Did you know that you live near from the largest nuclear waste site in the United States? The 586-square-mile Hanford Site, located in southeastern Washington on the Columbia River, was used to manufacture the plutonium for America’s nuclear weapons program during World War II and the Cold War.
Today, vast amounts of contamination leftover from plutonium production continue to challenge state and federal agencies tasked with cleaning up the site. Jane Hedges of the Washington State Department of Ecology and the Nuclear Waste Program Manager will join us to discuss the challenges faced.
About the Speaker
Jane Hedges is the Nuclear Waste Program Manager for the Washington State Department of Ecology. The mission of Ecology’s Nuclear Waste Program is to ensure sound management of nuclear waste statewide and to promote the management and protection of the environment at, and adjacent to, the Hanford Site. Among Jane’s responsibilities is the enforcement of regulatory compliance and cleanup at the Hanford Site. Jane joined Ecology's Nuclear Waste Program in 1999 where she served as Cleanup Section Manager for the Nuclear Waste Program until her appointment as Program Manager in January of 2006. Her prior experience includes two years in environmental and public health consulting and 20 years working for county health departments in Thurston, Tacoma-Pierce and Chelan-Douglas Counties in Washington and in Berrien County, Michigan. She is a graduate of Washington State University, with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Environmental Health, specializing in Bacteriology and Public Health. Jane Hedges manages a staff of about 70, most of whom are based in the Richland Program Office. She also serves as a member of Ecology's Executive Management Team.