WCS Dump Sites

Radioactive Dump Sites at Waste Control Specialists’ Facility in Andrews County

WCS dump sites

#11 on photo- Texas Compact "Low-Level" Waste Dump – proposed location

Low-level Radioactive Waste Disposal License – R04100 – by Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) – 9/10/09

  • Accepts Class A, B and C from Texas Compact and Federal generators
  • Can accept any and all radionuclides, including for example plutonium, which remains hazardous for half a million years
  • "Low-level" is a deceptive term – No radioactive elements are excluded from a "low-level" facility, including those that could be sent to "high-level" site
  • Accepts all nuclear reactor parts (except fuel rods): Includes reactor containment vessels, poison curtains that absorb radioactivity, piping, sludges, residues and can also accept medical waste
  • Licensed for 2.31 million cubic feet of waste and up t3.89 million curies of radioactivity
  • Decommissioning Vermont Yankee and four Texas reactors would require 3 times the licensed volume
  • The Texas Legislature "privatized" the disposal of low-level radioactive waste in 2003 and allowed import of DOE "low-level" radioactive waste and WCS was the only applicant
  • The Lone Star Sierra Club was denied the opportunity for a contested case hearing and appealed the decision ta Texas State District Court in March, 2009

#10 on photo- Federal "Low-Level" Waste Dump – proposed location

Low-level Radioactive Waste Disposal License – R04100 9/10/09

  • Will accept wastes from reactors and weapons plants managed by the federal government
  • Licensed for 26,000,000 cubic feet of radioactive federal facility waste, up to 5,600,000 curies

#9 on photo- Byproduct Dump

By-Product Material Disposal Facility License – R05807 – May 29, 2008

  • Authorized for receipt and disposal of by-product material as defined in Title 30 of the Texas Administrative Code, Section 336.1105
  • Not to exceed volume of 30,000 cubic yards (810,000 cubic feet) in 3,776 canisters, and a total radioactivity not to exceed 13,400 curies. 1
  • Can accept uranium mill tailings or "yellowcake", as well as radioactive equipment
  • 3776 containers of highly radioactive "K-65" weapons waste were sent from Fernald, Ohifor shallow land burial. K-65 ore has a record 65% uranium content, where typical ore contains only .1% uranium
  • Twof three TCEQ Commissioners refused tallow a either a public meeting or a contested case hearing. Lone Star Sierra Club has appealed the decision not to grant a hearing. Health concerns raised included risks from accidents, high winds, tornados and leaching of wastes intwaterways.

WCS also holds licenses and permits that allow for

  • Processing / storage of radioactive transuranic (TRU) wastes, Greater than Class C wastes, sealed sources
  • Treatment, storage, and disposal of hazardous and non-hazardous industrial waste (over 2,000 RCRA waste codes) with a RCRA part B equivalent permit to receive ignitable, corrosive, toxic and selective hazardous wastes
  • Treatment, storage, and land disposal of PCBs and PCB contaminated materials
  • Receipt of hazardous substances, pollutants or contaminants from CERCLA (Superfund sites)

1.http://www.tceq.state.tx.us/permitting/radmat/uranium/wcs_byproduct_app.html#currentstatus,
Note: License and permit data has been excerpted from http://www.wcstexas.com/cap_licenses_permits.html, where more complete permit information is available. Relevant comments regarding the permits have been added based on information provided by Sierra Club and other sources.

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