Aerial shot of a large factory
EM is expanding the 107-acre Environmental Restoration Disposal Facility to support at least 25 more years of risk-reduction cleanup at the Hanford Site.

RICHLAND, Wash. – Workers at the Environmental Restoration Disposal Facility (ERDF) on the Hanford Site have disposed of more than 19 million tons of waste from cleanup to date.

Operated by EM Richland Operations Office contractor Central Plateau Cleanup Company (CPCCo), the large engineered landfill is located near the center of the 580-square-mile site.

ERDF offers a safe and compliant location for the disposal of low-level radioactive, hazardous and mixed waste generated during cleanup activities on Hanford’s Central Plateau and in the nearby Columbia River Corridor. To protect the environment from contamination, ERDF has a liner with multiple layers that also capture runoff from weather and dust control, and directs it to holding tanks for treatment.

Six large yellow bins sit in the middle of a dirt lot with a white truck parked in front of them
Workers at the Environmental Restoration Disposal Facility at the Hanford Site have disposed of 19 million tons of debris from demolishing 800 facilities and cleaning up 1,300 waste sites since operations began in 1996.

Workers at the 107-acre facility have disposed of demolition material from more than 800 facilities and solid material and soil from 1,300 waste sites since the facility’s operations began in 1996. The facility consistently receives an average of 10,000 to 15,000 tons of waste per month.

“The disposal facility and the people who operate it continue to play a critical role in the site’s risk-reduction mission, as they have done for more than 25 years,” said Heather Dale, assistant manager for River and Plateau for EM Hanford.

ERDF can hold 21 million tons of waste distributed across 10 large disposal cells, enough to support site cleanup work for a few more years. By 2025, CPCCo will begin construction of an eleventh cell that will provide capacity for about another 20 years of disposal of cleanup debris.

“I’m proud of the role our experienced crews play in supporting cleanup progress across the Hanford Site,” said CPCCo ERDF manager Craig Larson. “Our team remains committed to safe and efficient operations and environmental protection.”

-Contributor: Dieter Bohrmann