Energy's Yucca Mountain site gets redesign, data restoration

A Yucca Mountain location in Nye County, Nev., has qualified for a construction permit application for a nuclear materials repository.

Controversy over the Energy Department's plan to build a nuclear waste repository in Nevada has brought renewed attention and a redesign to the Yucca Mountain Project's Web site, at www.ymp.gov.

Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham on Feb. 14 recommended the project at Yucca Mountain in Nye County, Nev., and President Bush subsequently spoke to Congress about it.

Cleaning up for visitors

For the week ending Feb. 22, the Web site logged 24,581 user sessions, compared with 8,010 sessions for the week ending Feb. 1, said Toni Chiri, spokeswoman for Energy's Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Office in Las Vegas.

The site characterization office is supposed to be a neutral party in the debate about the mountain's suitability for storing nuclear waste, Chiri said.

'It's not been our task to convince anyone either way,' she said.

Besides posting the proposed repository's environmental impact statement and budget allocation and the 1982 Nuclear Waste Policy Act, the Yucca Mountain site recently has restored some of the maps and technical materials scrubbed after Sept. 11 by Energy's Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management.

Energy officials are reviewing other scrubbed documents as quickly but as thoroughly as they can, Chiri said.

A Related Links section connects visitors to nearby county governments and the Nevada Nuclear Waste Project Office, as well as project supporters such as the Nuclear Energy Institute and opponents such as the Sierra Club.

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