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[greenyes] Radioactive recycling
Radioactive Recycling

If the Department of Energy has its way, the nation's nuclear garbage
could end up in everyday items like bicycles, frying pans, and baby

by Susan Q. Stranahan
July/August 2002

From the air, the East Tennessee Technology Park looks like clusters
of enormous Wal-Marts, sprawling across 4,700 acres in the rural
countryside west of Knoxville. But for decades the Oak Ridge complex
had a more ominous name -- the K-25 site. Its mission: to produce
highly enriched uranium for nuclear weapons.

Today, the facility contains tons of contaminated junk -- machinery,
metal, concrete, and tools -- some of which will remain radioactive
for generations. Faced with a massive cleanup, the Department of
Energy has come up with an ingenious plan to get rid of the slightly
radioactive scrap: "recycle" the metal and sell it for reuse. Both
the DOE and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) are quietly
revising rules that would allow millions of tons of radioactive
garbage at the nationÕs weapons facilities and nuclear reactors to be
converted into consumer products and building materials. Under the
plan, the leftover metal could end up in baby strollers, bikes,
frying pans, engine blocks, and I-beams.
Radioactive Recycling updates:
Updated April 1, 2003 - (online newspaper)
BNFL works 24/7 for 2004 finish
Cleanup bout: Official says DOE and BNFL fought "left and right," but
now on the straight and narrow.

by R. Cathey Daniels
Oak Ridger staff

Workers continue around the clock action at the K-25 site as BNFL,
Inc. hits another milestone this week.

.....Howard noted that the fixed-price project has been a cost-saver
for DOE. However, Howard also said DOE paid about $300,000 to buy
back scrap metal from BNFL following a government moratorium on metal
recycling. In addition, DOE pays about $60,000 per month in
maintenance costs for the metal, according to Howard.
A millirem (or milli roentgen equivalent in man or mammals) is a unit
for measuring absorbed doses of radiation. For comparison, the
average yearly dose to U.S. citizens from all sources of natural
background radiation is 300 millirem.
...Source - OakRidger online
Where does this stand now?

US Nuclear Regulatory Commission Link
Current News -

Your shorter link is:

Post from the Nuclear Monitor November 2002

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