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funding for a 3-year program composed of six thermal-hydraulic experiments and two fission product release and transport experiments. The LOFT facility, which until that time had been dedicated to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission safety research program, was to to be the test vehicle for this new program.
Question: What is the current status, total cost, and level of federal, private, and international participation?
Answer: The program is continuing on schedule and within budget. All of the thermal hydraulic experiments have now been completed, while planning, fuel fabrication, and instrumentation development are well underway for the final two experiments intended to study fission product release and transport.
In preparation for these two experiments, specialized measurements systems are being developed to permit both on-line and post-test analyses of the quantity and species of fission products released and their transport and deposition in an aerosol environment resulting from the vaporization of control rod materials. The results are intended to provide important information relevant to the source term issue.
The total cost of the program is planned at $91.21 million, of which $ 70 million will be supplied from federal sources, $1.5 million from U.S. Industry, and $19.71 million from foreign sources. To date, approximately $43 million has been spent.
Reduced Enrichment Research and Test Reactor
Question: Again this year there is no request in DOE for the RERTR subprogram but apparently a request is contained under the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency. How much is requested and what will be accomplished?
Answer: It is our understanding that the FY 1985 ACDA budget includes $4.9 million for the RERTR--Reduced Enrichment Research and Test Reactor--Program.
In general, efforts will continue in FY 1985 to provide the technical means through development and demonstration of alternative fuel systems for conversion of research and test reactors from use of HEU--highly enriched uranium--to LEU--low-enriched uranium-fuels. Assuming Congressional authorization of the required funding, major specific activities and accomplishments in FY 1985 will include qualification of 1,0. fuel systems for appropriate LEU applications; completion of procurement of high density silicide fuel for the full core demonstration of LEU in the Oak Ridge Research Reactor; continuation of analytical studies of conversion potentials and evaluation of HEU export requests; continuation of development of high uranium density silicide fuels, via irradiations--post irradiation examinations--and data processing; continuation of participation in joint studies with reactor operators for converting their specific reactors to appropriate LEU-fuels; and completion of the International Atomic Energy Agency Guidebooks for conversions of research and test reactors to appropriate LEU fuels.
Question: Does the ACDA have the capability and expertise to continue the program?
Answer: Although funding would be with ACDA, it is expected that responsibility for technical adninistration of the program will continue to be shared with, and conducted through, DOE and that ANL--Argonne National Laboratory--will continue the day-to-day technical management and program coordination activities.
Question: Will DOE personnel be involved?
Answer: We are planning to have current DOE and ANL personnel to continue to actively participate in completion of program activities which are required for timely implementation of the planned conversion policy.
Remedial Action Program
Question: Specifically, how does the Department plan to use the large increase requested in the uranium mill tailings program?
Answer: The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action, or UMTRA, Program is responsible for conducting remedial actions at 24 sites and several thousand associated vicinity properties as mandated by Public Law 95-604. The FY 1985 budget request reflects the UMTRA Program's transition from the planning and environmental analysis phase to the detailed engineering and construction phase. The increased funding level is required to accelerate work on the highpriority processing sites and vicinity properties and to establish the project pace and momentum necessary to meet the 7-year schedule mandated by the Law.
Question: Provide a list of sites with allocated funding and planned activities.
Answer: Provided for the record is a listing of the sites on which work will be underway in FY 1985, funds allocated to each, and a brief statement of the work to be accomplished.
UMTRA Site Work in FY 1985
Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, $10.537,000--Continue processing site remedial action and accomplish cleanup of 33 vicinity properties for a total of 111.
Salt Lake City, Utah, $14,724,000--Continue processing site remedial actions and accomplish cleanup of 29 vicinity properties for a total of 59.
Shiprock, New Mexico, $5,681,000--Complete 60 percent of processing site remedial action and cleanup approximately 8 vicinity properties.
Durango, Colorado, $6,038,000--Complete engineering, design, remedial action plans and environmental documentation and initiate remedial action at the processing site. Cleanup approximately 34 vicinity properties.
Gunnison, Colorado, $682,000--Complete approximately 50 percent of the engineering design for remedial action at the processing site.
Grand Junction, Colorado, $6,496,000--Continue work on the remedial action plans and conceptual designs for the processing site. Cleanup approximately 178 vicinity properties.
Rifle, Colorado, $485,000--Continue work on the remedial action plans and conceptual design for the site.
Riverton, Wyoming, $3,082,000--Complete the engineering design of the remedial action for the site. Complete the cleanup of 8 vicinity properties.
Tuba City, Arizona, $712,000--Complete the environmental documentation, remedial action plans and engineering design on the processing site. Cleanup 8 vicinity properties.
Mexican Hat, Utah, $587,000--Complete remedial action plans, and start the design engineering for the processing site.
Lakeview, Oregon, $389,000--Complete the environmental documentation and remedial action plans for the processing site.
Ambrosia Lake, New Mexico, $488,000--Complete the environmental documentation and start the remedial action plans and conceptual design for the site.
Naturita, Colorado, $418,000--Complete the environmental documentation and start the remedial action plans and conceptual design for the site.
Fall city, Texas, $5,000--Minor planning and support costs.
Maybell, Colorado, $289,000--Complete most of the environmental documentation and start the remedial action plans and conceptual design for the site.
Lowman, Idaho, $5,000---Minor planning and support costs.
Converse County, Wyoming, $10,000--Minor planning and support costs.
Monument Valley, Arizona, $159,000--Complete the environmental documentation and start the remedial action plans and conceptual design for the site.
Edgemont, South Dakota, $846,000--Cleanup approximately 21 vicinity properties.
Question: Give us an update on past accomplishments and planned activities at Canonsburg and the Salt Lake City site?
Answer: With respect to Canonsburg, the Final Environmental Impact Statement was published in July 1983, and the Record of Decision was made in September 1983. The Remedial Action Plan, including the Site Conceptual Design, was completed in October 1983 and construction work at the site was started at that time. By the end of the construction season, a catch basin to collect runoff had been installed, and the site had been fenced.
The engineering design for Canonsburg was completed in January 1984. Work at the site will resume as soon as weather permits-
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about April 1, 1984. The work 18 scheduled to be 35 percent complete by the end of IY 1984. The remaining work will be completed in FY 1985.
Work on the vicinity properties will also be completed in FY 1985. Cleanup of an estimated 33 properties will be accomplished in FY 1985, bringing the total to 111.
With respect to Salt Lake City, the Department, in October 1983 selected the relocation of the tailings to clive, Utah as the preferred remedial action option for this site. The proposed disposal site at Clive, located about 90 miles west of Salt Lake City, was recommended by the State.
The Final Environmental Impact Statement reflecting the preferred option is scheduled for publication in May 1984. The Remedial Action Plan, including the Site conceptual Design, will be completed in June 1984.
In connection with the decision to relocate the tailings, the State of Utah offered to increase its share of the funding of the cost increase associated with the relocation to Clive from the 10 percent required by the Act, to 25 percent provided that the State be given responsibility for the management of the engineering and construction phases of the project. An agreemment implementing these changes was executed on March 6, 1984.
Every effort will be made to minimize any delay in making the transition from DOE to Utah management, and the start of remedial action 18 still targeted to begin within FY 1984. During FY 1985 substantial Investments will be required in equipment and facilities required for the transport of the tailings. Work preparatory to loading the tailings at Salt Lake City and to receiving the tailings at the new disposal site at Clive will be underway.
Although the planning and conceptual engineering for the relocation option has not progressed to the point of establishing a new completion date, it is estimated that time required for the transport of the tailings will delay completion by at least one year, that is, until late FY 1988.
During FY 1985, an additional 29 properties will also be cleaned up, bringing the total completed to 59.
West Valley Project
Question: Briefly provide the Committee with the current status of the West Valley Projectt
Answer: The West Valley Demonstration Project is proceeding on schedule and within budget toward completion of the solidification of the stored high-level vaste by the end of 1990. Currently no major technical obstacles are foreseen that would challenge this schedule. The central task of the West Valley Demonstration Project is solidifcation in borosilicate glass of the high-level radioactive vaste stored in underground tanks at West Valley. In order to begin vitrification at the earliest practical date, the Project strategy is to meld know technology into a viable system and to test the key components of that system in noaradioactive operation and then
convert the system to radioactive operations. This testing will confirm process design, verify remote operability, refine operating procedures, and train personnel. At this time, construction is underway for the Component Test Stand, the liquid-fed ceramic melter, and associated feed subsystems. Start of borosilicate glass production using simulated West Valley waste is scheduled for May 1985; start of radioactive operation is planned for late 1988. Work continues on techniques to mobilize the sludge waste in the underground tanks and move it to the melter feed system. Decontamination of those existing facilities planned for use by the Project continues. Simultaneously, routine site maintenance and operations are being carried out.
The major accomplishments during the past fiscal year include: selection of a reference form, borosilicate glass, for the highlevel radioactive waste; selection of the waste solidification process--joule heated or slurry fed ceramic melter; construction start on the Component Test Stand for the solidification system; waste tank sampling and characterization; selection of an architect/ engineering firm; construction of a waste tank scale model for sludge removal testing; and major start on decontamination of the processing plant for project use.
During FY 1984, the major activities being addressed by the project include sludge removal equipment testing in the waste tank scale model, completion of major procurements and construction of the Component Test Stand or CTS, completion of CTS conceptual design modifications preparatory to conversion of the CTS to radioactive operation, and continuation of plant decontamination tasks. During FY 1985 significant progress is expected on nonradioactive operation of key high-level waste solidification components and removal of equipment and vessels from the large chemical process cell.
Question: FY 1985?
Explain why there is a need for the increase in
Answer: In accordance with Public Law 96-368, the West Valley Demonstration Project will demonstrate the solidification of the high-level waste stored at West Valley. The most effective demonstration will be the expeditious completion of waste solidification and preparation for permanent disposal. The inherent annual base cost for operations has been identified as the single most important element whereon cost cutting measures can be effective. Within reason, a 2-year change in schedule, while holding to essential project objectives and efforts, has been projected to mean a $20 to $50 million cost difference. A reduced funding level would result in a significant increase in the total project cost estimate and a significant delay in the programmatic goal of a public large-scale demonstration without gaining a meaningful annual budget reduction. Completion of the project on an as soon as practical basis will minimize costs to both the federal and New York State governments.
The increase in the West Valley Project is primarily for completion of the vitrification Component Test Stand so as to begin nonradioactive testing in 1985 of the key components in the solidification system and to initiate equipment design and procurements needed to maintain the schedule leading to processing of high-level waste in 1988. An increase is also required for treating--for example, low-level radioactive waste treatment system--and handling