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TECHROIOGIES FOR ERVIRORMERTAI MARAGEMERT THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY'S OFFICE OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY Board on Radioactive Waste Management Commission on Geosciences, Environment, and Resources National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C.
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NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This work was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy, Contracts No. DE-FC01-94EW54069 and DE-FC01-99EW59049. All opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect Me views of the Department of Energy. International Standard Book Number 0-309-06647-6 Additional copies of this report are available from: National Academy Press 2101 Constitution Ave., NW Box 285 Washington, DC 20055 800-624-6242 202-334-3313 (in the Washington Metropolitan Area) http://www.nap.edu Copyright 1999 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America
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"'1'~i~iTl~ ~ National Academy of Sciences National Academy of Engineering Institute of Medicine National Research Council A::~:AD~ ~..~ (a .C hi. The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Bruce M. Alberts is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. William A. Wulf is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Kenneth I. Shine is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Bruce M. Alberts and Dr. William A. Wulf are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the National Research Council. . . .
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BOARD ON RADIOACTIVE WASTE MANAGEMENT MICHAEL C. KAVANAUGH, Chair, Malcolm Pirnie, Inc., Oakland, Californiai JOHN F. AHEARNE, Vice-Chair, Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society, and Duke University, Research Triangle Park and Durham, North Carolina2 ROBERT J. BUDNITZ, Future Resources Associates, Inc., Berkeley, Californian MARY R. ENGLISH, University of Tennessee, Knoxvillei DARLEANE C. HOFFMAN, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, Berkeley, California JAMES H. JOHNSON, JR., Howard University, Washington, D.C. ROGER E. KASPERSON, Clark University, Worcester, Massachusetts JAMES O. LECKIE, Stanford University, Stanford, California JANE C.S. LONG, University of Nevada, Reno CHARLES MCCOMBIE, International Consultant, Wettingen, Switzerland WILLIAM A. MILLS, Oak Ridge Associated Universities (retired), Olney, Maryland D. WARNER NORTH, NorthWorks, Inc., Belmont, Californiai MARTIN J. STEINDLER, Argonne National Laboratory (retired), Argonne, Illinois JOHN J. TAYLOR, Electric Power Research Institute (retired), Palo Alto, California MARY LOU ZOBACK, U.S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, California NRC Staff GREGORY H. SYMMES, Study Director SUSAN B. MOCKLER, Research Associate TONI GREENLEAF, Administrative Associate LAURA D. LLANOS, Project Assistant Member of Committee on Environmental Management Technologies (CEMT) Working Group 2Chair of CEMT Working Group IV
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COMMISSION ON GEOSCIENCES, ENVIRONMENT, AND RESOURCES GEORGE M. HORNBERGER, Chair, University of Virginia, Charlottesville RICHARD A. CONWAY, Union Carbide Corporation (retired), South Charleston, West Virginia THOMAS E. GRAEDEL, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut THOMAS J. GRAFF, Environmental Defense Fund, Oakland, California EUGENIA KALNAY, University of Maryland, College Park DEBRA KNOPMAN, Progressive Policy Institute, Washington, D.C. KAI N. LEE, Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts BRAD MOONEY, J. Brad Mooney Associates, Ltd., Arlington, Virginia HUGH C. MORRIS, E1 Dorado Gold Corporation, Vancouver, British Columbia H. RONALD PULLIAM, University of Georgia, Athens MILTON RUSSELL, Joint Institute for Energy and Environment and University of Tennessee (emeritus), Knoxville THOMAS C. SCHELLING, University of Maryland, College Park ANDREW R. SOLOW, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, Massachusetts VICTORIA J. TSCHINKEL, Landers and Parsons, Tallahassee, Florida E-AN ZEN, University of Maryland, College Park MARY LOU ZOBACK, U.S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, California NRC Staff ROBERT M. HAMILTON, Executive Director GREGORY H. SYMMES, Associate Executive Director JEANETTE SPOON, Administrative and Financial Officer DAVID FEARY, Scientific Reports Officer SANDI FITZPATRICK, Administrative Associate MARQUITA SMITH, Administrative Assistant/Technology Analyst v
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Preface The Department of Energy's Environmental Management Program (DOE- EM) is one of the largest environmental cleanup efforts in world history (the analogue in Greco-Roman mythic tradition being the cleanup of the Augean stables). The EM division charged with developing or finding technologies to accomplish this massive feat, its Office of Science and Technology (OST), has been reviewed extensively, including six reports from committees of the National Research Council's (NRC's) Board on Radioactive Waste Management (BROOM) that have been released since December 1998. These committees examined different components of OST's technology development program, including its decision-making and peer review processes and its efforts to develop technologies in the areas of decontamination and decommissioning, waste forms for mixed waste, tank waste, and subsurface contamination. Gerald Boyd, head of OST, asked the BROOM to summarize the major findings and recommendations of these reports and synthesize any common issues into a number of overarching recommendations to EM and OST. Such an overarching assessment is timely because it occurs soon after the appointment of a new Assistant Secretary for Environmental Management. This report was written by a working group formed from members of the BRWM.i The working group developed a work plan, prepared a background paper and detailed summaries of the six reports reviewed, and held a meeting in early February win representatives of the committees that prepared the reports. The working group prepared drafts of this report, which were subsequently discussed by the entire board at its June 1999 and November 1999 board meetings. The report has been approved by all BROOM members. ~ The following BROOM members serve on this working group: John Ahearne (chair), Robert Budnitz, Mary English, Michael Kavanaugh, and Warner North. vii
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. . ~ V111 TECHNOLOGIES FOR ENV7RONMENTAL MANAGEMENT The working group thanks those representatives of BROOM committees who participated in the meeting in February: Martin Steindler, Tanks Committee; John Fountain, Peer Review and Subsurface Contaminants Committees; Ray Wymer (chair), Decision Making Committee; Sol Burstein, D&D Committee; and Paul DeJonghe (chair),'Mixed Waste Committee. In addition, the board gratefully acknowledges the assistance of NRC staff involved in this study. In particular, Toni Greenleaf did an exceptional job organizing the meeting and overseeing the preparation of drafts of this report. Susan Mockler assisted in preparing meeting summaries, performed research tasks for the study, and edited various drafts of the report. Laura Llanos prepared the camera-ready copy of this report. Gregory Symmes, who served as study director for this project, made major contributions in helping shape the board's ideas into a coherent report and in assisting the board to respond to extensive reviewer comments. Kevin Crowley provided helpful suggestions throughout the study. This report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the NRC's Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making the published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process. We thank the following individuals for their participation in the review of this report: Corale Brierley, Brierley Consultancy, LLC Thomas A. Cotton, JK Research Associates, Inc. Allen G. Croff, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Lloyd Duscha, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (retired) Harold Forsen, Bechtel Corporation (retired) John Fountain, State University of New York, Buffalo William Kastenberg, University of California, Berkeley Milton Levenson, Bechtel International (retired) Frank Parker, Vanderbilt University Bruce M. Thomson, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque Detlof von Winterfeldt, University of Southern California, Los Angeles While the individuals listed above have provided constructive comments and suggestions, it must be emphasized that responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the authoring committee and the institution. John Ahearne Chair, CEMT Working Group
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Contents SUMMARY INTRODUCTION This Report, 10 Background, 14 2 CLARIFY THE ROLE AND MISSION OF OST Strategic Planning and Prioritization, 20 Long-Term Objectives, 21 3 PUT DISCIPLINE INTO DECISION MAKING Framing Decisions, 22 Making Decisions, 27 Prioritizing Needs and Measuring Results, 34 4 EXPAND OST'S REACH OUTSIDE DOE Recommendations, 37 5 ADDRESS CONSTRAINTS TO TECHNOLOGY IMPLEMENTATION Constraints Within DOE, 38 Constraints External to DOE, 39 Conclusion, 42 Recommendations, 42 REFERENCES lox 8 18 22 36 38 44
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x TECHNOLOGIES FOR ENFlRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT APPENDIXES A List of Recommendations from A Review of Decontamination and Decommissioning Technology Development Programs at the Department of Energy B List of Recommendations from Peer Review in Environmental Technology Development Programs: The Department of Energy's Ounce of Science arm Technology List of Recommendations from An End State Methodology for Identifying Technology Needs for Environmental Management, with an Example from the Hanford Site Tanks D List of Recommendations from The State of Development of Waste Forms for Mined Wastes: U.S. Department of Energy 's Office of Environmental Management List of Recommendations from Groundwater and Soil Cleanup: Improving Management of Persistent Contaminants List of Recommendations from Decision Making in the U.S. Department of Energy's Environmental Management Office of Science and Technology Acronyms and Abbreviations Organizational Structure of Relevant Parts of the Department of Energy's Office of Environmental Management as of August 1999 49 52 55 58 62 65 72 73