August 25, 2014

Snyder Should Ban, Not Study Radioactive Waste Imports to Michigan

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Monday, August 25, 2014                               Mike Berkowitz

Sierra Club:  Snyder Should Ban, Not Study 
Radioactive Waste Imports to Michigan

LANSING, MI--Michigan Sierra Club criticized Gov. Snyder’s decision today to study rather than prevent radioactive wastes from being imported to Michigan from other states.

We shouldn't be accepting radioactive waste from other states, period,” said Mike Berkowitz, Sierra Club Legislative Director.  “Creating a study group is more about public relations than protecting Michigan’s drinking water sources.  What possible reason is there for Michigan to be burying other states’ radioactive wastes?

“The fact that the governor has already said in advance of the study that our current rules allowing wastes are protective enough speaks volumes. If Governor Snyder is unwilling to protect Michigan from radioactive wastes, then lawmakers need to step up and fill the void.”

Berkowitz pointed out that in announcing the study, Gov. Snyder gave no deadline for completing it or whether the study group would take input from the public.

Nearly 40 tons of radioactive sludge from Pennsylvania gas drilling operations is being shipped to a Michigan hazardous waste site after it was rejected by Pennsylvania as well as West Virginia.  Wayne Disposal in Belleville near Willow Run Airport is the destination for the large radioactive waste shipment from Pennsylvania.  Other states, meanwhile, are either banning or tightening regulations on radioactive waste disposal, making Michigan an attractive target for disposal.