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EPA puts forward new radiation exposure limits for Yucca Mountain site

[JURIST] The Environmental Protection Agency [official website] Tuesday proposed new radiation exposure limits [EPA backgrounder] for the Yucca Mountain waste dump project [official website] with the goal of ensuring a safe public site for hundreds of thousands of years. The proposal [EPA press release] is intended to satisfy a July 2004 court decision [JURIST report] that rejected the EPA's plans to protect against radiation for 10,000 years as inconsistent with evidence from the National Academy of Sciences [official website]. The new proposal will be two-tier standard: one for a span of up to 10,000 years as previously put forward and another standard for a length of time that could approach 1 million years. The Bush Administration had hoped the underground site which will house highly radioactive spent reactor fuel would open by 2010, but an opening in 2012 or later now seems more likely. AP has more.

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