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Title: Technical/ administrative options for managing tritium MCL exceedances in P-area groundwater and Steel Creek

Abstract

This white paper was requested by the Core Team (United States Department of Energy [USDOE], United States Environmental Protection Agency [USEPA], and South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control [SCDHEC]) at the P-Area Groundwater (PAGW) Operable Unit (OU) Scoping Meeting held in January 2017 to discuss recent data and potential alternatives in support of a focused Corrective Measures Study/Feasibility Study (CMS/FS). This white paper presents an overview of the problem, and a range of technical and administrative options for addressing the tritium contamination in groundwater and Steel Creek. As tritium cannot be treated practicably, alternatives are limited to media transfer, containment and natural attenuation principally relying on radioactive decay. Using other groundwater OU decisions involving tritium as precedent, Savannah River Nuclear Solutions (SRNS) recommends that final tritium alternatives be evaluated in a CMS/FS, understanding that the likely preferred remedy will include natural attenuation with land use controls (LUCs). This is based on the inability to significantly reduce tritium impact to Steel Creek using an engineered solution as compared to natural attenuation. The timing of this evaluation could be conducted concurrently with the final remedy evaluation for volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Authors:
 [1]
  1. Savannah River Site (SRS), Aiken, SC (United States). Savannah River National Lab. (SRNL)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Savannah River Site (SRS), Aiken, SC (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1351952
Report Number(s):
ERD-EN-2017-0034
DOE Contract Number:
AC09-08SR22470
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES

Citation Formats

Ross, J. Technical/ administrative options for managing tritium MCL exceedances in P-area groundwater and Steel Creek. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1351952.
Ross, J. Technical/ administrative options for managing tritium MCL exceedances in P-area groundwater and Steel Creek. United States. doi:10.2172/1351952.
Ross, J. Sat . "Technical/ administrative options for managing tritium MCL exceedances in P-area groundwater and Steel Creek". United States. doi:10.2172/1351952. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1351952.
@article{osti_1351952,
title = {Technical/ administrative options for managing tritium MCL exceedances in P-area groundwater and Steel Creek},
author = {Ross, J.},
abstractNote = {This white paper was requested by the Core Team (United States Department of Energy [USDOE], United States Environmental Protection Agency [USEPA], and South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control [SCDHEC]) at the P-Area Groundwater (PAGW) Operable Unit (OU) Scoping Meeting held in January 2017 to discuss recent data and potential alternatives in support of a focused Corrective Measures Study/Feasibility Study (CMS/FS). This white paper presents an overview of the problem, and a range of technical and administrative options for addressing the tritium contamination in groundwater and Steel Creek. As tritium cannot be treated practicably, alternatives are limited to media transfer, containment and natural attenuation principally relying on radioactive decay. Using other groundwater OU decisions involving tritium as precedent, Savannah River Nuclear Solutions (SRNS) recommends that final tritium alternatives be evaluated in a CMS/FS, understanding that the likely preferred remedy will include natural attenuation with land use controls (LUCs). This is based on the inability to significantly reduce tritium impact to Steel Creek using an engineered solution as compared to natural attenuation. The timing of this evaluation could be conducted concurrently with the final remedy evaluation for volatile organic compounds (VOCs).},
doi = {10.2172/1351952},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Sat Apr 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Sat Apr 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

Technical Report:

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  • Extremes in water quality unfavorable to the biota of Steel Creek were not detected during diversion of 32,000 gpm of ambient temperature water from P Area to Steel Creek. The small changes in water quality that were observed are considered within the normal range expected for this creek as a result of natural flow variation. Suspended sediment and Cs-137 concentrations were increased a factor of 3 to 4 above background due to stream bed erosion adjacent to P Area. These increased concentrations were reduced to normal levels 6 miles downstream from P Area. No significant change in Cs-137 concentrations wasmore » measured at the point where Steel Creek water flows into the Savannah River swamp.« less
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  • The Site Health and Safety Coordinator (SHSC) is selected based on demonstrated experience in conducting site safety operations to the level of protection anticipated for the site. The individual is an experienced industrial hygienist whose primary responsibility is to oversee field team site-specific Health and Safety Plan (HASP) compliance. The SHSC: implements the HASP and informs the Task Manager of any conditions or modifications that may be appropriate, Performs monitoring as required by the HASP, verifies with the Task Manager that assigned personnel have current 'Fit-For-Duty' medical authorizations and have received appropriate training, determines that equipment is used properly andmore » is calibrated in accordance with manufacturer's instruction or other standard protocols, and that the results are properly recorded and filed.« less
  • Four Mile Creek was electrofished during June 26--July 2, 1990 to assess the impacts of outcropping ground water form the F- and H-Area Seepage Basins on fish abundance and distribution. Number of fish species and total catch were comparable at sample stations upstream from and downstream from the outcropping zone in Four Mile Creek. Species number and composition downstream from the outcropping zone in Four Mile Creek were similar to species number and composition in unimpacted portions of Pen Branch, Steel Creek, and Meyers Branch. These findings indicate that seepage basin outcropping was not adversely affecting the Four Mile Creekmore » fish community. 5 refs., 3 figs., 4 tabs.« less