TV: Leaking radioactive material at U.S. nuclear site is “extremely reactive” and “always changing” (VIDEO)

Published: March 1st, 2013 at 12:40 am ET


Title: Options evaluated for leaking Hanford tanks
Source: KIRO 7
Date: Feb. 28, 2013

KIRO: Officials at the nation’s most contaminated nuclear site are considering a number of options to deal with six leaking waste tanks there […]

Senator Doug Erickson: “I think the most important thing that we heard today is currently there is no threat to human life and health to the Tri Cities area and throughout Washington state.” […]

KIRO: All of  [Hanford’s 149] single-shell tanks have been declared unfit and must be emptied and removed. Six tanks are leaking. The radioactive material in the tanks is extremely reactive and always changing, so draining them could be dangerous. The long-term plan to deal with the problem is to build a chemical treatment plant.

Jane Hedges of the Washington state Department of Ecology: “It is an extremely complex facility, probably the most complex chemical facility in the United States, because of the type of waste it has to treat,” said Hedges.

Watch the video here

Published: March 1st, 2013 at 12:40 am ET


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31 comments to TV: Leaking radioactive material at U.S. nuclear site is “extremely reactive” and “always changing” (VIDEO)

  • MaidenHeaven MaidenHeaven

    I would like to see a reporter list just some of the health affects from at least 4 or 5 of the radionuclides fund in radiation…before speaking to the *guest…then as the guest how he/she could claim "there is no threat to human life and health."

    People do not know anything except what they get from mainstream media…so they certainly do not know that cesium destroys children's hearts or strontium is a bone seeker..or how little plutonium is needed to cause cancer. They also do not know how long they last in the environment, nor what the actual readings were at Hanford.

    They do not even know the questions to ask..

    • We Not They Finally

      Yes. Most of the public does not even seem to know that they SHOULD ask questions. It's not that complicated to give a scary, accurate overview. And everyone should log into the Fukushima Symposium coming up March 11-12 at the New York Academy of Medicine, organized by Helen Caldicott. You can log in free, in real time, two whole days. You'll find it at the Helen Caldicott Foundation or just google the conference directly. They will be giving A LOT of medical info.

  • razzz razzz

    The list of dams is extensive on the Columbia River and even more in the surrounding region. But the US government still allows a NPP or two on the river. Totally unnecessary and so are all the environment damaging dams but that is another story…

    Future outlook for dam construction…

  • razzz razzz

    Can any of the locals confirm any part of this dismal narrative?

    "WE WAS GONA PUT A BOBWIRE FENCE TOO, Columbia along this stretch to the Pac, is just a string a lakes separated by hydropower dams. Each one fills the next, fills the next, and so on. Greenest dam power source on the planet but not renewable they say. A benny-spin off to this is the rise and fall of the beach, round the Hanford elbow, works to leach the crud from the low sand hills the tanks have called home All the dribblers is sunk in down to the gravel layer, theres this wide bend jus down a bit from the gravell to spinn the muck seep out offn shore sos it can dilute a bit afor it gits drun/ drinked.. We figured, shucks, no call sending it down to mexico, they don want it, lets jus let the river take it to Portland. Portlan don mind a bit, never have. May harden kanine tooth enamel too. Its all green, its win win for us all is how i see it."

  • razzz razzz

    …Forgot poster credit to the above quote at

    1 posted on Thursday, February 28, 2013 10:11:52 PM by Rabin

  • irhologram

    One effective thing to do would be to write a personal letter…not a form letter, but one that actually engages the reporter. It would take a little research, but such a campaign of reporters is possible, targeting both geographical areas and especially midrange and local reporters. National has the lid on, to be sure…but information trickles up. In these letters, some basic, hard hitting, bullet point facts, like Dr. Helen Caldicott in her video posted here…but those facts relating to the future of Handord, for example, with a sincere and kind request that they check out resources listed in a column on a second page, regarding the specific, current data for that region or area of the reporter's interests. If reporters are ill informed, inform them.
    "The people perish for lack of knowledge."

  • irhologram

    Particularly if you have something as "big" as Hanford as the area you're targeting, the Cc list at the bottom of the letter should include ALL local TV, radio, and newspaper reporters, each of whom, in the same mailing, received a return receipt requested letter that the station or paper could sign for. The reporters may talk among themselves, particularly with rival media receiving the same, locally tailored information. It would be useful, at the same time…let's say ENE is the entity initiating this effort…it would be useful to send a press release article to the local media stating why the information campaign was launched and detailing the purpose and scope of ENE.

  • MaidenHeaven MaidenHeaven

    Excellent suggestions irhologram, it would be to get the right combo of info..along with Helen I would suggest the video Fuskushima Radiation is not safe…it explains in laymens terms the research papers that prove low dose radiation is most dangerous to females.

  • irhologram

    Great. Those two resources would be on the second page "handout" sheet of go to info. The cover letter is the hardest (but not hard, because you can just google the media entities for staff reporters, google the reporter, or even just call the assignment editor to find what they've been working on…and then customize the letter for the "shell" bullet points that, in turn, create interest in the second page fact sheet. But for this to work, it must be a concerted effort…so that it will have "legs" for consciousness raising to stand on. The most important part is to create each reporter as an individual in order to get their attention. Basically, the only costs involved are return receipt postage and stationary.

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    I thought there was.. 220 steel tubes.
    230 tons of spent fuel.

    Canister Storage Building and Interim Storage Area

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    PS..The 118-K-1 Burial Ground…is scary looking.

  • dosdos dosdos

    Don't forget that this week's budget cuts for Hanford will reduce the workforce at the facility by at least 1000 workers. No one is saying whether or not the budget cut will affect the cleanup effort. (You can bet if it wasn't affecting the cleanup, someone would say so.)

    • We Not They Finally

      Yes, fifty years of power and five hundred thousand years of dangerous nuclear waste. "What a bargain!" Direct with the devil. Hanford is primarily a MILITARY facility anyway. ALL the nuclear plants are at the beck and call of the military, of course, but Hanford was openly dedicated to such. Now it's main job, apparently, is to kill people. And they should TRY to "clean it up," but it may be too late.

  • Sickputer

    "Currently there is no danger"…."no immediate threat"…

    How much time has to pass before the danger is recognized as something that can't be wished away with weasly politician words? When it does become denoted as a current and present danger? The nucleocrats just say there was nothing we could do…too many mistakes made long ago in a fight against the Axis powers. Then they will say we need to make the best of a bad situation.

    That doesn't help us at all. These miscreants blew up another 1,000 bombs AFTER the war just to keep proving they were more badass than the Russians who responded with similar tests. So I guarantee you more nuclear waste was hauled by truck and train and probably dumped in those same rusty tanks at Hanford. Or if they were full…straight into ditches and covered up.

    The out of control military industrial complex created the Hanfords and the Chernobyls and the Fukushimas of this world. The problems with mankind-killing wastes are not something we can keep kicking into the future like a tin can. But you can bet that's the stock answer from virtually all the politicians who keep spouting words of comfort when they should be screaming at the president for immediate financial help.

    This country needs a non-secret Manhattan Project to get rid of the extinction level effects of the first one. The only army the US needs is at Hanford and Los Alamos and yes…Fukushima. Quit saying it's someone else's problem.

    • Mack Mack

      Hi SP – regarding your comment:

      "These miscreants blew up another 1,000 bombs AFTER the war…"

      Two days ago 'The Heritage Foundation' published an article saying it's important to keep nuclear testing "on the table," and claimed nuclear testing would have limited effects on the environment!

      This article is a must-read:

      • Sickputer

        Yeah. The Heritage Foundation is a whorehound attack dog for for wannabe John Birchers and they pay Rush Limbaugh well to promote their war drum lingo.

        Careful HF… Don't give your toadie too much bling or he might go back to old habits and look like Lee Marvin leaning against a saloon wall on his horse.

        " What? You gave that former Oxy addict $100,000 bucks? You could have killed the man!"

        Oh, but the bigots and racists of this world love the Rush Limbaugh spectacle. They pay him well to say the things they are too chicken to say. But the verdict of history will not be kind. He proved the double standard of American justice. If you're poor, black, or brown you go to jail. If you are rich and famous you get off with a warning. Things never change in Future Shock America.


          spot on Sickputer. Limbaugh is a front runner for the neo-con disease that's destroying America. Sadly, there are well meaning Americans who are still getting sucked-in by his rhetoric…

      • We Not They Finally

        Actually, it IS "on the table." The dinner table. For us all. They've put the whole Earth at the intersection of evil, greedy, and stupid.

    • We Not They Finally

      Bizarrely, it IS "someone else's problem." I mean, we don't have to live in Fukushima or even in Washington State to be affected. It's been made the problem of us ALL, now and for generations to come. It's quite a equal-opportunity killer, this industry.

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    Leaking nuclear waste from Hanford will remain radioactive for hundreds of thousands of years.

    • We Not They Finally

      Yes, and leaking nuclear waste from ANYWHERE will remain radioactive for hundreds of thousands of years. It's been criminal genocide of the planet from the start. It's just got vastly escalated with Fukushima, with NOTHING done to contain the continual spewing and eventually, the world-wide spread.

  • razzz razzz

    Any reasonable person (even a reporter) will understand arguments for and against NPPs and nuclear waste but owners and editors come under tremendous pressure from the nuclear industry propaganda machine when a paper goes against the grain if questioning nuclear benefits. Reporters could be supportive but will the paper they work for be as supportive of ending NPPs?

    Germany is surviving phasing out its NPPs so is Japan in a perverse way with Fukushima fallout but about 50 of their nuke plants are idle and now France has a target of 55% nuke power generation in the coming years down from the current 75% output countrywide.

  • razzz razzz

    Why doesn't Fukushima Daiichi workers get those nice Tyvek suits to wear shown in the linked Hanford article video? Instead they get carted off to hospitals to die and be replaced (no doubt cesium eating away at their heart muscles). Hanford will need a separate tank to dispose of all those Tyvek suits.

  • JoshuaNB

    Razzz ………. most likely because Fukushima workers don't get billions of $$$$$$$$$$$$$ each year to 'play' around…. this should have been reported years ago… Hanford just got a 'stimulous grant' (wasted taxpayers hard earned $$), for retired Hanford workers to get home nurses to see if they can 'do anything' for them. The ad on tv is disgusting… this world is really sick, sick, sick.. I heard a TV commenter say last night on the news the amerikan dream is 'getting rich'. I belong on the wrong planet.. Heaven PLEASE claim me… soooooooooooooooooonnnnnnnn

  • JoshuaNB

    Forgot… those 'glass things'… they are a joke… useless… just more lies to keep the 'area' booming. Just in case there are any illusions about HOPE.

  • irhologram

    Re: sequestation: "We're currently assessing the potential impacts at Hanford and will know more early next week," said Cameron Hardy, DOE Hanford spokesman. "We anticipate impacts to our contractor work force, various projects and programs and a number of subcontracts for cleanup work at Hanford."
    A letter is expected to be sent from DOE to Washington Gov. Jay Inslee early next week giving more details on the effects of sequestration at Hanford.
    Then, contractors might be sent letters detailing cost cuts, which should result in better information about potential delays to environmental cleanup and impacts to contractor workers and subcontractors.
    Inslee has said that the sequestration could not come at a worse time, given news that six Hanford underground tanks have newly been discovered to be leaking underground waste.
    The Tri-Cities, because of its economic dependence on Hanford, will be disproportionately affected by the across-the-board federal budget costs, he said at a news conference this week.
    Read more here:

    Here's a start for building the mailing list of reporters. click news department

    Just a small beginning for the above outlined campaign.

    • jec jec

      THEY SAT ON THIS FOR YEARS. No excuses for the sequester..they have funds put away..for superfund sites..or did they already waste it. Should have been cleaned up in the 1960s..what gives with the government? Get us sick..give us "obamacare?"–medicine can not cure the cancers and autoimmune diseases we all have now..

    • We Not They Finally

      They just need to sequester the congresspeople who refuse to work. Give them pink slips and cut off their pay. That ANY public services will be cut is a disgrace. If they really want a no-government paradise, let them go live in Somalia. And they can take their assault weapons with them. Our country has come to THIS?

  • irhologram

    There are dozens more targets, I'm sure. The above all have e-mail. It would be useful to e-mail them that they're about to receive the letter, then plaster the facility with return receipt requested letters to each reporter, then e-mail again and request permission to supply them with ongoing info…in other words, establish a link by getting their attention through the law of advertising…it takes 3 impressions to break through to recognition.

  • Highly radioactive: 1,000 gallons of nuclear waste leak in Washington every year
    Published time: February 28, 2013 21:47

    "Six tanks at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation are leaking an estimated 1,000 gallons of nuclear waste each year. And with billions of dollars in automatic spending cuts about to occur, the US government may not have the funds to clean up the mess.

    Three underground tanks at the Washington-based nuclear reservation were last week found to be leaking at an initially-estimated rate of 300 gallons of waste per year. But Department of Energy investigators this week discovered three additional tanks were leaking, bringing the total estimated annual waste to 1,000 gallons per year.

    The Hanford Nuclear Reservation, which was established in 1943 as part of the Manhattan Project, is mostly decommissioned but still holds two-thirds of the nation’s radioactive waste in its 177 tanks. The millions of gallons of radioactive material, which still remain from Cold War-era plutonium production, are highly dangerous and are quickly dripping into American soil."