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Federal Court Says U.S. Must Complete Yucca Mountain Review

A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that the Obama administration is breaking the law by delaying its review of a plan to store nuclear waste in Nevada. The court ruled that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission must complete its licensing process — that is, approve or reject — the Energy Department's plan for the waste site in Nevada.

NPR's Geoff Brumfiel filed this report for our Newscast unit:

"The Nuclear Regulatory Commission's original job was to issue or deny a license to build a nuclear waste dump inside Yucca Mountain, Nevada.

"But in 2011, the commission ended its licensing process, in part because president Obama vowed the government would never build the dump. Authorities in Washington State and South Carolina, where much of the waste destined for Yucca Mountain is currently stored, brought suit.

"They claimed that the decision to abandon the licensing process violated federal law. By a 2-1 vote a three-judge panel agreed and ordered regulators resume licensing. The commission is now reviewing that decision, but even if Yucca Mountain were approved, the government has no immediate plans to build it."

As Reuters reports, this decision was expected.

"The court signaled in a decision last year that it would likely rule against the commission unless Congress specifically voted to terminate the project," Reuters writes. Congress has not taken action on the issue.

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Writer James Alan McPherson, Winner Of Pulitzer, MacArthur And Guggenheim, Dies At 72

McPherson, the first African-American to win the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, has died at 72. His work explored the intersection of white and black lives with deftness, subtlety and wry humor.
NPR

Oyster Archaeology: Ancient Trash Holds Clues To Sustainable Harvesting

Modern-day oyster populations in the Chesapeake are dwindling, but a multi-millennia archaeological survey shows that wasn't always the case. Native Americans harvested the shellfish sustainably.

WAMU 88.5

Your Turn: Ronald Reagan's Shooter, Freddie Gray Verdicts And More

Have opinions about the Democratic National Convention, or the verdicts from the Freddie Gray cases? It's your turn to talk.

NPR

Writing Data Onto Single Atoms, Scientists Store The Longest Text Yet

With atomic memory technology, little patterns of atoms can be arranged to represent English characters, fitting the content of more than a billion books onto the surface of a stamp.

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