The U.S. Senate's Environment and Public Works Committee will hold an oversight hearing later this month on Yucca Mountain.
It's the first time since Democrats took control of Congress that they will examine the planned nuclear waste dump project from the environmental perspective - rather than focusing on budgetary issues.
Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer of California, who chairs the committee, announced the October 31 hearing in a press release today.
Boxer has been opposed to Yucca Mountain.
The Environment and Public Works Committee has jurisdiction over the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the agency that will consider the Energy Department's application for a license to build the dump in the Nevada desert 90 miles northwest of Las Vegas.