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Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant (2015)

Chapter: Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement

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Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
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A

Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement

The process of developing and implementing the plan for destroying the nerve agent-containing munitions at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant (BGCAPP) has a complex history. It informs the way that the Program Executive Office (PEO) for Assembled Chemical Weapons Alternatives (ACWA) and stakeholders might now approach consideration of a backup plan in the event that onsite treatment processes fail to perform as expected. Aspects of this history that are critical to informing discussions of a backup plan are

  • The emergence of “critical trust” after the severe erosion of trust between the community and the Army;
  • An expectation that community members play a meaningful role in decision making about facility design, monitoring, and performance assessment; and
  • Concerns about the impacts of offsite shipments of secondary wastes such as hydrolysate.

This appendix summarizes the history. It provides an overview of the chronology and events that inform existing relationships and describes the perspectives of stakeholders and decision makers.

EARLY TENSIONS AND THE EROSION OF TRUST IN THE CHEMICAL WEAPONS DESTRUCTION PROGRAM

The initial proposal by the Army was to destroy the U.S. stockpile of chemical weapons and agents using incineration technology. Incineration was viewed as the best and most expedient option and was used widely to treat and destroy hazardous wastes in the 1980s. Incineration was also controversial, with many communities opposing the siting and operation of incinerators for the processing of hazardous and municipal wastes. In this context, it is no surprise that the early history of the chemical weapons destruction program was characterized by significant debate about the Army’s preference for incineration to dispose of the stockpile. Much of this debate had its origins in questions raised by residents living nearby the Blue Grass Army Depot (BGAD).

When the Army held public meetings in the communities with facilities housing chemical weapons, the meeting in Madison County, Kentucky, had the most people attending. Rather than building support for the Army’s plans to incinerate the weapons, this meeting “sparked fears in local residents, who began to organize against incineration” (Futrell and Futrell, 2012, p. 171). Some nearby residents did not know that chemical weapons were stored in their community. They also felt marginalized and disrespected by the Army, which lacked answers to their questions. Two participants described the initial meetings with Army this way:

Going into that meeting…a lot of us were skeptical about the plan but that didn’t mean we were necessarily opposed to it. But they came in, treated us like children, as if we didn’t know a thing. Then that little lady asked the simplest question—What’s left over after the weapons are burnt? They couldn’t answer. That’s about the time when we started thinking a little harder that this might be a really bad idea. (Futrell and Futrell, 2012, p. 174)

They [the army] would waltz into every public meeting with their cadre of engineers and staff acting like we were stupid hayseeds with no chance of understanding them. We were the ones asking questions that they couldn’t or wouldn’t answer with anything more than a “don’t worry about the details; we’ll take care of them.” They couldn’t tell us why neutralization wouldn’t work. They couldn’t tell us why we should be confident in them to solve the problems they began having with incineration. They were like a parent scolding a kid who keeps asking why something is the way it is saying “because I said so.” That kind of answer is just not acceptable. (Futrell, 2003a)

As residents began to ask more questions during the late 1980s through the 1990s, the process became increasingly adversarial (Futrell 2003a; Futrell 2003b) and distrust in the

Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×

Army and its plan for incineration grew. Public involvement by the Army was described as perfunctory, such that “locals soon concluded that the Army was only going through the motions of public involvement to meet their legal obligations, with no real intent to meaningfully involve them” (Futrell and Futrell, 2012, p. 175). Further, observers claimed that

Information was highly controlled, and army interaction with citizens was mechanistic and dismissive, reflecting the common top-down model of communication in which technical experts dominated decisions. The result was hollow proceduralism, tokenistic consultation, and conflict as citizens sought a meaningful role in the process. (Futrell, 2003a, p. 460)

Public opposition was reflected in political opposition. Federal, state, and local government officials began echoing public concerns and acting on them (Futrell, 2003b).

BUILDING A NETWORK OF OPPOSITION

The community members opposing the Army’s plan for incineration of the weapons at BGAD organized themselves into, first, the Kentucky Environmental Foundation (KEF), and, later, the Chemical Weapons Working Group (CWWG). The CWWG, established in 1991, is a coalition of community members from the nine chemical weapons sites around the United States, and from national and international nongovernmental organizations. Through a process of learning and dialogue, activists in the nine states began to develop a more unified view about how to handle the stockpile. Initial reactions from opponents to incineration were to ship weapons and wastes elsewhere for treatment. This preference soon bumped up against activists and residents in other locations, such as Utah, which viewed such an approach as ethically suspect by imposing new risks on additional communities (Marshall, 1996; Futrell, 2003b).

The CWWG adopted principles of environmental justice as a foundation for its proposals (Marshall, 1996). The result was a more systems view within the CWWG and a strategic shift toward supporting onsite closed-loop destruction and treatment of wastes.

[Alternative technologies] was a wholesale shift in our thinking. We went from advocating shipping this stuff to Utah to realizing that, not just politically but ethically, that just wouldn’t work. We don’t want it; why should they? Perfectly logical—it just wasn’t a big part of our thinking before we began talking. Considering this thing from their side was a real eye-opener and it fundamentally changed what we were trying to do. (Participant quoted in Futrell, 2003b)

Members of the KEF and CWWG, some of whom continue to be active today on Citizens’ Advisory Commissions (CACs) at Pueblo and Blue Grass and include the co-chair of the Chemical Destruction Citizens’ Advisory Board (CDCAB), developed considerable expertise about these technologies and their site. Futrell and Futrell (2012, p.182) describe their expertise this way:

The most persistent KEF/CWWG activists have been involved in the dispute for more than twenty years. Through their unique and invaluable experiences, they acquired a blend of knowledge and communication skills that only they possess. Many parties in the dispute, including legislators, regulators, and even army officials, have great regard for their brand of expertise and draw upon it frequently. . . . We describe this expertise as a combination of several interconnected dimensions: holistic knowledge, issue memory, vernacular translation, and the ability to cultivate alliances.

A SHIFTING DYNAMIC

A dramatic shift in the dynamic of growing social distrust and Army insistence on incineration occurred in 1997. A number of factors led to this shift, including mounting pressure on the Army from Congress and in local communities about the safety of incineration in general and the facilities in the Army specifically, as well as the transferring of risks to new communities by transporting and disposing of weapons and wastes (Durant, 2007; Futrell and Futrell, 2012; GAO, 1995a, 1995b). This pressure emerged in large part through the efforts of the KEF and CWWG. Congressional leaders were also concerned about the prospect of interstate transportation of weapons and waste (Durant, 2007). Public Laws 104-201 and 104-208 froze funds for construction of chemical agent destruction facilities at Blue Grass and Pueblo and directed the Army to demonstrate at least two alternatives to incineration for the destruction of the agent. What would eventually become the PEO ACWA was established to evaluate other means of destroying the chemical agent.1

As part of the PEO ACWA history, Congress also required a more robust effort to involve the public. PEO ACWA was, in large part, the result of an attempt to address public distrust of the Army that appeared to many to insist on pursuing incineration without justification. One of the first acts of what would become PEO ACWA was to initiate the Dialogue on Assembled Chemical Weapons Assessment (ACWA Dialogue) in 1997 (Goldberg, 2003; Keystone, 2004). The ACWA Dialogue was facilitated by the Keystone Policy Center (formerly the Keystone Center), a nongovernmental organization dedicated to supporting the resolution of policy conflicts by inspiring “leaders to rise above entrenched positions to reach common higher ground.”2 The ACWA Dialogue included 32 participants from the affected communities and states and met 13 times over 5 years. The goal

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1 When first established, ACWA was the Assembled Chemical Weapons Assessment program. It then became the Assembled Chemical Weapons Alternatives program, and then PEO ACWA.

2 More information about the Keystone Policy Center is available at www.keystone.org.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×

of the ACWA Dialogue was to “ensure a marriage of the best science available while incorporating the concerns of the communities and the political realities of the disposal issue” (Futrell, 2003a). Input was sought from the participants about technical and social criteria for comparing alternative technologies, assessment of the alternative technologies using the criteria, and identification of sites appropriate for the implementation of the alternative technologies. In addition, a subset of ACWA Dialogue members participated in the ACWA Technical Evaluation Team. These members and a consultant made up a Citizens’ Advisory Technical Team (CATT) “that directly monitored the procurement process and also participated in the evaluation of the demonstration test results” (Goldberg, 2003, p. 317). The CATT was a critical part of the process, allowing Dialogue participants access to closed, technical deliberations where technologies were ranked. CATT members had to sign confidentiality agreements. While the CATT members did not participate in the ranking of alternative technologies, they were able to observe that the criteria and weightings developed as part of the Dialogue were used as intended. As the current chair of the Blue Grass CAC observed, “CATT was critical. We were observers, we were behind the scenes to make sure it was all above board.” He further elaborated his view:

We could not know if the criteria would be legitimately applied to the technologies because it would be in a closed room. We felt it was not legitimate—we wanted to make sure that criteria were used as we proposed, not let them tweak. So, the government selected 4 [Dialogue participants] to observe. They could not come back and explain exactly what happened but [had] to come back and present their impressions of the legitimacy of the process that occurred, so when we narrowed the options we would have full confidence about that process. I don’t know if that was ever done before. But it was a remarkable accomplishment.3

Goldberg (2003) concludes that “rather than seeing the [DOD] as lacking interest in the effects of its actions, the ACWA Program was seen as a cooperative effort between the public and the government” and furthermore, that the public’s input “was valuable and their existence increased the level of public acceptance over the course of the program” (Goldberg, 2003, p. 319; Futrell, 2003a). This was not just the view of the Army, but also of community members and congressional staff (Futrell, 2003a).

Published accounts of the ACWA Dialogue highlight its importance for developing public support, enhancing PEO ACWA responsiveness to public concerns and preferences, building the capacity of local stakeholders to participate in highly technical discussions, and rebuilding trust (Goldberg, 2003; Futrell, 2003a; Futrell and Futrell, 2012). For example, Keystone staff observed that “Although there remained strong and differing opinions at the end of the Dialogue process, there was significantly greater understanding and trust of parties on almost all sides” (Keystone, 2004). Describing the experience with the ACWA Dialogue and the prior history, a participant said

There’s a real sense of back and forth trust developing, almost trust anyway, at least starting to believe each other, work with each other, and that development is really, really different from what’s been going on in the last decade. The army versus us thing that has been really characteristic just isn’t there with this. There is certainly a degree of caution. I think it’s on both sides. And I think it’s more of a caution of “we don’t want to screw this up.” Everyone is very concerned about building a kind of relationship and atmosphere in which we can do things together. It’s from a change in personnel; it’s from a change in process; it’s from a change in attitude. There’s a whole new dynamic going on that is really different. (Futrell, 2003a)

Subsequently, PEO ACWA managers worked hard to build on these experiences and continue developing trust and collaboration into the PEO ACWA program. For example, locally staffed CACs and outreach programs, which play an active role in community life, were established at the sites.

The significance of the ACWA Dialogue to subsequent planning activities rests in:

  • The Army’s better understanding of community concerns and preferences;
  • Community stakeholders feeling heard, by recognizing their input reflected in Army decisions;
  • A rebuilding of collaborative relationships that formed the basis for continued deliberations and planning for BGCAPP;
  • An expectation by members of the public for continued public involvement in all aspects of planning, decision making, and monitoring;
  • PEO ACWA’s commitment to meaningful public involvement;
  • Building the capacity of local stakeholders to participate in highly technical discussions about the alternative technologies, which at BGCAPP include the supercritical water oxidation process; and
  • Public acceptance of plans for destroying the stockpile.

PUBLIC INVOLVEMENT AT BGCAPP

After the technologies had been selected, the ACWA Dialogue Group was disbanded in favor of CACs, which were based in Colorado and Kentucky. The Kentucky CAC is comprised of nine members appointed by the state governor. However, some participants did not feel that the CAC was

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3 March 25, 2015, conference call with Doug Hindman, Kentucky CAC chair, and Craig Williams, Kentucky CDCAB co-chair; Judith Bradbury and Seth Tuler, committee members; Todd Kimmell, committee chair; and Jim Myska, study director.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×

“diverse enough to represent a broader swath of the community.” An additional group, the CDCAB, a subcommittee of the CAC, was established. The CAC chair and the CDCAB co-chair are former members of the ACWA Dialogue group. According to the CDCAB co-chair, it

includes representation of a more diverse group of people, so we could touch almost every aspect of life in the region. Now, the advisory board includes CAC members appointed by the governor and about 15 other people that represent different entities in the region not appointed by the governor—emergency preparedness, civic reps from other communities, hospitals, universities, chambers of commerce, NAACP. So, at meetings there is someone there that represents all aspects of life . . . religion, business, etc. so we have a link to all communities.4

The CAC also has working groups that focus on specific issues, such as the Secondary Waste Working Group. In addition, the CDCAB co-chair has been appointed as Madison County Chemical Weapons Host Liaison.

The goals and desired outcomes of BGCAPP’s robust public involvement activities are as follows:

To develop and maintain relationships with the local community, including CAC/CDCAB members, elected officials, oversight/regulatory stakeholders and the internal workforce to cultivate trust and understanding.” The desired outcome is to develop an informed and educated stakeholder community that actively supports the program mission, [and]

To provide consistent opportunities for public involvement and encourage community participation with the project. [The desired outcome is to develop] active partnerships within the stakeholder community to promote understanding of program decisions and requirements for success.5

Public involvement experiences at BGCAPP have resulted in strong local community ownership of the technological approach to destroying chemical agents at the BGCAPP, coupled with continuing opposition to offsite transport and disposal of wastes. These preferences have been articulated in the CAC/CDCAB meetings and public documents.

CONTINUED COLLABORATION AND TRUST IS CONTINGENT

“Critical trust” is an apt description of recent relationships among PEO ACWA, BGCAPP, and community representatives on the CAC and CDCAB. Poortinga and Pidgeon (2003, p. 971) call critical trust “a practical form of reliance on a person or institution combined with some healthy skepticism.” It can serve important social functions, such as ensuring oversight and vigilance (see also Tuler, 2002). The CAC chair has said “We have a foundation of trust now.” In parallel to the development of trust between the CAC/CDCAB, PEO ACWA, and BGCAPP, the general public in the community appears to trust the CAC/CDCAB. However, in this case trust lacks the critical dimension described by Poortinga and Pidgeon (2003). As described by both the CDCAB co-chair and the local BGCAPP outreach staff, “people feel the chairs represent them, and so they don’t need to go to meetings. They trust these people who represent them.”

The goals of BGCAPP’s public involvement activities centered around the CAC/CDCAB are responsive “directly to citizens’ calls for a decision process that acknowledges and integrates their ideas and concerns in the pursuit of technically sound and publicly acceptable approaches for weapons disposal” (Futrell, 2003a, p. 465). For example, while describing how the Army and CAC/CDCAB interact more recently, the CDCAB co-chair explained:

We discussed how to estimate conditions of the mustard rounds here, and based on that, determine what would be [the] best path forward. The Army decided to do x-rays, determined that 60 percent or so would not drain. That would inhibit the throughput of the plant and impact downstream processing. What should we do? [An explosive destruction technology] was one option, and the [NRC] committee on this briefed us. We did [our own] research, etc. The CAC, over 2.5 years, discussed and learned, and then we agreed—because risks to workers outweighed the risks associated with deploying an explosive technology. Then we discussed the EDTs on the market. The CAC assessed different options. The Army did too, and then we discussed and agreed. It is a back and forth relationship—if there is an issue that needs to be raised by us or them, we work through it incrementally and work toward reaching agreement about how to proceed.”6

At the same time, the foundation of trust is contingent on the character of ongoing interactions. Decisions and actions that appear to community members as violations of commitments or surprises have resulted in tensions in the consultative process and explicit opposition by community groups and representatives. For example, offsite shipments are viewed as ethically problematic, and failure to address the ethical dimensions of decisions to ship wastes offsite have created tensions in relationships that have improved since, in the words of the CAC chair, “the bad old days.” For example, the CWWG actively opposed shipments of

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4 March 25, 2015, conference call with Doug Hindman, Kentucky CAC chair, and Craig Williams, Kentucky CDCAB co-chair; Judith Bradbury and Seth Tuler, committee members; Todd Kimmell, committee chair; and Jim Myska, study director.

5 M. Monteverde, PEO ACWA, Public Affairs Office, and S. Parrett, public affairs officer, PEO ACWA, Blue Grass Chemical Activity, “Stakeholder Interests and Views on Offsite Shipment of Hydrolysate: Key Issues at the Site in Past,” presentation to the committee on January 28, 2015.

6 March 25, 2015, conference call with Doug Hindman, Kentucky CAC chair, and Craig Williams, Kentucky CDCAB co-chair; Judith Bradbury and Seth Tuler, committee members; Todd Kimmell, committee chair; and Jim Myska, study director.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×

hydrolysates from the Newport Chemical Agent Disposal Facility in Indiana because of concerns about environmental justice. In this case, potential recipient communities in Ohio and Delaware were opposed to receiving and processing the wastes, and they were supported in their opposition by the CWWG and others. The CWWG filed legal suits to stop the shipments and organized opposition. Ultimately, the hydrolysate was sent to Port Arthur, Texas, for incineration, although “people there were also opposed. But they did not have political clout, it was an environmental justice community, and they got it.”7

In contrast to the experience with the shipments from the Newport Chemical Agent Disposal Facility, stakeholders were able to work out an acceptable arrangement for removing deteriorating steel containers storing a mixture of GB (sarin) nerve agent and its breakdown products from the BGAD.8 The material was shipped to Port Arthur, Texas, in 2008 and 2009. The CAC/CDCAB agreed to these shipments as a “one time solution” that should not be viewed as a precedent for future shipments. In 2008 the CAC/CDCAB stated as follows:

Notwithstanding our long opposition to offsite shipment, but recognizing the urgent risks of continued storage of the [ton containers], we are willing to tolerate offsite disposal of secondary wastes if the responsible agency (PEO ACWA) determines that on-site considerations would, for technical, regulatory, safety or other reasons, inhibit the expeditious elimination of the urgent risks associated with these materials. . . . Tolerating this one-time, offsite shipment of material the CAC/CDCAB does not in any way imply support for, the condoning of, or even consideration of any future similar shipments of similar materials offsite associated with the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Pilot Plant (BGCAPP).9

Opposition to offsite shipments was also expressed by local officials. In 2008 the chief executive of Madison County and the mayors of the cities of Richmond and Berea, Kentucky, issued a statement regarding offsite hydrolysate treatment:

It is with steadfast resolve and unshakable determination, that the County and City Governments of Madison County and the Cities of Richmond and Berea join the Colorado and Kentucky Citizens Advisory Commissions and the Pueblo, Colorado Board of County Commissioners in opposing the offsite shipment of agent hydrolysate from either of the two

ACWA chemical disposal facilities.10

According to the CDCAB co-chair, agreement about the Operation Swift Solution offsite shipments was achieved because of the meaningful participation of the CAC/CDCAB in discussions about the need for these shipments and planning for them.11 The Kentucky CAC/CDCAB was provided the opportunity to understand the rationale for the decision, including community safety. It was also important that the recipient community was engaged in the planning process. The CAC/CDCAB described what happened this way:

The community was engaged with our assistance, and we worked out an acceptable approach to them [Port Arthur, Texas, community and facility] receiving the material, with no protests, no lawsuits, no opposition, no politics. It worked because it was a smaller amount but more importantly they were part of a process before the decision was made.12

Yet, tensions remain because the possibility of shipping of hydrolysates offsite has been repeatedly raised by PEO ACWA during the past decade. This has been viewed with suspicion among some interested and affected parties because they understand that a commitment had been made to treat all wastes in a closed cycle onsite (NRC, 2015). The reasons given by the Army are not necessarily about protecting public or worker safety, but about cost savings, and the cost factor has been emphasized by Congress (in PL 110-417 National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2009), by the National Research Council, and by consultants (Noblis, 2008).

SUMMARY

Consistent with their descriptions of the consultation process for Operation Swift Solution, recent descriptions by the CAC chair and the CDCAB co-chair of the public involvement at BGCAPP emphasize their views that PEO ACWA is continuing to meet the community’s expectations for meaningful public involvement. The process continues to unfold, but it is now based on a foundation of trust, commitment to transparency, and discussion of issues. For example, while acknowledging the initial lack of trust and the antagonistic relationship between the community and the Army, the CAC chair stated that the establishment of ACWA and its commitment to meeting public involvement goals allowed trust “to

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7 March 25, 2015, conference call with Doug Hindman, Kentucky CAC chair, and Craig Williams, Kentucky CDCAB co-chair; Judith Bradbury and Seth Tuler, committee members; Todd Kimmell, committee chair; and Jim Myska, study director.

8 Operation Swift Solution, http://www.peoacwa.army.mil/bgcapp/aboutbgcapp/operation-swift-solution/.

9 M. Monteverde, PEO ACWA, Public Affairs Office, and S. Parrett, public affairs officer, PEO ACWA, Blue Grass Chemical Activity, “Stakeholder Interests and Views on Offsite Shipment of Hydrolysate: Key Issues at the Site in Past,” presentation to the committee on January 28, 2015.

10 Ibid.

11 Operation Swift Solution involved the disposal of three deteriorating ton containers that held GB agent and related breakdown product. The GB in these containers was chemically neutralized in a special facility at BGAD and the hydrolysate was shipped offsite for final disposal, http://www.peoacwa.army.mil/bgcapp/about-bgcapp/operation-swift-solution/.

12 March 25, 2015, conference call with Doug Hindman, Kentucky CAC chair, and Craig Williams, Kentucky CDCAB co-chair; Judith Bradbury and Seth Tuler, committee members; Todd Kimmell, committee chair; and Jim Myska, study director.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×

build up over time. The local BGCAPP folk have continued that tradition, helping to make things move forward. They are trying very hard to be transparent with us, we work hard to be transparent with them.”13

Furthermore, the CAC chair and CDCAB co-chair reiterated that “offsite shipment is not supported, but we are forced to deal with the chance that things won’t work, so it’s important to have a backup plan, just in case.”14 They also outlined very explicitly their expectation for a similar level of involvement as with the Operation Swift Solution shipments and the current back-and-forth mode of decision making at BGCAPP:

This is something we want to work out with them. We want to be part of that process. . . . We want to work it out with them. There are so many details involved—as your committee knows—there are so many pieces to this that it is impossible to answer [whether and how shipments should occur] now. But we are confident that with reason and an adequate level of data and information about why we think this and why we think that, ultimately we will reach a conclusion that is palatable to all stakeholders. . . . We need to be conscientious about all aspects of what happens if we are going to execute Plan B—we need to understand all dimensions and all impacts of what we are deciding.15

As the CAC chair stated in referring to the ACWA Dialogue experience, the key to resolving the issues posed as operations proceed is this:

ACWA’s transparency and willingness to work with the public was a major factor in managing opposition to incineration and involving the public in alternate technologies. I appreciated the opportunity to have input and to have my questions answered openly, which helped me to feel much more comfortable with the program’s direction. (BGCAPP, 2015)

REFERENCES

CWWG (Chemical Weapons Working Group). 2007. Citizen Groups File Summary Judgment Motion in Federal Court to Stop VX Waste Shipments to Texas Incinerator. http://cwwg.org/pr_10.23.07sjmotion.html.

Durant, R.F. 2007. The Greening of the U.S. Military. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press.

Futrell, R. 2003a. Technical adversarialism and participatory collaboration in the U.S. chemical weapons disposal program. Science, Technology, & Human Values 28(4): 451-482.

Futrell, R. 2003b. Framing processes, cognitive liberation, and NIMBY, Protest in the U.S. chemical-weapons disposal conflict. Sociological Inquiry 73(3): 359-386.

Futrell, R., and Futrell, D. 2012. Expertise and alliances: How Kentuckians transformed the U.S. chemical wapons disposal program. S. McSpirit, L. Faltraco, and C. Bailey (eds.), Confronting Ecological Crisis in Appalachia and the South: University and Community Partnerships, pp. 171-193. Lexington, Ky.: University Press of Kentucky.

GAO (General Accounting Office). 1995a. Chemical Stockpile Disposal Program Review. NSIAD-95-66R. Washington, D.C.: General Accounting Office.

GAO. 1995b. Chemical Weapons Disposal: Issues Related to DOD’s Management. T/NSIAD-95-18. Washington, D.C.: General Accounting Office.

Goldberg, M. 2003. Strengthening the link between project planning and environmental impact assessment: The assembled chemical weapons assessment dialogue process. Environmental Practice 5(4): 313-320.

Keystone Policy Center. 2004. ACWA Dialogue Close-out Report (draft) https://www.keystone.org/.

Marshall, S. 1996. Chemical Weapons Disposal and Environmental Justice. Report by the Kentucky Environmental Foundation.

Noblis. 2008. Offsite Disposal of ACWA Hydrolysates. NTR 2008-61129. Falls Church, Va.

NRC (National Research Council). 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Pueblo Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, D.C.: The National Academies Press.

PEO ACWA (Program Executive Office, Assembled Chemical Weapons). Program Executive Office, Assembled Chemical Weapons, Facts page. http://www.peoacwa.army.mil/media-toolkit/facts-pages/peo-acwa/.

Poortinga, W., and N.F. Pidgeon. 2003. Exploring the dimensionality of trust in risk regulation. Risk Analysis 23(5): 961-972.

Tuler, S. 2002. Radiation Risk Perception and Communication: A Case Study of the Fernald Environmental Management Project. SERI Report 02-005. Greenfield, Mass.: Social and Environmental Research Institute. http://www.seri-us.org/sites/default/files/fernald_0.pdf.

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13 Ibid.

14 Ibid.

15 Ibid.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Chronology of Events at the Blue Grass Army Depot to the Present, With Focus on Public Involvement." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2015. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/21771.
×
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In 1993, the United States signed the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), an international treaty outlawing the production, stockpiling, and use of chemical weapons. The chemical weapons stockpiles at five of the U.S. chemical weapons storage sites have now been destroyed. At those sites, the munitions were robotically opened and the chemical agent was removed, collected, and incinerated.

One of the remaining sites with chemical weapons stockpiles is the Blue Grass Army Depot near Richmond, Kentucky. In this case, caustic hydrolysis will be used to destroy the agents and energetics, resulting in a secondary waste stream known as hydrolysate. Review Criteria for Successful Treatment of Hydrolysate at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant develops criteria for successfully treating the hydrolysate, identifies systemization data that should factor into the criteria/decision process, suggests potential modifications to suggested treatment that would allow continued onsite processing, and assesses waste disposal procedures. This study further examines the possibility of delay or failure of the existing technology and examines possible alternatives to onsite treatment.

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