WASHINGTON, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- A blue ribbon commission was named Friday to study managing used radioactive nuclear fuel and waste, U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said.
"Nuclear energy provides clean, safe, reliable power and has an important role to play as we build a low-carbon future," Chu said in a release. "The administration is committed to promoting nuclear power in the United States and developing a safe, long-term solution for the management of used nuclear fuel and nuclear waste."
Because the administration decided not to proceed with the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository in Nevada, President Barack Obama directed Chu to set up the commission to conduct a comprehensive review of policies for managing the back end of the nuclear fuel cycle. The commission also will provide advice and recommendations on issues such as alternatives for the storage, processing, and disposal of civilian and defense spent nuclear fuel and nuclear waste.
The Blue Ribbon Commission on America's Nuclear Future is being co-led by former Rep. Lee Hamilton, D-Ind., and former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft.
The commission is made up of 15 members with a range of experience and expertise in nuclear issues, including scientists, industry representatives, and respected former elected officials, Chu said.
"Finding an acceptable long-term solution to our used nuclear fuel and nuclear waste storage needs is vital to the economic, environmental and security interests of the United States," Hamilton said. "This will be a thorough, comprehensive review based on the best available science."