The Board’s fifth report focuses on the cross-cutting issue of thermal loading. It explores thermal-loading strategies (U.S. and others) and the technical issues and uncertainties related to thermal loading. It also details the Board’s position on the implications of thermal loading for the U.S. radioactive waste management system. Also included are updates on Board and panel activities during the reporting period. The report offers fifteen recommendations to the DOE on the following subjects: ESF and repository design enhancements, repository sealing, seismic vulnerabilities (vibratory ground motion and fault displacement), the DOE approach to the engineered barrier system, and transportation and systems program status.