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People Who Are Interested In Stopping Radioactive Metal From Being Recycled Into Consumer Products



TO: 	People Who Are Interested In Stopping Radioactive Metal From Being 
Recycled Into Consumer Products
FROM: 	Jessica Vallette, Organizer for Public Citizen's Critical Mass Energy 
Project
DATE: 	January 20, 1998
RE: 	Sample Letter For Publication & Distribution


We Need Your Help Now! The nuclear industry and their government allies are 
at it again! They want to recycle radioactive metal scrap from nuclear power 
plants and DOE weapons facilities into household items.  Citizens must act 
now to stop this sham recycling scheme.

What's Happening: The DOE has a huge stockpile of radioactive scrap metal. 
One proposed "disposal" method is to recycle it into consumer products. 
Before DOE can proceed with this irresponsible plan, they need the 
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set standards.  EPA has begun this 
process by writing a Preliminary Technical Support Document and the 
Preliminary Cost-Benefit Analysis.  These documents look at the feasibility 
of recycling radioactive scrap metal into consumer products.  This the 
beginning of a rulemaking that could result in radioactive metal being made 
into strollers, appliances, bedframes, beltbuckles-- anything made from 
metal.  These documents are  available on their website:

http://www.epa.gov/radiation/scrap/scrappub.htm

Background: Throughout the 1980's, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission along 
with the Department of Energy (DOE), sought to deregulate radioactive waste 
and call it "below regulatory concern".  Under this scheme, roughly 30% of 
the nation's "low-level" radioactive waste could be treated as normal 
garbage and disposed of in municipal solid waste landfills or incinerators.
 Furthermore it would have allowed production of consumer goods from these 
materials, most frequently by recycling the waste scrap.

What You Can Do: The public is being asked to review and send in their 
comments on these documents by January 31, 1998.  Please print the attached 
sample letter in your respective newsletters and request that the letters be 
carbon copied and sent both to your organization and to me.  These letters 
will demonstrate to the EPA and the DOE that the "stake holders" are not 
just industry organizations--this action would effect all Americans.  EPA 
must be told to set a standard that would not raise the "background" level 
of radiation that everyone is exposed to.  Tell them to set a zero tolerance 
level.  By doing so, we might be able to stop this process NOW.
										Your Name
										Your Address
										Your Daytime Phone (optional)


John Karhnak
US EPA Cleanup and Reuse Center
401 M Street, SW (6602J)
Washington, DC 20460

Re: Radioactive Metal Scrap Preliminary Technical Support Document and 
Preliminary Cost-Benefit Analysis

Dear Mr. Karhnak:

I am writing to express my concern about the Environmental Protection 
Agency's (EPA) proposal to allow radioactive metal scrap into the consumer 
market.  It is my understanding that this material could be "recycled" into 
strollers, appliances, bedframes, beltbuckles--anything made from metal.  I 
am opposed to any recycling of radioactive materials, including metal, into 
any consumer products. All radiation and radioactivity should be isolated 
from the environment forever. EPA must set a zero tolerance standard for 
radioactivity in consumer products.

Furthermore, this comment period was not publicized and the timing did not 
consider the general public's ability to comment during the busiest holiday 
season of year.

Regulations should not be used to legitimize recycling of these materials 
into consumer goods.  The amount of radiation that Americans are exposed to 
today is continually increasing as a result of nuclear power generation, 
nuclear weapons production and testing, and other events.  Now the US 
government wants to increase our exposure further by allowing companies to 
profit from recycling these materials?  The US government is supposed to 
protect its citizens from harm, not secretly increase our exposure to these 
dangerous materials.

Americans have repeatedly expressed our outrage at these proposals.  Not so 
long ago, Congress had to step in and force the Nuclear Regulatory 
Commission and the Department of Energy to back off from their "below 
regulatory concern" activities.  I hope we don't have to go down that route 
again.

Please protect our children from radioactive products.  Don't allow 
radioactive materials to be "recycled" into consumer products.

Sincerely,

Your Name

You can also send it to:general.comments@epamail.epa.gov,(Carol
Browner)BROWNER.CAROL@EPAMAIL.EPA.GOV


Jessica Vallette
Organizer                              
Public Citizen's Critical Mass Energy Project   
215 PA Ave., SE                                 
Washington, DC 20003                            
phone: 202-546-4996 ext. 323                   fax: 202-547-7392
         
Visit our web page: http://www.citizen.org/cmep
***************************************************************

EAGLE 
Environmental Assoc. for Great Lakes Education
394 Lake Ave. South, #308
Duluth, MN 55802
(218) 726-1828
email: lakes@cp.duluth.mn.us
Debbie Ortman and Jan Conley
Check out our new web sites:
EAGLE: http://www.cp.duluth.mn.us/~lakes/eagle.html
Great Lakes Women's Leadership Network Project:
http://www.cp.duluth.mn.us/~lakes/
Green Thumb Project (pesticide-free lawns):
http://www.cp.duluth.mn.us/~lakes/grthumb.html