U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden plans his first fact-finding visit to Hanford on Tuesday since taking over as chairmanof the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
As chairman, he'll play a key role in legislation to create a Manhattan Project National Historical Park, which would include Hanford's historicB Reactor. The Oregon Democrat supports formation of the park, said his spokesman, Tom Towslee.
In addition to touring B Reactor, Wyden also will see the tank farms -- where 56 million gallons of radioactive waste are stored in underground tanks -- and the vitrification plant being built to treat the waste for disposal.
As the new committee chairman, Wyden wants it understood that Hanford environmental cleanup is a priority, Towslee said.
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In addition, Wyden wants to make clear that he's been to Hanford recently when he talks about Hanford with whomever is nominated as the next energy secretary, Towslee said.