NNSA awards Y-12, Pantex contract

The sign at the main entrance to the Y-12 National Security Complex is pictured above on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017. (File photo by John Huotari/Oak Ridge Today)

A contract worth $2.8 billion per year has been awarded to Nuclear Production One LLC to manage and operate the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge and Pantex Plant in Amarillo, Texas.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration announced the contract award on Monday.

NPOne is a limited liability company that consists of Fluor Federal Services Incorporate and AECOM Energy and Construction, an Amentum company, a press release said.

“For over 40 years, the Pantex Plant in Amarillo, Texas has been the nation’s primary nuclear weapon assembly, disassembly, and life-extension center,” NNSA Administrator Jill Hruby said in the press release. “The Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, has been strengthening our national security and reducing the global threat from weapons of mass destruction since 1943. I look forward to NPOne helping us accomplish our mission.”

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Mercury cleanup: COLEX equipment deactivated at Y-12

Oak Ridge workers remove mercury and mercury-contaminated solids from process pipes in the column exchange, or COLEX, equipment at the Alpha-4 facility at the Y-12 National Security Complex. (Submitted photo)

Crews are nearly finished deactivating the second of three collections of old, mercury-contaminated equipment around the Alpha-4 facility at the Y-12 National Security Complex at Oak Ridge, a press release said.

The project addresses potential environmental risks and moves the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Environmental Management a step closer to preparing one of Y-12’s largest high-risk contaminated facilities for demolition, the press release said.

The column exchange, or COLEX, structures are connected to the four-story 500,000-square-foot Alpha-4 building, which was used for uranium separation from 1944 to 1945. Workers finished installing the COLEX equipment in 1955 for lithium separation, a process that required large amounts of mercury. A significant amount of the mercury was lost into the equipment, buildings, and surrounding soils, and its cleanup is one of EM’s top priorities.

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CNS contributes $100,000 in community grants to 17 nonprofits

A Consolidated Nuclear Security Community Investment grant funded a therapist for Willow Brook Elementary School in Oak Ridge.  (Submitted photo)

Submitted

Awards recommended by Y-12 employees in 2021 focused on at-risk youth, food insecurity, mental health, and aid to frontline workers

Consolidated Nuclear Security, in partnership with East Tennessee Foundation, recently awarded 17 grants totaling $100,000 to nonprofit organizations in 10 East Tennessee counties: Anderson, Blount, Campbell, Claiborne, Hamblen, Knox, Monroe, Roane, Scott, and Sevier.

The CNS Employee Investment Advisory Committee at Y-12 National Security Complex reviewed dozens of grant proposals this year, conducted staff interviews, and made site visits before recommending funding based on the committee’s four focus areas for the year: at-risk youth, food insecurity, mental health, and aid to frontline workers.

With the latest round of community investment grants, Consolidated Nuclear Security topped $880,000 of investment in the East Tennessee community during the last five years, a press release said.

[Read more…]

For members: Big change for Y-12 water permit is Mercury Treatment Facility

The planned Mercury Treatment Facility at the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge. (Image courtesy UCOR/U.S. Department of Energy Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management)

 

The biggest change for a water discharge permit drafted for the Y-12 National Security Complex is the construction and operation of a Mercury Treatment Facility, a state official said Tuesday.

The mercury treatment facility, which is under construction and could begin operating next year, is expected to capture and treat most of the mercury released as old, unused mercury-contaminated buildings, equipment, and soils are demolished and removed, especially on the west side of the nuclear weapons production site.

Millions of pounds of mercury were used at Y-12 in the 1950s and early 1960s to produce nuclear weapons parts. Roughly 60,000 pounds is estimated to remain in buildings and equipment, and an unknown amount was released into soils and sediments. About 1.3 million pounds is unaccounted for. Mercury is a top pollutant of concern on the federal Oak Ridge Reservation.

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The planned Mercury Treatment Facility at the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge. (Image courtesy UCOR/U.S. Department of Energy Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management)

The biggest change for a water discharge permit drafted for the Y-12 National Security Complex is the construction and operation of a Mercury Treatment Facility, a state official said Tuesday.

The mercury treatment facility, which is under construction and could begin operating next year, is expected to capture and treat most of the mercury released as old, unused mercury-contaminated buildings, equipment, and soils are demolished and removed, especially on the west side of the nuclear weapons production site.

The planned Mercury Treatment Facility at the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge. (Image courtesy UCOR/U.S. Department of Energy Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management)

 

The biggest change for a water discharge permit drafted for the Y-12 National Security Complex is the construction and operation of a Mercury Treatment Facility, a state official said Tuesday.

The mercury treatment facility, which is under construction and could begin operating next year, is expected to capture and treat most of the mercury released as old, unused mercury-contaminated buildings, equipment, and soils are demolished and removed, especially on the west side of the nuclear weapons production site.

Millions of pounds of mercury were used at Y-12 in the 1950s and early 1960s to produce nuclear weapons parts. Roughly 60,000 pounds is estimated to remain in buildings and equipment, and an unknown amount was released into soils and sediments. About 1.3 million pounds is unaccounted for. Mercury is a top pollutant of concern on the federal Oak Ridge Reservation.

The rest of this story, which you will read only on Oak Ridge Today, is available if you are a member: a subscriber, advertiser, or contributor to Oak Ridge Today.

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For members: Y-12 waste had pressurized gases, ‘energetic material,’ but posed no safety risk

The sign at the main entrance to the Y-12 National Security Complex is pictured above on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017. (File photo by John Huotari/Oak Ridge Today)

 

The waste shipped from the Y-12 National Security Complex that violated a solid waste permit in Nevada included small volumes of pressurized, non-flammable gases and an energetic material, but the shipments did not pose a safety risk, the U.S. Department of Energy said Thursday.

“These items were contained within a sealed, thick steel assembly that was disposed within a large metal box,” DOE said in response to questions. “Though the presence of these internal items were not known at the time of disposal, they do not pose any safety risk because the inner assembly is capable of containing any release of the small volumes of pressurized gases and the energetic material.”

The Department of Energy and the State of Nevada resolved regulatory actions related to the unauthorized shipments of the classified low-level radioactive waste in June. Oak Ridge Today reported about the settlement agreement on Wednesday, and the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection announced the agreement on Thursday. DOE also responded to questions about the shipments on Thursday, and the responses are included here.

At issue were 33 waste packages in 10 shipments from Y-12 to the Nevada National Security Site northwest of Las Vegas between January 2013 and December 2018. The shipments, which were quickly suspended, received publicity in July 2019 after Dan Brouillette, who was then deputy energy secretary, informed Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak about them. At the time, Nevada officials were already in a dispute with DOE about a half-ton of plutonium shipped to NNSS from the Savannah River Site in South Carolina.

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The sign at the main entrance to the Y-12 National Security Complex is pictured above on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017. (File photo by John Huotari/Oak Ridge Today)

The waste shipped from the Y-12 National Security Complex that violated a solid waste permit in Nevada included small volumes of pressurized, non-flammable gases and an energetic material, but the shipments did not pose a safety risk, the U.S. Department of Energy said Thursday.

“These items were contained within a sealed, thick steel assembly that was disposed within a large metal box,” DOE said in response to questions. “Though the presence of these internal items were not known at the time of disposal, they do not pose any safety risk because the inner assembly is capable of containing any release of the small volumes of pressurized gases and the energetic material.”

The sign at the main entrance to the Y-12 National Security Complex is pictured above on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017. (File photo by John Huotari/Oak Ridge Today)

 

The waste shipped from the Y-12 National Security Complex that violated a solid waste permit in Nevada included small volumes of pressurized, non-flammable gases and an energetic material, but the shipments did not pose a safety risk, the U.S. Department of Energy said Thursday.

“These items were contained within a sealed, thick steel assembly that was disposed within a large metal box,” DOE said in response to questions. “Though the presence of these internal items were not known at the time of disposal, they do not pose any safety risk because the inner assembly is capable of containing any release of the small volumes of pressurized gases and the energetic material.”

The Department of Energy and the State of Nevada resolved regulatory actions related to the unauthorized shipments of the classified low-level radioactive waste in June. Oak Ridge Today reported about the settlement agreement on Wednesday, and the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection announced the agreement on Thursday. DOE also responded to questions about the shipments on Thursday, and the responses are included here.

At issue were 33 waste packages in 10 shipments from Y-12 to the Nevada National Security Site northwest of Las Vegas between January 2013 and December 2018. The shipments, which were quickly suspended, received publicity in July 2019 after Dan Brouillette, who was then deputy energy secretary, informed Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak about them. At the time, Nevada officials were already in a dispute with DOE about a half-ton of plutonium shipped to NNSS from the Savannah River Site in South Carolina.

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For members: DOE, NNSA, Nevada settle over waste shipped from Y-12

The sign at the main entrance to the Y-12 National Security Complex is pictured above on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017. (File photo by John Huotari/Oak Ridge Today)

 

The U.S. Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration, and Nevada environmental regulators have agreed to a settlement after classified low-level waste shipped west from the Y-12 National Security Complex allegedly violated waste acceptance criteria at the Nevada National Security Site northwest of Las Vegas, according to documents posted online. 

The waste shipments from Y-12 received significant publicity in news stories in 2019 after Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak demanded answers from the U.S. Department of Energy about what were described as unapproved waste shipments. The shipments were incorrectly labeled, according to a letter sent that summer to former Energy Secretary Rick Perry by Sisolak and U.S. senators Catherine Cortez Masto and Jacky Rosen. Sisolak said he learned about the shipments from Y-12 to Nevada from Dan Brouillette, who was then deputy energy secretary.

Waste shipments from Y-12 were suspended that July. They remained suspended for almost two years. Shipments of low-level waste resumed in May this year, according to the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board. Work continues to obtain approval to dispose of weapons-related material, the DNFSB said.

The settlement agreement, which was signed in June, addresses reimbursement and factual findings, and it includes, as an attachment, information about how the shipments from Y-12 allegedly violated waste acceptance criteria at NNSS.

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The sign at the main entrance to the Y-12 National Security Complex is pictured above on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017. (File photo by John Huotari/Oak Ridge Today)

Note: This story was last updated at 2:40 p.m.

The U.S. Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration, and Nevada environmental regulators have agreed to a settlement after classified low-level waste shipped west from the Y-12 National Security Complex allegedly violated waste acceptance criteria at the Nevada National Security Site northwest of Las Vegas, according to documents posted online. 

The sign at the main entrance to the Y-12 National Security Complex is pictured above on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017. (File photo by John Huotari/Oak Ridge Today)

 

The U.S. Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration, and Nevada environmental regulators have agreed to a settlement after classified low-level waste shipped west from the Y-12 National Security Complex allegedly violated waste acceptance criteria at the Nevada National Security Site northwest of Las Vegas, according to documents posted online. 

The waste shipments from Y-12 received significant publicity in news stories in 2019 after Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak demanded answers from the U.S. Department of Energy about what were described as unapproved waste shipments. The shipments were incorrectly labeled, according to a letter sent that summer to former Energy Secretary Rick Perry by Sisolak and U.S. senators Catherine Cortez Masto and Jacky Rosen. Sisolak said he learned about the shipments from Y-12 to Nevada from Dan Brouillette, who was then deputy energy secretary.

Waste shipments from Y-12 were suspended that July. They remained suspended for almost two years. Shipments of low-level waste resumed in May this year, according to the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board. Work continues to obtain approval to dispose of weapons-related material, the DNFSB said.

The settlement agreement, which was signed in June, addresses reimbursement and factual findings, and it includes, as an attachment, information about how the shipments from Y-12 allegedly violated waste acceptance criteria at NNSS.

The rest of this story, which you will read only on Oak Ridge Today, is available if you are a member: a subscriber, advertiser, or contributor to Oak Ridge Today.

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