"Senators Argue Over Fate of Nuclear Safety Proposals"

"Partisan bickering erupted in the Senate [Tuesday] over how quickly the federal government should implement a dozen safety recommendations to ensure 104 nuclear plants in the United States are operating safely.

Top Republicans on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee criticized the federal task force charged with reviewing Japan's nuclear crisis and the safety of U.S. reactors for recommending 'more Washington red tape' and called its proposals premature, potentially excessively, expensive and burdensome.

Democrats shot back, calling for swift implementation of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's near-term task force recommendations to improve nuclear safety and prevent such a catastrophe from happening in this country.

Environment and Public Works Chairwoman Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) countered that 'it's not red tape at all' and said the commission will be asked to testify every three months until the issue is addressed. 'After the [terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2011], we had all these great ideas ... nine years later, some of these things were implemented,' Boxer said. 'That is not going to happen.'"

Hannah Northey reports for Greenwire August 2, 2011.

SEE ALSO:

"Seeking Consensus in a Squabbling Nuclear Family" (Green/NYT)

"Vermont Finds Contaminated Fish As Nuclear Debate Rages" (Reuters)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011