The cause of the radiation leaks at the United States’ first nuclear waste repository are still under investigation, but in the meantime government officials have decided to move a stalled shipment of waste to a private dump in Texas.
According to Reuters, the shipment of approximately 1,000 barrels of radioactive leftovers to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) in Carlsbad, New Mexico, was put on hold when the facility began leaking radioactive material in February. On Thursday, the Department of Energy announced it would temporarily relocate those barrels to a rural site in western Texas.
Beginning in April, shipments from Los Alamos National Laboratory will commence as officials hope to remove the barrels – currently stored outside and potentially at risk of a wildfire – by the original June deadline. The waste includes items contaminated with low level radiation such as clothing, tools, soil, rags, and other items. These barrels will be held in Andrews County until the WIPP reopens.
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