- Sep 15, 2012
- Reaction score
- Columbus, OH
- Political Leaning
A school district in southern Ohio has closed its middle school because of concerns of radioactive contamination from a shuttered uranium enrichment plant fewer than five miles away.
The Scioto Valley Local School District announced it was closing Zahn’s Corner Middle School on Monday after U.S. Department of Energy officials said they had no plans to stop their work at the former Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant, a 3,000–acre facility that stopped producing enriched uranium in 2001. Energy Department contractors are building a waste disposal site on the plant as they work to clean up the site.
County Health Department officials became concerned about contamination after the recent release of a 2017 Energy Department report that said the DOE found traces of neptunium at an air-monitoring station on the grounds of the middle school. Neptunium is a carcinogen linked to bone cancers.
So the gist of this is that some genius zoned a school within five miles of a weapons-grade uranium and plutonium enrichment facility. The water and homes in the surrounding area have also tested positive for plutonium, uranium and neptunium contamination. But it is a great example of why nuclear energy is not a good alternative to fossil fuels - the US government sucks at responsible disposal of nuclear waste.