The Congressional Budget Committee begins hearings this morning into the financial impact of backing out of a major nuclear waste storage project in Nevada. South Carolina’s 5th District Congressman John Spratt will have a key role in questioning the move by the Obama administration to terminate the Yucca Mountain repository project. The designation of Yucca Mountain for the site has already been approved by Congress.
Spratt, House Budget Committee chairman, says he opposes the president’s decision, which he says has significant implications for the federal budget. He also disapproves of keeping waste indefinitely at sites in his state and district.
David A. Wright, vice chairman of the Public Service Commission of South Carolina, will testify on how the delays have affected utilities in his state, where commercial nuclear plants have paid nearly $1.3 billion into the Nuclear Waste Fund for the permanent disposal of nuclear waste at the Nevada site. The hearing will be the first time an Energy Department official has appeared before Congress since the Nuclear Regulatory Commission the DOE’s motion to withdraw its Yucca Mountain license application.