Waste Isolation Pilot Plant 2003 Site Environmental Report

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The purpose of this report is to provide information needed by the DOE to assess WIPP's environmental performance and to convey that performance to stakeholders and members of the public. This report has been prepared in accordance with DOE Order 231.1A and DOE guidance. This report documents WIPP's environmental monitoring programs and their results for 2003. The WIPP Project is authorized by the DOE National Security and Military Applications of Nuclear Energy Authorization Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-164). After more than 20 years of scientific study and public input, WIPP received its first shipment of waste on March 26, ... continued below

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268 pages

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Services, Washington Regulatory and Environmental September 3, 2005.

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Description

The purpose of this report is to provide information needed by the DOE to assess WIPP's environmental performance and to convey that performance to stakeholders and members of the public. This report has been prepared in accordance with DOE Order 231.1A and DOE guidance. This report documents WIPP's environmental monitoring programs and their results for 2003. The WIPP Project is authorized by the DOE National Security and Military Applications of Nuclear Energy Authorization Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-164). After more than 20 years of scientific study and public input, WIPP received its first shipment of waste on March 26, 1999. Located in southeastern New Mexico, WIPP is the nation's first underground repository permitted to safely and permanently dispose of TRU radioactive and mixed waste (as defined in the WIPP LWA) generated through the research and production of nuclear weapons and other activities related to the national defense of the United States. TRU waste is defined in the WIPP LWA as radioactive waste containing more than 100 nanocuries (3,700 becquerels [Bq]) of alpha-emitting transuranic isotopes per gram of waste, with half-lives greater than 20 years. Exceptions are noted as high-level waste, waste that has been determined not to require the degree of isolation required by the disposal regulations, and waste the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has approved for disposal. Most TRU waste is contaminated industrial trash, such as rags and old tools, and sludges from solidified liquids; glass; metal; and other materials from dismantled buildings. A TRU waste is eligible for disposal at WIPP if it has been generated in whole or in partby one or more of the activities listed in the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (42 United States Code [U.S.C.] §10101, et seq.), including naval reactors development, weapons activities, verification and control technology, defense nuclear materials production, defense nuclear waste and materials by-products management, defense nuclear materials security and safeguards and security investigations, and defense research and development. The waste must also meet the WIPP Waste Acceptance Criteria. When TRU waste arrives at WIPP, it is transported into the Waste Handling Building. The waste containers are removed from the shipping containers, placed on the waste hoist, and lowered to the repository level of 655 m (2,150 ft; approximately 0.5 mi) below the surface. Next, the containers of waste are removed from the hoist and placed in excavated storage rooms in the Salado Formation, a thick sequence of evaporite beds deposited approximately 250 million years ago (Figure 1.1). After each panel has been filled with waste, specially designed closures are emplaced. When all of WIPP's panels have been filled, at the conclusion of WIPP operations, seals will be placed in the shafts. Salt under pressure is relatively plastic, and mine openings will be allowed to creep closed for final disposal, encapsulating and isolating the waste.

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268 pages

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WIPP Information Center - 1-800-336-9477

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  • Report No.: DOE/WIPP-04-2225
  • Grant Number: AC04-01AL66444
  • DOI: 10.2172/924490 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 924490
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc895587

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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Creation Date

  • September 3, 2005

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 27, 2016, 1:39 a.m.

Description Last Updated

  • Nov. 1, 2016, 7:15 p.m.

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Services, Washington Regulatory and Environmental. Waste Isolation Pilot Plant 2003 Site Environmental Report, report, September 3, 2005; Carlsbad, New Mexico. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc895587/: accessed October 15, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.