Gov. Jay Inslee's statement on meeting with US Dept of Energy Secretary Ernie Moniz regarding Hanford

March 17, 2014


“Safe and successful cleanup of the nuclear waste stored at Hanford is of utmost priority for the people of Washington state and the Pacific Northwest. The federal government has a moral and legal obligation to oversee the successful cleanup of the waste that remains. Fifty-six million gallons of hazardous and radioactive waste continue to be held in Hanford’s storage tanks - now decades beyond their intended use. I and others have called for a comprehensive plan that will lead to an effective cleanup plan. We have eagerly awaited an acceptable plan to protect the public health, the environment of our state and Columbia River.

“As such, I have appreciated the attention that Secretary Moniz has given to Hanford since assuming office last year, and that he has come to Olympia today to present the Energy Department’s perspective and a draft cleanup plan. Unfortunately, the draft that was shown to us this morning did not contain the comprehensiveness and level of detail that the State has requested for months from our federal partners. While there are aspects of the plan that have merit, we need to have assurance that the U.S. Department of Energy’s proposal will lead to a plan that will be acceptable to the State. I have been considering the State’s options for ensuring an effective and safe Hanford cleanup. In light of today’s meeting, I will be consulting with Attorney General Bob Ferguson and my Department of Ecology and will have more to say on this matter in the coming days.”

Photo from one-on-one meeting:

Additional Contacts:

Dieter Bohrmann, Department of Ecology  |  509.372.7954

Janelle Guthrie, Office of the Attorney General  |  360.586.0725

Media Contact 

Jaime Smith
Governor Inslee’s Communications Office