IT HAS BEEN CALLED THE MOST RADIOACTIVE PLACE ON EARTH.
THE MOST RECENT ACCIDENT
The Department of Energy has checked for radiation contamination in three states after potentially contaminated equipment left Hanford.
January 21, 2016 A worker at the Hanford Fire Station has tested positive for internal radioactive contamination .
The exposure occurred after breathing equipment used at the nuclear reservation’s Plutonium Finishing Plant was sent to the station for storage, according to the Department of Energy.
Of 150 workers at the Hanford Fire Department, 104 have requested tests of their bodily fluid to determine if they also may have been exposed. In December, contamination was found in cooling systems used within protective suits worn by Plutonium Finishing Plant workers that have high levels of radioactive contaminants.
Work was stopped on the three high-hazard projects at the Plutonium Finishing Plant, which is being prepared for demolition.
Projects include cutting up the last large contaminated glove box, work inside the Americium Facility and work inside the Plutonium Reclamation Facility canyon.
Crews have since re-entered the Plutonium Reclamation Facility canyon to cap the floor with grout. The cap will provide shielding from radiological contamination and a level surface for workers when they begin decontaminating the canyon walls.
[NOTE: GROUT IS GOING TO STOP PLUTONIUM FROM ESCAPING?
QUICK! SEND GROUT TO JAPAN!
THE FUKUSHIMA CRISIS CAN BE SOLVED, RIGHT?
The other two high-hazard projects require wearing the air-filled suits.
Contractor CH2M Hill Plateau Remediation Co. has decided to do just one project at a time that requires the suits, and work has resumed on the glove box rather than the Americium Facility. An in depth investigation into the cause of the incident is continuing, Olds said."
HANFORD IS NOTORIOUS FOR "ACCIDENTS" AND MISSING DEADLINES, AND POISONING THE ENVIRONMENT AND HUMANS AND EVERY LIVING THING AS FAR AS IT CAN REACH.
BUT THE NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION (NRC) ALLOWS ALL NUKE SITES TO DO AS THEY PLEASE, EVEN BARS NEW REGULATIONS THAT WOULD INCREASE THE SAFETY OF ALL OF THEM...AND US.
THE NRC IS NOT FOR HUMAN HEALTH, BUT FOR NUCLEAR INDUSTRY PROFITS.
The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has rejected the recommendation of the high-level task force it convened after the March 2011 Fukushima disaster to require nuclear plant owners to develop and maintain plans for coping with a core-melt accident.
This decision will allow nuclear plants to continue to maintain those plans voluntarily and deny the agency the authority to review those plans or issue citations if they are deficient.
“Once again, the NRC is ignoring a key lesson of the Fukushima accident:
Emergency plans are not worth the paper they are printed on unless they are rigorously developed, maintained and periodically exercised,” said Edwin Lyman, a senior scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS).
Yesterday’s decision also removes a provision from the proposed draft rule that would require NEW reactors to have additional design features to protect against Fukushima-type accidents.
By eliminating this requirement, Lyman said, the NRC is relinquishing the opportunity to ensure that new reactors built in the United States will have stronger protection measures than the current reactor fleet.
“When it comes to these critical safety measures, the NRC is allowing the industry to regulate itself.”
ALWAYS HAS, ALWAYS WILL.
AFTER OVER 60 YEARS, THE NRC (OR ANY AGENCY BEFORE IT) HAS NOT FORCED HANFORD'S OWNERS TO DO ONE BLOODY THING RIGHT.
ALTHOUGH AWARDED OVER $13 BILLION FOR A "CLEAN-UP FACILITY", WE SEE THAT MONEY APPARENTLY WENT TO OTHER "PROJECTS".
WHERE IT WENT, WE MAY NEVER KNOW.
WE KNOW THEY SAY THEY NEED ANOTHER $120 BILLION TO REALLY CLEAN UP.
"With an estimated price tag of $120 billion, and a theoretical deadline of 2047, cleanup efforts are continually stalled by obstacles including time, money, the danger of the task at hand, and the sheer vastness of the site, 586 square-miles."
Two more C Farm tanks not emptied 15 months after deadline.
"A court-enforced consent decree required that all 16 C Farm tanks, which were built during World War II, be emptied 15 months ago. A federal judge is expected to set new deadlines.
FOR THE HUNDREDTH TIME?
The most recently emptied tank, the ONLY one completed in 2015, is Tank C-102.
Tank C-105 remains a problem. Work has stalled there to demonstrate a robotic vacuum system that can be used on tanks suspected of leaking in the past.
Work with the system is not expected to resume.
“It’s going to be an important issue,” said Jim Alzheimer, a tank engineer with the state Department of Ecology, a regulator on the project. Hanford needs a way to empty tanks that are in danger of leaking. The most recent tank to be emptied, C-102, had nearly 300,000 gallons of waste removed. It amounts to 95 percent of waste retrieved, although the goal is to retrieve an average of 99 percent of the waste from all single-shell tanks.
The target was to get down to 360 cubic feet of waste, or the equivalent of about 1 inch of waste if it were evenly spread over the bottom of the 530,000-gallon-capacity tank.
However, the state can agree to consider a tank empty to regulatory standards when the limits of technology are reached.
THE "LIMITS OF TECHNOLOGY" CANNOT DEAL WITH NUCLEAR WASTE, NEVER COULD, NEVER WILL.
THOSE WHO DESIGNED THE DAMNABLE THINGS KNEW AND ADMITTED THIS, ADMITTED THEY COULD NOT PREVENT LEAKAGE, AND YET THE NUKE INDUSTRY WENT RIGHT AHEAD AND BUILT THE FIRST NUCLEAR POWER PLANT...AFTER ALL, THEY HAD TO HAVE A WAY TO "LEGALLY" CONTAMINATE THE WORLD.
Waste has been emptied with a Mobile Arm Retrieval System, or MARS, the largest and most robust system used to retrieve waste in Hanford’s underground tanks. With retrieval about 45 percent complete and 67,000 gallons of waste remaining, the hoses used on the vacuum system failed due to heavy use.
JUST LIKE RADIATION AT FUKUSHIMA SHUT DOWN ALL THE ROBOTS.
THE MANHATTAN PROJECT BOYS SIMPLY UNDERESTIMATED WHAT RADIOACTIVE MATERIAL IN NUCLEAR REACTORS CAN DO TO THE MATERIALS USED TO "CONTAIN" THEM...
THERE IS NO REAL CONTAINMENT POSSIBLE...LEAKS AND THE NEED FOR "VENTING" ARE THE NORM.
As work is completed on the C Tank Farm, DOE will next go to the A and AX Tank Farm.
At least two single-shell tanks are at risk of leaking during waste retrieval and could benefit from a vacuum retrieval system.
One of the tanks was ruptured after high heat waste was added and an explosion occurred, Alzheimer said.
DID THAT MAKE NATIONAL NEWS?
DO LOCALS KNOW?
ARE WARNINGS OUT?
NOPE...NO NEED, THEY SAY.
"Between October 2012 and February 2013, the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) reported that 7 of the 177 underground storage tanks at Hanford are leaking.
The Washington State Department of Ecology only knows when USDOE reported these leaks, not when the leaks actually started.
Note that 67 tanks leaked at least one million gallons in the past."
The single-shell tanks (SSTs) are all unfit for use and decades past their design life. It would be impossible to repair and upgrade the SSTs to meet current regulatory standards.
Because the Waste Treatment Plant designed to treat Hanford’s tank waste will not start up for at least six more years, USDOE is exploring other options to treat and dispose of this waste.
It may be possible to classify the waste in five of the six leaking SSTs as transuranic waste (meaning literally “after uranium,” this waste contains alpha-particle-emitting radioactive isotopes with atomic numbers higher than 92, uranium's atomic number).
If this was done, then the waste would be retrieved from the tanks, dried, packaged, and shipped to WIPP for disposal. But this process would, optimistically, take at least two to five years."
WIPP IS CLOSED, DUE TO ITS OWN CRUMBLING FAILURE AND ITS OWN LEAKS.
AND THAT "NEW WASTE TREATMENT PLANT"?
THE ONSITE FACILITY AT HANFORD IS "ON HOLD".
YUCCA MOUNTAIN, THE ONLY OTHER "NEW" FACILITY ALREADY PLANNED AND BEGUN HAS BEEN AXED.
NOBODY WANTED SUCH AN ABOMINATION NEAR THEM.
EVEN A FEW POLITICIANS FOUGHT AGAINST YUCCA MOUNTAIN.
HANFORD HAS LONG POLLUTED GROUNDWATER AND THE COLUMBIA RIVER IT SITS ON.
Hanford officials publicly announce a leak of at least 115,000 gallons from single-shell tank 106-T. A month earlier, a report from the Seattle Post Intelligencer claims over 30 years, billions of low-level waste was discharged into the ground.but monitoring data continues to indicate intrusion in some tanks."
REDUCED BUT NOT STOPPED!
REMEMBER, THE SSTs HAVE BEEN THERE SINCE WORLD WAR 2, HAVE BEEN LEAKING SINCE AT LEAST 1973.
"The sources of intrusion are being investigated and stopped WHERE POSSIBLE."
THEN IT'S BEING STOPPED NOWHERE BECAUSE THE SSTs CAN'T DO ANYTHING BUT LEAK...THEY'RE CRUMBLED, CRACKED RELICS FROM MID-20th CENTURY.
HERE'S THE FACT OF IT ALL...
"Hanford hosts 56 million gallons of hot reactor byproducts in 177 steel-walled underground tanks, some dating to the heyday of Betty Grable.
Collectively, they’ve leaked an estimated 1 million gallons of waste into the desert soil, creating radioactive plumes that are gradually headed for the Columbia River.
The Department of Energy put a stop to the big leaks years ago by pumping out liquids from the tanks, leaving crusty, gooey, toxic sludges inside. Water has been penetrating one of these supposedly “stabilized” tanks. The lyrically named T-111 has reportedly resumed leaking at a rate of 150 to 300 gallons a year.
This is a reminder that the nation’s largest concentration of nuclear waste is stored under insanely makeshift conditions. The oldest tanks, including T-111, were engineered to last 20 years. They were built in 1943 and 1944.
Even Hanford’s newer, double-walled tanks – built between the late 1960s and early 1980s – are slowly rotting in the ground."
By the late 1940s and early 1950s, radioactivity was detected as far as the mouth of the Columbia River, near Astoria, Oregon...
IMAGINE WHAT THE LEVELS ARE BY NOW?
BUT HANFORD ISN'T THE ONLY FAILING FACILITY.
OTHER "INCIDENTS" FOR JANUARY, 2016?
THE DRESDEN FACILITY IN ILLINOIS.
Notification Date: 01/19/2016
"At 0400 CST on Wednesday, January 20, 2016, the Dresden Nuclear Power Station (DNPS) Technical Support Center (TSC) emergency ventilation system will be removed from service for planned maintenance activities.
During the maintenance, the TSC Ventilation will be shut down. The TSC air filtration fan and dampers will be non-functional, rendering the TSC HVAC accident mode non-functional.
This maintenance is scheduled to minimize out of service time. The planned TSC ventilation outage is scheduled to be completed in approximately 43 hours."
43 HOURS UNFILTERED VENTILATION....
DID YOU KNOW, ILLINOIS?
Notification Date: 01/17/2016ALERT DECLARED FOR FIRE NOT EXTINGUISHED WITHIN 15 MINUTES
Facility: WESTINGHOUSE ELECTRIC CORPORATION
RX Type: URANIUM FUEL FABRICATION
City: COLUMBIA State: SC
"A plant employee discovered a fire in the mechanical factory strap plating room and activated the fire alarm. At 0529 EST, the licensee notified the Richland County Fire Department. The fire was extinguished and the Alert declaration was terminated at 0709 EST. No radioactive materials were involved and no injuries were reported. "
THEY'RE "SELF-REPORTING", SELF-REGULATED....NO WORRIES...BURN, BABY, BURN!
THEN SIMPLY RETRACT THE INCIDENT, ALL IS WELL.
BACK IN DECEMBER,
WHO READ ABOUT THE "INCIDENT" AT INDIAN POINT NUKE FACILITY WHEN IT LOST POWER?
IT'S OKAY, NEW YORK, NEW JERSEY, NO WORRIES.
INDIAN POINT IS A WELL KNOWN LEAKER ANYWAY....IT'S THE NORM.
WANT TO READ MORE?
GO TO http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/event-status/event/
PICK A YEAR.
For INES event reports, see IAEA Event Report Website
Suggested Further Reading
- Columbia River United (CRU), Hanford and the River, 1997
- D'Antonio, Michael, Atomic Harvest: Hanford and the Lethal Toll of America's Nuclear Arsenal, 1993, New York: Crown Publishers
- Gerber, Michelle, On the Home Front, 1992, Lincoln, NE: Univ. of NE Press
- Loeb, Paul, Nuclear Culture: Living and Working in the World's Largest Atomic Complex, 1986, (2nded.) Philadelphia: New Society Publishers
- Oregon Office of Energy, Hanford Cleanup: The First Ten Years, 1999, OOE Safety Division.
- U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) Office on Environmental Management, Linking Legacies: Connecting the Cold War Nuclear Weapons Production Processes to Their Environmental Consequences, 1997, Washington, DC: USDOE
- USDOE Office of Environmental Management, Closing the Circle on Splitting of the Atom, 1996, Washington, DC: USDOE