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National Briefing / NEVADA

Yucca site's cost put at $96 billion

August 06, 2008|From Times Wire Reports

Even if no new reactors are built, getting rid of the country's nuclear waste will cost $96.2 billion and require a major expansion of the planned Yucca Mountain waste dump beyond limits imposed by Congress, the Energy Department said in Washington.

The government now says the controversial project 90 miles northwest of Las Vegas will cost $38.7 billion more than was anticipated in 2001.

Ward Sproat, the official in charge of the federal nuclear waste program, said $16 billion of that increase is pegged to inflation. The program also has become more expensive because Yucca will have to accept more waste than had been anticipated, since current reactors are being allowed to operate longer, he said.

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