There isn’t enough room to dispose of a proposed 34 metric tons of weapons grade plutonium at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant. To do so, WIPP’s physical and statutory capacity will have to increase, per a Friday report from the National Academies of Sciences (NAS). The report was the first of two the organization was tasked with creating by the federal government, for the proposed program. The final report was expected in summer 2019. Emplacement of plutonium was expected, per the report, to begin in 2024, and end in 2049, with the program lasting “more than” 30 years.
Carlsbad Argus 30th Nov 2018 read more »
Washington Times 30th Nov 2018 read more »
Disposal of Surplus Plutonium at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant: Interim Report evaluates the general viability of the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration’s (DOE-NNSA’s) conceptual plans for disposing of 34 metric tons (MT) of surplus plutonium in the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP), a deep geologic repository near Carlsbad, New Mexico. This report evaluates DOE-NNSA’s plans to ship, receive, and emplace surplus plutonium in WIPP and its understanding of the impacts of these plans on WIPP and WIPP-bound waste streams. This report, the first of two to be issued during this study, provides a preliminary assessment of the general viability of DOE-NNSA’s conceptual plans, focusing on some of the barriers to their implementation.
National Academies 30th Nov 2018 read more »
National Academies Press Release 30th Nov 2018 read more »