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Study Slams Nuclear Waste Practices at Hanford

Feb 6, 2013
(NYT Green)

Management and disposal of radioactive waste at the Hanford nuclear reservation in Washington State, marred by problems for more than two decades, is the focus of a harsh new assessment by the Government Accountability Office.

"By just about any definition," the auditing agency says, "Hanford has not been a well-planned, well-managed or well-executed major capital construction project."

Hanford opened in 1943 as part of the Manhattan Project and operated almost continuously through 1987 as the country’s largest manufacturer of weapons-grade plutonium. Left behind at the 586-square-mile site are 56 million gallons of highly radioactive waste in aged and corroded underground storage tanks.