AP: Ticking time bombs of nuclear waste at multiple U.S. sites? Lab checking for smoking drums — CNN: “Imminent threat from radiation” — Gundersen: Serious public health effects if one blows; “Very, very volatile… like nitroglycerin” (VIDEO)

Published: May 23rd, 2014 at 10:12 am ET
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AP, May 21, 2014: Los Alamos National Laboratory [LANL] on Wednesday told state government it has isolated and is closely monitoring nuclear waste [...] packed with a type of cat litter suspected in a radiation leak at [WIPP]. [LANL] said the 55-gallon barrels have been secured in special containers and moved to an isolated area with a fire protection system. They also are being monitored 24 hours a day for any change in temperature, smoking or other abnormalities. [...] More than 100 other suspect containers are being stored temporarily at Waste Control Specialists in Andrews, Texas.

AP, May 23, 2014: Has cat litter turned barrels of New Mexico nuclear waste into ticking time bombs? [...] COULD THE OTHER BARRELS BE TICKING TIME BOMBS? [LANL] said it has packed them in special containers, placed them under a dome with a fire extinguishing system and is closely monitoring them. Waste Control Specialists has taken similar precautions. As for the more than 350 containers already at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, Flynn has ordered the U.S. Department of Energy to expedite plans for sealing off the underground rooms where the waste is stored. Complicating that effort is the laborious investigative process [...] they are still working to see if other containers have been breached.

CNN Interview with Arnie Gundersen, May 21, 2014: ‘Imminent’ threat from radiation leak

  • At :15 in — Arnie Gundersen, Fairewinds Chief Engineer: Barrels are above ground and still at Los Alamos, which is a major concern because this material gets more and more unstable as it gets warmer, and of course we’re heading into the summer months on the desert. So those barrels that are above ground, if they were to blow like the one that did below ground, we’d have a serious public health effect. [...]
  • At 1:30 in – Gundersen: When the corn [in the kitty litter] absorbed the moisture, the nitrogen inside got very, very volatile. Almost like in these old movies when you see somebody holding nitroglycerin — any shake will cause it to be disturbed. Well that’s what happened to these canisters that have the organic kitty litter. They’ve got to go back through and find all of those and isolate them and then figure out how to change the litter.

Watch the CNN interview here

Published: May 23rd, 2014 at 10:12 am ET
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  1. CBS News: “Potential ‘imminent’ threat from New Mexico nuclear waste” — Official: Risk of “substantial endangerment” to public health — 57 barrels of nuclear waste could rupture, came from multiple gov’t labs — ‘Unclear’ how many are now at WIPP — Being monitored for rise in temperature (VIDEO) May 20, 2014
  2. Officials now admit over 500 barrels of nuclear waste at risk of bursting open — AP: 368 already at WIPP dump — “New Mexico sees ‘imminent’ danger” — State orders WIPP to prevent “health or environmental threat”; Must ‘permanently seal’ underground storage areas May 21, 2014
  3. Expert: ‘Cracked’ nuclear container “blew top off” at WIPP — Hundreds more drums at dump risk ‘energetic reaction’ and radiation release — Insider: Get forklift and remove them before another accident — Official: No ‘imminent’ public threat ‘at this time’ (VIDEO) May 19, 2014
  4. Experts: Gov’t may never stabilize hundreds of explosive drums of radioactive waste stored at WIPP — Nuclear dump now at risk of closing permanently — Ruined for good by kitty litter? (AUDIO) May 23, 2014
  5. Officials: Leakage seen on “many” nuclear waste drums in WIPP underground — We think the seals have degraded — Public “should be concerned” about another explosion — 1,000s of radioactive drums now seen as too risky to move (VIDEO) June 13, 2014

193 comments to AP: Ticking time bombs of nuclear waste at multiple U.S. sites? Lab checking for smoking drums — CNN: “Imminent threat from radiation” — Gundersen: Serious public health effects if one blows; “Very, very volatile… like nitroglycerin” (VIDEO)

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    "A ventilation system now evaporates the water, but after WIPP closes, it will be a wet repository."

    The ventilation system..is 'crippled".


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    • Sickputer

      Well look on the bright side…if they seal and it turns into a water-soaked morass of drums and corroded drums, it probably won't blow up. But it will find egress over centuries to local underground water aquifers.

      They will seal it up, out of sight, but not out of mind.

      Better start looking at new ideas for their killer waste…it sure wasn't our fault.


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  • jackassrig

    I remember when I was a kid I went to a nuclear trade show with booths and displays. One display on the floor had hundreds and hundreds of loaded mouse traps side by side. Each mouse trap had a ping pong ball on top of the bar. The host tossed a ping pong ball into the display and swoosh all the balls flew up into the air. The host said this demonstrates nuclear fission. I never forgot that. Multiply that millions of times. I'm not sure how the nuclear technicians ever thought they could control such an event.


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  • rogerthat

    What's in the drums? The town hall meeting got told all about the nitrates in the drums, but what about the plutonium and it's cousins? We (think) we know it's transuranic waste, but is this stuff in these drums hotter than anything at Hanford, i.e., the hottest nuclear waste known to man? Is this seven Curies per liter stuff? Was it in liquid form, with the kitty litter acting as an absorbent? Are they allowed to put the kind of stuff that is in the Hanford tanks into WIPP? Why is nobody talking about HOW MUCH PLUTONIUM is in each 45 gallon drum? It's not just gloves and overalls, is it?


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    • Stax Stax

      Every post you make , I promise to poster ten notices boards with FuQshima facts and figures and a link to the only site reporting newsworthy items – ENENEWS.
      So post your dating crap some more sadass.


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  • rogerthat

    From AP:
    ''…the theory is that some kind of chemical reaction occurred between waste containing nitrate salts and the new litter.''

    ''… plans for immediately isolating all 500-plus barrels of waste known to contain nitrate salts and organic cat litter.''

    – well that sounds harmless enough


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  • Sol Man

    …harmless enough.

    Not when the driving psyche of tptb is a death mandate for all. Judging from the way that things have been progressing they may succeed.

    Now what to do with all of the fiat profits, fouled aquifers, radioactive atmosphere, poisoned food, bad drugs, dead waters and so on?


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  • Sol Man

    G-nome Jigger, Inc.

    Dr. Alliz Zohot

    No appointment necessary!


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  • zogerke zogerke

    I read that whole testimony link.1999. Every single thing that happened at WIPP was right there, right there, right there.

    The DOE does not rule out the possibility of dissolution.

    Its like, someone is dead, rotting and stinking: The DOE rep stamnds right there next to the body. The DOE does not rule out the possibility that someone might not be in tip top health….
    We are such a stupid race of beings, en mass….

    "Virtually all scientists who have examined this area recognize the extensive character of dissolution in the Rustler Formation at the WIPP site. The work of two DOE scientists does not "largely rule out this explanation," as contended by the DOE."

    "The 6 Culebra test wells are located randomly, in a hexagonal [6-sided] array, surrounding the WIPP repository. The 6 monitoring wells, some of them hydraulically upgradient from the WIPP site, might be considered insufficient for an ordinary landfill and are surely insufficient for our nation's defense transuranic waste dump."


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  • Socrates

    In order to save the world, we had to destroy it!


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  • HTB – HORMETIC TIME BOMBS

    Tick-Tock goes the clock
    Bursting drums are gonna rock
    New Mexicans are under shock
    'Cause kitty litter broke the lock

    :-(


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  • And another one (the last one, for today, I promise !):

    SCRIBBELY SCRABBELY DOO, KITTY KITTY* !

    Little kitty
    Kitty litter
    Kitty killer
    Killer kitty
    Kitty licker
    Little killer
    Little litter
    Litter licker
    Killer litter

    No litter killer so far, though. Sad.

    *aka "National Lampoon's Pilot Plant Vacation"


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    "Lab checking for smoking drums"

    A little late by then..


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  • Nick

    Where has everyone been these past decades?

    Some of us KNEW nuclear anything was dangerous.

    Fukushima and WIPP seem to be proving us right.

    The problem is, that gives us NO satisfaction.

    It is way past time for a social media storm to slam the nuclear military industrial complex into the dust-bin of history.

    Problem is, once that efforts goes viral, ecosystems will already be collapsing.

    …..


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    Let's see.
    They don't know how to remove the involved drums.
    If a drum should begin to become chemically active.. are they going to try and remove it ..or just let it explode.
    And what if something goes wrong with the removal?
    If left in the DUMP ..are the workers to return ..and just assume they will ..may/somewhat/somehow survive another incident?
    What about the safety conditions of the workers?


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    If the temperature of the drums starts to increase..
    (which is not bound by outside conditions)
    They cant stop it…above or below ground.


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    Monitoring comes to nothing..


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    "In their response on 21 May, the LANL and the DOE said that the drums were being transferred to a tent fitted with fire-control and high-efficiency particulate air filtration to contain any radioactive particles in the event of an accident. They added that air radiation levels and the temperature of the drums were being monitored, and that the drums were being inspected hourly for signs of rupture."

    A tent ..with particulate air filtration.
    Wow ..a whole mine's worth of particulate filtration ..didn't hold the emissions from the EXPLOSION.
    ..
    Monitoring hourly for signs of rupture?
    Then what??..run over the hill with it??

    A tent to hold.. the shock of an explosion.
    What did they use.. the sarong of 'The Colossus Man'?


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    Link:

    "Time bombs may be ticking at the United States' only deep geological repository for nuclear waste."

    http://hisz.rsoe.hu/alertmap/site/?pageid=event_desc&edis_id=HZ-20140528-43928-USA


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    "The emails trace LANL’s approval of two products requested by contractor EnergySolutions, which packages LANL waste, to neutralize the pH balance of drum contents sent to WIPP.

    The products contain organic ingredients known to be incompatible with the nitrate salts present in the LANL waste containers – “a bad combination,” according to Cole Smith, a chemist in NMED’s Hazardous Waste Bureau.

    EnergySolutions asked LANL managers for approval in a May 2013 email to switch to one of the products. LANL approved the change a month later – despite product warnings clearly stating that the product is incompatible with metallic nitrates and “strong oxidizers,” such as nitrate salts, both of which are found in the LANL drums.
    Nitrates and organic matter are known to oxidize, a reaction that generates heat.

    The other product mentioned in an email was a new liquid to neutralize acids and bases in the drums. When Zeke Wilmot, EnergySolutions industrial hygienist, asked in an August 2013 email for approval to use the product, he notes that “criticality safety issues are not my area of expertise” and “it may be advisable to have LANL personnel weigh in on these issues as well.”

    A subcontract technical representative for LANL environmental programs responded to Wilmot and approved the change in a September 2013 email copied to eight other people. The approved product also contains an organic ingredient."


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    (cont.)

    "The other product mentioned in an email was a new liquid to neutralize acids and bases in the drums. When Zeke Wilmot, EnergySolutions industrial hygienist, asked in an August 2013 email for approval to use the product, he notes that “criticality safety issues are not my area of expertise” and “it may be advisable to have LANL personnel weigh in on these issues as well.”

    A subcontract technical representative for LANL environmental programs responded to Wilmot and approved the change in a September 2013 email copied to eight other people. The approved product also contains an organic ingredient."

    WIPP probe: Emails raise new questions
    May 29 2014

    http://www.abqjournal.com/407594/news/ingredients-used-in-drums-questioned.html


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    (cont.)
    "The emails also don’t say what kind of testing may or may not have been done at LANL before the products were approved, said Don Hancock of the Southwest Research and Information Center, a WIPP watchdog.

    “There is no way anyone can make a big change without it going through a lot of people,” Hancock said. “There are multiple people who were aware of this in 2013.”


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    Perhaps..two products.
    "a new liquid to neutralize acids and bases in the drums"


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    (cont.)
    "EnergySolutions asked LANL managers for approval in a May 2013 email to switch to one of the products. LANL approved the change a month later – despite product warnings clearly stating that the incompatible with metallic nitrates and “strong oxidizers,” such as nitrate salts, both of which are found in the LANL drums."

    Chemical reaction within a year..
    I'd say it's moving pretty fast.


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    EXPLODING NUCLEAR MATERIALS ON THE US MAINLAND..HELLO!


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    Anybody home ..anybody give a damn?


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    • GQR2

      Hold onto yourselves people. These cowboys make huge chemical engineering decisions by email. by EMAIL!! who wrote the email who asked, who approved it. Now we watch them try to minimize it. Well temps are climbing. We here in NM are very nervous about fires. Its tinder box dry. Rows of browned burned conifers along I-25 that people shrug off as drought (not) OVER 500 drums of this stuff.

      What on earth are they gonna say at the Town Hall. Hope the Mayer is still feeling all warm and fuzzy. THIS IS A NUCLEAR CRIME> these people are the terrorists. GET IT!? They are the people that wield the terror and make the poison bombs after their consultations with their gods. Then they have the nerve to play on people's desire to be civil and nice so they can manipulate the perceptions of what they are doing. Its time for them to start digging in granite. NO instead we get told that the "dome" technology is suddenly ok?? Well if its so ok,then why is it not permanent. Build a fire proof dome around the dome? Oh wait that is less $$$$ on permanently storing the barrels- big money in passing them around.


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  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    :( Nobody.. gives a damn!


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  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    WIPP RE-ENTRY VIDEO

    DOE making headway in New Mexico nuclear leak investigation

    Watch WIPP video of re-entry [below]
    May 29 2014

    http://www.hazmatmag.com/news/doe-making-headway-in-new-mexico-nuclear-leak-investigation/1003087318/?&er=NA


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  • jec jec

    One more site, the lying and coverup is everywhere. Hanford took an old PLUTONIUM contaminated, 'test' reactor to the special new storage site a Hanford WA. This is the same site leaching poisons into the groundwater. See 2009 report, bet its the same now..especially with the USS Ronald Reagan parts, the reactors (low level waste???) and more. No wonder there are terrible birth defects in the areas around Hanford WA!!
    http://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/em/Summary-OperationalIssuesattheEnvironmentalRestorationDisposalFacility%28ERDF%29atHanford-June2007.pdf

    Read this report..note the leaching of materials warning..and the rather depressing comments..


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