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Title: Elk and Deer Study, Material Disposal Area G, Technical Area 54: Source document

Abstract

As nuclear research has become more prevalent, environmental contamination from the disposal of radioactive waste has become a prominent issue. At Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in northern New Mexico, radioactive contamination from disposal operations has raised some very specific concerns. Material Disposal Area G (Area G) is the primary low-level radioactive waste disposal site at LANL and occupies an area adjacent to land belonging to the Native American community of the Pueblo of San Ildefonso. Analyses of soil and vegetation collected from the perimeter of Area G have shown concentrations of radionuclides greater than background concentrations established for northern New Mexico. As a result, Pueblo residents had become concerned that contaminants from Area G could enter tribal lands through various ecological pathways. The residents specifically questioned the safety of consuming meat from elk and deer that forage near Area G and then migrate onto tribal lands. Consequently, this study addresses the uptake of {sup 3}H, {sup 90}Sr, {sup tot}U, {sup 238}Pu, {sup 239}Pu, {sup 241}Am, and {sup 137}Cs by elk (Cervus elaphus) and deer (Odocoileus hemionus) that forage around the perimeter of Area G and the associated doses to the animals and to humans who consume these animals. Radionuclidemore » uptake by and internal dose to animals was estimated using equations modified from National Council on Radiological Protection Report 76. The Residual Radiation computer code was used to estimate the external dose to animals and the dose to humans consuming meat. Soil and water concentrations from the perimeter of Area G and from background regions in northern New Mexico were averaged over 4 years (1993--1996) and used as input data for the models. Concentration estimates generated by the model correspond to the concentration range measured in actual tissue samples from elk and deer collected at LANL. The highest dose estimates for both animals (0.028 mrad/d) and humans (0.072 mrem/y) were well below guidelines established to protect the environment (100 mrad/d) and the public (100 mrem/y) from radiological health risks.« less

Authors:
; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM (US)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Environment, Safety and Health (EH) (US)
OSTI Identifier:
751947
Report Number(s):
LA-13596-MS
TRN: US0003020
DOE Contract Number:  
W-7405-ENG-36
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Resource Relation:
Other Information: PBD: 1 Sep 1999
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
11 NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE AND FUEL MATERIALS; 54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; 61 RADIATION PROTECTION AND DOSIMETRY; 63 RADIATION, THERMAL, AND OTHER ENVIRONMENTAL POLLUTANT EFFECTS ON LIVING ORGANISMS AND BIOLOGICAL MATERIALS; LANL; ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS; LOW-LEVEL RADIOACTIVE WASTES; RADIATION MONITORING; RADIONUCLIDE MIGRATION; SOILS; PLANTS; FOOD CHAINS; RADIATION DOSES

Citation Formats

J. K. Ferenbaugh, P. R. Fresquez, M. H. Ebinger, G. J. Gonzales, and P. A. Jordan. Elk and Deer Study, Material Disposal Area G, Technical Area 54: Source document. United States: N. p., 1999. Web. doi:10.2172/751947.
J. K. Ferenbaugh, P. R. Fresquez, M. H. Ebinger, G. J. Gonzales, & P. A. Jordan. Elk and Deer Study, Material Disposal Area G, Technical Area 54: Source document. United States. doi:10.2172/751947.
J. K. Ferenbaugh, P. R. Fresquez, M. H. Ebinger, G. J. Gonzales, and P. A. Jordan. Wed . "Elk and Deer Study, Material Disposal Area G, Technical Area 54: Source document". United States. doi:10.2172/751947. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/751947.
@article{osti_751947,
title = {Elk and Deer Study, Material Disposal Area G, Technical Area 54: Source document},
author = {J. K. Ferenbaugh and P. R. Fresquez and M. H. Ebinger and G. J. Gonzales and P. A. Jordan},
abstractNote = {As nuclear research has become more prevalent, environmental contamination from the disposal of radioactive waste has become a prominent issue. At Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in northern New Mexico, radioactive contamination from disposal operations has raised some very specific concerns. Material Disposal Area G (Area G) is the primary low-level radioactive waste disposal site at LANL and occupies an area adjacent to land belonging to the Native American community of the Pueblo of San Ildefonso. Analyses of soil and vegetation collected from the perimeter of Area G have shown concentrations of radionuclides greater than background concentrations established for northern New Mexico. As a result, Pueblo residents had become concerned that contaminants from Area G could enter tribal lands through various ecological pathways. The residents specifically questioned the safety of consuming meat from elk and deer that forage near Area G and then migrate onto tribal lands. Consequently, this study addresses the uptake of {sup 3}H, {sup 90}Sr, {sup tot}U, {sup 238}Pu, {sup 239}Pu, {sup 241}Am, and {sup 137}Cs by elk (Cervus elaphus) and deer (Odocoileus hemionus) that forage around the perimeter of Area G and the associated doses to the animals and to humans who consume these animals. Radionuclide uptake by and internal dose to animals was estimated using equations modified from National Council on Radiological Protection Report 76. The Residual Radiation computer code was used to estimate the external dose to animals and the dose to humans consuming meat. Soil and water concentrations from the perimeter of Area G and from background regions in northern New Mexico were averaged over 4 years (1993--1996) and used as input data for the models. Concentration estimates generated by the model correspond to the concentration range measured in actual tissue samples from elk and deer collected at LANL. The highest dose estimates for both animals (0.028 mrad/d) and humans (0.072 mrem/y) were well below guidelines established to protect the environment (100 mrad/d) and the public (100 mrem/y) from radiological health risks.},
doi = {10.2172/751947},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {1999},
month = {9}
}