State Seal From the office of
Governor Kenny Guinn
DATE: March 19, 2002
CONTACT: Greg Bortolin
PHONE: 775-684-5670
LAS VEGAS: 702-486-2500
CELL: 775-230-3302
FAX: 775-684-7198


Gov. Guinn lauds Attorney General and Congressional Delegation on efforts to derail Yucca Mountain

CARSON CITY - Gov. Kenny Guinn today said Nevada's efforts to thwart the ill-conceived plan to transport 77,000 tons of nuclear waste to Yucca Mountain have been effective.

"Conventional wisdom before yesterday's vote in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee suggested that we would only be able to secure seven or eight votes," said Gov. Guinn when he learned of the committee's decision to override his veto by a 13-10 margin. "I'm pleased that 10 Senators saw their way to understanding the dangers of Yucca Mountain."

"The more people learn the truth about Yucca Mountain, the more they realize that this is not just a Nevada problem but one that will affect every single American for generations to come."

Gov. Guinn said the close committee vote, combined with the filing by Attorney General Frankie Sue Del Papa of Nevada's comprehensive environmental lawsuit against the Department of Energy today demonstrates that Nevada's overall strategy has been effective and should continue.

"No one believed that Yucca Mountain would be an easy fight in Congress with the overwhelming funding advantage the Nuclear Power Industry has over the State of Nevada," Gov. Guinn said. "The vast majority of Nevadans are against this project and it's our obligation to fight against a project DOE has not proved is safe."

Gov. Guinn said he is looking forward to DOE and the nuclear power industry defending its proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear dump project in both federal court and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's licensing process.

"For the first time in this process, DOE won't be able to hide behind its political allies in Congress when the courts begin their review of DOE's record on this project," Gov. Guinn said. "We have developed some real momentum going into the home stretch and we've made progress that people thought was impossible."

Gov.Guinn said that the state's overall strategy to stop Yucca Mountain, aimed at both Congress and the Courts, remains on track.

"I would like to commend both our Congressional Delegation and Attorney General for their outstanding, bipartisan and united effort against Yucca Mountain," Gov. Guinn said. "If we do not prevail in Congress, I am confident that the best legal talent in the country will ask the courts to find that the illegal activities of this out of control agency are against the law, and we are confident that we will prevail."