Been watching “Manhattan” on TV? Deadly crud still hasn’t been cleaned up!

The federal Department of Energy has estimated that it will cost $1.2 billion to clean up all the radioactive and hazardous waste at Los Alamos, but New Mexico Environment Secretary Ryan Flynn says he believes that amount is “far too low.”

Flynn, speaking at a meeting of a Los Alamos National Laboratory citizens advisory board here Thursday, called the DOE’s cost projection “a bare minimum.”

Flynn said the parties involved need “to have an honest conversation about the extent of the problem.” LANL is expected to receive $181 million in federal funds for environmental remediation in the next federal budget year…

And Flynn said any assumption that the state Environment Department will accept the cheapest so-called cap-and-cover contamination remedies from DOE “is misplaced.”

Flynn’s comments came as part of the first public discussion of plans to revise the 2005 legal agreement between the state and DOE over cleanup of LANL’s legacy waste dating back to the 1940s Manhattan Project that developed the first atomic bomb.

Under the 10-year-old consent order that ended a legal fight between New Mexico and the feds, cleanup of the lab’s 40-square-mile site was supposed to be completed by this year. But that didn’t come close to happening and the two sides are preparing to negotiate revisions.

RTFA for lots and lots of details.

Most of this crappola goes back 75 years. No one on Earth expects the US Government or the Pentagon to be in a hurry to live up to their responsibilities at contaminating the planet; but, you’d think they’d do something about the little county in the Jemez Mountains of New Mexico – that they own lock, stock and barrels of radioactive goo.

Everyone in Los Alamos knows about most of the stuff buried under the town itself. Which fast-food restaurants where you only use the drive-up window. But, I continue to be surprised by the highest-paid help in the entire United States sticking around for those paychecks when they learn what they’re sleeping and living over.

3 thoughts on “Been watching “Manhattan” on TV? Deadly crud still hasn’t been cleaned up!

  1. Nikohl Vandel says:

    The nuclear industry and our government are really looking for the way out, yet they are still a bit confused how to help us survive their experimentation mess. I’ve found that the Nuclear Regulatory Agency has a hard job to do and many who work there are not balanced in their mindset. I don’t know how it was before #Fuqafukushima, I have not seen an improvement in our Federal agency except more Public communication seems to be important to them and I do watch their outreach. Our nuclear discussion definitely needs to be loud, loud, loud.

  2. Lewis Strauss says:

    In reply to the rhetorical question about the residents of Los Alamos: perhaps “they know that they know what they don’t want to know.” More information about the progress of the cleanup of contaminated material at the Los Alamos National Laboratory @ Note that according to Nuclear Watch New Mexico, 8.4% of the $2.2 billion total budget for the Los Alamos National Laboratory goes to environmental cleanup, while 65% goes to weapons activities. Meanwhile Federal officials are investigating another theft of radioactive materials by a lab employee from one of the areas at LANL set aside for contaminated waste.

  3. Crocodile says:

    Los Alamos is the second-most affluent city in the United States and the most affluent small city with a population of less than 100,000. Only Washington, D.C., came ahead of Los Alamos in the national ranking. Also according to the Census Bureau the average income in Los Alamos county is $117,400 compared to $51,637 in neighboring Rio Arriba county, which means there’s a 127.36% wealth gap between the two counties.

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