Incorporating Public Outreach in the MRS Design

by John Richardson, United Engineers and Constructors, Inc., Washington, United States,
Christopher Charles, United Engineers and Constructors, Inc., Washington, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: High Level Radioactive Waste Management 1993


As the design of the proposed DOE-OCRWM MRS facility progresses, facility layouts that allow for frequent and unhindered viewing of the MRS processes by the public should be developed. By allowing the public to observe operations, the DOE believes that trust and confidence in the program will greatly improve. A program should be developed to educate the public so that they can see for themselves that the MRS facility does not pose an undue risk to public health and that the DOE is open, honest, and can be trusted. At the same time, a positive safety message will be implicitly conveyed, which should engender more positive public feelings about nuclear energy. Visitor access to the MRS Facility should not be limited to a Visitors Center, but rather should be expanded to allow the general public a chance to view the actual processes, such as the cask handling and spent fuel transfers that go on within the facility. This paper will describe the desirable features of any approach to give unlimited public access to the MRS facility and operations and thereby enhance public understanding and acceptance.

Subject Headings: Public information programs | Resilient modulus | Public health and safety | Building design | Public buildings | Health hazards | Public policy | Nuclear power

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