Published February 27, 2013
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee says radioactive waste tanks may be leaking some 1,000 gallons a year at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.
Inslee said Wednesday that numbers are still being evaluated to determine exactly how much has leaked and how fast the waste is leaving the tanks. The 1,000-gallon figure is a rough estimate based on the early assessment of six problematic tanks.
Hanford has 177 aging tanks that store millions of gallons of radioactive sludge. Inslee says there's no technology to plug the leaks, so officials are working on a solution to remove the sludge from the leaking tanks. He's also expressed concerns about the other tanks at the reservation.
Federal officials say there is no immediate threat to public safety and that they have not detected any discernible change in contamination levels in monitoring wells.