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WEST VALLEY DEMONSTRATION PROJECT ACT

MONDAY, JULY 28, 1980

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,

SUBCOMMITTEE ON ENERGY AND POWER,

COMMITTEE ON INTERSTAte and Foreign CommerCE,

Washington, D.C.

The subcommittee met, pursuant to notice, at 10 a.m., in room 2123, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Al Swift, presiding (Hon. John D. Dingell, chairman).

Mr. SWIFT. The subcommittee will come to order.

The chairman of the subcommittee, Mr. Dingell, expresses his regrets that he cannot be here for the first portion of the hearing. He has every intention and hope that he will be here before they are completed today.

I will read his opening statement.

This morning, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power begins hearings in regard to H.R. 6865, which would establish a program within the Department of Energy to clean up the liquid high-level nuclear waste at the Western New York Service Center near West Valley, N.Y.

This legislation raises a number of issues. First, should the Federal Government contribute to the cleaning up of these liquid highlevel wastes and, if so, what portion of the costs should be provided by the Federal Government? Second, the bill only addresses the issue of high-level liquid wastes and not the problem of the site as a whole, including the potential for the future use of the site. Finally, the bill does not address the issue of the contribution which will be supplied by the lessee of the site, the Nuclear Fuel Services, Inc.

The subcommittee is also interested in receiving the comments of the witnesses on the recent report issued by the General Accounting Office regarding the remedial actions at this site.

At this time, without objection, the texts of H.R. 3193 and H.R. 6865 will be printed in the record.

[Testimony begins on page 22.]

[The texts of H.R. 3193 and H.R. 6865, and a report by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission on H.R. 6865, follow:]

(1)

96TH CONGRESS 1ST SESSION

H. R. 3193

To establish a demonstration project to be conducted by the Secretary of Energy to provide for the disposal of high level nuclear wastes at the Western New York Nuclear Service Center in West Valley, New York, to establish procedures to govern the disposition of other nuclear wastes at such site, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

MARCH 22, 1979

Mr. LUNDINE introduced the following bill; which was referred jointly to the Committees on Interior and Insular Affairs, Interstate and Foreign Commerce, and Science and Technology

A BILL

To establish a demonstration project to be conducted by the Secretary of Energy to provide for the disposal of high level nuclear wastes at the Western New York Nuclear Service Center in West Valley, New York, to establish procedures to govern the disposition of other nuclear wastes at such site, and for other purposes.

1 Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representa

2 tives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

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SHORT TITLE

SECTION 1. This Act may be cited as the "Nuclear

3 Waste Management Demonstration Act of 1979".

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FINDINGS AND PURPOSES

SEC. 2. (a) The Congress finds that:

(1) The commercial nuclear waste reprocessing

facility at the Western New York Nuclear Service Center in West Valley, New York, was encouraged by the Federal Government as a means of demonstrating the commercial feasibility of reprocessing nuclear

waste, but its operations were hampered by Federal regulatory requirements.

(2) The Federal Government is the only entity which has the technical and financial resources to

ensure the safe disposal of the high level liquid nuclear

wastes which remain on the site of the Western New York Nuclear Service Center.

(3) Because of the involvement of the Federal Government with the Western New York Nuclear

20 Service Center since its inception, and because of the

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hazards posed by presence of the nuclear waste at the reprocessing site, the Government has a moral obligation to assume the responsibility for (A) disposing of

nuclear wastes at the service center and (B) providing

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for the decommissioning and decontamination of the facilities of the service center.

(4) A program to study the health effects of the operation of the reprocessing facility at the Western

New York Nuclear Service Center on the employees of

the facility and on other persons within the vicinity of the service center could greatly assist the formulation of State and Federal standards relating to exposure of individuals to ionizing radiation.

(5) Although the reprocessing facility at West Valley, New York, was encouraged by the Federal Government for scientific purposes useful to the United

States as a whole, only the citizens of the State of
New York have been financially burdened by the es-

tablishment of the facility within their State and have
suffered possible health hazards in association with the
operation of the facility and, for these reasons, are
entitled to receive compensation from the Federal Gov-
ernment during the resolution of these problems.

(b) The purposes of this Act are the following:

(1) To require the Secretary of Energy to carry out a nuclear waste solidification demonstration project at the Western New York Nuclear Service Center, to be completed within ten years after the date of the enactment of this Act, and to decommission and decon

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taminate facilities at the service center upon comple

tion of the project.

(2) To provide for the safe, long-term disposal of

(A) the nuclear wastes stored at the federally and State licensed solid waste burial site at the Western New York Nuclear Service Center and (B) the spent fuel stored at the spent fuel receiving and storage fa

cility adjacent to the reprocessing plant at the service

center.

(3) To authorize appropriate research regarding the health effects of ionizing radiation at the Western New York Nuclear Service Center on employees who

worked at the service center and on other persons

within the vicinity of the service center.

(4) To prohibit the disposal of additional nuclear wastes at the Western New York Nuclear Service Center.

BUDGET ACT LIMITATIONS

SEC. 3. No grants may be made, or contracts entered

20 into, under this Act except to the extent or in such amounts 21 as may be provided in advance in appropriation Acts.

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