Sunday, November 7, 2010

weekend travel 2

bird's eye view of the weldon spring site (taken from the internet)
the weldon spring site as seen from the road leading up to it. it is a huge limestone covered disposal cell. contained inside is uranium feed materials and their manufacturing wastes. i wonder if it glows in the dark????. the cell covers about 45 acres and provides long term isolation for 1.48 million cubic yards of chemical and low-level radioactive waste. from 1941 to 1945 as part of the ww2 defense effort the u.s. army produced explosives at the weldon spring ordnance works a 17,232 acre facility in st charles, missouri and should remain stable for 1,000 years. the busch conservations area is part of the acreage. this is either the greatest or worst government use of funds ever
stair way to heaven or hell. hell for some of the many workers who handled uranium ore without knowing how dangerous it was, hell for the residents of the cities of Howell, Hamburg, and Toonerville who were forced off their land in 1941 without compensation for the war effort so the munions plant could be built
view from the top is the highest accessible point in st charles county, the cell is 75 feet above the surrounding terrain. there has been some controversy about this site. people believe that the radioactivity has already migrated into the ground water before this site was cleaned up. the ground water that 70,000 citizens of st charles drink
observation deck
another view to east. the land around the cell has been turned into hiking and biking trails and a wildflower and grass prairie. i'll have to return in the spring to capture the prairie flowers
a group almost to the top
the layers of material that contains the waste. from 1957 to 1966 this area was used to process uranium ore concentrates and a small amount of thorium. in 1986 the department of energy designated the clean up effort here and it was finished in 2001
old wooden water line

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