May 5, 2017

Big Win for Enviros in Texas as Nuclear Waste Bill Is Amended

AUSTIN, Texas — Today marked a win for environmentalists and opponents of nuclear waste storage in Texas. Under pressure from his peers in the legislature, Texas Rep. Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) removed key provisions from his bill (CSHB 2662) proposing to expand storage capacity at the low-level radioactive waste site in Andrews County, Texas.

Public Citizen mobilized its members in Texas to oppose the bill.

“This was the latest attempt by Waste Control Specialists to expand its low-level radioactive waste site,” said Adrian Shelley, director of Public Citizen’s Texas office. “The company is in dire financial straits already, and digging another pit won’t change that. It would have created an expensive radioactive mess that the people of Texas would have been left to clean up.”

“The pared-back bill is a great victory for the health and safety of Texans,” said Karen Hadden, director of the SEED Coalition. The bill, which the House of Representatives approved, only commissions a study of storage capacity at the site.

The Senate companion bill, SB 1137, is pending in committee and contains the original language to expand nuclear waste storage capacity at the Andrews County site. But in floor comments, Landgraf, pledged to stick with his House version of the bill during future negotiations with the Senate.

“They can study this all they want,” added Shelley. “They’re going to find that it’s a bad idea.”