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Energy Northwest new classification

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RICHLAND, Wash.-- Energy Northwest recently reached a new level, when it comes to protecting the environment.

The Columbia Generating Station's nuclear energy system was awarded a new classification level. The state department of ecology has given energy northwest a lower classification of hazardous and mixed waste production.

They went from a large quantity generator to a medium one. The company's been considered a large level for all of it's 27 years. Energy Northwest is working to regulate their environmental impact and this is a big success for them.

Energy Northwest environmental regulator, Robert Nielson, says they're working to shrink their pollution footprint, knowing it's important to the community.

"It means increased trust on the part of our stake holders and the public by reducing the amount of waste that we generate and subsequently have to impact the environment with," says Nielson.

The large, medium, or small classification is based on how much waste is produced every month and how much waste is accumulated on the site.

Energy northwest runs the only nuclear generating facility in the Northwest, which makes this impact even greater.