WIPP Community Forum on Monday, October 24th at 5:30 pm at Buffalo Thunder
It is essential for folks to attend – either virtually or in person – the WIPP Community Forum on Monday, October 24th, beginning at 5:30 pm at Buffalo Thunder Resort Casino. https://www.wipp.energy.gov/wipp_news_20221014.asp
The Department of Energy (DOE), which owns both Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP), has plans to greatly expand both facilities. At LANL, DOE plans to increase the number of plutonium pits, or the triggers, for nuclear weapons from very few to 30 a year. At WIPP, DOE plans to double the size of the underground waste disposal site 26 miles east of Carlsbad. It is essential we raise our voices now in opposition to DOE’s plans that would impact our communities for decades to come. DOE has promised that at the October 24th event people will be able to make comments and ask questions to be answered at the meeting.
To register for the Community Forum, go to https://www.wipp.energy.gov/wipp_news_20221014.asp. Despite numerous requests for DOE to fix the registration links, they may not work. If they don’t, please cut and paste the link into your browser….
In-Person Event: https://form.jotform.com/222836798629172
Please note: Despite numerous requests for representatives from the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) attend the Community Forum to answer questions, WIPP stated in its announcements:
Please remember that CBFO/NWP can only answer questions within WIPP’s purview. Questions about surplus plutonium shipments, for example, must be directed to the National Nuclear Security Administration.
WIPP hosted an event on July 7th at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center. People wrote their questions on index cards. http://nuclearactive.org/wipp-to-stay-open-forever-speak-up-at-the-july-7th-wipp-community-forum/ and https://losalamosreporter.com/2022/07/10/wipp-officials-hold-information-meeting-in-santa-fe-knerr-chats-with-los-alamos-reporter/
WIPP promised to post the answers on WIPP’s website, but it took more than three months for DOE to post 46 pages of responses. Clearly, there is a lot of public interest in WIPP’s expansion plans. https://wipp.energy.gov/Library/documents/2022/WIPP_Community_Forum_Q&A_7-7-22.pdf
Questions were asked about the intersectionality of expanded pit production at LANL, the resulting increase in the amount of plutonium-contaminated waste destined for WIPP, and increased transportation of that waste through New Mexico communities already stressed by other environmental threats. https://stopforeverwipp.org/wipp-expansion
DOE already has agreements with other states that ship legacy waste to WIPP. For example, the agreement with Idaho requires 55 percent of the shipments be from that state. South Carolina, Tennessee, and Washington also have expectations for reserving space at WIPP. It is unclear how the LANL legacy waste fits into DOE’s space allocations.
But here’s the rub: Since January 2021, the DOE has been shipping drums of legacy waste and drums of newly generated waste from pit production to WIPP. https://n3b-la.com/n3b-and-triad-cooperate-to-ship-radioactive-waste-to-wipp/
Is the priority to get the legacy waste that is threatening the regional drinking water aquifer “off the hill,” or to support plutonium pit production?
Please make time to express your concerns either in person or virtually at the WIPP Community Forum. Register here: https://wipp.energy.gov/wipp_news_20221014.asp
- Friday, October 21st from noon to 1 pm – Join the weekly peaceful protest for nuclear disarmament on the corners of Alameda and Guadalupe in downtown Santa Fe. Join us to discuss next steps toward nuclear disarmament.
- Saturday, October 22nd at 11 am Mountain – Annual White Mesa Ute Community Spiritual Walk & Protest: Protecting Our Communities, Health, Environment & Indigenous Sacred Landscapes. The 11 am rally will be followed by the spiritual and protest walk to the White Mesa uranium mill. https://protectwhitemesa.org/
- Wednesday, October 26 from 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm., virtual and in-person LANL Environmental Management Cleanup Forum at Fuller Lodge, 2131 Central Avenue, Los Alamos, NM. The focus will be on the cleanup activities for the 158 corrugated metal pipes at Area G. The powerpoint presentation is available at: https://n3b-la.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/10/EMCF-CMP-10.26.22-FINAL.pdf To view the agenda and connection information, go to https://n3b-la.com/environmental-management-cleanup-forum-october-26-2022/
- Friday, October 28th at 8 am MT through Friday, November 4th – viewing of virtual ceremony for the 14th anniversary of the Cold War Patriots National Day of Remembrance. Every October, the Official Cold War Patriots National Day of Remembrance™ (NDR) honors the men and women working in the U.S. nuclear weapon and uranium industries and recognizes those who are no longer with us. Often working in secrecy, these patriots have been instrumental in the protection of our nation — from WWII to today. To register: https://coldwarpatriots.org/about-us/national-day-remembrance-2022/
Tags: Buffalo Thunder Resort Casino, Department of Energy, DOE, expansion, get waste off the hill, Idaho, July 7th WIPP fiasco meeting, LANL, legacy waste, Los Alamos National Laboratory, newly generated waste, plutonium pit production, South Carolina, space allocations at WIPP, Tennessee, Washington, Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, WIPP, WIPP Community Forum