American Indians, classism, Desoto National Forest, dumping on the poor, Environmental racism, guests on the land, High Level Nuclear Waste, internal imperialism, Mississippi, Mississippi Public Service Commission, National Park, nuclear waste, nuclear waste dump, respecting the land, salt domes, sinkholes
Is a salt dome in a wet climate really the place for US (and World) High Level Nuclear Waste, as proposed by Obama’s DOE Secretary Moniz and Assistant Lyons? It’s actually in a recent Blue Ribbon report! And, it fits rather neatly with the US NRC policy of using dilution as the “solution” to nuclear waste, aka dilute and deceive, but you can’t deceive Mother Nature.
Still imploding salt dome, now sinkhole, in neighboring Louisiana:
Concerned, Elvis’ cousin, Mississippi Public Service Commissioner Presley forwarded the Commission’s Resolution against Nuclear Waste in Mississippi to President Obama and others (see further down).
It’s really hard to tell what is going on with this. Is it pure laziness that a recent US Blue Ribbon panel trotted out a list from studies done in the 1950s and 1960s suggesting Mississippi salt domes for nuclear waste, that are known to be unfit? We won’t insult hares as Mississippi Commissioner Presley has by calling it a hare-brained idea.
Hare photo by USFWS
Presley was obviously trying to be nice. Stark raving mad is a better description of this idea. And, what else can be said about someone, like Moniz, who stated from Fukushima that nuclear would be part of the US energy mix? Well, rude and crazy. If Fukushima is so wonderful now then why isn’t Moniz moving there with his Japanese wife to help clean it up?
It is, of course, the epitome of environmental racism and social injustice to try to dump on the most poor and black state in the USA (Mississippi), as well as the height of stupidity, as can be seen, in part, above, and as we have outlined at length elsewhere. But looking at what’s going on in South Dakota and Crow Butte Nebraska with proposed and ongoing uranium mining, and the attempts to dump high level nuclear waste from Germany and elsewhere on South Carolina, it is clear that this administration has become very adept at environmental classism and racism, and that they are trying to destroy the USA largely at the behest of foreign governments and corporations.
More shocking than the racism and classism and anti-Americanism of the Obama administration is its sheer stupidity and laziness.
Proposing the dumping of nuclear waste in fragile salt domes, at least one of which had a cracked roof, considered unfit for petroleum storage for this and other reasons, is sheer stupidity. Of course, they were probably too lazy to bother to read the studies which have been done, and are even online. For those who have been around metal near saltwater or know anything about the properties of salt, there is no need for studies to know that salt dome storage is a stupid idea.
Allowing uranium and other mining companies, often foreign, to use up the water and poison the aquifers of the arid and semi-arid western United States; often on government land, especially during a time of drought is sheer stupidity (ditto for Australia, Canada, etc). The US appears to be getting no severance tax either, under the 1872 Mining Act. A remarkable number of companies destroying the US West are foreign, although with US subsidiaries. This exploitation of the American continent and its people looks remarkably like the exploitation of Africa and parts of Latin America. Like Russia, the US government is promoting imperialist exploitation within its own borders and destroying the land. However, in Russia the exploiters are technically Russian. But, they are exploiting the indigenous peoples. America needs to come to grips with its colonial settler status and stop abusing the land and the American Indians. Those who do not wish to respect the land and its people need to apply to migrate back to their place of origin. The same is true for everyone living in a colonial settler state (e.g. Canada, Australia, and others). While the entire world is guests on the land, some are more guests than others. How can people steal a land, only to destroy it?
Another sad thing about the whole story is that Yucca mountain is holy to the Western Shoshone. This was elaborated upon in a US govt. study from 1991! Still few care about this point. This fact was thus known over 10 years before Yucca mountain was officially chosen as nuclear waste dump. The Shoshone tried to get their land back well before it became a nuclear test range too.
Currently it appears that there are some upset rich Las Vegas Casino operators putting pressure on the administration against Yucca mountain, using small earthquakes as an excuse. Most places in the world are in earthquake zones, including Mississippi. The Mississippi state capital even sits atop a dormant volcano. The Mississippi Choctaw Indians have casinos too, which would be damaged by a nuclear dump. The historic nuclear tests done in Alaska and Mississippi were supposedly to appease Howard Hughes in Las Vegas too. But, they don’t seem to have let up much on Nevada.
Assistant energy secretary Lyons who has recently engaged in trying to dump nuclear on Mississippi, instead of Nevada, just happens to be from Nevada! Talk about major conflict of interest!