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3 Overview of the Integration Project The objective of this chapter is to provide an overview of the Integration Project to set the stage for the detailed assessments of the science and technology (S&T) program in subsequent chapters of this report. The committee relied on several key documents in preparing this chapter, most notably DOE (1 998a, 1 998d, 1 999b, 2000a) and GAO (1 998~. BACKGROUND AND HISTORY The Groundwater/\/adose Zone Integration Project, was established in late 1997 in response to pressure from the U.S. Congress and Department of Energy (DOE) Headquarters for more effective coordination of the numerous waste management and clean-up efforts under way at the Hanford Site (DOE, 1 998c). As discussed in Chapter 1, the integration effort grew out of investigations begun in 1994 to map radionuclide distributions around and beneath the single-shell tanks in the SX Tank Farm in the 200 Area at the site (see Chapter 2~.2 These investigations suggested that significant radionuclide migration into the deep vadose zone had occurred and that radionuclides had in fact reached groundwater in at least one instance. This discovery contradicted long-enunciated DOE assertions that radionuclides would not migrate to groundwater for thousands of years. Concurrent work by Los Alamos National Laboratory scientists suggested that leaks from the single-shell tanks in one tank farm may have been several times greater than previously reported (Agnew and Corbin, 1998, Table 2~. At the time the Integration Project was established, three organizations were responsible for waste management and cleanup at the Hanford Site. The work done by each of these offices was carried out by several private contractors with oversight by federal employees. The GroundwaterNadose Zone Integration Project is referred to as the "Integration Project" in this and subsequent chapters. A good discussion of the events leading up to the formation of the Integration Project is provided in GAO (1998~. 40

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Overview of the Integration Project 1. The Tank Waste Remediation System Program was responsible for management and cleanup of the tank farms and underlying vadose zone. 2. The Office of Environmental Restoration was responsible for cleaning up the site, including the vadose zone and groundwater outside the tank farms. 3. The Office of Waste Management was responsible for managing stored and future-generated waste. 41 The Integration Project was overlaid onto these three existing organizations, and it was charged with coordinating the activities of these organizations with respect to investigations of the vadose zone, groundwater, and Columbia River.3 The three organizations signed a memorandum of understanding in 1997 that outlined their responsibilities for the vadose zone at the site. The Environmental Restoration Program was directed to be the lead in this effort, and its contractor, Bechtel Hanford, was directed to take the lead in developing a plan of work. A draft of this plan was issued in December 1998 (DOE, 1998d), and updates of parts of the plan have been issued since that time (DOE, 1999b, 2000a). The names of the three organizations responsible for waste management and cleanup at the site were changed in 1998 and 1999, but their responsibilities remain much the same: 1. The Office of River Protection, which was created by Congress in 1998, is now responsible for management and cleanup of the tank farms and underlying vadose zone. 2. The Office of Project Completion, Richland Office, is responsible for cleaning up the remainder of the site. 3. The Office of Integration and Disposition is responsible for managing stored and future-generated waste. CH2M Hill is the primary contractor for the tank farm work, Bechtel Hanford is the primary contractor for the environmental restoration program, and Fluor Daniel Hanford is the primary contractor for nuclear materials management at the site. Table 3.2 provides a summary of the projects under these offices. Additional details are provided later in this chapter. 3The name "GroundwaterNadose Zone Integration Project' does not reflect the potentially important role this project plays in protecting the Columbia River. The committee was told that the project name was coined in its early development stages, before its full scope was understood. By the time the full scope was established, the project name had become institutionalized.

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42 Science and Technology for Environmental Cleanup It was clear even from an early draft of the Integration Project plan that the project scope was broader than suggested by its name. This is perhaps best illustrated by the mission statement in the December 1998 draft of the project specification (DOE, 1 998d, p. 1-2~: To ensure that Hanford Site decisions are defensible and possess an integrated perspective for the protection of water resources, the Columbia River environment, river- dependent life, and users of the Columbia River resources, the mission of the GroundwaterNadose Zone Project is to develop and conduct defensible assessments of the Hanford Site's present and post- closure cumulative effects of radioactive and chemical materials that have accumulated throughout Hanford's history (and which continue to accumulate). To support this mission the GroundwaterNadose Zone Project will also define those actions necessary to establish consistency and maintain mutual compatibility among site-wide characterization and analysis tasks that bear on decisions, receptor impact, and regulatory compliance. The GroundwaterNadose Zone Integration Project will identify and oversee the science and technology initiatives pursued by the national laboratories (as necessary) to enable the assessment mission to be successfully completed. As noted in Chapter 1, the main objectives of the Integration Project as outlined in this December 1998 draft are as follows: 1. Integrate all Hanford Site GroundwaterNadose zone related work scope. 2. Predict current and future impacts resulting from contaminants that have been (or are predicted to be) released to the soil column at the Hanford Site. 3. Provide a sound science and technology basis for site decisions and actions. 4. Promote open and honest involvement by Tribal Nations. regulators, and other stakeholders so that project outcomes reflect expressed interests and values. 5. Establish an independent technical peer review. The Integration Project has both technical and nontechnical objectives. On the technical side, the Integration Project is responsible for promoting the use of sound science and technology in decision making at

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Oven/iew of the Integration Project 43 the site. The project is also responsible for promoting interactions with outside parties who have an interest in Hanford so that local interests and values are taken into account in those decisions. The third and fifth objectives are particularly germane to this National Research Council study. As noted in Chapter 1, the study was requested by DOE Headquarters as part of the site's efforts to obtain independent technical reviews of its programs. Also as noted in Chapter 1, the committee has been asked to review the S&T work that is occurring under the Integration Project and to offer recommendations to improve its technical merit and applicability to site cleanup decisions. A brief review of the science and technology element of the Integration Project is provided below. More details are provided in subsequent chapters. SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM The objective of the Integration Project's science and technology program is to provide the data, tools, and understanding to predict present and future impacts and to promote sound decision making (Sidebar 3.1~. The Integration Project's science and technology program is organized into the six technical elements listed below. Within each of these technical elements, the Integration Project supports (or plans to support) scientific and technical studies to improve the understanding of contaminant inventories, locations, fate and transport processes, and impacts on the Columbia River. 1. The Inventory Technical Element supports studies to develop improved estimates of chemical and radionuclide inventories at the Hanford Site, especially for wastes disposed of or discharged to the subsurface. There are a number of site databases that track waste inventories, most notably the Hanford Environmental Information System, Waste Inventory Data System, and Solid Waste Inventory Tracking System (see Chapter 5~. However, the data in these systems are incomplete, primarily because waste inventories were not tracked very carefully during much of the site history (see Chapter 2 for a more detailed discussion). 2. The Vadose Zone Technical Element supports studies to develop a better understanding of subsurface contaminant behavior in the vadose zone for example, studies to improve the understanding of fate and transport processes in the vadose zone, studies to improve conceptual and numerical models of contaminant fate and transport in the vadose zone, and studies to test advanced characterization tools and methods.

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44 Science and Technology for Environmental Cleanup 3. The Groundwater Technical Element supports studies to improve site-wide assessments of contaminant fate and transport in groundwater at the site for example, studies to improve modeling of contaminant fate and transport in groundwater and studies to improve the understanding of contaminant locations in the subsurface and of locations and fluxes of contaminant releases to the Columbia River. 4. The Columbia River Technical Element supports studies to provide an enhanced understanding of the potential impacts and consequences of contaminant releases to the Columbia River for example, studies to improve conceptual models of the river, studies to parameterize fate and transport models, and studies to improve the understanding of the effects of contaminants on riverine biota. 5. The Risk Technical Element, which is still under development, will focus on improving the understanding of risks, broadly construed,4 posed by contaminant migration at the site and on reducing uncertainties in risk assessment methodologies. 6. The Remediation and Monitoring Technical Elements, which have not yet been developed, will focus on improving capabilities to remediate and monitor environmental contamination at the Hanford Site. SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM PLANNING THROUGH RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT "ROADMAPS" Problems to be addressed by the six technical elements listed above are being identified through a process that DOE calls research and development (R&D) roadmapping.5 In DOE parlance, a roadmap is an R&D plan developed to address explicitly posed technical problems and to guide investment decisions so that the needed R&D work can be completed in time to make critical site decisions. The roadmap itself is a document that identifies the technical problems to be addressed by R&D, with a plan that lays out objectives, priorities, schedules, and budgets for addressing them. A roadmap is usually developed through a series of meetings or workshops that bring together experts who understand the problems that must be addressed (problem holders), experts who understand how to address these problems (problem solvers), and other parties who have an interest in the work to be done (stakeholders). 4The Risk Technical Element considers ecological, human health, economic, and sociocultural impacts, the latter two of which are not usually considered in standard risk assessments. 5The roadmapping concept originated in industrial R&D labs and has been embraced by DOE for many of its R&D programs through the strong encouragement of Ernest Moniz, who served as DOE Under Secretary at the time the Integration Project was created.

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Oven/iew of the Integration Project 45 ~ .'.S.~DEB~;.~...1'.What.i'.sl''n - ' 'I' ' '' S ' ' --':':::;" ;'""''-;" :1'-:"''"~':: ~ ~ .. ~~ .~ ~ ~ ~ . ~ . ~ ----- ~-~ D~u-r~.ng th.~course ~th~s. study,- th.e c McKee neither. found ~ -I ~~ aft. fin the-wriden. dock i i it - o I ~it. received Tom ..Integ.~ion~ Off Riti ~ ~~ ~~ . it ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~~ ~ . ~ ~ ~ ~~ i. ~ i. . . ~~ ~ air. ~~ ~.~ ~ .. ~ . ~ i .~ ~ ~ Hi. ~ .. - ~ . ,~,.~ chn~:/ogy: in th.'e.e'o,,n,.t'.~.t.':.~,, ' '1 ~ ' t ' n:P ' ~-.R' ad' ;' ' :( 'E ' ::'~ 199'9b). The rtoa, 0,map.:,d,e,2,s,crib,, ~-~ne-w-knowledg.e:'.d2ata'~.~.'t'ool's--'and:-th'' :' ' d' 'st i 'd' ~ : I ::'' -the'.l;nte''g'~t'.on P~''e~'s~ i . ~ ~ ~ . ~ . ..... ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ i. ~ - ~ . ~ . ~ . ~ .. - . - . ~ ~ ~ . ~ i .. ~ ~ ~ . - ~ ~ ~ ~ . - ~ ~ . ~ .. -. :. ~ - . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ . ~ . . . . ~~ ~~tocUsec ~ On rBSo ving Key TeC Conga : lsSUeS. ; 1a :.. be pa o=. ant .-: ~~ tee ~ A- .~. ~ ..~,, ,, . .. . A . ~ .. ................ .~ ~.~ flues. dec~s.'ons' ....but it .does..n.ot. describe. what. th.e...~ntegrat'~n..... A - ~ ~ Hi. ~ . ~ ~ A. .. ~~ A ..................................................... ....... , , , ..... .. ~ Hi ~ ~Pr~ed con-s'ders to be:.~.~. in. the s.=,p,e of .S=...Moreover .the core -- - .~. ~~ . . A. ~ A. All . ~ . ~.~ . . ~ . ~ ..~ ... ....... A ... A .... I. projects ~also.fund..and-carry-.-~..a.s~gn.~r~~ t porc~on-o:~ tne.,.~a i.. erron .-..:- ~ ~~ ~~ ~ A. A --, ~-~-~-~.~ . ~.~ A-- .. ~ -I.---. ~ ~.~ ~~ ~ ~~.~.~.~ ~ ~at.~the-.~s~te ~ Carnal. thee defin.~t'~n.s. ma~r..nof .he..cons~stent.w'th those..usea..~. - .~bv:the.Integrat~on..Pr~ed.-..~. i.. ; - GonsequenUy.the iN ha -appli-~:-what-~t s- ~- ~ ~ A- ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~ ~ A- ~~ - ~ -. A. : ~ ,--~- - A. - -- ~ -- ~~.~ ~ .~ , ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ -- i. ~ ~ ..~. ~ A. it': be he. g.en~e~r.allyaccepteddefin~t~ons-of science. and technology .~n~ . ~ ~- ~ ~ .. A... A.. ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ . - - - . ~ A. A. ~ ~ ~ . . ~ ~ ~ A. ~ ~ ~ . . - - - ~ ~ . ~ . ~ . . ~ ~ . ~ ~ - -. ~ A.. ~ -. i. ~ - - ~ ~~ r"`'i=-wi~n~th~ :~:~:l:.~nronrnm. .~mnce is the discovery of kr~o~vledae. ~~ . :- esp~ially-:as..obtain.ed and-test~..~-through..scient~fi' -mom' ds :- -- . ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~ ~~ ~~ .~ ~ ~ ~~ ~~ . ~ . A .............. ~ ......... ~-~-whereas~.techno/o~.'s~the a.ppl.i.cation...of scientific kn~wledg~e-.to~ .-- ~ ~ . ~ ~ ~ ~ . ~ . ~ ~ ~ ~ . . ~ ~ A. ~ . ~ A ~ . ~ . ~ ~ ~ ~ . ~ ~ . . i. A ~ ~ pa;dicularpr~.blem..s T.h 1 I E ~ 9: .~- ~ airy. technology: pr.ov~.es- -an Sue and. errs p.or. tent. opportu.n~'es.~to - weave i.... .~ ~~ ~ ~ Hi. Hi ~~ ~ ~~ ~~ .~ .. . ~ . ~~ ~ All. - .~ A A ~ .~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ -if . i .~ ~ . ~ ~ ~~ - - ~~ - -- ~~ ~~ ~ ~ ~~.t~th-Pr~kn~wl~cre~nn-kno~eintearation.~a darn I . We if- In fiscal year 1 99B, DOE held a series of workshops involving site contractors (problem holders), national laboratory scientists (problem solvers), and representatives of regulatory agencies, Tribal Nations, and other interested parties (stakeholders) to develop initial (Rev. 0) roadmaps for four of the six technical elements: inventory, vadose zone, groundwater, and Columbia River. These roadmaps are provided in Groundwater/\/adose Zone Integration Project Science and Technology Summary Description (DOE, 1 999b). This document will be referred to as the Integration Project Roadmap in the remainder of this report. In fiscal year 1999, DOE held additional meetings with staff from the DOE Center for Risk Excellence, national laboratory and university scientists, Tribal Nations, and other stakeholders to develop a roadmap for the Risk Technical Element. This roadmap and updated roadmaps for the other four technical elements are provided in "Rev. 1" of the roadmap document (DOE, 2000a). During the current (2001 ) and next (2002) fiscal

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46 Science and Technology for Environmental Cleanup years, DOE plans to develop additional roadmaps for the remediation and monitoring technical elements, presumably using the same process that was used to develop the other five roadmaps. The Integration Project Roadmap (DOE, 2000a) describes R&D needs, products, schedules, and budgets. The roadmap descriptions are general in nature and provide little or no technical detail on individual S&T projects. This is a key document for the committee's review, and additional details of the roadmap are provided in subsequent chapters. IMPLEMENTATION OF INTEGRATION PROJECT ROADMAP The projects outlined in the Integration Project Roadmap are designed to provide scientific and technical information to meet DOE's cleanup or waste management objectives. To help ensure the timely delivery of useful information, the Integration Project has developed science-user teams for each of the technical elements discussed above. These teams comprise Integration Project staff, contractor staff from DOE's "core" remediation and waste management projects,6 and national laboratory researchers. Some of the teams also involve principal investigators from Environmental Management Science Program (EMSP)7 projects relevant to Hanford Site cleanup (these projects are discussed in more detail elsewhere in this report). The science-user teams are responsible for planning and implementing the R&D work and ensuring that the results are transferred to problem holders in a timely fashion. The Integration Project Roadmap identifies projects that provide R&D support to five Hanford Site core projects as well as two Integration Project efforts: The Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project (core project) is responsible for remediating or stabilizing contaminants in the vadose zone beneath the 200 Area tank farms. Planning for this work is under way, but actual remediation has not yet begun. 6The core projects are responsible for the actual work done at the Hanford Site to remediate and/or stabilize waste and contaminants. 7The EMSP is a mission-directed, basic research program that provides three-year grants to researchers in national laboratories, academia, and industry. The grants are awarded based on competitive peer review that considers both scientific merit and relevance to DOE's cleanup needs. The program was established by Congress in 1996 and is managed jointly by DOE's Office of Science and Office of Environmental Management. See National Research Council (1997, 2000a) for a description of this program.

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Overview of the Integration Project 47 The Groundwater Project (core project) is responsible for site- wide groundwater monitoring and remediation. The 200 Area Remedial Action Project (core project) is focused on the remediation and/or stabilization of waste burial grouncis and discharge sites in the 200 Area. The River Monitoring Project (core project) is responsible for monitoring the Columbia River to meet regulations and compliance agreements. The Immobilized Low-Activity Waste Project (core project) is responsible for development of a disposal facility for low-activity waste that will be generated during retrieval, processing, and immobilization of high-level waste from the 200 Area tank farms. The System Assessment Capability Project (SAC; Integration Project) is responsible for the development of models and databases that can be used to conduct site-wide risk assessments. The Characterization of Systems Project (Integration Project) is responsible for the development of data and conceptual models for the vadose zone, groundwater, and river. The Integration Project's R&D activities take several forms. As shown in later chapters, most of the Integration Project's current R&D work is being conducted through the EMSP, a basic research program funded through DOE Headquarters. The Integration Project also provides direct funding for shorter-term, applied R&D work. Some additional R&D may be funded directly by the national laboratories through laboratory- directed research and development funds.8 R&D work, whether under the auspices of the Environmental Management Science Program or the Integration Project, may be conducted in conjunction with core project activities. The Integration Project refers to R&D done in conjunction with core projects as"wrap-around science." SCHEDULE AND BUDGET Rev. 1 of the Integration Project Roadmap (DOE, 2000a, Figure 4.1 therein) provides a logic diagram of R&D activities that extends through fiscal year 2005, with notational lines to indicate that some work will extend beyond that date. The budget for the program (DOE, 2000a, Multi program DOE national laboratories are authorized by Congress to spend a percentage of their operating budgets on research and development activities "of a creative and innovative nature ... selected by the director of a laboratory for the purpose of maintaining the vitality of the laboratory in defense- related scientific disciplines" (National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1991).

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48 Science and Technology for Environmental Cleanup Table 5-1; see Table 3.1 in this report) extends through fiscal year 2004 (FY04) and indicates that the Integration Project's S&T effort will involve an investment of between about $1 million and $16 million per year to complete the planned work. This budget has been reduced since the roacimap was published, as noted by the bottom row of the table for TABLE 3.1 Budget for the Integration Project's Science and Technology Program Budget Planned FiscalYear Funding Levelsa Total Element (thousand dollars) 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 Inventory 130 410 845 130 Vadose zone 120 3,170 5,500 6,500 6,500 1,645 3,000 1 9,840 Groundwater 450 900 400 600 2,350 River 250 1,000 1,250 750 850 4,100 Risk 3,750 5,300 3,800 12,850 Remediation Monitoring Roadmap 900 900 500 500 500 3,300 planning and implemen- tation Planned 1,150 4,730 12,045 14,580 12,080 4,450 51,985 funding level. Actual funding 1,333 levelc Other S&T program funding levels 4,700 4,600 24,000e aThe figures in this table represent Integration Project funding levels for the S&T program (Table 5.1 of DOE, 2000a). Additional funding for activities identified in the S&T roadmap is provided by other Hanford core projects as well as the Integration Project through its SAC and Characterization of Systems projects. bThe figures shown are calculated by summing the funding levels for each fiscal year. CThe actual funding levels are from DOE (2000c). The figures shown in this column represent planned funding for the Integration Project S&T program from other DOE sources, for example, the EMSP. eThe EMSP awarded funding to 31 projects. This funding will be distributed from fiscal year 1999 through fiscal year 2002.

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Overview of the Integration Project 49 FY01. The budget reduction is being achieved primarily by delaying planned work. More detailed budgets for each of the technical elements shown in Table 3.1 are provided in the Integration Project Roadmap (DOE, 2000a) and are reproduced in Chapters 5-9 of this report. There are several inconsistencies between Table 3.1 and the budgets shown in the later chapters due to funding reductions and changes in budget priorities since the roadmap budgets were published. Nevertheless, the committee considers the Integration Project Roadmap budgets given in Chapters 5-9 to be important because they provide an indication of projected funding needs during the first five years of the project's existence. DISCUSSION This chapter provides an overview of the Integration Project to set the stage for the detailed assessments of the science and technology plan in subsequent chapters. The material in this chapter reflects the committee's understanding of the Integration Project's S&T program as it existed when the committee completed its information gathering in late March 2001. Several preliminary observations are worth noting at this point. The Integration Project has been superimposed onto a number of preexisting, highly complex, multicontractor"core" waste management and cleanup projects at the site (see Table 3.2~. The Integration Project has been given the challenging task of providing scientific and technical information to these preexisting projects, but it has very restricted authority and budget to carry out this mandate. It has direct control over only the small amount of money it distributes to the R&D effort each year (Table 3.1), and it has no authority over the clean up decisions to be made. It is not even clear in many cases who "owns" the Integration Project's R&D results. To add to this challenge, the core project missions themselves also appear to be changing as the end-state decisions to be made at the site (Chapter 2) are developed. The Integration Project is operating in an unstable programmatic environment, which makes it difficult to plan an R&D program that meets site needs and schedules. Nevertheless, with cleanup work at the site planned to extend until at least 2046 (see Chapter 2), there would certainly appear to be ample opportunity to maintain an R&D effort that, through proper planning and focus, will fill critical knowledge gaps for the cleanup program at Hanford. Suggestions for how the Integration Project can operate more successfully in this unstable environment are given in Chapter 1 0.

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50 Science and Technology for Environmental Cleanup TABLE 3.2 Core and Integration Project Responsibilities for Environmental Management at the Hanford Site DOE Office Project Responsibility GWNZ Integration Road- Plan and integrate S&T for Y' mapping Project and S&T environmental decision a, Elements making; coordinate ' stakeholder involvement .o SAC Project Models and databases for site- Office of ~ wide risk assessments Completion ~ Characterization of Systems Models and data for vadose ' Project zone, groundwater, and Richland Columbia River Office 200 Area Remedial Action 200 Area disposal sites Project outside tank farms Groundwater Project Site-wide groundwater Y] monitoring and remediation .a Q River Monitoring Project Monitoring the Columbia River Office of Project | 0 | Tank Fam' Vc dose Zon | Unsaturated zone around River Protection .. Disposal of low-activity waste Office mmob' sized c A A vl generated from tank waste L ~ ~ caste Pro,ect ~ immobilization operations