Hazardous Waste Siting

TitleHazardous Waste Siting
Publication TypeCase Study
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsHedahl, M, Henderson, M, Heurer, K, Nelson, JL, Rieder, TN, Whyte, K
Corporate AuthorsGeorgetown University Undergraduate Bioethics Society,, American Society for Bioethics + Humanities,
Date PublishedApril 2013
PublisherGeorgetown University Undergraduate Bioethics Society
KeywordsBIOETHICS , ENVIRONMENTAL engineering , ENVIRONMENTAL ethics , Environmental Sciences , MEDICINE , Public Policy , Social Justice
Abstract(See page 4 of PDF) In 1990, a proposal was put forward for the siting of a low-level radioactive waste dump in upstate New York. The proposal caused concern outside of the immediate area because two of the five potential disposal sites were in one of the primary dairy-farming areas in the state, and citizens were worried about the potential for the radiation to infect both the groundwater of nearby towns as well as in the milk supply. However, nuclear waste is a byproduct of hospitals and other health facilities, and lack of access for disposal of such material presents not only a significant financial burden to hospitals but also can limit the type of technology and the amount of waste-generating procedures that can be offered. This can lead to a lower standard of care for citizens served by these hospitals. How could the needs of various communities - local residents, dairy consumers, and perhaps even the cows themselves - have been best met (and respected) by policy-makers in this case?
NotesCase from the 2013 Bioethics Bowl head as part of the National Undergraduate Bioethics Conference. Hosted by Georgetown University, Washington, D.C. April 5-7, 2013.
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