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

Title: Waste Isolation Pilot Plant 2005 Site Environmental Report

Abstract

The purpose of this report is to provide information needed by the DOE to assess WIPP's environmental performance and to make WIPP environmental information available to stakeholders and members of the public. This report has been prepared in accordance with DOE Order 231.1A and DOE guidance. This report documents WIPP's environmental monitoring programs and their results for 2004. The WIPP Project is authorized by the DOE National Security and Military Applications of Nuclear Energy Authorization Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-164). After more than 20 years of scientific study and public input, WIPP received its first shipment of waste on March 26, 1999. Located in southeastern New Mexico, WIPP is the nation's first underground repository permitted to safely and permanently dispose of TRU radioactive and mixed waste (as defined in the WIPP LWA) generated through defense activities and programs. TRU waste is defined, in the WIPP LWA, as radioactive waste containing more than 100 nanocuries (3,700 becquerels [Bq]) of alpha-emitting TRU isotopes per gram of waste, with half-lives greater than 20 years except for high-level waste, waste that has been determined not to require the degree of isolation required by the disposal regulations, and waste the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commissionmore » (NRC) has approved for disposal. Most TRU waste is contaminated industrial trash, such as rags and old tools; sludges from solidified liquids; glass; metal; and other materials from dismantled buildings. TRU waste is eligible for disposal at WIPP if it has been generated in whole or in part by one or more of the activities listed in the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (42 United States Code [U.S.C.] §10101, et seq.), including naval reactors development, weapons activities, verification and control technology, defense nuclear materials production, defense nuclear waste and materials by-products management,defense nuclear materials security and safeguards and security investigations, and defense research and development. The waste must also meet the WIPP Waste Acceptance Criteria. When TRU waste arrives at WIPP, it is transported into the Waste Handling Building. The waste containers are removed from the shipping containers, placed on the waste hoist, and lowered to the repository level of 655 m (2,150 ft; approximately 0.5 mi) below the surface. Next, the containers of waste are removed from the hoist and placed in excavated disposal rooms in the Salado Formation, a thick sequence of evaporite beds deposited approximately 250 million years ago (Figure 1.1). After each panel of seven rooms has been filled with waste, specially designed closures are emplaced. When all of WIPP's panels have been filled, at the conclusion of WIPP operations, seals will be placed in the shafts. One of the main attributes of salt, as a rock formation in which to isolate radioactive waste, is the ability of the salt to creep, that is, to deform continuously over time. Excavations into which the waste-filled drums are placed will close eventually, flowing around the drums and sealing them within the formation.« less

Authors:
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP), Carlsbad, NM
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE - Office of Environmental Management (EM)
OSTI Identifier:
924491
Report Number(s):
DOE/WIPP-06-2225
TRN: US1001850
DOE Contract Number:  
AC29-01AL66444
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
12 MANAGEMENT OF RADIOACTIVE AND NON-RADIOACTIVE WASTES FROM NUCLEAR FACILITIES; ALPHA-BEARING WASTES; BY-PRODUCTS; CONTAINERS; EVAPORITES; NATIONAL SECURITY; NUCLEAR ENERGY; NUCLEAR WASTE POLICY ACTS; RADIOACTIVE WASTES; REGULATIONS; SAFEGUARDS; SECURITY; SHIP PROPULSION REACTORS; SLUDGES; VERIFICATION; WASTES; WEAPONS; WIPP; Area of Concern; analysis of variance; transuranic; remote-handled; contact-handled; record of decision; RCRA; TRUPACT; TRANSCOM; SWMU; plugging and abandonment; pollution prevention; PPOA; New Mexico Environment Department; Washington TRU Solutions LLC; Waste Isolation Pilot Plant; TSDF; treatment, storage, and disposal facility

Citation Formats

Washington Regulatory and Environmental Services. Waste Isolation Pilot Plant 2005 Site Environmental Report. United States: N. p., 2006. Web. doi:10.2172/924491.
Washington Regulatory and Environmental Services. Waste Isolation Pilot Plant 2005 Site Environmental Report. United States. https://doi.org/10.2172/924491
Washington Regulatory and Environmental Services. Fri . "Waste Isolation Pilot Plant 2005 Site Environmental Report". United States. https://doi.org/10.2172/924491. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/924491.
@article{osti_924491,
title = {Waste Isolation Pilot Plant 2005 Site Environmental Report},
author = {Washington Regulatory and Environmental Services},
abstractNote = {The purpose of this report is to provide information needed by the DOE to assess WIPP's environmental performance and to make WIPP environmental information available to stakeholders and members of the public. This report has been prepared in accordance with DOE Order 231.1A and DOE guidance. This report documents WIPP's environmental monitoring programs and their results for 2004. The WIPP Project is authorized by the DOE National Security and Military Applications of Nuclear Energy Authorization Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-164). After more than 20 years of scientific study and public input, WIPP received its first shipment of waste on March 26, 1999. Located in southeastern New Mexico, WIPP is the nation's first underground repository permitted to safely and permanently dispose of TRU radioactive and mixed waste (as defined in the WIPP LWA) generated through defense activities and programs. TRU waste is defined, in the WIPP LWA, as radioactive waste containing more than 100 nanocuries (3,700 becquerels [Bq]) of alpha-emitting TRU isotopes per gram of waste, with half-lives greater than 20 years except for high-level waste, waste that has been determined not to require the degree of isolation required by the disposal regulations, and waste the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has approved for disposal. Most TRU waste is contaminated industrial trash, such as rags and old tools; sludges from solidified liquids; glass; metal; and other materials from dismantled buildings. TRU waste is eligible for disposal at WIPP if it has been generated in whole or in part by one or more of the activities listed in the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (42 United States Code [U.S.C.] §10101, et seq.), including naval reactors development, weapons activities, verification and control technology, defense nuclear materials production, defense nuclear waste and materials by-products management,defense nuclear materials security and safeguards and security investigations, and defense research and development. The waste must also meet the WIPP Waste Acceptance Criteria. When TRU waste arrives at WIPP, it is transported into the Waste Handling Building. The waste containers are removed from the shipping containers, placed on the waste hoist, and lowered to the repository level of 655 m (2,150 ft; approximately 0.5 mi) below the surface. Next, the containers of waste are removed from the hoist and placed in excavated disposal rooms in the Salado Formation, a thick sequence of evaporite beds deposited approximately 250 million years ago (Figure 1.1). After each panel of seven rooms has been filled with waste, specially designed closures are emplaced. When all of WIPP's panels have been filled, at the conclusion of WIPP operations, seals will be placed in the shafts. One of the main attributes of salt, as a rock formation in which to isolate radioactive waste, is the ability of the salt to creep, that is, to deform continuously over time. Excavations into which the waste-filled drums are placed will close eventually, flowing around the drums and sealing them within the formation.},
doi = {10.2172/924491},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/924491}, journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2006},
month = {10}
}