Low-Level Radioactive Waste: The Texas Medical Association recognizes that many activities of society giving rise to low-level radioactive wastes are useful. Such activities include diagnosis and treatment of disease, research in science and medicine, and industrial uses such as generating electricity, detecting metal fatigue, and discovering oil. TMA therefore adopts the following guidance as stated in the policies of the American Medical Association on low-level radioactive disposal: (1) The rules and recommendations for the radiation protection promulgated by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements, and the International Commission on Radiological Protection ensure that disposal facilities for low-level radioactive wastes will be built and operated in a manner that protects the safety of workers and the public. (2) Physicians should inform their patients and help inform the public about the many beneficial uses of radioactive materials and about the measures and standards that are in place to reduce unnecessary exposures to these materials. (3) Physicians should minimize the diagnostic and therapeutic exposures of patients to ionizing radiation in accord with good medical practice.
In support of the management of low-level active radioactive waste, TMA also recommends that:
• Any site for the disposal of low-level radioactive waste be rejected by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission unless all applicable statutes and regulations are fully satisfied;
• Texas should be responsible for providing capacity within or outside the state for disposal of commercial, nonmilitary, low-level radioactive waste generated within its border – TMA urges Environmental Protection Agency action to ensure capacity for disposal of low-level radioactive waste – and, moreover, the Texas Department of State Health Services should develop the rules for storage of radioactive waste, while the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is responsible for managing the licensure of disposal sites; and
• Texas reiterate its endorsement of the process now in place for dealing with the disposal of low-level radioactive wastes, which involves the formation of compacts among the 50 states and the construction of regional facilities. TMA encourages physicians to support and assist state agencies and others responsible for planning the safe disposal of low-level radioactive waste (Res. 29O, p 160, A-97; Res 21-I-02; amended CSA Rep. 4-A-07; amended CSPH Rep. 3-A-17).
Last Updated On
May 30, 2017