NBC Right Now has learned there’s been a leak at the Central Waste Complex site, a Department of Energy facility at Hanford. It was discovered on February 6th during a routine survey done by the Department of Energy. It was reported to the Department of Ecology the very next day.
A spokesperson from Washington State Department of Ecology Radioactive Waste Program has confirmed there was a radioactive reading found near a concrete box containing radioactive waste.
The Department of Ecology is conducting an investigation to see what the substance is and how long it’s been sitting out. In the meantime, they have set up a buffer zone, not letting anyone within 30 feet of the area.
Several workers who do not wish to be identified in the Department of Ecology and the Environmental Protection Agency say there is concern about the way these containers are being stored at the Central Waste Complex.
USDOE has lost vast quantities of Transuranic Waste in the soil at Hanford – including enough Plutonium for over 50 nuclear weapons. Transuranic waste is long-lived (with half lives ranging up to tens of thousands of years) and properly belongs disposed in a deep geologic repository, where it can be isolated from contaminating the environment or exposing people for those tens of thousands of years.
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