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Tri-City Herald - State and top fed official at odds over Hanford high level radioactive waste - Annette Cary

Quote:DOE’s change of policy would allow waste from fuel reprocessing to be classified as low level waste if it can meet radioactive concentration limits set for low level waste and could be safely disposed of at a site other than a deep geological repository, as required for high level waste.

While high level waste is legally defined mostly by the processes that created it, low level waste is defined mostly by its radioactive content.

The new policy “is us looking at this from a science basis of what the content is of any waste stream,” Dabbar said.

It is consistent with international standards, he said. Other countries define radioactive waste by content rather than source, he said.

Again, they're trying to treat all radioactive sources the same, regardless of differing toxicity of material.  Toxicity of source only needs to be diluted to low level standards of radioactive content.  Cheaper and easier to grout it than vitrify it, then move it to some other location.  Delays in radioactive waste disposition and disposal are costing FED dollars.  DOE is looking to cut Hanford Advisory Boards to save more money.  Hanford's big brag is moving toxic radioactive sludge further away from the Colombia River.

Quote:The sludge was the result of irradiated fuel that was not processed to remove plutonium at the end of the Cold War. Before the fuel was removed in 2004, it corroded underwater and fuel corrosion particle, metal fragments and dirt combined to create about 950 cubic feet of sludge.

Just a small part of Hanford's legacy.