Thursday, March 30, 2017

"It's a Cover-Up, Not a Clean-Up": Nuclear Waste Smolders in Sites Across the US

Renowned wartime journalist Wilfred Burchett described the damage from the atomic bomb that flattened Hiroshima as "far greater than photographs can show." When it comes to the enduring legacy of the Manhattan Project on home soil, the damage to the environment and human health is proving similarly hard to grasp.
The covert project to create the world's first atomic weapon during WWII, coupled with the nuclear proliferation of the Cold War era, has left a trail of toxic and radioactive waste at sites across the nation that will necessitate, by some margin, the largest environmental cleanup in the nation's history. The amount of money that has been poured into remediating the waste already is staggering. Still, it appears that the scale of the problems, and the efforts needed to effectively tackle them, continue to be underestimated by the authorities responsible for their cleanup...

...Hanford, Washington, is a Manhattan Project era facility perched on the lip of the Columbia River, and the scene of the largest single radioactive remediation in the US. Last year, the DOE championed "20 successful years" of environmental cleanup at Hanford, which was decommissioned in the 1980s. Fifty-six million gallons of toxic waste were subsequently stored away in 177 large tanks, some of which have leaked high-level radioactive sludge into the environment. Efforts to build a pretreatment plant for this waste -- with the idea of sending that treated waste to adjacent facilities for final processing -- have, for years, been beset with costly overruns, as well as administrative and corporate failings...

more: "It's a Cover-Up, Not a Clean-Up": Nuclear Waste Smolders in Sites Across the US

No comments:

Post a Comment