Texas urges appeals court to declare federal government not in compliance with NWPA

By Mark Iandolo | Jun 12, 2017

AUSTIN (Legal Newsline) — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced June 2 that his office has led a motion that asks the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to declare that the federal government is not in compliance with the Nuclear Waste Policy Act (NWPA).

Paxton’s office also seeks an injunction that would bar the Department of Energy (DOE) from spending money without Congress approval.

The NWPA was enacted in 1982 and involved a licensing process for a permanent nuclear waste storage repository. According to Paxton, the DOE has failed to proceed with the process. Paxton wants to force an up or down decision by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission on the licensing of the Yucca Mountain repository as a location for the repository. Currently, toxic radioactive waste is allegedly stored above ground, and Paxton believes it poses a clear and present danger to Texans.

“The goal of this latest filing is to have the federal government follow the law and focus its efforts on the permanent nuclear waste facility selected by Congress,” Paxton said. “Every day the federal government refuses to fulfill its mandate under federal law is another day that more nuclear waste piles up above ground, threatening our health and safety, and placing Texas at greater risk for a nuclear incident.”

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