Natural Resources

Solid Waste Management

Support of the following positions: 

Comprehensive Planning:

  • Wisconsin should prepare to deal promptly with low-level radioactive waste (LLRW) generated within the state;
  • Wisconsin should develop a comprehensive plan for the long-term management of LLRW;
  • A comprehensive plan should take into account both public health and the environment;
  • The preferred option is to join the Midwest Interstate Compact to maximize future options while continuing to explore other options;
  • The most important criterion for decision making is to assure that safeguards are provided for people and the environment. Next in importance is total hazard of the LLRW generated. Other important criteria are: costs to the taxpayer, the volume of LLRW generated, the best interest of the multi-state region, and the nation. Least, but not unimportant are costs to the consumer (of electricity or medical/research services) and the costs to the generator of LLRW; agreement state status in some form is desirable, should Wisconsin have a low-level radioactive waste facility.

Handling and Transfer

  • LLRW should be categorized by total hazard;
  • Regulations for handling, transporting, treatment, and disposal should match the hazard of the wastes;
  • To further the reduction of waste, Wisconsin should:
    • Provide incentives to generators to minimize waste generation through improved management practices (incentives include both positive and negative measures);
    • Encourage research to improve reduction techniques and investigate new approaches;
    • Provide incentives to generators to use the best and safest techniques to reduce the volume of LLRW that requires burial.  (Incentives are not only monetary but include technical assistance and expertise.)
    • Decisions to concentrate waste must consider safety of radiation workers, the environment and public safety.

Transportation & Emergency Planning

  • Wisconsin should seek the authority to enforce standards and to correct violations in the packaging, handling, routing, and transportation of both radioactive materials and LLRW.
  • Wisconsin should ensure that emergency response teams in each county receive training to deal with radioactive materials and LLRW.

Public Participation and Local Input

  • Procedures for making decisions about facilities should take into account the concerns of nearby residents  and affected local governments  and provide for a resolution of differences;
  • Wisconsin should develop a program to educate the public about LLRW issues;
  • Wisconsin should ensure that open meetings with public notice, open records, hearings and appeal procedures be provided for local governments and nearby residents when proposals are made concerning LLRW management in their area;
  • Regulations should be uniformly and consistently enforced. Citizens should have standing to sue for enforcement of LLRW regulations.
Copyright League of Women Voters of Wisconsin