Nevada sues Federal Government to prevent plutonium shipment
LAS VEGAS (KSNV) —
The State of Nevada filed a lawsuit on Friday, Nov. 30, challenging the Federal Government’s plan to ship weapons grade plutonium to the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS), an area north of Las Vegas.
Governor Sandoval and Attorney General Adam Laxalt announced the lawsuit on Tuesday, Dec. 4, which was filed in the U.S. District Court in Nevada.
Nevada’s motion seeks a preliminary injunction against the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Nuclear Security Administration, arguing that their plan for plutonium at NNSS violated the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and associated regulations.
Governor Sandoval said in a statement:
As I have made clear throughout my tenure as Governor, Nevada will not stand for anything that could potentially harm the health, safety and/or welfare of our citizens. So long as I am Governor of the Silver State, Nevada will fight this issue at every level.
Nevada charges that the DOE failed to prepare a new or supplemental statement fully evaluating the environmental impact of shipping and storing one metric ton of plutonium, as required under NEPA.
The DOE also failed to evaluate the impact of future plutonium shipments to Nevada as well as alternatives to shipping roughly 2,200 lbs. of plutonium by January 2020 to Nevada.
Plus, Nevada did not receive any assurance from the DOE that the plutonium would be removed at a certain date.
Additionally, Nevada’s complaint charges that DOE’s Supplement Analysis fails to evaluate the impact and risks associated with transporting plutonium that may be detrimental to new developments and, specifically, the Las Vegas metropolitan area.