(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray helped advance $1.96 billion in cleanup funds for the Hanford nuclear site. This funding was included in the Senate Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee, of which Murray is a senior member. Senator Murray fought to include an additional $126 Million over the President's Budget proposal for critical projects to move forward on cleanup and meet Tri-Party Agreement milestones.
"I am pleased that this bill adequately reflects the funding needs for cleanup at Hanford," Murray stated. "By fully funding the vit plant and providing additional resources for tank farm activities and river corridor cleanup, we are demonstrating our commitment to make sure cleanup is accomplished safely and expediently."
DOE Office of River Protection (ORP) – $1,015,972,000
Waste Treatment Plant (WTP) - $690,000,000
Senator Murray ensured the WTP was fully funded in the bill for FY08
Tank Farms – 325,972,000
Senator Murray added $53 Million over the President's Budget Request
The WTP is the cornerstone of Hanford cleanup. The funding profile for WTP requires level funding at $690 Million per year. Senator Murray was pleased that the President's Budget fully funded this priority, and worked to make sure the figure was included in the bill.
Senator Murray provided ORP with an additional $53 Million for projects at the Tank Farms. Capacity in the double shell tanks is running out, and it is critical that retrieval of waste from single shell tanks continues. This increased funding that Senator Murray included will give DOE the resources to continue transferring waste from single shell to double shell tanks, as well as to continue work on supplemental treatment technologies. Supplemental treatment of low activity waste is a necessary part of the overall cleanup of the tank farms, as the WTP is not designed to treat all of the low activity waste.
DOE Richland Operations Office (RL) – $950,376,000
Senator Murray included $73,296,000 above the President's Budget for RL projects. This additional funding will help DOE meet near-term and mid-term milestones under the Tri-Party Agreement.
Solid Waste Stabilization and Disposition - $23 Million increase
Increased funding will allow additional transuranic waste retrieval and mixed-low level waste disposal to meet compliance milestones.
Soil Remediation in the Central Plateau - $19.4 Million increase
Additional funding is for soil remediation, as well as for a feasibility study of cleanup of the PUREX site.
River Corridor Cleanup - $23 Million increase
Cleanup and remediation along the Columbia river corridor is a priority for Hanford cleanup and Senator Murray has provided additional funding for the River Corridor Cleanup (RCC). RCC projects include the decommissioning and demolition of buildings in the 300 Area, which requires close collaboration with Pacific Northwest National Lab's (PNNL) relocation out of facilities in the area.
Notably, DOE RL has made progress at the K East Basin, certifying that the basin is sludge free as of May 2007. The K Basin facilities are responsible for roughly 95 percent of the radioactivity in the RCC, and continued progress at the K Basins will be a great step towards protecting the Columbia river. This funding will ensure DOE RL can build upon this momentum in the RCC and Hanford's Central Plateau.
The bill provides $7.5 Million for the Volpentest HAMMER Training and Education Center.
The Energy and Water Appropriations bill will next move to the full Appropriations Committee for debate later this week. It will then move to the Senate Floor for deliberation.