January 5, 2017

BLM: Verde Transmission Line proposal violates land plan -- Santa Fe New Mexican

A proposed high-voltage power line that would cross federal land northwest of Santa Fe isn’t permitted under the management plan for the land, a federal official said Wednesday.

Sarah Schlanger, field manager for the BLM’s Taos office, said that because of the visual classification of the BLM land, the management plan for the area would have to be changed for construction of the power line to move forward.

Actor and environmental activist Robert Redford, a Santa Fe County resident, raised the issue of the Class II visual rating for the BLM land in a commentary article published Sunday in The New Mexican. He highlighted the importance of the state’s open landscapes to the film industry and the economic benefit created as a result. -- 1/5/2017

 

Nuke dump disposes of first drums of waste in three years -- Albuquerque Journal

Employees at the federal government’s only underground nuclear waste repository resumed disposal work Wednesday after a nearly three-year hiatus prompted by a radiation release that contaminated a significant portion of the facility.

Two pallets of low-level radioactive waste were emplaced in one of the underground disposal rooms at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in southern New Mexico around 12:45 p.m., the U.S. Energy Department confirmed.

U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and other officials are expected to celebrate the reopening with a ribbon-cutting event Monday. -- 1/5/2017