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Safety includes not only the effect of the repository on people near the site, but also people along the transportation routes to the site.
As far as location, a waste site cannot be in an area with a large population or near a ground water supply.
Also, because one of the most significant factors in determining the life span of a possible repository is how long the waste storage canisters will remain in tact, the waste site must be located in a dry climate to eliminate the moisture that can cause the waste canisters to corrode.
Such a volcanic eruption could release damaging amounts of radioactivity to the environment.
According to the Department of Energy (DOE), a repository for high-level radioactive waste must meet several criteria including safety, location, and economics [Roush, 1995].
There are at least a dozen young volcanoes within 40 kilometers of the proposed Yucca Mountain waste site [Weiss, 1996].
The proximity of Yucca Mountain to these volcanoes makes it possible to have a volcanic eruption pass through the spent fuel waste repository.
More than 30,000 metric tons of nuclear waste have arisen from U. commercial reactors as well as high level nuclear weapons waste, such as uranium and plutonium [Roush, 1995].
Because of the build-up of this waste, some power plants will be forced to shut down.
To avoid losing an important source of energy, a safe and economical place to keep this waste is necessary.
This document proposes a literature review of whether Yucca Mountain is a suitable site for a nuclear waste repository.