Utah Radiation Control Board members Tuesday pushed back against EnergySolutions’ request to delay a public review of the company’s plans to bury depleted uranium in Tooele County.
Board members told company executives they want to move forward with a public process that will culminate this summer with a decision of whether to accept the nation’s 700,000-metric-ton stockpile of radioactive waste that is low-level now, but becomes increasingly hotter over the next 2 million years.
“This literally is of national interest, and we keep punting it down the road,” said radiation board Chairman Peter Jenkins. “It is time to get additional opinions on it.”
Depleted uranium is a byproduct of the enrichment process required to produce fissionable material for nuclear bombs and fuel. The nation’s stockpile of the waste is currently stored at three federal sites, in Kentucky, Ohio and South Carolina.