Hot Time in Hanford

February 17, 2013

Hanford Nuclear Bomb Plant

More disturbing news is coming as Washington State Governor Jay Inslee warns that the Nuclear Bomb plant at Hanford is seriously leaking. This has been happening for years, but with the possible sequester of Federal funds the clean-up effort may stall. Enevitably, radiation will or more likely has leaked into the Columbia River.

From The Seattle PI.com:

“A World War II-vintage, single-shell waste tank at Hanford, storing high-level radioactive waste from nuclear weapons manufacturing, has been leaking 150 to 300 gallons each year into the soil at the Eastern Washington reservation, the U.S. Department of Energy told the governor’s office early Friday.
“This is very disturbing news. I am alarmed about this on many levels . . . Washington state has a zero tolerance policy on radioactive leaks,” Gov. Jay Inslee told a news conference in Olympia.
While stressing that there is “no immediate public health risk,” Inslee voiced impatience that federal managers have yet to clean remaining sludge — a mixture of solids and liquids with a mud-like consistency — out of 149 single-shell tanks built as long as 70 years ago to contain wastes from the manufacture of plutonium.
Hanford began bomb-building as part of the World War II Manhattan Project. It manufactured the plutonium used in the bombing of Nagasaki, Japan on Aug. 9, 1945. The 560-square-mile reservation continued making plutonium for 45 years after the end of World War II.”
(snip)
“In two weeks, noted Inslee, a sweeping, across-the-board sequestration will cut spending in all federal agencies — unless Congress acts to head it off. It will force some layoffs at Hanford, noted the governor, and “could conceivably stop the remediation effort at some of these tanks.”
The leak, and the sequestration, constitute a “perfect radioactive storm,” said Inslee.
The “perfect storm” may break over the heads of two Eastern Washington members of Congress.
The House Republican leadership has indicated it will let the sequestration go ahead. Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers, R-Wash., whose Eastern Washington district is downwind of Hanford, is chairman of the House Republican Conference. Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Wash., who comes from Pasco and whose district includes Hanford, is chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee.”
—————————————–
So for the Congress-Stalling Republicans, this will be a case of “Uh-oh, it’s in my backyard”…

Enjoy the water…

 

And in accordance with the long-standing tradition of unsubstantiated rumor-mongering at Dojo Rat, I will relate these two stories:

When I was care taking a farm on the Columbia River outside Portland Oregon, water quality was a constant issue. One of my best friends had just done a cabinet job for a pub up in Hood River, miles upstream on the Columbia. While talking with the owner, it was related that the town had a dirty little secret. It seems that thousands of people travel to Hood River to windsurf, some renting condos and cabins for the entire summer of steady winds and blue water. However, there seemed to be a problem; lots of the windsurfers ended up suffering from illness such as hair loss, skin rash and bleeding gums, the most obvious to appear and be visible. Nobody could explain this, but fingers were pointed at the leaky Hanford plant upstream.
When I told that story to my neighbor, an attorney for the city of Portland and very reliable, he added more to the story:
He knew a person that was stationed on a barge at the mouth of the Columbia. Their job was to dredge up muck from the bottom of the river and inspect it for environmental toxins.
As he described; the sediment was so radioactive, they sunk the barge right there.
I don’t know what to make of that, but I’ve thought about it for years.
In a separate horror story about Hanford, I had a source for a story that was a contract pilot for the CIA. He was personally told that at Hanford there are places so radioactive that nobody is supposed to go there for thousands of years.
And that is where bodies that are never to be found are hidden.
Of whom?
I don’t know, but I can guess.
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UPDATE:

New Book: Shocking Hanford radiation experiments on prisoners — Columbia River called most radioactive in world

(snip)
“More Hanford History from Brown

*Tunnels created by muskrats undermined one of Hanford’s storage ponds, causing 60 million litres of radioactive effluent to pour into the Columbia river
*For 7 hours, they processed highly radioactive “green” fuel that had not been allowed to decay for as long as usual – and showered 407,000 gigabecquerels of radioactive iodine over nearby cities
*The Columbia [has] been called the most radioactive in the world, and many thousands of people who live downstream and downwind say the contamination has made them sick”

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5 Responses to Hot Time in Hanford

  1. Ghog! on February 23, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    so! That’s where Jimmy Hoffa is!

  2. BekkaPoo on March 14, 2013 at 1:35 pm

    Thanks for this story.. The nuclear infrastructure in this country is aging and with no plans to stop nuclear power/weapons manufacturing anytime soon..well, maybe we don’t want to think about that, but we should. I’m sure there could easily be an American Fukushima.

  3. BekkaPoo on March 14, 2013 at 4:11 pm
  4. DR on March 14, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    Thanks,
    And we should not forget that last years midwest floods in the midwest threatened one nuclear power plant, Hurricane Sandy flooding another, and the damned things are leaking radioactivity into rivers.
    Worst case scenario is a massive solar storm which shuts down the power grid and the back-up cooling systems fail.
    but in Hanford’s case, it is years of stored waste that is the issue.

  5. BekkaPoo on March 14, 2013 at 6:41 pm

    What to do, what to do? It seems like nuclear anything has more risks than it’s worth.

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