Winner of the Top Prize for
Best Feature Film
2012 Uranium Film Festival
College students in Pennsylvania
housed in Pentagon nuclear waste site
Environmental officials protect DOD, conceal dangers from students and families
Report citing 'significant health concern' labeled 'Not For Public Release'
'Not For Pubic Release': A nuclear incident in Lock Haven
A documentary film by Bill Keisling
For much of the twentieth century the United States Department of Defense was a major producer of radioactive waste.
The Pentagon not only produced its own nuclear waste. For years, the DOD depended on an unknown number of private defense contractors to supply countless radioactive parts and equipment.
Former Karnish Instruments site in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania (top of page) was the scene of a little-publicized multi-million dollar radiation demolition in 2009, funded by taxpayers.
Students living in the building include Tyler Fenimore, Rocco Zanella and Brandon Groff.
Larry Fenimore, Tyler's dad, says he feels state environmental officials lied to him.
Karnish Instruments workers from the 1960s say they were told by supervisors to dump radioactive waste at the work site. Radium has a half-life of 1,600 years.
In the mid-twentieth century, the U.S. government actually gave some of these defense contractors permission to dump radioactive waste on their private properties.
The Pentagon seldom, if ever, disclosed the whereabouts of these dangerous nuclear dumps. The problem becomes one for the ages: many of these radioactive isotopes remain dangerous and "hot" for thousands of years, even as the radiation is invisible to unsuspecting victims.
This carelessness caught up with college students in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania. One day the students woke up to find environmental officials dressed in protective "moonsuits" searching their apartment building for tell-tale signs of radioactive waste.
It would turn out that the student housing had been built on a property where a long-dead Pentagon contractor once dumped his highly radioactive DOD waste.
The film takes its name, Not For Public Release, from a suppressed Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection report which was concealed from students. The report found that the students' apartment building posed a "significant health concern."
Internal emails written by the staff of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PA DEP) further explain that the students were not told of the dangers of the contaminated building because state officials did not wish to "cause community concern."
The film's writer/director, Bill Keisling, laments, "In Pennsylvania these days, young people are regularly endangered by state officials. This must stop."
Not For Public Release: A nuclear incident in Lock Haven, digs deeply into the problem of privatized Pentagon nuclear waste, and how the government's secretive handling of this sensitive issue places unsuspecting citizens in unacceptable risk.
The DVD Not For Public Release: A nuclear incident in Lock Haven (length 1 hour and 13 minutes) is available now from yardbird.com for $15.
Watch the 9-minute trailer: