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Nuclear waste leak in Washington much worse than originally feared, officials say

Last week, Washington state officials announced that one of the 177 underground storage tanks at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in the state’s south-central region is leaking radioactive nuclear waste at a rate of 150 to 300 gallons per year, threatening the water table and nearby Columbia River. Further inspections, however, reveal the problem to be much worse. In meetings Friday, Washington governor Jay Inslee learned that six of the tanks containing hundreds of thousands of gallons of radioactive sludge were found to be leaking. Combined, the tanks contain some 53 million gallons of nuclear waste, a byproduct of the federal ... Read More

Nuclear waste leak threatens Washington State’s groundwater, rivers

Washington Governor Jay Inslee and other state officials sounded an alarm Friday over a leaking underground storage tank at south-central Washington’s Hanford nuclear reservation, a former plutonium production facility that is already the nation’s most contaminated nuclear waste site. The leaking tank contains hundreds of thousands of gallons of radioactive nuclear waste and is one of 177 World War II-era tanks at the site designed to last 20 years. Gov. Inslee said that officials estimate the tank could be leaking 150 gallons to 300 gallons of nuclear waste over a year and that the long-term threat to the state’s groundwater ... Read More