Office of Environmental Management

DOE, N.M. Delegation Mark WIPP Reopening With Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony

January 17, 2017

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Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EM Assistant Secretary Monica Regalbuto joined members of the New Mexico delegation, including Gov. Susana Martinez, U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich, U.S. Reps. Steve Pearce and Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway for a celebration this month marking the reopening and resumption of waste operations at EM’s Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) near Carlsbad, N.M.

Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EM Assistant Secretary Monica Regalbuto joined members of the New Mexico delegation, including Gov. Susana Martinez, U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich, U.S. Reps. Steve Pearce and Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway for a celebration this month marking the reopening and resumption of waste operations at EM’s Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) near Carlsbad, N.M.

National Champion Mine Rescue Team Captain Heath Fowler, center, shared information about WIPP's mine rescue team members, who secured the 2016 national championship, with Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EM Assistant Secretary Monica Regalbuto during an underground tour Jan. 9.

National Champion Mine Rescue Team Captain Heath Fowler, center, shared information about WIPP's mine rescue team members, who secured the 2016 national championship, with Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EM Assistant Secretary Monica Regalbuto during an underground tour Jan. 9.

Nuclear Waste Partnership Deputy Manager of Underground Operations Mark Pearcy describes airflow in the WIPP underground to Sen. Martin Heinrich, from left, Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EM Assistant Secretary Monica Regalbuto. The underground tour was part of a Jan. 9 event for WIPP's reopening.

Nuclear Waste Partnership Deputy Manager of Underground Operations Mark Pearcy describes airflow in the WIPP underground to Sen. Martin Heinrich, from left, Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EM Assistant Secretary Monica Regalbuto. The underground tour was part of a Jan. 9 event for WIPP's reopening.

N.M. Gov. Susana Martinez leads a round of applause for the resumption of waste emplacement at WIPP during the reopening ceremony Jan. 9. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, Sen. Martin Heinrich, Reps. Steve Pearce and Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway also spoke at the event.

N.M. Gov. Susana Martinez leads a round of applause for the resumption of waste emplacement at WIPP during the reopening ceremony Jan. 9. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, Sen. Martin Heinrich, Reps. Steve Pearce and Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway also spoke at the event.

Workers underground at WIPP celebrate the completion of the first waste emplacement since 2014. On Jan. 4, 2017, they emplaced waste from the Savannah River Site that had been recertified and stored in the Waste Handling Building (WHB). All recertified waste from the WHB will be emplaced prior to accepting new waste shipments from generator sites to WIPP. EM expects to resume shipments to WIPP in spring 2017.

Workers underground at WIPP celebrate the completion of the first waste emplacement since 2014. On Jan. 4, 2017, they emplaced waste from the Savannah River Site that had been recertified and stored in the Waste Handling Building (WHB). All recertified waste from the WHB will be emplaced prior to accepting new waste shipments from generator sites to WIPP. EM expects to resume shipments to WIPP in spring 2017.

Workers move waste for emplacement underground at WIPP on Jan. 4.

Workers move waste for emplacement underground at WIPP on Jan. 4.

CARLSBAD, N.M. – Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EM Assistant Secretary Monica Regalbuto joined members of the New Mexico delegation, including Gov. Susana Martinez, U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich, U.S. Reps. Steve Pearce and Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway for a celebration this month marking the reopening and resumption of waste operations at EM’s Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) near Carlsbad, N.M. Waste emplacement activities were halted in February 2014 following a waste drum rupture in an underground storage panel and a separate underground fire. “The tireless efforts by the workforce, the contractor and federal management and the community to make WIPP a safer place to fulfill its critical mission is a remarkable feat,” Moniz said. Here, Moniz, Martinez and members of the N.M. congressional delegation cut a ceremonial ribbon in WIPP's Waste Handling Building on Jan. 9.