Press Release

#SubEnvironment Advances Two Bipartisan Bills to Full Committee for Consideration


WASHINGTON, DC – The Subcommittee on Environment, chaired by Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL), today advanced two bipartisan bills to the full committee that advance the Department of Energy’s environmental remediation efforts.

#SubEnvironment advanced the following bills:

  • H.R. 2278, the Responsible Disposal Reauthorization Act of 2017, from Rep. Scott Tipton (R-CO), amends the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 to extend the authorization for the Secretary of Energy to continue the operation of the disposal site in Mesa County, Colorado (known as the Cheney disposal cell) for receiving and disposing of residual radioactive material from processing sites from 2023 to 2048. H.R. 2278 passed, as amended, by voice vote.
  • H.R. 2389, to reauthorize the West Valley demonstration project, and for other purposes, from Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY), reauthorizes the West Valley Demonstration Project located in West Valley, New York. Additionally, the legislation considers the disposal pathway for the project’s radioactive waste. H.R. 2389 passed, as amended, by voice vote.

#SubEnvironment Chairman Shimkus said, “To get a better understanding of alternative disposal paths for the … radioactive waste, Congress needs additional information. The Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute for H.R. 2389 will help gather that information by directing the Government Accountability Office to identify the volumes and types of radioactive waste at the site, disposal options for the waste streams including costs and timeframes, and benefits and challenges of each disposal option.”

He added, “[H.R. 2278] before us today proactively extends the date for the uranium mill tailings disposal cell in Mesa County, Colorado to operate for another 25 years.”

Full Committee Chairman Walden said, “The two targeted bills before us today are part of the Environment Subcommittee’s … efforts to address cleanup projects and legacy needs associated with the development and deployment of atomic energy technologies.”

Electronic copies of the legislation, amendment text, and vote tallies can be found on the committee’s website HERE.


Press Release