Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz is scheduled to travel to New Mexico in August to discuss efforts to reopen a shuttered atomic waste dump there.
The secretary will be in Carlsbad on Aug. 12, the Carlsbad Current-Argus reported. Moniz is coming at the invitation of New Mexico’s congressional delegation. It is not clear if he will be meeting with the public, though he has been urged to do so by the Carlsbad Nuclear Task Force.
The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant has been shut down since February, when an atomic waste-filled container mysteriously ruptured, sending small amounts of plutonium and americium into the underground chambers and the nearby environment.
Task force chairman John Heaton in a Thursday interview said the Energy Department has not been forthcoming enough in updating the public about efforts to safely clean up the ruptured atomic-waste container and reopen the federal dump site.
“This is a government operation and you would expect that everything would be completely open and transparent to the public, said Heaton, a onetime Democratic state senator. “I think that we’ve been guaranteed transparency by the DOE headquarters, but what’s so private about a recovery plan that it can’t be published at this point.”