Transportation Casks_1

On June 13, 2022, the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) — the nuclear power industry’s lobbying and public relations HQ in Washington, D.C. — filed a Friend of the Court Brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in the Don’t Waste Michigan v. NRC case:

6 13 22_NEI Amicus Brief

NEI’s Friend of the Court Brief expresses support for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s decision to rubber-stamp a construction and operating license for the Interim Storage Partners, LLC highly radioactive waste consolidated interim storage facility targeting Andrews County, Texas immediately upon the border with (and upstream of) New Mexico.

Petitioners (parties opposed to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s approval of ISP’s construction and operating license on September 13, 2021) include Beyond Nuclear, Don’t Waste Michigan et al. (a national grassroots environmental coalition comprised of seven organizations), Sierra Club, as well as Fasken Land and Minerals, Ltd. and Permian Basin Land and Royalty Owners, individuals and companies with oil and gas, as well as ranching and other agricultural interests, in west Texas and southeastern New Mexico.

See Beyond Nuclear’s Initial Brief, filed on March 18, 2022.

See Don’t Waste Michigan, et al. (a seven-group national grassroots environmental coalition) and Sierra Club’s combined Initial Brief, filed March 18, 2022.

See the combined environmental coalition’s press release, published on March 21, 2022.

See Fasken Land and Minerals, Ltd. and Permian Basin Land and Royalty Owners’ Initial Brief, filed March 18, 2022.

On March 25, 2022, Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the City of Fort Worth, Texas, filed Friend of the Court Briefs supporting ISP’s opponents. NRDC’s Friend of the Court Brief focused on the history of the Nuclear Waste Policy Act, in support of Beyond Nuclear’s arguments against ISP in this case. Fort Worth’s Friend of the Court Brief focused on highly radioactive waste transportation risks, in support of arguments brought by Sierra Club and Don’t Waste Michigan, et al. in this case.

See NRC’s June 6th Brief, here.

See ISP’s June 21st Brief, here.

On July 20, 2022, Petitioners’ (opponents to the ISP dump) Reply Briefs are due.

On August 3, 2022, the DWM et al. v. NRC Deferred Appendix is due.

On August 10, 2022, opponents to the CISF must file their Final Briefs.

After that, the three-judge federal court panel could then schedule oral arguments in the appeal.

The environmental coalition first opposed ISP’s CISF — challenging its legality — with a letter to NRC on October 26, 2016. The coalition then opposed ISP’s CISF, and challenged its legality, throughout NRC’s Atomic Safety and Licensing Board proceeding, as well as throughout NRC’s environmental and safety review, over several long years.

The States of Texas and New Mexico are also opposed to ISP’s CISF. Texas (joined by Fasken and PBLRO) has appealed at the 5th Circuit Court in New Orleans. New Mexico has appealed at the 10th Circuit Court in Denver. These two appeals are actually slightly further along than the case in the D.C. Circuit.

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