Senate committee to vote on nuclear ban billby Stephanie Hemphill, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — A Senate committee is expected to vote Thursday on a bill to allow more nuclear power plants in the state.
It's an issue that already generated a lot of heated debate in this election year and a wide range of opinions.
Minnesota's ban dates from 1994, when the legislature agreed to allow Xcel Energy to store radioactive waste next to its nuclear plant at Prairie Island on the Mississippi River.
Officials from the Prairie Island Indian Community, with homes just blocks from plant, told the committee Tuesday that Minnesota should not build new plants until the government finds a better place to store the waste.
Advocates said nuclear represents a low-carbon source of reliable baseload power.
Last year, a similar bill passed in the Senate, without committee debate. In the House last year, the Energy committee debated the issue and decided to keep the ban.