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Corps seeks input on Interim Waste Containment Structure options

by jmaloni
Sat, Dec 18th 2010 01:05 pm

by Terry Duffy

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Buffalo District issued an e-mail advisory this week that it continues to seek public input on addressing future options for the Interim Waste Containment Structure at the Niagara Falls Storage Site.

According to Arleen K. Kreusch, Outreach Program specialist for the Corps Buffalo District, the request follows issuance of the Corps' "Development of Interim Waste Containment Structure Remedial Alternatives, Technologies Development and Screening Technical Memorandum" PDF, released this month.

In that document, the Corps outlines a number of options it is now considering for the IWCS. Included is what the Corps calls a "Configuration and Evaluation of Alternatives" - where it will develop alternatives to remediate and control contaminated media in the IWCS Operable Unit in order to provide protection to human health and the environment. Among the range of potential alternatives:

•Complete removal of the IWCS contents, including the K-65 residues, other lower-activity residues, and contaminated soils and debris;

•A range of partial removal alternatives (e.g. remove all residues, remove K-65 residues only) involving disposal off-site;

•A removal option involving the construction of an on-site disposal cell;

•Disposal options including transportation to remote, out-of-state locations;

•A range of alternatives involving containment with little or no treatment;

•Limited Action alternatives (e.g., enhanced IWCS containment and environmental monitoring);

•A "No Further Action" alternative (continued current site maintenance and monitoring); and

•A "No Action" alternative (no site maintenance or monitoring).

Kreusch stressed, "The Corps does not consider the 'No Action' alternative to be a viable long-term remedy due to its lack of protectiveness for human health and the environment."

She adds the "No Action" alternative will be evaluated as mandated by 40 CFR 300.430, for comparative purposes to other proposed remedial alternatives. For each IWCS alternative, the Corps will define maintenance and monitoring requirements, remediation time requirements, transportation options, etc. "These alternatives, which incorporate multiple remedial technologies, will then be evaluated with respect to their long-term and short-term effectiveness, their ability to achieve applicable or relevant and appropriate requirements, their ability to reduce the toxicity, mobility or volume of contaminated media, and their cost-effectiveness," said Kreusch.

The Corps 2009 NFSS Environmental Surveillance Technical Memorandum is available for review at:http://www.lrb.usace.army.mil/fusrap/nfss/#EnvSurv.

The document contains the results of the Corps monitoring at NFSS from December 2008 to December 2009. Specifically, it documents the results of the Corps monitoring program at NFSS with respect to quantifying and evaluating radiological, chemical, and water quality data from the environment at NFSS. The 2009 Technical Memorandum indicates that measured parameters were within U.S. Department of Energy guidelines and calculated exposure rates to the general public were well within regulatory limits, said Kreusch.

Also available for review is the Interim Waste Containment Structure (IWCS) Remedial Alternatives Technologies Development and Screening Fact Sheet, accessed at:http://www.lrb.usace.army.mil/fusrap/nfss/index.htm#Documents.

The fact sheet outlines further the purpose and objective of the IWCS Remedial Alternatives Technologies Development and Screening Technical Memorandum for the NFSS Feasibility Study, said Kreusch.

She reports the Corps is requesting input on the documents by Jan. 17, 2011.

Input on the objective of the technical memorandum can be sent via e-mail [email protected]. Include "IWCS Remedial Alternatives Technologies Development Screening" in the subject of the e-mail.

Input can also be sent to: U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, FUSRAP Team, 1776 Niagara St., Buffalo, NY 14207. Or by phone to 800-833-6390.

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