A nuclear power plant in suburban in Minneapolis revealed it leaked more than 400,000 gallons of radioactive water, but tried to calm ears by saying the incident poses no health risks.
The incident took place at the Xcel Energy plant in Monticello, just northwest of Minneapolis. Regulators are now in the process of monitoring cleanup, per reports.
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Xcel reported the leak of tritium-containing water to state and federal authorities in November, but the spill was not revealed publicly until Thursday.
“Xcel Energy took swift action to contain the leak to the plant site, which poses no health and safety risk to the local community or the environment,” the utility said in a statement, via The Associated Press.
400,000 Gallons of Radioactive Water
Minnesota officials said they wanted to wait until they received more information before announcing the leak to the public.
“We knew there was a presence of tritium in one monitoring well, however Xcel had not yet identified the source of the leak and its location,” Minnesota Pollution Control Agency spokesman Michael Rafferty said, via The AP.
“Now that we have all the information about where the leak occurred, how much was released into groundwater, and that contaminated groundwater had moved beyond the original location, we are sharing this information.”
Rafferty reiterated that no public health risk was found.
The leak reportedly came from a pipe between two buildings at the plant.
“While this leak does not pose a risk to the public or the environment, we take this very seriously and are working to safely address the situation,” Chris Clark, president of Xcel Energy–Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota, said in the statement. “We continue to gather and treat all potentially affected water while regularly monitoring nearby groundwater sources.”