This article lays out a detailed picture of what it means to release one million gallons of radioactively contaminated water containing tritium and other radioactive isotopes into the Hudson River. It also offers a solution.
“An effective decontamination strategy would be to simply keep the wastewater contained on site to allow the natural decay process to proceed. Retention for approximately 25 years would reduce the quantity of tritium by 75 percent, making release into the environment less problematic. After 60 years, 96.4 percent of the stored tritium would have decayed. The NRC allows 60 years for decommissioning and spent fuel rods can remain on site for longer. However, that would require ensuring that containment was maintained throughout that time to prevent leakage into the surrounding groundwater, entailing long-term monitoring, maintenance and associated expense. Leaks in two containment tanks at the facility have already been detected. It should be noted that the tritium standards have not been updated for 50 years and may be out of date.”