courage will stop all of the falderal and put the matter to rest once and for all. Gov. Guinn, you, as governor of this sovereign state, have all the authority, and I believe also the courage, needed to do just that. Enforce the Nevada Public Lands Ownership Act of 1979: NRS Ch. 321.

However, putting a stop to the usurpation by the Feds is one thing; another is to capitalize on a great opportunity.

It seems that the generators of nuclear waste are more than willing to supply a valuable resource to Nevada at no charge.

The so-called “dangerous waste” is no more dangerous than coal, and in fact, is much less dangerous than the fall-out of emissions from a coal-fired electric generating plant, such as those at Valmy, Nev.

This so-called “dangerous waste” is reclaimable and there is a market for the reclaimed product, known as nuclear fuel.

To continue this nonsense, scare tactic and Luddite resistance is to throw away a great opportunity for the state of Nevada and its citizens.

It seems to me that a more sensible approach to this mythical “problem of highly dangerous” nuclear waste is to :

1. Enforce the law referred to above, and

2. Dictate the terms by which we will accept this gift (sort of a Brer Rabbit and the briar patch thing).

Some suggestions:

1. Demand a guaranteed, continuous supply of waste material, exclusively for Nevada.

2. Require the suppliers, i.e., the federal government, to construct a reclamation facility at its expense, at some site in this state.

3. Encourage electric power generators to build nuclear power plants in Nevada.

4. Sell the reclaimed nuclear fuel to the highest bidders.

The entire nation is now faced with an imminent energy debacle. The time is now at hand, and Nevada is in the position to make Nevada a major energy producer and exporter of electrical energy.

The alternative is to be humiliated by an oppressive federal mandate. To continue to resist the inevitable is just plain foolish, if not insane (insanity has been described as doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different result).

Merritt K. (Ike) Yochum

Carson City

Feb. 8