State to hold 'open house' on EnergySolutions' large uranium disposal plans

Nov 11 2013 - 4:18pm


Energy Solutions
Energy Solutions

SALT LAKE CITY - The Utah Department of Environmental Quality is hosting an "open house" on Wednesday, Nov. 13 to explain the scope of evaluating EnergySolutions' proposal to dispose of large quantities of depleted uranium.

The open house, held from 4 to 6 p.m. Wednesday, will walk the public through the process of analyzing a performance assessment EnergySolutions' submitted to the Division of Radiation Control to consider allowing depleted uranium disposal at its low-level radioactive facility in Clive.

It's not a public hearing, but an informal meeting that will be held in DEQ's Conference Room 1015, located at the Multi State Agency Office Building, 195 North 1950 West, Salt Lake City.

"This is an important opportunity to learn about the issue and processes that will help guide us in our technical review of EnergySolutions' performance assessment," said Rusty Lundberg, director of DRC. "We want to engage the public in this decision."

In 2010, the Radiation Control Board approved a new rule that required EnergySolutions to conduct a performance assessment before disposing of large quantities of depleted uranium. Depleted uranium is mainly a byproduct from enrichment facilities. It is a unique waste stream as it actually gets more radioactive over time due to the ingrowth of decay products - unlike most radioactive materials, which become less radioactive as they decay.

In August 2013, DEQ hired an outside contractor, S. Cohen & Associates (SC&A) of Virginia, to evaluate the performance assessment Energy Solutions submitted to determine if it is adequate and addresses the necessary requirements to ensure public health and safety of the proposal.

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