A panel of professionals sit at a long table
DOE and National Nuclear Security Administration personnel discuss plans for the upcoming Savannah River Site landlord transition during a recent summit.

AIKEN, S.C. — The future of the Savannah River Site (SRS) was the focus of a recent summit on the transition of the site’s landlord responsibilities from EM to the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) next year.

Personnel from DOE and NNSA gathered at the site’s Collaboration Center to discuss plans for the SRS landlord transition set to occur on Oct. 1, 2024, when primary authority, accountability and site stewardship responsibility for SRS is transferred from the DOE-Savannah River Operations Office (SROO) to the NNSA-Savannah River Field Office (SRFO).

Deemed necessary due to the steadily increasing NNSA mission requirements at SRS and the concurrent progression of the EM cleanup mission toward a defined end state, the transition will include transfer of four major areas of responsibility from DOE-SROO to NNSA-SRFO: the Savannah River Nuclear Solutions (SRNS) management and operations contract, including landlord and essential site services; Pro-Force contract; K Area Complex; and environmental permits and agreements.

“We thought it was important to have everyone here so we could meet as many people as possible in person,” DOE-Savannah River (SR) Manager Mike Budney said. “A lot of people have worked very hard on the original transition plan and to put this summit together. They’ve done a tremendous job in getting us to this point, and now we’ve got to carry things through for the next 11 months.”

A woman stands and speaks at a podium on a stage in front of an audience
DOE-Savannah River Transition Steering Committee Lead Sherri Robinson gives remarks during a summit focused on the EM-to-National Nuclear Security Administration Savannah River Site landlord transition.

The summit was designed to provide detailed briefings to the NNSA organizations, which will assume SRS landlord function, responsibilities and interfaces. The DOE and NNSA participants also continued to collaborate to accomplish a seamless transition.

“We wanted to ensure that we had as an outcome of this summit some sense of where we are today and what we will end up looking like,” DOE-SR Transition Steering Committee Lead Sherri Robinson said. “We have the ‘as is’ and the ‘to be.’ In order to get to the ‘to be,' we had to start talking collaboratively as a unified group between EM and NNSA. This was the platform we chose to go with.”

At the conclusion of the two-day summit, Robinson said she was pleased with the results.

“I’m very happy with the way everything has turned out. This was a success,” she said. “As some of our SRNS and EM folks have said, they’re ready to launch and feel confident to launch on October 1, 2024. I appreciate everyone’s support.”

NNSA-SRFO Deputy Manager Jeff Allison agreed.

“This summit was excellent. I think this has been a great forum,” he said. “There’s a lot of good work that’s happened so far. There is still a lot of work to be done, but I think we understand what that looks like. Let’s keep communicating and collaborating, and on October 1, we’ll be ready to go.”

-Contributor: Kendall Carter