Hanford Nuclear Reservation | KUOW News and Information

Hanford Nuclear Reservation

About 10,000 people visit southeast Washington state’s Hanford Nuclear Reservation every year. And after a few hours on the bus, some are dazed like tourists who’ve seen one Italian cathedral too many.

On those tours, they have guides. But even folks who don’t come to Hanford’s physical site have a "tour guide" -- someone who can translate the language of Hanford and its nuclear legacy: Liz Mattson.

Federal officials are conducting an investigation after plutonium escaped off the Hanford nuclear site in Washington state. The plutonium is left over from a Cold War era factory at Hanford where plutonium was processed from a liquid into a solid form for bombs.

Wherever she was, she stood out for being half white, or half Japanese. Shirley Olinger will only whisper the racist names she was called as a girl.

In 1987, late in the Cold War, in a government reading room in Richland, Washington, a historian was studying newly released documents about the Hanford nuclear reservation. Then, a strange man approached her.

Hanford officials and community boosters In southeast Washington are hosting a celebration Thursday at an historic nuclear reactor. A signing ceremony in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday made the Manhattan Project National Historical Park official.

Cleaning up the central part of the Hanford nuclear reservation will take even longer. That’s the bottom line of a series of regional public comment meetings kicking off Wednesday in Richland, Washington.

Geochemist Frannie Smith would like to see more girls get into science like she did. Women make up only about 25 percent of geoscientists in the U.S. and only a quarter of all the scientists or engineers at the Pacific Northwest National Lab in Washington state are female.

For the fifth time in 15 years, the state of Washington is fighting the federal government in court over Hanford cleanup. The state’s top cleanup watchdog in Richland -- who grew up just downstream from the nuclear site -- plays a major role in that case

On November 10, the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Department of the Interior will enter into an agreement establishing the Manhattan Project National Historical Park.

Highway sign on a road entering the Hanford Site
Wikipedia Photo/Ellery (CC BY SA 3.0)/http://bit.ly/1LnhFqH

David Hyde speaks with attorney Richard Eymann about the history of 'Hanford downwinders' -- people who believed they suffered health problems after being exposed to radiation from the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.

After more than two decades of fighting in court, the Hanford Downwinders case has ended. The approximately 3,000 Downwinders have all either dropped their claims or arrived at a settlement.

In southeast Washington state, a group of farms has been frozen in time. It’s at Hanford, the area the federal government took over to make plutonium during World War II.

Part of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in eastern Washington.
Flickr photo/ Philo Nordlund

Kim Malcolm speaks with Anna King of Northwest News Network about the most recent lawsuit involving the Hanford nuclear site in eastern Washington.

Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson Wednesday announced a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Energy and some of its contractors over worker safety at the Hanford nuclear site.

A Hanford nuclear site whistleblower says he’s ready to get back to work. He settled his legal battle Wednesday for $4.1million.

Walter Tamosaitis, a high-level whistleblower at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, settled Wednesday with his former employer federal contractor URS.

The 70th Anniversary of the bombing of Nagasaki, Japan was remembered Sunday night in Richland, Washington. About 50 people gathered near the Columbia River to remember the day.

The B reactor at Hanford.
Flickr Photo/Gary Paulson (CC BY ND 2.0)

Todd Mundt speaks with Northwest News Network correspondent Anna King about the past and present of the Hanford nuclear site in eastern Washington. 

In the West, there aren’t a lot of black woman geologists who specialize in uranium deposits and groundwater. Zelma Maine Jackson landed far from her home state of South Carolina, but drilled into life in the West.

For decades Patty Murray’s image has been the working mom of the U.S. Senate. Agree with it or not, she’s brought home the bacon: Murray’s funneled billions of federal dollars into Washington state and especially to the Hanford nuclear site.

Two branches of the federal government struck a deal Tuesday on when to clean up radioactive sludge near the Columbia River.

The Hanford Nuclear Reservation in southeast Washington is one of the most contaminated places on earth. It’s also one of the most sacred landscapes for Northwest tribes.

The Hanford Nuclear Reservation is one of the most contaminated sites on earth. And Susan Leckband is using her natural curiosity to help clean it up.

Hanford Nuclear Reservation officials Tuesday made public their plan to improve safety for workers in the so-called “tank farms.”

The medical histories of radioactive cleanup workers should be examined more closely at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.

President Barack Obama’s budget would spend $2.3 billion on cleanup at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in 2016.

A new report by the federal Government Accountability Office calls for a better plan for leaking tanks of waste at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in Washington state.

Congress has approved a new national park in Washington state that commemorates the Manhattan Project at Hanford.

A bill that passed Thursday in the U.S. House includes big changes for the Tri-Cities. The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015 would create a new set of national parks in honor of the top-secret Manhattan Project.

For the third time this week there are calls to protect workers from hazardous vapors at Hanford. This time from Washington’s congressional delegation.

Pages