November 16, 2009: Presentation on nuclear waste processing and landfill disposal in TN to Tennessee State House of Representatives 2009 summer study committee
, on behalf of Tennessee Conservation Voters, Tennessee Environmental Council and Citizens to End Nuclear Dumping in Tennessee and Nuclear Information and Resource Service.
Links to WSMV stories related to Out Of Control-On Purpose report (click here)
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Radioactive materials are being released from nuclear weapons facilities
to regular landfills and into commercial recycling streams where they
can be used to make everyday household items.
This is a key finding of a new NIRS report: Out of Control –
On Purpose: DOE's Dispersal of Radioactive Waste into Landfills and Consumer
Products. The report was commissioned to track the DOE’s policies
and procedures for releasing nuclear wastes from nuclear bomb production.
The report was released on May 14, 2007.
Under the current system, the DOE and other nuclear waste generators
either release contaminated materials directly or send their waste to
processors who can then release it from radioactive controls to landfills,
to recyclers or to auction for reuse.
The report includes a detailed assessment of DOE’s policies, and
a special focus on Tennessee which licenses companies to bring nuclear
waste into the state where it is then processed and in some cases “redefined”
as not radioactive or as “special.” It can then be sent to
regular trash dumps or other facilities. This opens up the potential for
the materials to enter the recycling stream to make everyday household
items or to be used to build roads, schools, and playgrounds.
The Executive Summary, full report (including executive summary) and
all Appendices are available for download below.
Read press release here.
Full report, with appendices
1999 Tennessee Radioactive Materials/Waste Processors Chart
2006 Tennessee Radioactive Materials/Waste Processors Chart
Department of Energy press release: Secretarial Announcement Blocking
Nickel Recycling at Oak Ridge and “prohibiting the release of all
volumetrically contaminated metals” January 12, 2000
Department of Energy press release: Secretarial Announcement of Suspension
of Release of Materials (Metals) from DOE Facilities July 13, 2000
DOE Secretarial Memo on Release of Surplus and Scrap Materials July 13,
DOE Radiological Release of Property: Flow Chart
2001 Tennessee Department Environment and Conservation (TDEC) Division
of Radiological Health White Paper streamlining accepting nuclear waste
2006 TDEC Memo of Agreement between Divisions of Solid Waste and Radiological
Health allowing landfill disposal of radioactive waste as “special”
DOE 5400.5 Surface Contamination Release Levels
Excerpt from Nuclear Regulatory Commission Below Regulatory Concern policy
on risks from radiation doses
Talking Points, US Department of Energy, Notice of Intent to Prepare a
Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement on the Disposition of Radioactive
NIRS FOIA Request to DOE/NNSA re all Authorized and Supplemental Limits
for Radioactive Release May 2007
Concentrated Benefit over Diffuse Injury, by John W. Gofman, M.D., Ph.D.,
and Egan O'Connor
Why Radioactive Wastes Should be Sequestered for the Full Duration of
their Hazard: Considering the “MACS Effect,” by Judith Johnsrud,
June 15, 2007: NIRS report “Out of Control --- On Purpose” revealed that at least 4 or 5 regular trash landfills in Tennessee are accepting radioactive wastes. Residents in the communities near the Middle Point BFI Allied solid waste landfill in Murfreesboro, Rutherford County, TN have set up a website www.citizenstoendit.org, are petitioning the state to stop sending nuclear waste to their landfill, and appear to have gotten a moratorium on the dumping until a study is completed. Other communities around the other landfills are also raising concerns. The landfills are Middle Point in Murfreesboro, Carter’s Valley in Church Hill, Chestnut Ridge in Heiskell and North and South Shelby landfills near Memphis.
NIRS comments to TDEC TN Dept of Envt and Conservation Solid Waste Advisory Committee considering nuclear waste going to Middle Point landfill. July 24, 2007.
November 3, 2007: NIRS Statement at the Memphis Sierra Club Annual Environmental Justice Conference.