The United States has deposited more than 3.1 million cubic fees of radioactive soil and debris including plutonium to the Runit Dome in the Marshall Islands and now the dome, called “the Tomb is a major risk of collapsing from rising seas and other effects of climate change. Officials in the Marshall Islands have sought help from the U.S. government for help, but American officials have declined.
The Times team also found that the American government withheld key pieces of information about the dome’s contents and its weapons testing program before the two countries signed a compact in 1986 releasing the U.S. government from further liability. One example: The United States did not tell the Marshallese that in 1958, it shipped 130 tons of soil from its atomic testing grounds in Nevada to the Marshall Islands. U.S. authorities also didn’t inform people in Enewetak, where the waste site is located, that they’d conducted a dozen biological weapons tests in the atoll, including experiments with an aerosolized bacteria designed to kill enemy troops.
Scientists are also seeing levels of radiation in some spots in Enewetak and other parts of the Marshall Islands as high asChernobyl and Fukushima.