Local News

  • Lab continues with PF-4 upgrades

    Members of the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board voiced their frustration with NNSA and lab officials last week in regard to the seismic safety issues especially in relation to Plutonium Facility-4 (PF-4).

    Lab director Charlie McMillan told committee members he would be more comfortable in the Plutonium Facility than in his own house should a major earthquake occur.

    Board members, however, were not quite buying it.

    “You need to ensure adequate protection at every moment of the day,” said Peter Winokur, chairman of the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board.

  • Is Sustainability Science Really a Science?

    The idea that one can create a field of science out of thin air, just because of societal and policy need, is a bold concept.  But for the emerging field of sustainability science, sorting among theoretical and applied scientific disciplines, making sense of potentially divergent theory, practice and policy, the gamble has paid off.
    In the current issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, scientists from Los Alamos National Laboratory, Santa Fe Institute, and Indiana University analyzed the field’s temporal evolution, geographic distribution, disciplinary composition, and collaboration structure.

  • Gov. announces approval of fed disaster declaration

    Governor Susana Martinez announced Wednesday that the Obama Administration has approved the state’s request for a federal disaster declaration due to recent flooding in Cibola and Sandoval Counties, as well as Acoma and Santa Clara Pueblos. 
    This will make federal funds available to help local and tribal governments recover from the flooding sustained from Aug. 19-24.

  • N.M. agency assesses millions in penalties

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — It’s been nearly a year and environmentalists are still uneasy about where Gov. Susana Martinez’s administration stands on protecting air, water and other natural resources.

    Their perception of the administration being cozy with industry persists, but officials with the New Mexico Environment Department have grown tired of critics assuming they’re taking it easy on polluters.

    They are pointing to nearly $7 million in penalties assessed since the beginning of the year against businesses that have failed to live up to their permits with the state. The department’s bureaus have already collected more than $3.2 million in the form of settlements and fines, according to records reviewed by The Associated Press.

  • Update 11-25-11

    TAC meeting

    The Technical Advisory Committee will meet at 5 p.m. Nov. 29 at Pajarito Cliffs Conference Room.

    County Council

    The Los Alamos County Council will meet at 7 p.m., Dec. 6 at council chambers in the Community Building.

    Court closed

    The Magistrate Court will close Nov. 30, Dec. 1 and Dec. 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 for computer training for the judge and staff. Anyone who has court business may come to the court before or after those closing dates.

    Marketing study

    Hotel/Conference Center marketing study meeting at 7 p.m. Nov. 29 in council chambers.

    CIP committee

  • Statues in downtown LA could help Creative District

    Editor’s note: This is the second of a series.

    The Los Alamos Main Street Steering Committee has been grappling with questions on how to establish a Creative District that focuses on the downtown becoming a livelier, more vital place.
    Nancy Bartlit, a member of the Los Alamos Historical Society, explained how installing historical statues would be one way to connect the dots between the Bradbury Science Museum and the Historical Museum through the core of the Creative District.
    The statues would create a visual pathway that leads from one building to the next and reflect the building’s history.
    For example, the Romero Cabin will have a statue of Homesteaders.

  • DPU forming Conservation Advisory Group

    The Department of Public Utilities (DPU) is forming a Conservation Advisory Group to generate ideas for updating its conservation and energy plan.

    “We’re trying to get citizen input on what types of goals they would like to see and on how to implement those goals,” said Conservation Coordinator Christine Chavez. The plan will help determine DPU’s conservation goals for the next five years, as well as what type of budget and other resources should be allocated to conservation.

  • Countdown to Mars Launch--video extra

    Roger Wiens and his family traveled to Florida this week.

    But this was no ordinary Thanksgiving holiday.

    Wiens is in Cape Canaveral, Fla., to witness the launch of The United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket.
    Aboard the rocket is NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity rover.  And an integral part of the rover is ChemCam.

    That is where Wiens comes in. Wiens, who works at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, is the principal investigator of the ChemCam.

    “This was the best time frame to launch,” Wiens said, “because of the proximity of Mars to Earth.”

    It will take Curiosity close to eight and one-half months to get to Mars.

  • VIDEO: Thanksgiving in Afghanistan
  • Giffords serves Thanksgiving meal at Ariz air base

    TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords helped serve a Thanksgiving meal to service members and retirees at a military base in her hometown of Tucson, Ariz.

    Giffords arrived in the dining hall at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base at midday Thursday wearing a ball cap and an apron with her nickname of "Gabby" sewn on the front. She was accompanied by her retired astronaut husband, Mark Kelly, who also donned an apron.

    Giffords used only her left hand as she served, a sign that physical damage remains from the injuries she suffered when she was shot in January.

    Kelly supported her from her left side as she worked the turkey station on the serving line. He served ham.