skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Ocean dumping of low-level radioactive wastes

Abstract

Scientific bases, developed internationally over the last 20 years, to control and restrict to acceptable levels the resultant radiation doses that potentially could occur from the dumping of low-level radioactive wastes in the deep oceans were presented. The author concluded that present evaluations of the disposal of radioactive wastes into the oceans, coastal and deep ocean, indicate that these are being conducted within the ICRP recommended dose limits. However, there are presently no international institutions or mechanisms to deal with the long-term radiation exposure at low-levels to large numbers of people on a regional basis if not a global level. Recommendations were made to deal with these aspects through the established mechanisms of NEA/OECD and the London Dumping Convention, in cooperation with ICRP, UNSCEAR and the IAEA. (PSB)

Authors:
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest Lab., Richland, WA (USA)
OSTI Identifier:
6893092
Report Number(s):
PNL-SA-10831
ON: DE83002709
DOE Contract Number:
AC06-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
11 NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE AND FUEL MATERIALS; 54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; 12 MANAGEMENT OF RADIOACTIVE AND NON-RADIOACTIVE WASTES FROM NUCLEAR FACILITIES; 98 NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT, SAFEGUARDS, AND PHYSICAL PROTECTION; 29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY AND ECONOMY; LOW-LEVEL RADIOACTIVE WASTES; MARINE DISPOSAL; RISK ASSESSMENT; SEAWATER; RADIONUCLIDE MIGRATION; ENVIRONMENTAL EXPOSURE PATHWAY; HUMAN POPULATIONS; INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION; RADIATION DOSES; RADIATION PROTECTION; RADIONUCLIDE KINETICS; COOPERATION; DOSES; ENVIRONMENTAL TRANSPORT; HYDROGEN COMPOUNDS; MANAGEMENT; MASS TRANSFER; MATERIALS; OXYGEN COMPOUNDS; POPULATIONS; RADIOACTIVE MATERIALS; RADIOACTIVE WASTES; WASTE DISPOSAL; WASTE MANAGEMENT; WASTES; WATER 054000* -- Nuclear Fuels-- Health & Safety; 520302 -- Environment, Aquatic-- Radioactive Materials Monitoring & Transport-- Aquatic Ecosystems & Food Chains-- (-1987); 052002 -- Nuclear Fuels-- Waste Disposal & Storage; 055000 -- Nuclear Fuels-- Safeguards, Inspection, & Accountability; 530100 -- Environmental-Social Aspects of Energy Technologies-- Social & Economic Studies-- (-1989); 290600 -- Energy Planning & Policy-- Nuclear Energy; 290300 -- Energy Planning & Policy-- Environment, Health, & Safety

Citation Formats

Templeton, W.L. Ocean dumping of low-level radioactive wastes. United States: N. p., 1982. Web.
Templeton, W.L. Ocean dumping of low-level radioactive wastes. United States.
Templeton, W.L. 1982. "Ocean dumping of low-level radioactive wastes". United States. doi:.
@article{osti_6893092,
title = {Ocean dumping of low-level radioactive wastes},
author = {Templeton, W.L.},
abstractNote = {Scientific bases, developed internationally over the last 20 years, to control and restrict to acceptable levels the resultant radiation doses that potentially could occur from the dumping of low-level radioactive wastes in the deep oceans were presented. The author concluded that present evaluations of the disposal of radioactive wastes into the oceans, coastal and deep ocean, indicate that these are being conducted within the ICRP recommended dose limits. However, there are presently no international institutions or mechanisms to deal with the long-term radiation exposure at low-levels to large numbers of people on a regional basis if not a global level. Recommendations were made to deal with these aspects through the established mechanisms of NEA/OECD and the London Dumping Convention, in cooperation with ICRP, UNSCEAR and the IAEA. (PSB)},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = 1982,
month =
}

Technical Report:
Other availability
Please see Document Availability for additional information on obtaining the full-text document. Library patrons may search WorldCat to identify libraries that may hold this item. Keep in mind that many technical reports are not cataloged in WorldCat.

Save / Share:
  • The following aspects are discussed: radiological principles as applied to disposal to the environment; international regulations; historical dumping practices; assessment of the Northeast Atlantic dump site; IAEA generic studies; and implications of issues on US needs and policies.
  • From 1946 to 1970, the United States disposed of low-level radioactive waste by dumping it into the ocean. Today, more than a decade after all dumping stopped, concerns over the potential environmental and public health consequences of past ocean dumping persist. In an evaluation of the adequacy of federal efforts to deal with this issue, GAO found that: the Federal Government has no complete and accurate catalogue of information on how much, what kind, and where low-level nuclear waste was dumped because detailed records were not required; the overwhelming body of scientific research and opinion shows that concerns over themore » potential public health and environmental consequences posed by past ocean dumping activity are unwarranted and overemphasized; and although the Environmental Protection Agency has been slow in developing low-level radioactive waste ocean dumping regulations, its current approach is sound. Nonetheless, improvements are needed in developing specific dumpsite monitoring requirements. Accordingly, GAO makes specific recommendations to improve the effectiveness of federal efforts in the area.« less
  • The report provides information applicable to using geophysical instruments and survey methods, and the data collected, in the process of designating sites for ocean disposal of low level radioactive wastes. The geophysical ocean survey methods described in the report are envisioned as preceding any sediment sampling required to characterize disposal sites.
  • The amounts of coal ash, flue gas desulfurization (FGD) sludge, sewage sludge, industrial waste, and seafood-processing wastes currently ocean dumped were determined, and ocean dumping of these wastes was projected for the year 2000. The projected rates were made using three different scenarios: Scenario I assumed continued ocean dumping only by current permittees, Scenario II assumed some relaxation of ocean dumping regulation, and Scenario III, to provide a maximum estimate, assumed that future ocean-dumping would be based solely on economic considerations. Coal ash and FGD sludge are projected to be the most voluminous waste dumped under Scenarios II and III,more » and the East coast of the U.S. would produce the greatest amounts to be dumped.« less