Radiation Expert: 5 types of plutonium were released from WIPP; Officials not informing public â Caldicott: âI predict that facility will never be able to be used againâ; Inhaling a millionth of a gram of plutonium will induce lung cancer (AUDIO)
March 25th, 2014
KUNM, Mar. 24, 2014: The director of an organization that evaluated the WIPP site for over 25 years said officials arenât doing enough to inform New Mexicans. [...] âI just canât stress the importance of DOE being available to respond to detailed questions that people have,â [Dr. Bob Neill] said. âThereâs no substitute for direct communication.â Immediately after the leak was discovered, the public should have been given a detailed explanation of what was released, said Dr. Neill, who received his degree in radiological medicine. Americium 241 and plutonium 239 were mentioned. âBut there are four other radio-isotopes of plutonium, namely the 238, 240, the beta and 241,â he said. âTheyâre all bone-seekers. So you want to be able to report all the valuesâhow each one may have contributed. Itâs just essential.â [...] âItâs so important to answer peopleâs questionsâand not just people in Carlsbad, but throughout the state and elsewhere,â he said. As for the leak itself, he said all of the possible causes of the failure at WIPP must be considered, and a response system should be designed accordingly.
Interview with Dr. Helen Caldicott, March 2014 (at 37:30 in): One of the repositories for very, very dangerous radioactive waste plutonium, americium, etc. has just leaked radiation all around the area in Carlsbad, New Mexico. One microgram of plutonium, a millionth of a gram of plutonium, if inhaled will induce lung cancer. Itâs extraordinarily radioactive. So they thought this would be safe storing radiation in salt mines, but something happened, one of the casks blew up or part of the ceiling fell on the casks, we do not know. But I predict that that facility will never be able to be used again, it will be so contaminated.