According to the Guardian, the US gov’t plans to reclassify radioactive waste. “Labeling some high-level waste as low level will save $40bn in cleanup costs.”
[irony on] I think that is a very interesting concept. Here is an idea to Mr Trump: Why not simply classify all nuclear waste as being a non-pollutant, then the USA can save all the clean-up costs. You could simply leave it lying around as, once it is reclassified, it then would be harmless anyway. I mean, it was most likely non-sense anyway that nuclear waste was classified as being harmful in the first place, right? [irony off]
This is yet another addition towards the recent streams of environmental deregulations from the current US government. This government, headed by Trump, seems to be convinced that it is better to save money than to save the lifes and health of its citizens. Well, somehow fair game, after all the voters fell into the illusion that Trump would actually be interested in them and do something for them, voted for him despite everything that had been made public about him.
So fortunately there is going to be an election in the US soon and the voters can show what is most important for them. If they continue to support Trump despite his tantrums, misbehaviors, focus on tweets instead of actual policy, mood-dependent policy and irresponsible international policy, then that is their fair choice and they have to live with the consequences.
When it comes to the election time, the important point they however need to consider is going to be: Am I better off since Trump took power? Do I feel safer, happier? And for those voters who not only have their own interests in mind: Has he made the world a better place?
Hi Ingmar, and thank you for a nice blog. It’s a pleasure to read it.
Without commenting current US governments environmental regulations, Guardian’s story says that DOE would like to change the classification of the nuclear waste from weapons production: “The old definition of high-level waste was based on how the materials were produced, while the new definition will be based on their radioactive characteristics – the standard used in most countries.” This may actually be quite reasonable. After all, it is the radioactive properties of the waste that we should worry about (in addition to waste management costs, of course). Moving waste with low radioactivity off these sites might make economic sense.
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Thanks Pauli for this clarification. You have a point. I think the issue though is that, given Trump’s environmental deregulations and his general approach, I have a huge level of mistrust when it comes to any change in environmental policy in the US. After all during Trump’s time in power we have seen a constant weakening of existing environmental reguations. It would be interesting to see whether these reclassifications are according to some generally accepted international classifications or just another step towards cost-minimization coupled with downplaying environmental risks.
I agree, let’s see how things go!
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Thank you for the information