Thursday, July 30, 2009 | 12:17 p.m.
WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced today that the White House and its Energy Secretary have agreed to cut off all funding to pursue the license for Yucca Mountain in next year’s budget.
President Barack Obama promised Nevadans the nuclear waste repository north of Las Vegas would not be built on his watch, and substantially cut funding in his first budget for fiscal 2010 now before Congress.
Yet Obama had allowed the funding for the pursuit of the license application to continue before the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, worrying Yucca Mountain opponents who feared a new president could one day open the dump.
Reid’s office said this afternoon that following conversations with Energy Secretary Steven Chu and the White House the administration has agreed to cut off all funding to pursue a license application in fiscal 2011.
“This is a major victory for Nevada,” Reid said in a statement. The only funding allocated for Yucca would be to conclude the work being done at the site, bringing the project to a close.
“I am pleased that President Obama has lived up to his promise to me and all Nevadans by working with me to kill the Yucca Mountain Project. I look forward to continuing my work with the President and his administration to find responsible, alternative solutions for dealing with nuclear waste.”