Office of Environmental Management

Planning Underway for Eventual AMWTP Closure

October 15, 2019

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Under a proposed strategy, the Transuranic Storage Area/Retrieval Enclosure, which is the large gray building pictured here, would become the first building to be closed at the Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project at DOE's Idaho National Laboratory Site
Under a proposed strategy, the Transuranic Storage Area/Retrieval Enclosure, which is the large gray building pictured here, would become the first building to be closed at the Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project at DOE's Idaho National Laboratory Site

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho – The ultimate closure of the Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project (AMWTP) will involve a coordinated effort among the state of Idaho, EM, the DOE Idaho Operations Office, and cleanup contractor Fluor Idaho.

Planning is underway to close the waste treatment facility under the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. The project includes a systematic and integrated building demolition effort.

Challenges will result from the need to complete the work in phases. AMWTP’s closure is dependent on two other projects: completion of the targeted transuranic (TRU) waste retrieval mission of the Accelerated Retrieval Project (ARP) and the site preparation and construction of a gravel and soil cover to place over the 97-acre Subsurface Disposal Area and the western portion of AMWTP.

Under a proposed strategy, the five-acre Transuranic Storage Area/Retrieval Enclosure (TSA/RE) at AMWTP would be removed first to make way for part of the earthen cover and an extensive water drainage system off the landfill cover.

At top is a view of the Radioactive Waste Management Complex at DOE's Idaho National Laboratory Site. Ultimately, an earthen cover will be built over the site as shown in the rendering immediately above.
At top is a view of the Radioactive Waste Management Complex at DOE's Idaho National Laboratory Site. Ultimately, an earthen cover will be built over the site as shown in the rendering immediately above.
At top is a view of the Radioactive Waste Management Complex at DOE's Idaho National Laboratory Site. Ultimately, an earthen cover will be built over the site as shown in the rendering immediately above.

In the second phase, the AMWTP Treatment Facility and associated buildings are set to be closed. EM is scheduled to complete its TRU waste debris treatment mission at the Treatment Facility this fall. That’s where robotic arms resize waste and a supercompactor crushes 55-gallon drums as part of volume-reduction and treatment efforts.

The third phase involves closing remaining AMWTP buildings once all TRU and low-level waste is shipped for disposal. Shipments to EM’s Waste Isolation Pilot Plant are scheduled to continue up until 2028.

Meanwhile, the buried TRU exhumation project at ARP IX is projected to be completed late next year. Demolition of that facility and remaining soft-sided buildings from previous targeted buried waste exhumation projects will commence soon after.

Ultimately, a 10-foot-thick earthen cover spanning more than 150 acres will be built over the landfill, and a drainage system will be constructed to move water away from it.

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