Newspaper Archive of
Pahrump Mirror
Pahrump, Nevada
June 26, 1997     Pahrump Mirror
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June 26, 1997

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8 ursday, )une 26, rlb97 Pahrump' Valley" ..... Gazette" Beatty leak sparks concerns about safety by Geoff Kreis Alleged radioactive leakage from a nuclear waste dump near Beatty, has caused concerns of contaminated ground- water. The leakage has been steadily in- creasing in the last five years. Trituim, which is another form of hy- drogen, has been leaking its way down through the earth and into underground water supplies. There are tears that these groundwater sources could become con- taminated and endanger the Colorado River which serves as a major source of drinking water for residents of Nevada and Arizona. According to environmental groups, the tritium has leaked due to the fact that it wasflumped into open trenches and left unattended for more than a year: Dave Hursh, of the Committee to Bridge the Gap, said that the U.S. Geo- logical Detartment noticed that the level of tritium in the groundwater was above the normal level after they took measure- ments in 1992. Since then, the amount of the radioactive substance has been dou- Bishop Veterinary Hospital  Tonopah Clinic Dr. Lind will be in Tonopah June 25 Front downstairs office- 42 Belmont St, Appointments/Info, Call 482-6453 after 5 p.m, Dr, LiMa will be in every other Wednesday 8 a,m.- 1 p.m,: Dogs, cats and other small animals, including spays, neutering, dentistry, minor surgery, etc. 1:30 p.m.- 3:30 p.m,: Horses, cows, etc. bling its presence in the groundwater sup- ply. "When the moisture rises upward, it causes the tritium to seep slowly through the soil," said Hursh. "Therefore, the tri- tium leaks its way down beneath the iand and passes into the underground water. If the leakage escapes the Ward Valley where the dump is located, then the situa-- tion could become much, more worse. Other groundwater sources would be affected as well as soil contamination. The measure- ments taken did not indicate what sort of damage would be done if the waste were to exit the valley. The dump was run by the Department of Ecology until its closure in 1992. Officials were unavailable for comment on the leak. It was determined that the tritium levels that showed up in the groundwater samples came from the Beatty dump. The levels that were measured by the U.S. Geological Ser- vice were more elevated than those that would have come from atmospheric fallout. The leakage comes at a time when a lot of Nevadans are fighting the Yucca Mountain proposal to bring the nation's nuclear waste to a final resting place in Nye County. The Beatty site is not far from e Yucca Mountain site and the leak- age concerns have local resi- dents wondering what is next. said former Amargosa Val- ley resident Gene Fliesher. "The Beatty leak makes me wonder how well Nevada can handle a full time nuclear waste facility." So far, it appears that groundwater supplies are safe, but only time will tell. NEED SOME X-TRA CASH? LOANS 0075.$750 Personal Loans ,Ho Management Licensed By The State of Nevada We Want To Give You A Loan Today/ CALL NOW/ Finance Rd. Suite #106 133 7 Ash Meadows a desert oasis "An Oasis of Life in the Desert," came to life for Friends of the Library viewing the slide show presented by Wildlife Biologist Elizabeth St. George at their June meeting. St. George encouraged members of the group to visit Ash Meadows National Wild- life Refuge. The third largest wetlands in the continental United States is located in the desert refuge. A ground water system believed to have formed thousands of yea ago creates "fossil" water springs and seeps in more than 30 areas of the refuge. Crystal Springs is one of the most pristine sights in the meadows. It's a refreshing re- spite from the scorching desert heat. No swimming is allowed in order to protect the fish and the algae they eat. However, swimming and non-motorized boming is permitted on nearby Crystal Reservoir. St. George explained the need topreserveandrestorethe ASH MEADOWS - Wildlife Biologist Elizabeth St. 22,117 acre refuge managed by George tells a Friends of the Library group about the the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Ser- unique Oasis in the Desert. vice. The area is home to at least 24 plants and animals found nowhere else in the world, including the tiny "Pup Fish." At least five of the species are listed as endangered. Interpretive tours are available with advance notice. Day use aftords plenty of opportu- nity to explore the beauty of this desert oasis. For more information contact the Refuge Manager at 702-372-5435. PRIMESTAR BY TSAT 1-800--449-1269 Programming Packages Starting at About a Dollar a Day!'" i, Tolat insta!l prce s $149g0 and does no inck lmy prograffm'dng costs,  rental costs o  costs 1o adddiotk ol.'ets,   ,  r,;mt aplxoval O#e  ttou Juty 31,1997 C'not be combined vh any oe, or. Oiler availate li'voug  disltitt, ion  Local sd, es tax may atly. 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