DOE to Ship Hanford Leaking Tank Waste to New Mexico - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

DOE to Ship Hanford Leaking Tank Waste to New Mexico

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RICHLAND, Wash. - Federal officials are looking to ship some 3 million gallons of radioactive waste from Washington state to New Mexico.

 The Department of Energy announced its preferred plan Wednesday, saying it will provide the department an option to deal with leaking tanks at Hanford Nuclear Reservation. The waste would ultimately be disposed at a massive repository near Carlsbad, N.M.

 The transfer would only account for a fraction of the roughly 50 million gallons of waste currently at Hanford but would impact some 20 tanks. Federal officials have identified six leaking tanks.

Governor Inslee statement on DOE announcement regarding removal of Hanford waste. Released as governor arrived at Hanford for a tour and briefing.

 "This is a good start. The state of Washington had been pushing to get this waste out of Hanford and I'm heartened that the increased attention on these leaking tanks has prompted DOE to act.

 "I do have some remaining questions and concerns.  We need to make sure that this action does not jeopardize progress on the vitrification plant. I will be insistent that the full cycle of technical review and permitting is resolved so that any grouted material does not remain in the state of Washington.  We also need a clear determination of which tanks hold TRU waste that can be shipped out of Washington."