House Bill 3640

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CHAPTER 00617

AN ACT
Relating to nuclear facilities.

Be It Enacted by the People of the State of Oregon:

SECTION 1. The Legislative Assembly and the people of the State of Oregon find that:

(1) The maintenance of healthy, unpolluted river systems, airsheds and land are essential to the economic vitality and well-being of the citizens of tbs State of Oregon and the Pacific Northwest.

(2) Radioactive waste stored at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation is already leaking into and contaminating the water table and watershed of the Columbia River and radioactive materials and toxic compounds have been found in plants, animals and waters downstream from the Hanford Nuclear Reservation and constitute a present and potential threat to the health, safety and welfare of the people of the State of Oregon.

(3) The Hanford Nuclear Reservation is now one of the most radioactively contaminated sites in the world, according to government studies, and will require billions of dollars in costs for cleanup and the ongoing assessment of health effects.

(4) in November 1980, the people of the State of Oregon, by direct vote in a statewide election, enacted a moratorium on the construction of nuclear power plants, and no nuclear power plants are presently operating in the State of Oregon.

(5) In May 1987, the people of the State of Oregon, by direct vote in a statewide election enacted Ballot Measure 1, opposing the disposal of highly radioactive spent fuel from commercial power plants at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.

(6) In 1895, the Legislative Assembly resolved that Oregon should have all legal rights in matters affecting the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, including party status in the Hanford tri-party agreement that governs the cleanup of the reservation

(7) Throughout the administrations of Presidents Ford, Carter, Regan and Bush, the policy of the Federal Government banned the use of plutonium in commercial nuclear power plants due to the risk that the plutonium could be diverted to terrorists and to nations that have not renounced the use of unclear weapons.

(8) The Federal Government has announced that it will process plutonium from weapons with uranium to produce mixed oxide fuel for commercial nuclear power plants and other nuclear facilities. The Hanford Nuclear Reservation, located on the Columbia River, is a primary candidate site being considered for the production facilities.

(9) The production of mixed oxide fuel will result in enormous new quantities of radioactive and chemical wastes that will present significant additional disposal problems and unknown costs.

SECTION 2. The Legislative Assembly and the people of the State of Oregon

(1) Declare that the State of Oregon is unalterably opposed to the use of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation for operations that create more contamination at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, divert resources from cleanup at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation and make the Hanford Nuclear Reservation cleanup more difficult such as the processing of plutonium to fuel nuclear power plants, reactors or any other facilities, and further declare that vitrification in a safe manner is the preferred means to dispose of excess plutonium in order ro protect human health and the environment

(2) Request that the President of the United States and the Secretary of the Department of Energy continue their previous policy of banning the use of plutonium to fuel commercial power plants and nuclear facilities.

(3) Request that the Federal Government honor the Federal Government’s original mandate to implement and complete the cleanup and restoration of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation

SECTION 3. Not more than 10 days after the effective date of this Act, the Secretary of State shall transmit copies of sections 1 and 2 of this Act to the President of the United States, the Secretary of the Department of Energy, the Majority Leader of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, each member of the Oregon Congressional Delegation, the Governors of the other 49 stares and the tribal councils of the federally recognized Indian tribes in Oregon, Washington and Idaho.

Passed by the House June 10, 1997

Passed by the Senate June 19, 1997

Approved by the Governor, July 25, 1997