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Leaking nuclear waste dome in the Marshall Islands

This dome contains tons of radioactive waste — and it's starting to crack… Here's the threatening legacy of years of US nuclear testing.

Leaking nuclear waste?!

What’s happening to the Marshall Islands?

The Marshall Islands, an archipelago of the Pacific Ocean, were originally supervised by the United States from 1947 to 1986 along with the Marianas and the Carolines (excluding Guam). Since declaring itself a presidential republic with free association with the United States, the Marshall Islands have membership in the United Nations and the Pacific Community. However, the United States used this relationship to their advantage. Between 1946 and 1958, the Pentagon dropped 67 nuclear bombs, tested a dozen biological weapons and dumped tons of irradiated soil from Nevada on the archipelago.

The United States then gathered the most radioactive waste in this crater sealed with a dome. This crater, called the "Runit Dome,” is threatening to crack open because of global warming. Radioactive materials are already leaking out and the soil around the dome is highly contaminated. This so-called “tomb” is the legacy of American nuclear testing during the Cold War. Nowadays, the dome is at risk of collapsing under the pressure of rising sea levels. In fact, the Marshall Islands could be entirely submerged by the end of the century, all 70 square miles of them. With the 2018 census reporting a population of around 58,500 people, many homes and lives would be lost.

Too late to say sorry?

The American government maintains that responsibility for the dome now lies with the Marshall Islands. The Marshallese government contests this and is trying to obtain compensation for the health and environmental effects of the nuclear testing. Although the American Congress launched an inquiry into the risk that this dome represents in December 2019, to this day, the United States have never officially apologized to the Marshall Islands. The Marshall Islands currently have laws in place to protect the environment including a $10 thousand penalty fee for each day that the hazardous waste violation continues.

Brut.

03/07/2020 2:30 PM

406 comments

  • Jennifer K.
    a day

    Sad

  • Jerry E.
    a day

    Stop with the global warming bull. Sea levels have risen approximately 2 inches in the last 300 years and approx 1 inch since WW2. This is not the cause of pressure on the dome.

  • William R.
    2 days

    Wow: you New Age idiots are a non stop doom and gloom OK it’s a problem but seriously Global Warming Why don’t you just blame it on President Trump. I mean get with it he’s the new go to guy for your crap

  • Justin G.
    3 days

    That's the future.... All the ancient civilizations left amazing Temple's and statues... And us??? Fuckin nuclear waste...

  • Justin G.
    3 days

    Fuckin idiots... Discraceful.

  • Mike F.
    3 days

    Humanity hold many penalties and sentences to confront - even possibly extinction or more harsh consequences; as suffering the most. Destruction too spreading of pollution are of the monstrous mankind cult - worldwide...

  • Jhon C.
    6 days

    :-O

  • Paul G.
    6 days

    I was one of the young men and teenagers that built this dome, we did our very best but we were given an impossible task at the cost of our lives and/or health. What is to be learned here is there is no way to "cleanup" after a nuclear weapon. I see so many comments with people that don't get it and still think it can be cleaned up.

  • Frank C.
    6 days

    Im sorry 💘

  • Rahu A.
    11/24/2020 06:55

    Fucking yankees and their "fight for freedom"

  • Vern K.
    11/24/2020 06:20

    Incredible the stupidity of humanity, it's everyone's problem and it's up to everyone to fix this mistake and enforce that this never ever happens again. We have technology that can take the hot water and filter out the contamination . Store waste in a container seeing as how it can not be totally disposed of but stored better

  • Naima H.
    11/24/2020 01:45

    Wow. Leaving a mess for another generation to clean up.

  • Denker C.
    11/22/2020 14:03

    I guarantee you the marshall islands got paid when the United States first dumped all that waste on the island

  • Leticia C.
    11/22/2020 03:09

    So sad and Disgusting how we are destroying our own planet. 💔

  • Nicholas T.
    11/21/2020 16:13

    The United States is so responsible for this fiasco! But as per usual Western Leaders ie America are trying to shift the responsibility

  • Senthilnathan P.
    11/21/2020 14:14

    Coverts oneday will pay for this,

  • Noor A.
    11/21/2020 04:04

    Amurika always spread their cancer all over the world

  • Egon W.
    11/20/2020 12:38

    That's when an international organisation should force countries to clean up their mess before it does any more damage

  • Isaac M.
    11/19/2020 09:52

    Pack it all up on ships and send it to America

  • Floyd W.
    11/19/2020 06:43

    Maybe its because the concrete is 75 years old and supporting a shit load of weight, and being exposed to the salt breeze. You think

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