League to Hear About Safety of Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage

photo of Bobbi Merryman

League study has focused on whether to support storage of spent nuclear fuel in New Mexico

The League of Women Voters of Central New Mexico will welcome Ms. Bobbi Merryman, Advocacy Officer of the American Nuclear Society at the lunch unit meeting on Thursday, January 9, at 11:30 a.m. at Embassy Suites Hotel, 1000 Woodward Pl. NE.

Ms. Merryman will discuss the safety of Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage installations proposed for New Mexico and Texas. There are currently two private corporations proposing to store all spent nuclear fuel for the nations’ 99 commercial nuclear powers reactors in southeast New Mexico midway between Carlsbad and Hobbs and just east of the Texas/New Mexico border five miles from Eunice, New Mexico.

Ms. Merryman is a nuclear engineer pursuing her Ph.D. at the University of New Mexico. She is active in nuclear energy public education and policy advocacy. She is a Co-Chair for the American Nuclear Society and retention committee, the UNM ANS advocacy officer and previously served on the Board of Directors for Generation Atomic. She is currently developing a working group on spent nuclear fuel options for New Mexico and the greater Southwest. Ms. Alexandria Ragsdale, the ANS President for the UNM Chapter will also be available for questions from league members.

The NM/Holtec Consolidated Interim Storage Facility and TX/Interim Storage Partners have applications pending 2021 approval by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. If approved, both NM/Holtec and TX/ISP applications anticipate they will begin receiving spent nuclear fuel by 2023.

The League of Women Voters of New Mexico Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Research and Advocacy Committee, chaired by Karen Douglas, LWVCNM Co-President and LWVNM Director, has been studying the adequacy of the two Consolidated Interim Storage Facility license applications to determine how public safety and the environment will be affected. The study was approved in 2017 by LWVNM convention delegates.

Reservations for the lunch can be made by emailing the league at lunch@lwvcnm.org or by calling the league office at 884-8441 and leaving a voice message. Cost of the lunch is $22. Members may attend without eating lunch. Reservations must by made by 10 a.m. on Monday, January 6.