Hilary Jacobs Quoted in Bloomberg Law on Environmental Justice in Nuclear Energy
On December 19, Bloomberg Law published an article titled, “Nuclear Power 2.0 Eyes Opportunity, Steep Climb in Coal Country,” which discusses the possible roll out of small modular nuclear reactors (SMRs) as a replacement (and in tandem with solar, wind, and hydro energy) for the coal power plants that are expected to shut down by 2030.
One concern opponents of nuclear energy have is how spent nuclear fuel is handled and waste sites are determined. To tackle this issue, while taking environmental justice into consideration, Oklahoma and Michigan researchers are looking to design a process for winning community consent to host a hypothetical temporary waste site. Hilary Jacobs (Associate, Washington, DC) commented on the use of community benefit agreements, which would guarantee certain benefits and investment in the community in exchange for support for the project. Hilary states, “It’s incredibly tricky, and I think you have to define precisely who you’re contracting with—how is the community defined, who is bound by this. I’ll be very curious to see what [the Department of Energy] recommend for memorializing consent.”
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