The federal spending bill approved last week includes $639 million for the federal government’s cleanup program in Oak Ridge, including what could be full funding for a top priority deactivation and demolition project at the Y-12 National Security Complex.
The $639 million for the current fiscal year is an increase of $141 million or more, compared to recent fiscal years, and it’s the most money appropriated in a while.
Besides Y-12, the fiscal year 2018 funding will be used for U.S. Department of Energy cleanup projects at East Tennessee Technology Park (the former K-25 site) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
“It’s very positive for us,” said Jay Mullis, manager of the DOE Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management, or OREM. Mullis gave a brief update at a meeting of the Oak Ridge Reservation Communities Alliance on Monday.
In addition to $125 million to deactivate and demolish the Biology Complex at Y-12, the fiscal year 2018 spending bill includes $17.1 million in funding for the planned Mercury Treatment Facility at Y-12, about $200 million for continued cleanup work at ETTP, and a total of roughly $12 million for the Environmental Management Disposal Facility, or EMDF. That’s a proposed landfill that could be west of Y-12 and accept waste from future cleanup work at Y-12 and ORNL, possibly early in the 2020s. The project plan for EMDF is expected to be open to public comment later this summer. [Read more…]