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The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: Coastal Wetland and Wildlife Impacts and Response

Description: The explosion of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010, and the resulting oil spill began a cascade of effects on the coastal areas of the Gulf and on the wealth of species that inhabit those areas. This report addresses the importance of wetlands in general, the ecology of the coastal wetlands in the Gulf, impacts of oil spills on wetland habitats, response options, the implications of hurricane season for the spill's impacts, and cleanup and recovery issues. The emphasis is on the nearshore environment, although a few species found in deeper waters will be mentioned. In addition, some lessons from past spills such as the Exxon Valdez in Alaska will be discussed, along with issues that may arise as response and recovery transition to restoration of the Gulf.
Date: July 7, 2010
Creator: Corn, M. Lynne & Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Asian Carp and the Great Lakes Region

Description: This report provides an overview of four species of non-indigenous Asian carp that are expanding their range in U.S. waterways, resulting in a variety of concerns and problems. This report details the environmental and economic threats from this invasion, as well as ways to combat the spread of Asian carp in U.S. water.
Date: August 6, 2010
Creator: Buck, Eugene H.; Upton, Harold F.; Stern, Charles V. & Nichols, James E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Federal Food Safety System: A Primer

Description: Numerous federal, state, and local agencies share responsibilities for regulating the safety of the U.S. food supply, which many experts say is among the safest in the world. This report discusses various food safety proposals in Congress, as well as agencies with food safety related responsibilities.
Date: August 18, 2010
Creator: Johnson, Renée
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Asian Carp and the Great Lakes Region

Description: This report discusses four species of non-indigenous Asian carp that are expanding their range in U.S. waterways, resulting in a variety of concerns and problems. Three species--bighead, silver, and black carp--are of particular note, based on the perceived degree of environmental concern. Current controversy relates to what measures might be necessary and sufficient to prevent movement of Asian carp from the Mississippi River drainage into the Great Lakes through the Chicago Area Waterway System. Bills have been introduced in the 111th Congress to direct actions to avoid the possibility of carp becoming established in the Great Lakes.
Date: November 30, 2010
Creator: Buck, Eugene H.; Upton, Harold F.; Stern, Charles V. & Nichols, James E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Animal Drug User Fee Programs

Description: This report discusses aspects of the Animal Drug User Fee Act of 2003 (ADUFA I), including funding and program performance; the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) ADUFA II and Animal Generic Drug User Fee Act of 2008 (AGDUFA) proposals; congressional activity; and other relevant issues.
Date: August 4, 2008
Creator: Lister, Sarah A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Northern Marshall Islands radiological survey: A quality control program for radiochemical and gamma spectroscopy analysis

Description: From 1979 to 1989, approximately 25,000 Post Northern Marshall Islands Radiological Survey (PNMIRS) samples were collected, and over 71,400 radiochemical and gamma spectroscopy analyses were performed to establish the concentration of {sup 90}Sr, {sup 137}Cs, {sup 241}Am, and plutonium isotopes in soil, vegetation, fish, and animals in the Northern Marshall Islands. While the Low Level Gamma Counting Facility (B379) in the Health and Ecological Assessment (HEA) division accounted for over 80% of all gamma spectroscopy analyses, approximately 4889 radiochemical and 5437 gamma spectroscopy analyses were performed on 4784 samples of soil, vegetation, terrestrial animal, and marine organisms by outside laboratories. Four laboratories were used by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) to perform the radiochemical analyses: Thermo Analytical Norcal, Richmond, California (TMA); Nuclear Energy Services, North Carolina State University (NCSU); Laboratory of Radiation Ecology, University of Washington (LRE); and Health and Ecological Assessment (HEA) division, LLNL, Livermore, California. Additionally, LRE and NCSU were used to perform gamma spectroscopy analyses. The analytical precision and accuracy were monitored by including blind duplicates and natural matrix standards in each group of samples analyzed. On the basis of reported analytical values for duplicates and standards, 88% of the gamma and 87% of the radiochemical analyses in this survey were accepted. By laboratory, 93% of the radiochemical analyses by TMA; 88% of the gamma-ray spectrometry and 100% of the radiochemistry analyses by NCSU; 89% of the gamma spectroscopy and 87% of the radiochemistry analyses by LRE; and 90% of the radiochemistry analyses performed by HEA`s radiochemistry department were accepted.
Date: September 1, 1995
Creator: Kehl, S.R.; Mount, M.E. & Robison, W.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

National Low-Level Waste Management Program radionuclide report series. Volume 2, Niobium-94

Description: The Purpose of the National Low-Level Waste Management Program Radionuclide Report Series is to provide information to, state representatives and developers of low-level radioactive waste disposal facilities about the radiological chemical, and physical characteristics of selected radionuclides and their behavior in the low-level radioactive waste disposal facility environment. Extensive surveys of available literature provided information used to produce this series of reports and an introductory report. This report is Volume 11 of the series. It outlines the basic radiological, chemical, and physical characteristics of niobium-94, waste types and forms that contain it, and its behavior in environmental media such as soils, plants, groundwater, air, animals and the human body.
Date: April 1, 1995
Creator: Adams, J.P. & Carboneau, M.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

National Low-Level Waste Management Program Radionuclide Report Series: Volume 12, Cobalt-60

Description: This report outlines the basic radiological and chemical characteristics of cobalt-60 ({sup 60}Co) and examines how these characteristics affect the behavior of {sup 60}Co in various environmental media, such as soils, groundwater, plants, animals, the atmosphere, and the human body. Discussions also include methods of {sup 60}Co production, waste types, and waste forms that contain {sup 60}Co. All cobalt atoms contain 27 protons (Z = 27) and various numbers of neutrons (typically N = 27 to 37 neutrons) within the atom`s nucleus. There is only one stable isotope of cobalt, namely {sup 59}Co. All other cobalt isotopes, including {sup 60}Co, are radioactive. The radioactive isotopes of cobalt have half-lives ranging from less than a second ({sup 54}Co-0.19 s) to 5.2 years ({sup 60}Co). The radioactive isotopes of cobalt are not a normal constituent of the natural environment and are generated as a result of human activities. The primary source of {sup 60}Co in the environment has been low-level radioactive waste material generated as a result of neutron activation of stable {sup 59}Co that is present in the structural components of nuclear reactor vessels. This isotope is also intentionally produced, usually in reactors but also to some degree in accelerators for industrial and medical uses, such as for radiation sources for cancer treatment and nondestructive testing of metals and welds. {sup 60}Co may enter the environment as a result of the activities associated with nuclear reactor operations and decommissioning and when industrial and medical sources are being used, manufactured, or disposed.
Date: June 1, 1995
Creator: Adams, J.P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Program facilities newsletter, October 2002.

Description: Aerosol Observing System Upgraded--The Aerosol Observing System (AOS) at the SGP central facility recently received maintenance and was upgraded to improve its performance. The AOS measures the properties of the aerosol particles around it. Several AOS components were removed, repaired, and calibrated to operate within specifications. The system continuously gathers information about the way minute aerosol particles interact with solar radiation. A better understanding of these interactions will help climate change researchers integrate aerosol effects more accurately into global climate computer models. Polar Bears Make Work Dangerous at ARM North Slope of Alaska Site--The late development of seasonal sea ice has increased polar bear sitings at ARM's Barrow site. The bears were recently seen next to the ARM instrument towers at Barrow, making the normal work day a bit more tricky for the technicians who are at the site year-round. Polar bears are not afraid of people and will attack and kill. The bears usually spend most of their time on off-shore ice floes hunting seals. This season, a large storm pushed the floes out to sea while the bears were ashore at Barrow, leaving them to forage for food on land until the sea ice reforms with the onset of colder weather. The hungry bears have made working at the Barrow CART site a dangerous proposition. ARM workers carry shotguns with them at all times for protection. On a recent journey to the site, ARM instrument mentor Michael Ritsche encountered the animals. ''You become much more aware of your surroundings,'' said Ritsche after returning safely to Argonne. Barrow residents protect themselves by shooting warning shells to scare the bears away from developed areas. Hearing the firing in the early mornings and late evenings at Barrow reminded Ritsche that he was in a more dangerous world.
Date: November 4, 2002
Creator: Holdridge, D. J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Wildlife use of NPDES outfalls at Los Alamos National Laboratory

Description: From July through October of 1991, the Biological Resources Evaluation Team (BRET) surveyed 133 of the 140 National Pollutant Discharge and Elimination System outfalls at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). The purpose of the survey was to determine the use of these wastewater outfalls by wildlife. BRET observed wildlife or evidence of wildlife (scat, tracks, or bedding) by 35 vertebrate species in the vicinity of the outfalls, suggesting these animals could be using water from outfalls. Approximately 56% of the outfalls are probably used or are suitable for use by large mammals as sources of drinking water. Additionally, hydrophytic vegetation grows in association with approximately 40% of the outfalls-a characteristic that could make these areas eligible for wetland status. BRET recommends further study to accurately characterize the use of outfalls by small and medium-sized mammals and amphibians. The team also recommends systematic aquatic macroinvertebrate studies to provide information on resident communities and water quality. Wetland assessments may be necessary to ensure compliance with wetland regulations if LANL activities affect any of the outfalls supporting hydrophytic vegetation.
Date: September 1, 1995
Creator: Foxx, T. & Blea-Edeskuty, B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Dose Estimates from Ingestion of Marine and Terrestrial Animals Harvested in the Beaufort Sea and Northwestern Alaska

Description: Between 1993 and 1995, marine and terrestrial animal samples were collected from the Beaufort Sea and northwest Alaska. These samples were analyzed at Los Alamos National Laboratory for the presence of the anthropogenic radionuclides, {sup 90}Sr, {sup 137}Cs, {sup 238}Pu, {sup 239+240}Pu, and {sup 241}Am. The measurement data were combined with food consumption rates based on survey results for populations residing in three northwest Alaskan communities and published age-dependent ingestion dose coefficients to estimate potential radiological impacts from the consumption of traditional animal foods harvested in this region. The results of this study indicate that committed equivalent doses to adults from {sup 90}Sr and {sup 137}Cs, due to consumption of traditional food sources are consistent with currently accepted estimates of average doses to adults in North America due to atmospheric nuclear weapons testing fallout.
Date: November 1, 2000
Creator: Inkret, W. C. T.; Schillaci, M. E.; Efurd, D. W.; Ennis, M. E.; Hameedi, M. J.; Inkret, J. M. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Ecological Monitoring and Compliance Program Fiscal Year 2002 Report

Description: The Ecological Monitoring and Compliance program, funded through the U.S. Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration Nevada Operations Office, monitors the ecosystem of the Nevada Test Site (NTS) and ensures compliance with laws and regulations pertaining to NTS biota. This report summarizes the program's activities conducted by Bechtel Nevada (BN) during fiscal year 2002. Program activities included: (1) biological surveys at proposed construction sites, (2) desert tortoise compliance, (3) ecosystem mapping and data management, (4) sensitive species and unique habitat monitoring, and (5) biological monitoring at the HAZMAT Spill Center. Biological surveys for the presence of sensitive species and important biological resources were conducted for 26 NTS projects. These projects have the potential to disturb a total of 374 acres. Thirteen of the projects were in desert tortoise habitat, and 13.38 acres of desert tortoise habitat were disturbed. No tortoises were found in or displaced from project areas, and no tortoises were accidentally injured or killed at project areas or along paved roads. Compilation of historical wildlife data continued this year in efforts to develop faunal distribution maps for the NTS. Photographs associated with the NTS ecological landform units sampled to create the NTS vegetation maps were cataloged for future retrieval and analysis. The list of sensitive plant species for which long-term population monitoring is scheduled was revised. Six vascular plants and five mosses were added to the list. Plant density estimates from ten populations of Astragalus beatleyae were collected, and eight known populations of Eriogonum concinnum were visited to assess plant and habitat status. Minimal field monitoring of western burrowing owl burrows occurred. A report relating to the ecology of the western burrowing owl on the Nevada Test Site was prepared which summarizes four years of data collected on this species' distribution, burrow use, reproduction, activity patterns, and ...
Date: December 1, 2002
Creator: Wills, C. A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Ecological Monitoring and Compliance Program Fiscal Year 2002 Report (Part Two of Two)

Description: The Ecological Monitoring and Compliance program, funded through the U.S. Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration Nevada Operations Office, monitors the ecosystem of the Nevada Test Site (NTS) and ensures compliance with laws and regulations pertaining to NTS biota. This report summarizes the program's activities conducted by Bechtel Nevada (BN) during fiscal year 2002. Program activities included: (1) biological surveys at proposed construction sites, (2) desert tortoise compliance, (3) ecosystem mapping and data management, (4) sensitive species and unique habitat monitoring, and (5) biological monitoring at the HAZMAT Spill Center. Biological surveys for the presence of sensitive species and important biological resources were conducted for 26 NTS projects. These projects have the potential to disturb a total of 374 acres. Thirteen of the projects were in desert tortoise habitat, and 13.38 acres of desert tortoise habitat were disturbed. No tortoises were found in or displaced from project areas, and no tortoises were accidentally injured or killed at project areas or along paved roads. Compilation of historical wildlife data continued this year in efforts to develop faunal distribution maps for the NTS. Photographs associated with the NTS ecological landform units sampled to create the NTS vegetation maps were cataloged for future retrieval and analysis. The list of sensitive plant species for which long-term population monitoring is scheduled was revised. Six vascular plants and five mosses were added to the list. Plant density estimates from ten populations of Astragalus beatleyae were collected, and eight known populations of Eriogonum concinnum were visited to assess plant and habitat status. Minimal field monitoring of western burrowing owl burrows occurred. A report relating to the ecology of the western burrowing owl on the Nevada Test Site was prepared which summarizes four years of data collected on this species' distribution, burrow use, reproduction, activity patterns, and ...
Date: December 1, 2002
Creator: Wills, C. A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Lakeview, Oregon. Revision 2

Description: The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project consists of the Surface Project (Phase I) and the Ground Water Project (Phase II). Under the UMTRA Surface Project, tailings, contaminated soil, equipment, and materials associated with the former uranium ore processing at UMTRA Project sites are placed into disposal cells. The cells are designed to reduce radon and other radiation emissions and to minimize further contamination of ground water. Surface cleanup at the UMTRA Project site near Lakeview, Oregon, was completed in 1989. The mill operated from February 1958 to November 1960. The Ground Water Project evaluates the nature and extent of ground water contamination that resulted from the uranium ore processing activities. The Ground Water Project is in its beginning stages. Human health may be at risk from exposure to ground water contaminated by uranium ore processing. Exposure could occur by drinking water pumped out of a hypothetical well drilled in the contaminated areas. Ecological risks to plants or animals may result from exposure to surface water and sediment that have received contaminated ground water. A risk assessment describes a source of contamination, how that contamination reaches people and the environment, the amount of contamination to which people or the ecological environment may be exposed, and the health or ecological effects that could result from that exposure. This risk assessment is a site-specific document that will be used to evaluate current and potential future impacts to the public and the environment from exposure to contaminated ground water. The results of this evaluation and further site characterization will determine whether any action is needed to protect human health or the ecological environment.
Date: March 1, 1996
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Naturita, Colorado

Description: The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project consists of the Surface Project (phase I), and the Ground Water Project (phase II). For the UMTRA Project site located near Naturita, Colorado (the Naturita site), phase I involves the removal of radioactively contaminated soils and materials and their transportation to a disposal site at Union Carbide Corporation`s Upper Burbank Repository at Uravan, Colorado, about 13 road miles (mi) (21 kilometers [km]) to the northwest. No uranium mill tailings are involved because the tailings were removed from the Naturita site and placed at Coke Oven, Colorado, during 1977 to 1979. Phase II of the project will evaluate the nature and extent of ground water contamination resulting from uranium processing and its effect on human health or the environment; and will determine site-specific ground water compliance strategies in accordance with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ground water standards established for the UMTRA Project. Human health risks could occur from drinking water pumped from a hypothetical well drilled in the contaminated ground water area. Environmental risks may result if plants or animals are exposed to contaminated ground water, or surface water that has received contaminated ground water. Therefore, a risk assessment is conducted for the Naturita site. This risk assessment report is the first site-specific document prepared for the Ground Water Project at the Naturita site. What follows is an evaluation of current and possible future impacts to the public and the environment from exposure to contaminated ground water. The results of this evaluation and further site characterization will be used to determine whether any action is needed to protect human health or the environment.
Date: August 1, 1995
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Consequences of the Chernobyl accident for the natural and human environments

Description: In the ten years since the Chernobyl accident, an enormous amount of work has been done to assess the consequences to the natural and human environment. Although it is difficult to summarize such a large and varied field, some general conclusions can be drawn. This background paper includes the main findings concerning the direct impacts of radiation on the flora and fauna; the general advances of knowledge in the cycling of radionuclides in natural, seminatural and agricultural environments; some evaluation of countermeasures that were used; and a summary of the human radiation doses resulting from the environmental contamination. although open questions still remain, it can be concluded that: (1) at high radiation levels, the natural environment has shown short term impacts but any significant long term impacts remain to be seen; (2) effective countermeasures can be taken to reduce the transfer of contamination from the environment to humans but these are highly site specific and must be evaluated in terms of practicality as well as population does reduction; (3) the majority of the doses have already been received by the human population. If agricultural countermeasures are appropriately taken, the main source of future doses will be the gathering of food and recreational activities in natural and seminatural ecosystems.
Date: July 1, 1996
Creator: Dreicer, M.; Aarkog, A.; Alexakhin, R.; Anspaugh, L.; Arkhipov, N.P. & Johansson, K.-J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Spring 1995 wildlife and vegetation survey, Norton Air Force Base, California

Description: The objectives of the 1994 and 1995 wildlife and vegetation surveys were to gather data to be used for various applications including: (1) basewide Environmental Risk Assessment (ERA) Work Plan (Scoping Document), (2) the completion of the basewide ERA, (3) determining remedial activities, and (4) determining the distribution of state and federal list plant and animal species on Norton AFB. Data gathering included an inventory of plant and animal species present, the identification of potential ecological receptors, mapping of habitats, and constructing the ecological food web present on or near the IRP sites of concern.
Date: July 18, 1995
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Survey of protected terrestrial vertebrates on the Oak Ridge Reservation 1995 annual progress report

Description: This progress report discusses surveys of protected terrestrial vertebrates on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) from October 1994 through September 1995. These surveys are important to help avoid or minimize potential impacts of projects on the ORR to species listed as threatened, endangered, or in need of management by the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. Currently, there are 69 species of federally or state-listed terrestrial vertebrates that may occur in Tennessee. Not all of these are expected to occur on the ORR, nor do resources permit comprehensive sampling for all of them over the entire ORR. To effectively organize sampling efforts, listed animal species that might be present were targeted using a prioritization system based on historical and recent sightings, species distributions, literature reviews, and personal communications. Sampling was conducted during the time of the year when each targeted species would most likely be encountered. Several trapping and surveying methods were used, including pitfall traps, Sherman traps, seining, artificial covers, and cave and avian surveys.
Date: November 1, 1995
Creator: Vail, E.R.; Mitchell, J.M.; Webb, J.W.; King, A.L. & Hamlett, P.A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Closure Report for Corrective Action Unit 426: Cactus Spring Waste Trenches, Tonopah Test Range, Nevada

Description: This closure report provides the documentation for closure of the Cactus Spring Waste Trenches Corrective Action Unit (CAU) 426. The site is located on the Tonopah Test Range,approximately 225 kilometers (140 miles) northwest of Las Vegas, Nevada. CAU 426 consists of one Corrective Action Site which is comprised of four waste trenches. The trenches were excavated to receive solid waste generated in support of Operation Roller Coaster, primarily the Double Tracks Test in 1963, and were subsequently backfilled. The Double Tracks Test involved the use of live animals to assess the biological hazards associated with the non-nuclear detonation of plutonium-bearing devices (i.e., inhalation uptake of plutonium aerosol) (DOE, 1996). The remedial alternative proposed Nevada Division of Environmental Protection proposed the capping method. The closure activities were completed in accordance with the approved Corrective Action Plan and consisted of constructing an engineered cover in the ar ea of the trenches, constructing/planning a vegetative cover, installing a perimeter fence and signs, implementing restrictions on future use, and preparing a post-closure monitoring plan. Closure activities for CAU 426 have been completed in accordance with the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection approved Corrective Action Plan as documented in this Closure Report.
Date: August 8, 1998
Creator: Madsen, Dave D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Closure Report for Corrective Action Unit 426: Cactus Spring Waste Trenches, Tonopah Test Range, Nevada

Description: This Closure Report provides the documentation for closure of the Cactus Spring Waste Trenches Corrective Action Unit (CAU) 426. The site is located on the Tonopah Test Range, approximately 225 kilometers northwest of Las Vegas, NV. CAU 426 consists of one corrective action site (CAS) which is comprised of four waste trenches. The trenches were excavated to receive solid waste generated in support of Operation Roller Coaster, primary the Double Tracks Test in 1963, and were subsequently backfilled. The Double Tracks Test involved use of live animals to assess the biological hazards associated with the nonnuclear detonation of plutonium-bearing devices. The Nevada Division of Environmental Protection approved Corrective Action Plan (CAP)which proposed ''capping'' methodology. The closure activities were completed in accordance with the approved CAP and consisted of constructing an engineered cover in the area of the trenches, constructing/planting a vegetative cover, installing a perimeter fence and signs, implementing restrictions on future use, and preparing a Post-Closure Monitoring Plan.
Date: August 1, 1998
Creator: Madsen, Dave
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Environmental summary of the F- and H-area seepage basins groundwater remediation project, Savannah River site

Description: This report summarizes the results of nearly 70 investigations of the baseline environment, describes the remedial action, and identifies constituents of interest that pose potential risk to human health and the environment. It also proposes an approach for evaluating the effectiveness of the remedial action.
Date: December 31, 1997
Creator: Friday, G.P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Yucca Mountain and The Environment

Description: The Yucca Mountain Project places a high priority on protecting the environment. To ensure compliance with all state and federal environmental laws and regulations, the Project established an Environmental Management System. Important elements of the Environmental Management System include the following: (1) monitoring air, water, and other natural resources; (2) protecting plant and animal species by minimizing land disturbance; (3) restoring vegetation and wildlife habitat in disturbed areas; (4) protecting cultural resources; (5) minimizing waste, preventing pollution, and promoting environmental awareness; and (6) managing of hazardous and non-hazardous waste. Reducing the impacts of Project activities on the environment will continue for the duration of the Project.
Date: April 12, 2005
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department