Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tank waste, robots and waxing… Recipe for a viral video?

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

Check out this new video about removing the dangerous radioactive and chemical waste from Hanford’s underground tanks (“closing” the tanks). Then, please forward it to your friends, family, neighbors, colleagues, acquaintances, etc.

As Part 1 of the series The Scoop on Hanford Tanks, this video, The Tanks are Out There, begins explaining the process and risks associated with tank closure.

Currently, we’re in the process of making decisions about how to close the 16 single-shell tanks in Waste Management Area C (WMA-C), with 2019 being the deadline for completing this task. Before we make any decisions, Ecology and the U.S. Department of Energy will hold a public comment period for the proposed WMA-C Closure Plan. This Closure Plan will be developed in the next 1-2 years. Some of the questions surrounding this issue are:
  • Do we dig up the tanks after they’ve been emptied? Or do we stabilize them and leave them in the ground?
  • What does “empty” really mean?
  • What do we do about the potentially contaminated soil around the tanks?

We want your input before we draft the Closure Plan. Please comment here, email, or call 800-321-2008. For more information, see our Tank Waste Storage Project page.

We’re currently working on more videos in this series, so stay tuned…

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