February 2016 marks two years since the underground fire and radiological release events forced the temporary closure of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP), near Carlsbad, New Mexico. Since that time much progress has been made in the recovery of the underground including mine stability and habitability, initial panel closure, radiological risk remediation and the addition of an interim ventilation system. Additionally, in response to investigations from the Accident Investigation Boards (AIB), the site has made significant changes to all safety management programs and is in the process of revising the Documented Safety Analysis (DSA) that establishes the safety envelope for all activities on the WIPP site.
Cumbria Trust 18th Feb 2016 read more »
Rapidly decomposing waste 60 feet to 200 feet down is smoldering beneath one of the landfills in what scientists call a sub-surface burning event. The underground burn is only a few thousand feet from a Superfund site filled with waste from the World War II-era Manhattan Project, the federal government’s ultimately successful effort to build an atomic bomb. The Superfund site is managed by the Environmental Protection Agency, which neighbors and state officials say has done little to stop the burn from reaching the radioactive waste.
Washington Post 16th Feb 2016 read more »
Weapons plutonium is riskier above ground.
Nature 18th Feb 2016 read more »