* EPA Criminal Investigation Launched at LANL.

* Former Los Alamos Scientist Sentenced.

* Study Raises New Questions About Yucca Mountain.

* Experts Call WIPP "The Wrong Solution."

* Los Alamos National Laboratory is under criminal investigation for illegal disposal of asphalt that could be contaminated with radioactive or chemical waste.

The asphalt dumping under criminal investigation by the Environmental Protection Agency took place at a rubble pile related to an unspecified road project, according to an unnamed source quoted in the Los Alamos Monitor . The asphalt originated at Technical Area 54, which is the lab's radioactive and chemical waste disposal facility.

The investigation has been ongoing for several weeks, according to the New Mexico Attorney General's office. Upon completing the investigation, the U.S. Attorney's office will decide whether to present evidence on the case to a Grand Jury.

* A nuclear physicist who was convicted of sharing national defense secrets with Chinese nuclear scientists and lying about it to U.S. investigators has been sentenced. Fifty-eight year old Peter Lee, a native of Taiwan now residing in Manhattan Beach, California...had worked as an energy researcher at LANL. Lee was sentenced to spend one year at a half-way house and pay twenty-thousand-dollars in fines, plus perform three-thousand hours of community service. Lee divulged classified information on the use of lasers to simulate nuclear detonations during a 1985 visit to the government-run Chinese Academy of Sciences.

A new study by the California Institute of Technology or C-I-T, has raised new questions about the advisability of government plans to bury thousands of tons of highly radioactive waste at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. The study's findings show the site proposed for a permanent national nuclear waste dump may be more susceptible to seismic activity, such as earthquakes, than previously thought.

C-I-T researcher Brian Wernicke (Wer-nik-ee) concluded that the site, located ninety miles north of Los Vegas, Nevada...could experience an earthquake or lava flow every thousand years...ten times more frequently than previously reported by government geologists. Yet the highly radioactive materials slated for burial at the site will remain deadly for tens of thousands of years.

Nevada state officials and environmental groups nation-wide have long objected to Yucca Mountain as a permanent dump site for the nation's nuclear waste...their criticisms often pointing to geological instability...among other issues such as the cultural importance of Yucca Mountain to local Native Americans.

Although Energy Department officials told the Associated Press they were not discounting the C-I-T study...they said they did not believe the information would rule out the possibility of a Yucca Mountain nuclear waste dump.

* The highly controversial Waste Isolation Pilot Plant or WIPP has been criticized by industry experts as the wrong solution to the nation's military nuclear waste problem. In its newly released three-hundred-page report entitled, "The Cold War Mess," the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research says opening WIPP runs contrary to the Department of Energy policy which calls for prioritizing the elimination of urgent risks associated with nuclear arms production.

The Institute's report states that clean-up of plutonium wastes which have laid buried in ditches, some for over 30 years, should be given higher priority. According to DOE documents, the WIPP site will accommodate less than 2% of the nation's munitions- related nuclear waste when filled to capacity. DOE officials told the Albuquerque Tribune last week that some of the concerns raised by the Institute's report have merit, but will not alter the department's goal of shipping waste to WIPP "as soon as possible."

A coalition of environmental groups are threatening to file lawsuits should the DOE persist in its plan to open WIPP this year. Many citizens are concerned with the potential for accidents on the nation's highways involving trucks carrying trans-uranic waste to WIPP. These wastes will be shipped from weapons facilities in eight states, ranging from California to South Carolina.

* And finally, CCNS would like to invite all our friends and supporters to celebrate with us at a "We're Not WIPP'd Yet" benefit dance on April 5, 8:00 p.m., at Club Allegria. The dance, which will help support CCNS, features the fabulous Iguanas. The Iguanas have toured as an opening act with Jimmy Buffet, playing to over a million people. It's music that will make you want to get up and dance!

Tickets are will be fifteen dollars and are on sale at Rare Bear Records and all TicketMaster outlets, or at the door. For more information call 986-1973.

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