Companies responsible for cleaning up a decommissioned plutonium plant in rural Washington state failed to conduct comprehensive safety checks at facilities containing nuclear waste, even after a 2017 tunnel collapse put surrounding communities on lockdown, government auditors reported Thursday. The report about the Hanford nuclear waste site raises new concerns about environmental and safety risks posed by one of the United States’ worst toxic waste sites. The Government Accountability Office found that the Energy Department waived a “root cause analysis” of the tunnel collapse because it was asked to do so by the contractor handling inspections, a subsidiary of Dallas-based Jacobs Engineering. The department did conduct a separate review to determine weaknesses and risks related to contaminated facilities, but that evaluation “was based largely on old data” and “did not include any physical or non-physical inspection” to flag facilities for cleanup, the office reported.
Washington Post 21st Feb 2020 read more »
Frontline Communities and the U.S. Nuclear Weapons Complex. U.S. nuclear weapons have left a toxic legacy, but the issue is far from outdated history. In December 2019, Congress passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The NDAA increases production of nuclear weapons, putting even more neighborhoods in New Mexico, South Carolina, and Georgia at risk.
Outrider Post (accessed) 22nd Feb 2020 read more »