March 05, 2010
Under the sands of Eastern Washington sits hundreds of millions of gallons of toxic and nuclear waste, remnants of the Cold War that could last for millions of years. The massive cleanup of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation continues slowly.
But this radioactive material may not have the final resting place it was once promised.
The Obama administration recently announced that the proposed Yucca Mountain national nuclear waste repository in Nevada is off the table. It is no longer being considered viable as a solution to radioactive waste and a blue ribbon panel is researching an alternative.
The announcement has Washington Senator Patty Murray up in arms, worried that Hanford’s waste may have no where to go.
Senator Murray took Energy Secretary Steven Chu to task in testimony yesterday, calling the Yucca decision irresponsible. Murray asked Chu to explain the decision not to move forward with Yucca Mountain to communities living around Hanford and its nuclear waste:
Senator Murray believes Yucca Mountain needs to move forward and in 2002 voted to pass a resolution in the Senate approving Yucca Mountain as a national nuclear waste repository.
Senator Murray also pressed Secretary Chu on providing clear, consistent, and sufficient budgets for Hanford clean-up.