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A Department of Energy decision making process to judge the prospects for geologic disposal of high-level radioactive wastes at Yucca Mountain based on (1) specific design work on the critical elements of the repository and waste package, (2) a total system performance assessment that will describe the probable behavior of the repository, (3) a plan and cost estimate for the work required to complete a license application, and (4) an estimate of the costs to construct and operate the repository.

The viability assessment was required by the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act, 1997 (Public Law 104-206). After the viability assessment was completed, site-specific environmental standards at 40 CFR Part 197 and implementing regulations.

Source: U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission