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Inslee: Hanford Plan Doesn’t Include Immediate Solution for Leaky Tanks of Waste

Ted S. Warren
AP Photo

A new proposal to phase-in portions of cleanup at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation is an intriguing idea, but it doesn’t solve immediate problems of leaking waste tanks, said Gov. Jay Inslee during a visit Thursday.

The Democrat was responding to a new plan this week from U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz. 

“... And we’ve made clear to the Department of Energy that they need to move forward with a plan to stabilize these tanks and remove them from the leaking tanks. So we can’t take our eye off the ball and the immediate threat, which is the leaking tanks as well. Both things need to happen,” the governor said.

The governor says the people of Washington are owed a swift solution for the 56 million gallons of radioactive sludge stored in underground tanks at the Hanford reservation. The federal plan would phase-in a massive waste treatment plant to process radioactive waste into glass logs.

Anna King calls Richland, Washington home and loves unearthing great stories about people in the Northwest. She reports for the Northwest News Network from a studio at Washington State University, Tri-Cities. She covers the Mid-Columbia region, from nuclear reactors to Mexican rodeos.