Nuclear Waste Site Not Welcome in Nevada

I was dismayed by the editorial ''Urgent: Nuclear Waste,'' Oct. 24, which urged an interim storage facility for nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain. An interim facility would deplete Department of Energy funds for a permanent-site study, and an above-ground interim site might become the de facto storage site. With the earthquake hazard at Yucca Mountain, that would be disastrous. Nuclear waste storage in Nevada certainly is undesirable for Nevadans, who produce no nuclear waste of their own. Nevada is like the abused child of all the states, first having to accept the test site for atomic weapons and now all the lethal waste from the rest of the country.

Arlene Williams Sparks, Nev.

The editorial is well-titled, but countless people would disagree almost entirely with the contents of the piece, especially the conclusion: ''Consolidating the waste at a single interim facility is far preferable to 109 dispersed sites.'' Not true. If highly radioactive spent fuel can be placed in containers that make it safe to transport, there is no need to transport. Monitored, above-ground storage at the site of production represents the only sane solution for the foreseeable future. It avoids building the truck and rail fleet you refer to, avoiding that expense, but it also avoids the considerable danger of much handling of thousands of miles of rail. Neither Nevadans nor the Western Shoshone nation, on whose land Yucca Mountain is situated, will ever accept interim or permanent storage. The statement, ''a permanent repository is at least 15 years away,'' is optimistic to say the least.

John S. Miller Rogue River, Ore.

Farrakhan is not the right leader

The article ''March Shows Two Americas in Search of a New Bridge,'' Oct. 18, poses the question: Is Louis Farrakhan an adequate leader? Racial issues are tearing the United States apart; our attitudes need to change, so we can become more accepting of each other. Mr. Farrakhan, the leader of the Nation of Islam, is not the man to forge the path to a united society. Our nation needs to learn that through diversity we can draw strength; Farrakhan is not capable of teaching this concept. Farrakhan's idea of uniting the black race is essential. We must love who we are before we can accept others. But Farrakhan is not the man to lead the way.

Kristen Bateman Scottsbluff, Neb.

Clinton: all talk, no action

In response to the opinion-page article ''Clinton: 'We Will Win the Day,' '' Oct. 20: President Clinton can give glamorous speeches about unifying America, but until results are evident, the words uttered are empty.

The points Mr. Clinton made about the growing absence of fathers in the home need to be taken care of to make America better. But if you keep shifting the blame onto fathers missing from the home and never attempting to do anything about it, then nothing is ever going to get accomplished. Clinton says ''we will win the day.'' Maybe the day the speech is given, but what about next month or in years to come?

Mindy Bargar Rexburg, Idaho

Maintain habitat for animals, plants

In the letter ''Protecting Species, Landowners,'' Oct. 26, the writer states: ''Most listed species are found on private land, so landowners must be given reasons for maintaining the habitat for those plants and animals.'' Landowners should already know why habitats for plants and animals must be maintained. The letter writer also mentions a bill introduced by two Republican representatives which offers incentives to landowners in the form of concessions and conservation grants. Why do we need to provide concessions to landowners for what they should already be doing - protecting endangered species and the environment?

George D. Dillard San Diego

Your letters are welcome. For publication they must be signed and include your address and telephone number. Only a selection can be published and none acknowledged. Letters should be addressed to ''Readers Write'' and may be sent by mail to One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115, by fax to 617-450-2317, or by Internet e-mail (200 words maximum) to OPED@RACHEL.CSPS.COM.

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