Inslee: Leaking Tank Waste Removal Can’t Begin For Two To Four Years

Mar 6, 2013

  Washington Gov. Jay Inslee says it may take two to four years to begin removing liquids from leaking tanks at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.

Washington Governor Jay Inslee toured the under-construction waste treatment plant at Hanford on Wednesday.
Credit Office of the Governor

  The Democratic governor made the comments Wednesday after a tour of the southeast Washington site. The governor told reporters on the tour that there is no technology that can stop the leaks.

“The bad news is that unfortunately there will be some continuing leakage in these tanks while we’re experiencing this," Inslee says. "However, there is a very active pump and treating system -- you may have seen as we were driving by -- a brand new pump and treat system that is showing great success.”

That treatment system pumps out contaminated groundwater at Hanford and replaces it with water that meets regulatory standards. Separately, Wednesday, the Department of Energy announced that salt caves in the New Mexico desert are its preferred resting place for a small portion of Hanford's radioactive tank waste.

Copyright 2013 Northwest News Network

One the Web:

Gov. Inslee's statement on Hanford tank waste - Office of the Governor