Nuclear Industry Offers Nevada Hush Money

Image from an NEI ad"We all knew it would come to this, didn't we?" a Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial asks, of a new offer by the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) to pay Nevada to accept nuclear waste at the controversial Yucca Mountain storage facility. NEI's offer is $25 million per year, which would double "once the first waste shipment arrives." After calling Yucca Mountain a "boondoggle," with "audit after audit" revealing "glaring flaws in the scientific models created to demonstrate the project's long-term viability," the newspaper slams NEI's offer as too low. "The standard for paying off a state's population was set by the Alaska Permanent Fund, which collects fees and taxes from oil and mineral exploration and production and offers qualifying residents an annual dividend," it states. This year, Alaska residents received more than $1,100 each; NEI's offer translates to a measly $10 per Nevada resident. In other news, a new poll paid for by NEI and conducted by a former NEI employee found that "nearly seven of 10 Americans favor nuclear energy and 68 percent support building a new reactor at the existing nuclear power plant closest to where they live."