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No Loopholes, No Excuses - Full Cleanup at LANL!

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The New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) has issued a revised "Consent Order" governing cleanup at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the birthplace of nuclear weapons. The underlying purpose of the original 2005 Consent Order was to compel the Lab and the Department of Energy to get additional funding from Congress for accelerated cleanup.

After Gov. Susana Martinez came into office in 2011 NMED granted more than 150 compliance milestone extensions, effectively eviscerating the Order. Cleanup funding has been cut since that time. To make matters worse, the new Consent Order allows Los Alamos Lab and DOE to get out of cleanup by simply pleading that they don't have enough money. In contrast, the U.S. is getting ready to spend one trillion dollars on "modernizing" its nuclear weapons and missiles, subs and bombers. Meanwhile, the nuclear weapons labs are openly talking about the Second Nuclear Age before we have even cleaned up from the first nuclear age. In fact, Los Alamos Lab wants to "cap and cover" and leave permanently buried some 200,000 cubic yards of hazardous and radioactive wastes, and call that cleaned up!

We demand NMED close the giant loophole in the final Consent Order that would allow Los Alamos Lab and DOE to get out of cleanup by simply saying that they don't have enough money. That makes no sense when the Lab is receiving twice as much money as it was during the Cold War for nuclear weapons.

And we demand NMED hold a public hearing on the new Consent Order, given the intense public interest in cleaning up the Lab. Comprehensive cleanup would be a win-win for New Mexicans, permanently protecting the environment and our precious water resources while creating hundreds of high-paying jobs.



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