Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Nuclear Waste Program “Scene” at Sturgeon Festival 2010

By Erika Holmes, Community Outreach & Environmental Education Specialist, Nuclear Waste Program

On September 18, I had the opportunity to participate in the Sturgeon Festival at the Water Resources Education Center in Vancouver, Wash. This educational, annual family event celebrates the ecosystems of the Columbia River.

Our exhibit featured the Hanford-specific groundwater model that demonstrates how contamination enters the groundwater and soil beneath the nuclear reservation. But it’s also a great tool for showing kids why it’s important to keep our groundwater clean.

For adults, we offered invitations to upcoming public workshops on Hanford’s radioactive solid waste burial grounds and the opportunity to sign up for the Hanford Public Involvement mailing lists.
We also asked attendees to identify which Hanford issues are most important to them. The top three responses were:
  • Protecting the Columbia River from Hanford contaminants
  • Finding a long-term storage solution for high-level nuclear waste now that progress on the Yucca Mountain Project has halted
  • Ensuring that the public is informed and included in the decision-making process.

We also participated in the Water Center’s “Scene a Sturgeon Lately?” photo challenge, entering in the “Sturgeon and You Go Green” category. Our sturgeon sets a clean, green example by recycling and bringing a reusable water bottle!


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