This facility, in a remote Idaho desert, disposes of hazardous waste. Materials disposed of in these drums may include:
- asbestos (once used as insulation)
- PCBs (once used as coolants)
- dust generated by steel production
- battery acid
- lead-based paints
- waste from laboratories, such as chemically sensitive acids, mercury, or flammable liquids
The facility also disposes of low-level radioactive waste. Low-level radioactive wastes are items that have become contaminated by exposure to radiation, usually at nuclear energy power plants. They include:
- medical supplies, such as syringes and test tubes
- carcasses of animals used in laboratory experiments
Term Part of Speech Definition Encyclopedic Entry asbestos Noun
mineral previously used to manufacture fireproof materials and insulation.
battery acid Noun
toxic chemical made of hydrogen, sulfur, and oxygen that is used to operate vehicle batteries. Also called sulfuric acid.
to poison or make hazardous.
(dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane) toxic chemical used as an insecticide but illegal for most uses in the U.S. since 1972.
area of land that receives no more than 25 centimeters (10 inches) of precipitation a year.
Encyclopedic Entry: desert facility Noun
a building or room that serves a specific function.
easily set on fire.
hazardous waste Noun
manufacturing byproduct that is toxic or harmful to people and the environment.
chemical element with the symbol Pb.
nuclear energy Noun
energy released by reactions among the nuclei of atoms.
Encyclopedic Entry: nuclear energy PCB Noun
(polychlorinated biphenal) chemical substance that can occur naturally or be manufactured that may cause cancer.
natural or manufactured substance used to kill organisms that threaten agriculture or are undesirable. Pesticides can be fungicides (which kill harmful fungi), insecticides (which kill harmful insects), herbicides (which kill harmful plants), or rodenticides (which kill harmful rodents.)
power plant Noun
industrial facility for the generation of electric energy.
energy, emitted as waves or particles, radiating outward from a source.
radioactive waste Noun
byproduct of nuclear fission that emits a type of heat, or radiation, that can damage the tissue of living organisms.
distant or far away.
metal made of the elements iron and carbon.
small device consisting of a hollow needle and tube, used for extracting or injecting fluid into the body.