>Reading about the ecological nightmare that is now New Orleans and probably most of the Gulf Coast reminded me of a little research I did about Hunter’s Point Naval Shipyard.
Stupidly enough, the City of San Francisco is trying to redevelop part of Hunter’s Point into residential units. I seriously hope NO ONE lives there, for their own sake.
Please read through the above linked article. Here are a few highlights, if you are lazy like me:
Parts of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945 were shipped to the South Pacific from here. And, just a few months later, 14 ships badly contaminated with radiation from the first postwar nuclear tests, at Bikini Atoll in the South Pacific, were towed to the Hunters Point Naval Shipyard for decontamination.
Um, and I wouldn’t be eating the seafood from around here if I were you:
As part of the Naval Radiological Defense Laboratory — until 1969, the U.S. Navy’s largest radiation lab, based in an ominously windowless building that still stands at Hunters Point — the Independence was the site of years of radiologically dirty experiments aimed at finding out what happens when materials, equipment and animals are exposed to radiation. In 1951, the ship was declared too radioactive to decontaminate and was towed out past the Farallon Islands and bombed until it sank.
It lies beneath the waves in odious company: almost 50,000 drums of radioactive waste are scattered on the seafloor just 25 miles out from the Golden Gate. Ten times larger than the City, this is the largest offshore nuclear dump in the United States, yet it’s not clear exactly what is in the drums, or who precisely put them all there. In the 1990s, scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey found that the drums are leaking radioactivity into the ocean. Some may have been spilling from the start — sailors involved in dumping operations have reported shooting floating drums with rifles to make them sink — and, as the rest age, they are falling apart.
It seems that with every new disaster our country deals with, we see the true colors of the bureaucracy that runs our government