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Fair rules for siting a high-level nuclear waste repository

  • Douglas Easterling
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    Geologic repositories are designed to resolve the ever-growing problem of high-level nuclear waste, but these facilities invite intense local opposition due to the perceived severity of the risks and the possibility of stigma effects. This analysis examines whether the perceived fairness of the siting process affects local residents' support for hosting a repository. In particular, a survey of 1001 Nevada residents is used to test the hypothesis that an individual's willingness to accept a local repository will increase if he or she is convinced that this is the safest disposal option available. A logistic analysis indicates that beliefs regarding relative suitability have an independent effect on the acceptability of a local repository (i.e., Yucca Mountain). The article then considers the question of how to implement an optimizing strategy for siting facilities, comparing an idealized strategy against the original Nuclear Waste Policy Act (NWPA) of 1982 and the Amendments Act of 1987. Although choosing the safest site seems as if it could enhance public acceptance of the repository program, there is currently little prospect of identifying the best option to the high-level waste problem and, as a result, little chance of gaining the public support that is necessary to promote a successful siting outcome.

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.2307/3325071
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    Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

    Volume (Year): 11 (1992)
    Issue (Month): 3 ()
    Pages: 442-475

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    Handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:11:y:1992:i:3:p:442-475
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/34787/home

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    1. Gary L. Downey, 1985. "Federalism and nuclear waste disposal: The struggle over shared decision making," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 5(1), pages 73-99.
    2. Guth, Werner & Schmittberger, Rolf & Schwarze, Bernd, 1982. "An experimental analysis of ultimatum bargaining," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 367-388, December.
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