11.1 C
New York
Saturday, April 1, 2023

Radioactive Leak at Minnesota Nuclear Plant Revealed Months After Accident : ScienceAlert

The operator of a nuclear facility in Minnesota stated on Thursday the plant suffered a leak final November of water containing radioactive tritium, however that contamination was largely restricted to the plant itself.

Xcel Vitality, operator of the nuclear plant northwest of Minneapolis within the Midwest state of Minnesota, didn’t say why it waited greater than three months to acknowledge the leak to the general public.

​The corporate stated it notified state officers and the federal Nuclear Regulatory Fee (NRC) as soon as it realized of the leak on November 22.

“Whereas this leak doesn’t pose a danger to the general public or the surroundings, we take this very critically and are working to securely tackle the scenario,” Chris Clark, the utility’s president, stated in an announcement.

The Minnesota Air pollution Management Company stated the corporate advised it some 400,000 gallons of water containing tritium leaked on the web site, however none “reached the Mississippi River or contaminated ingesting water sources”.

State officers “are actively reviewing information” from the location and “overseeing remediation efforts,” the company stated.

​The corporate stated it has “recovered about 25 p.c of the tritium launched and can proceed restoration over the course of the 12 months”.

​The leak originated in “a water pipe between two buildings” on the Monticello nuclear plant.

​Tritium is a radioactive isotope of hydrogen that could be a byproduct of the manufacturing of electrical energy at nuclear crops. It will probably additionally happen naturally within the surroundings.

Monticello is 63 kilometers (39 miles) northwest of Minneapolis, the most important metropolis within the state, and in addition the place Xcel Vitality has its headquarters.

​Xcel stated it detected the spill whereas doing routine groundwater testing.

​It stated it contained the leak by diverting water to an in-plant therapy facility, and might want to construct “massive storage tanks… to retailer recovered water till it may be handled and reused.”

​The corporate stated it’s conducting extra frequent assessments from some two dozen groundwater monitoring wells in and across the web site.

​The US has suffered one main nuclear accident in its historical past – the meltdown of the Three Mile Island reactor in Pennsylvania on March 28, 1979.

​Some 92 nuclear reactors present energy to tens of thousands and thousands of US houses. Smaller accidents have occurred through the years however often contained with localized impacts.

© Agence France-Presse

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest Articles