Nuclear Policy

IPS Associate Fellow Bob Alvarez leads this project focused on nuclear disarmament, environmental, and energy policies

Reducing the Risks

The nuclear crisis in Japan has raised alarming questions about the safety of nuclear power plants in our own backyard. There’s good reason for all of us to be worried.

According to a new analysis by the Institute for Policy Studies and the Project On Government Oversight, our nation’s stockpile of radioactive spent fuel is stored in such unsafe conditions that the lives of millions of people who live near nuclear reactors in this country are at risk.

Find out more in our report and fact sheet.

Check your own risk of radiation from a nuclear fuel pool accident with Physicians for Social Responsibility’s interactive online map.

View Robert Alvarez’s public education efforts post-Fukushima.

Take Action! Contact your member of Congress and urge them to secure spent nuclear fuel.

Latest Work

Advice for the Blue Ribbon Commission

Hopefully Obama’s new commission will motivate the country to finally deal with the toxic legacy of the nuclear age.

Flying and Excess Radiation

The doses of radiation experienced in everyday life, especially flying long distances in jet aircraft, pose risks we should carefully heed.

Nukes Aren’t the Answer

The Obama administration is making no moves to answer the call for a new energy future.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s FY 2011 Budget Request

A closer look at what Obama’s energy priorities really are for the next fiscal year.

Mandate for Change: Policies and Leadership for 2009 and Beyond

Mandate for Change offers a set of specific policy proposals for the incoming Obama administration on every major domestic and international topic, written specifically for the book by leading thinkers and activists in the field.

A New Energy Future Means a New Energy Department

Among Steven Chu’s most daunting challenges will be reforming the Energy Department itself.

Reprocessing Spent Nuclear Fuel Too Risky

Nuclear energy is not the right alternative for the United States.

U.S.-Russian Nuclear Agreement Raises Serious Concerns

Many Democrats and Republicans oppose the accord because of fears that Russia is providing Iran with nuclear and military assistance. There are also bipartisan concerns about its potential nonproliferation problems.

The Unfinished Business of Nuclear Disarmament

Coming to terms with nuclear weapons in 2009.

Risky Appropriations: Gambling U.S. Energy Policy on the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership

A critrical review of the U.S. Government’s efforts to establish global nuclear markets.

Nuclear Power in the Age of Global Warming

A critical review of the history of nuclear power and its prospects for mitigating the impacts of global warming.

Analysis: U.S. Department of Energy Budget FY 2009

Despite extraordinary dependence on foreign oil, the U.S. Department of Energy’s 2009 budget does little to find alternatives.

Recycling Nuclear Waste Too Dangerous

President George W. Bush has recently intensified efforts to revive nuclear recycling.

Radioactive Wastes and the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership

An analysis of the impacts of reprocessing U.S. nuclear power spent fuel.

Reducing the Hazards from Stored Spent Power-Reactor Fuel in the United States

This 2003 report underscored the dangers posed by the practice of storing spent fuel on-site at nuclear power plants in the United States. It remains relevant today as Japanese engineers struggle to prevent a nuclear catastrophe in Fukushima, Japan.

What About The Spent Fuel?

Until recently, concerns about attacks on nuclear power plants focused mainly on the vulnerability of reactors. Spent fuel ponds may be even more difficult to safeguard.

Fire, Earth, and Water

An assessment of the environmental, safety and health Impacts of the Cerro Grande Fire on Los Alamos National Laboratory,