Jim Bagwell: Let’s remove the doomsday rhetoric and revisit Yucca
Have you given any thought lately to how Nevada might reconstruct government without taxing ourselves into oblivion? To find answers there must be ideas offered for thought and debate. Here is one from me that could come at the right time: The Nuclear Waste Repository.
First, I would change the name to something like the National Nuclear Recycling Center. The word “waste” has a negative connotation. Like it or not, out of necessity we will make a national decision to use nuclear energy to supplant coal and other fossil fuels in the near future. Today, safe technology exists to recycle and use the majority of the “waste” beneficially.
If we are headed in that direction anyway, let’s get the best deal we can for our state. Much of the work has already been done at Yucca Mountain, we only need to embrace it. The tax benefits would be tremendous, taking pressure off of state and local leaders. The workforce created would awaken a lethargic economy. Support industries would be created. Economically, what is not to like?
Our children and the university system would benefit by becoming the world leaders in nuclear research. If we have the “recycling center” in our state it stands to reason that the research and development of new technology could and would be produced near the storage and recycling center. There is no better place than in the minds of our own children to create our future.
To digress a few years, our federal and state leaders produced a state strategy of opposing the nuclear “dump” using fear as a hammer. The opposition was not unanimous but it was effective. You can always cause reasonable people to pause when the only information presented is cloaked in doomsday rhetoric.
I suggest that our leaders open their collective minds and revisit this issue without preconceived thoughts or perceptions. Let’s take the emotion and fear out of the equation. We can no longer bury our heads in the sand and expect to have a bright future.
• Jim Bagwell of Carson City is a Vietnam veteran and graduate of the FBI National Academy who worked 31 years in law enforcement. He and his wife Lori own Charley’s Grilled Subs.