U-233 Letter to the Editor
Monday, June 10, 2002
John Stang's May 31 article "Nez Perce denounce maverick scientist's Hanford waste theories" brings the public into an erupting controversy of sex, salmon and secrecy, to borrow the title of a documentary-in-production. (Sex refers to a University of Idaho report of gender switched salmon spawning in the Hanford Reach of the Columbia River.)
Three years ago, as a contractor for the Government Accountability Project (GAP), I began analyzing radioactivity in the Hanford Reach riverbed. After I discovered unusual thorium, GAP requested records of Hanford waste disposals from production of uranium-233 from thorium.
Two surprises: The Department of Energy provided over 50,000 pages of titles (!) of Hanford documents relating to U-233 production, processing and waste disposals. The other surprise: I discovered most of the Hanford Reach riverbed contaminated with U-233 production wastes.
Last February I handed out for review my draft report: "Hanford radioactivity in salmon spawning grounds -- quality, extent and some implications." On May 28, the Nez Perce Tribe published a scathing review that is the subject of Stang's informative article.
My draft report and the Nez Perce review are at www.radioactivist.org.
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