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The Nation

December 21, 1987

The government can expect to pay between $4 billion and $16 billion to clean up radioactive waste at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation that has accumulated during 44 years of weapons production, officials say. The waste at Hanford is stored in underground tanks or, in some pre-1970 cases, merely buried in canisters under the surface at the 570-square-mile reservation near Richland in central Washington. But the environmental impact report on how the federal government plans to proceed provides disposal alternatives for only about two-thirds of the radioactive waste at Hanford at a cost of $3 billion. Mike Lawrence, the Energy Department's manager of the reservation, said the disposal of the remaining third, at an approximate cost of at least $940 million, will require more study.

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