Although the government believes that Nevada is an ideal place for nuclear waste storage, it is simply overlooking the obvious implications that would threaten both the environment and the people of the land.
Yucca was suggested to be a waste repository along with several other areas some years ago. This facility located at Yucca Mountain would house some of mans most dangerous elements, like plutonium. As with the Native Americans political power played a key role in the theft of their land. Nevada, having the least amount of political power has been exposed to the same issue Native American’s faced years and years ago. There was said to be a handful of proposed nuclear waste sites that were supposed to be individually examined for pros and cons, but after a laconic effort to examine each site some how all proposed sites were decided to be dropped from the list of potential nuclear waste sites except for Nevada’s Yucca Mountain. It is also important to point out that the only two potential sites for nuclear waste are on or near Indian lands. These facts show an unjust system of decision made by the Department of Energy. The Yucca Mountain region is one of the least populated regions of the United States and without strong political efforts made it will eventually become a permanent nuclear waste village that all Nevada’s population will have to deal with and quite very possible be harmed by.
One of the most prominent problems with nuclear waste is the lethal factor it poses to mankind. “To properly understand the scope of the problem it is necessary to take into account the detrimental health effects of these materials” (Kuletz 84). The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that as little as 10 millionths of a curie of plutonium if inhaled can cause cancer in an average human being. But even with these alarming statistics, officials are still willing to take the health risks of storing the waste in a permanent storage facility at Yucca Mountain that in the long run could result in millions of citizens being diagnosed with cancer. If they do end up storing nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain in the end, the only victims will be the citizens of the United States. Even with conclusive studies that are deemed un-conclusive by high paid scientists, the government insists on killing it’s own people with mass production of nuclear waste pouring out nuclear plants everyday. Studies reveal these elements kill, yet the DOE or Department of Energy changes science to fit into their master plan.
In the grants Uranium Belt region, a major source of uranium mining, over a hundred cases were reported of cancer and birth defects that directly relate to the nuclear materials such as uranium. Not only is nuclear substance extremely lethal to mankind, but the area of Yucca Mountain is said to have a incredible aquifer beneath it’s desolated surface. If the nuclear waste were to ever make its way into the vast water channels located within the aquifer there would be complete devastation. At some specific spots on the nuclear landscape underground streams emerge from below and reveal the extensive underground water source in the Yucca Mountain are. It is noted in Kuletz’s book on the numerous interviews she had with Native Americans in the Yucca Mountain region that a lot of them complained from thyroid cancer. Also many deaths have occurred in their families that they accredit to the tests and nuclear waste.
One must not only examine the effects that nuclear waste has Nevada’s water supply, but the adverse health effects when nuclear waste enters into our ecosystem and indirectly into our food chain. As Kuletz points out, “Scientists don’t really know how the water will flow through this environment thousands of years from now, how gases will move through it along pneumatic pathways, and most importantly how stable the earth will be (Kuletz 278).”
With the notion of a deep geological permanent waste storage facility it is difficult not to imagine the effects seismic activity could have on a such a (death barrel) located deep in the ground. In a world were weathermen have difficulty predicting what the weather