In the budget proposal President Bush has proposed restarting research on reprocessing spent nuclear fuel. Reprocessing work was stopped by President Carter in the 1970's.
The administration claims that rather than using old technology, a new technology, in which the plutonium would remain bound with other highly radioactive materials would be used, making it more difficult to use in weapons, thus reducing security concerns. The recycling plan would reduce the amount of nuclear waste at US nuclear power plants and encourage the building of more reactors to expand domestic electricity supplies. The amount of commercial spent nuclear fuel destined for disposal at the Yucca Mountain storage site near Las Vegas would be reduced by 80 percent under the proposed program.
A very controversial proposal, although some way of reducing the nuclear waste that will result from building of new nuclear power plants, which seems inevitable at this time, is necessary, One report said that the waste would have a shorter half life than current waste. Other reports indicated that the reprocessed waste would be more radioactive than normal nuclear fuel and would require 'fast reactors' to use it. What do you think?
Culled from various news sources including; Bush requests money for Yucca Mountain, reprocessing in budget, Las Vegas Sun, Feb. 6, 2006