New PR Offensive Opposes Yucca Mountain Nuke Dump

The proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository is keeping lobbyists and PR firms busy on both sides of the issue. New York Times reporter Evelyn Nieves writes: "In an effort to counter the nuclear industry's own deep-pocketed Washington lobbyists -- John Sununu, chief of staff for the first President Bush, and Geraldine Ferraro, the onetime vice-presidential candidate, have been enlisted in the pro-Yucca fight -- Nevada is planning a multimillion-dollar advertising and publicity campaign intended to stoke opposition to the plan beyond Nevada's borders. On March 27, officials announced that they were trying to raise $10 million to pay for national television commercials that would be broadcast in states where nuclear waste would travel before reaching the burial site, presenting the argument that the Yucca plan is dangerous for every city and town, every highway and byway and every truck stop and railroad yard along the way. Officials are hoping to raise the money from local and county governments as well as the casino industry and other private businesses. The state also plans to send trucks with mock nuclear casks into cities around the country, where they will find themselves trapped in traffic jams, demonstrating the potential problems with transporting nuclear material through 43 states." O'Dwyer's PR Daily reports that Nevada's Republican Governor Kenny Guinn has hired Las Vagas-based Brown & Partners for a million-dollar national PR and ad contract.