Plutonium and more than 100 other new toxins identified at Bannister Federal Complex
11:02 AM, Apr 15, 2011
6:40 PM, Apr 15, 2011
KANSAS CITY, Missouri - The United States Department of Labor has identified more than a hundred known new toxins to a list of health concerns present at the Bannister Federal Complex and an official acknowledges the plant also uses small amounts of plutonium.
The updated list acknowledges use of more than 898 toxins. That's 114 more toxins since the NBC Action News Investigation into Bannister began in November 2009.
The list includes several radioactive materials, but does not name plutonium, although officials at the Kansas City Plant acknowledge use of small amounts.
NBC Action News first uncovered the history of plutonium at the Bannister Federal Complex by obtaining a 1998 Brookings Institution report by Stephen Schwartz which analyzed plutonium stored in the nation's weapons manufacturing facilities.
According to the report, the amount of 1.2 grams of plutonium reported at the Bannister Federal Complex was miniscule compared to other facilities which stored tons of plutonium at a time.
Bannister officials confirmed the report's findings on plutonium at the Kansas City Plant.
In a prepared statement a spokeswoman at the Kansas City Plant said plutonium is not processed or stored at the Bannister, but is used in scientific devices.
"As is common in manufacturing industries, sealed radioactive sources are utilized in analytical devices for quality control and calibration of components," said Tanya Snyder, National Nuclear Security Administration's Kansas City Plant spokewoman. "At the KCP, a very small amount of sealed plutonium (less than 2 grams) is used in these types of commercially available tools which are routinely inspected."
The NBC Action News Investigation has identified hundreds of sick workers that believe their illnesses are linked to toxins there.
Sick workers on the Honeywell side of the complex have been paid out nearly $30 million from a special government program set up to assist sick workers at plants that make parts for nuclear weapons.
Workers on Honeywell's nuclear bomb part manufacturing side of the complex are also entitled to routine health checks.
Honeywell manufacturers non-nuclear components for nuclear weaponry under contract with the Department of Energy.
The CDC has identified potential pathways for toxins to sick employees working in the General Services Administration side of the building, do those workers do not qualify for the compensation program.
Although toxins have also been identified on the GSA side of the complex, the CDC's National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has ruled out a cancer cluster there and found no significant exposure among employeees.
Below is a verbatim copy of the new listing (including 114 previously unidentified toxins) of what the Dept. of Labor acknowledges as known toxins present at some point during the plant's history.
Please note this government list is several pages long, please click next page or view as single page at bottom of text.
* The name of the substance(s) listed first is the one used in the SEM website. Any name(s) that follow in bold and separated by a vertical bar are the corresponding names referenced in the Haz-Map website.