U.S. nuclear waste problem gains new scrutiny

Tuesday, March 22, 2011 - 20:00 in Physics & Chemistry

Japan's nuclear accident has focused attention on the U.S. practice of packing spent-fuel pools at power plants far beyond their capacity, which some scientists call a serious compromise in safety.When the first U.S. nuclear power plants went online more than a half century ago, utilities built small cooling pools next to the reactors to store their radioactive waste — like the ones at Japan's Fukushima plant that overheated and probably leaked radioactivity into the environment.

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