Do public comments matter? Exploring narrow openings in closed policy subsystems: Nuclear waste governance in St. Louis Superfund sites
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- Studentoppgaver (SV-IMS) 
The St. Louis region was home to the earliest large-scale processing of uranium for the U.S. nuclear weapons program and is facing ongoing efforts to clean up the resulting waste under the Superfund contaminated site program. Within a 17 km radius, there are three notable instances major changes in long-term environmental governance efforts: A mound built to hold radioactive waste material for 1,000 years, cleanup of improperly stored and transported wastes that contaminated soil and leached into a neighborhood creek, and an underground landfill fire encroaching on illegally dumped nuclear waste. This thesis is a nested case study of the St. Louis Superfund sites that explores the role public comments play in technocratic decisions surrounding three subcases. It applies qualitative textural analysis and elements of the Advocacy Coalitions Framework to examine a gap in the literature surrounding Environmental Governance, Contaminated Site studies, Nuclear Waste Management, and Participatory Processes. This project explores how legal context likely over shadows differences in time and institutional ownership in affecting the role of public opinion and the openness of technocratic policy subsystems in the administration of long-term environmental governance projects.
Master's thesis in Energy, Environment and Society