I applaud Mike Cowley's op-ed, "Blended waste is too hot for Utah" (Opinion, Jan. 1). It is unconscionable that the governor's staff at the Division of Radiation Control would open a loophole in our state's ban on hotter classes of nuclear waste, while "continuing to study" whether that waste can be safely stored at the EnergySolutions dump.
An obvious motivation is the state supporting a new revenue source for EnergySolutions. This could be a short-sighted economic development strategy.
As more national attention focuses on the hotter radioactive waste flowing into Utah, our state's reputation will shift from a tourist destination with "the greatest snow on earth" to "America's greatest toxic waste dump." Add to that the Wasatch Front's notoriety for some of the country's most toxic air, and the influx of tourist dollars is likely to diminish.
With a new nuclear waste dump ready to welcome B and C waste in Texas, Utah is no longer the only option for storing our nation's waste.
A basic expectation is that Gov. Gary Herbert's priority should be to protect our health and safety and enhance Utah's bottom line, not the bottom line of EnergySolutions. Send B and C waste to Texas.