- LOS ALAMOS, N.M. - Los Alamos
National Laboratory Monday announced it is setting up an emergency environmental
SWAT team to assess the potential hazards that runoff and erosion might
have on chemical and radioactive hazards on lab property.
- Lab Director John Browne said those environmental concerns
must be addressed sooner rather than later.
- "If something is there, and it's moving, we need
to take some mitigation measures," he said. "If it's not moving,
we need to show it's not moving so the public can be reassured."
- Browne said he and his staff will work with pueblos near
the lab to assure them the fire has not taken contaminants off lab property.
- Browne said he has already been offered additional expert
assistance from the University of California and the U.S. Forest Service's
"Bear Team," which has expertise in minimizing pollution from
- Browne said some areas of burned lab property have soot
a foot thick.
- He said the biggest environmental concern the lab had,
a plutonium waste-disposal site called Technical Area 54, sustained no
- Browne said he conferred with Sen. Ted Stevens, an Alaska
Republican who is chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, about
an emergency appropriation from Congress to help the lab deal with all
aspects of the fire.
- (Contact Lawrence Spohn of The Tribune in Albuquerque,
N.M., at http://www.abqtrib.com.)
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