Friday, November 3, 2006
Nuclear Cleanup Site Has Cities Cleaning Up Financially: Effort That Began In 1989 Has Been An Economic Boon
Article in the Washington Post -- Nuclear Cleanup Site Has Cities Cleaning Up Financially: Effort That Began In 1989 Has Been An Economic Boon, by Blaine Harden:
Out on the Hanford nuclear reservation, a fantastically poisoned plateau where the federal government brewed up most of the plutonium for its nuclear arsenal, the cleanup is going rather badly.
Now in its 17th year, the nation's largest and most complex environmental remediation project is costing many billions of dollars more than expected and will continue far longer than experts once predicted.
That dismal forecast is music to the ears of local residents.
"The silver lining is all local, where there are no consequences for failure and no misdeed goes unrewarded," said Robert Alvarez, a senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington and a former Energy Department official who monitored the cleanup during the Clinton era.
By almost every measure, except the radiation and chemical illnesses suffered by some Hanford workers, five decades of making bombs were a blessing to Pasco, Kennewick and Richland -- neighboring towns along the Columbia River that call themselves the Tri-Cities.