This guy does an excellent summary of the Nuclear Waste non-issue:
"...There are multiple plans for the spent fuel. Over the course of the next few years or decades, the main repository is most likely to be the on-site cooling pools or dry cask storage. There are no serious technical problems with that approach, and that could easily see us through the remainder of this century. If you can think of any respect in which contained spent fuel with its ridiculously tiny geographic footprint is not massively greener than coal, I'd be interested to hear about it.
For intermediate term storage, I expect several underground repositories will be set up and those might see some use for another 2 or 3 centuries.. But spent fuel is only "spent" with regard to the current class of reactors. Even high-burnup spent fuel has only extracted about 5% of the energy potential of the fuel. There are multiple teams working on developing fast, mixed, or epithermal spectrum reactors which can make use of the rest, and most of them would operate in a temperature range which makes the heat produced more useful, so these reactors should deliver between 20 to 30 times the amount of usable energy that we got from the fuel on its first pass through current reactors. Final burnup will convert all of the transuranics into fission products.
The fission products themselves will be divided into three categories. Around 80% of it will go into well-shielded short-term sequester for up to ten years while it drops down to or below background radiation levels. There will be 7 very long-lived fission products, some of which have uses, or can be converted into stable and even valuable elements by transmutation, and the remainder of which will be very mildly radioactive, easily-shielded beta emitters, in very small quantities. Around 17% of the fission products will have intermediate half-lives--up to around 30 years. In three or four centuries, they will be cold elements, all of which are usable. These might wind up in a recoverable sequester, or we might just vitrify them and drop them down deep boreholes--whichever turns out to be cheapest at the time. Earthquakes would pose no problem for borehole disposal. They might collapse underground repositories rendering the fission products unrecoverable, but posing negligible risk to anyone above ground, and Australia is currently investigating setting up a global nuclear waste repository, and Australia has some of the most tectonically stable land on the planet. The net long-term risk from earthquakes would be trivial compared to the risks posed by the energy alternatives.
As for cost, a metric ton of spent fuel easily has the potential to produce a gigawatt-year of electricity. At a wholesale rate of, say, 3 cents per kw hour, that would translate into revenues of over a quarter billion dollars. Even a metric ton of gold is only worth around 35 million. So let me turn your question around. If someone were to dump several tons of gold dust in your front yard, how much do you think it would "cost" you to dispose of it?..."
I would add Russia & India have both recently put new Fast Spectrum Reactors online that burn spent nuclear fuel. And GE is marketing a version that will also burn nuclear waste, based on the proven Integral Fast Reactor that the DOE built and Bill Clinton (an admitted Natural Gas Industry stooge) ordered shutdown and destroyed. The IFR was tested operationally Fukushima style or even worse than that - complete station blackout - no operator interventions - and it automatically shut itself down and maintained a stable state. And CANDU reactors can and do burn spent nuclear fuel.
And a LFTR - Liquid Flouride Thorium Reactor - a thermal neutron spectrum reactor that is compact & meltdown proof, can generate 1 GW of electricity for a year on one tonne of natural Thorium. There is enough Thorium in the annual waste from one Rare Earth metals mine, that produces materials for the Wind & Solar Industries, to power the entire planet for one year, burnt in a LFTR. The mine will pay you to take away their radioactive Thorium waste, so the LFTR is actually consuming radioactive waste.
Funny, supposed opponents of climate change, like Greenpeace & Obama, don't demand $billions be spent to fast-trak LFTR development instead of throwing $trillions down the sewer on nutty bait-and-switch scams like Solar, Wind, Wave & Tidal energy, Agrofuels, Hydrogen & Carbon Capture. Big Oil luvs scams. Scams = The Status Quo or Burn, Baby, Burn. Meanwhile western governments, including the US, are spending zip on advanced super-safe reactor development.