AIKEN, S.C. – Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Savannah River celebrated the cleanup and closure of the P and R Reactor Areas under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act program at the Savannah River Site and announced the vision for future missions at the site.
Acting Assistant Secretary for the DOE’s Office of Environmental Management David Huizenga joined federal and state regulators, the Savannah River Nuclear Solutions (SRNS) Recovery Act Team, and local community stakeholders for the event.
“The accomplishments achieved through the Recovery Act, such as the closure of P and R Reactor Areas, are tremendous, but I commit to you that SRS is not a closure site,” Huizenga said. “Through the implementation of Enterprise SRS, the Site will utilize its nuclear materials workforce, knowledge, and assets to help the nation address its critical missions in the three key areas of environmental stewardship, clean energy, and national security.”
The 30-month effort contributed 62 square miles to the Site’s operational footprint reduction strategy five years ahead of schedule and provided jobs and a boost to the economy through $1.6 billion in Recovery Act funds.
The P and R Reactors were the first production reactors in the DOE complex to achieve their final end state, in this case was in situ decommissioning. Both reactor buildings were grouted to the 0.0 foot elevation with approximately 254,000 cubic yards of concrete.
“Today’s completion of P and R Areas is as historic as their inception almost 60 years ago,” said Dr. David Moody, SRS Manager. “These two Recovery Act projects have been highly anticipated for much of the Recovery Act and serve as examples to the rest of the DOE complex.”
Deactivation and decommissioning (D&D) projects in P and R Areas included the demolition of 15 facilities, which contributed 20 percent to the site’s 75 percent operational footprint reduction strategy facilitated under the Recovery Act.
More than 450 regulatory milestones were achieved on or ahead of schedule at P and R Areas. The Recovery Act accelerated the closure of P Reactor Area by four years and R Reactor Area by five years.
The event also marked the rollout for the SRS Strategic Plan, outlining the commitment of site leadership to develop future missions for the site. Included in this is Enterprise SRS, a new initiative to transform past environmental liabilities into revitalized assets for future use, including national security, clean energy development and environmental management.