Department of Energy September 21, 2005 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents
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Combined Notice of Filings #1
Sithe Energies, Inc., LLC, et al.; Electric Rate and Corporate Filings
Record of Decision for the Remediation of the Moab Uranium Mill Tailings, Grand and San Juan Counties, UT
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announces its decision to implement the preferred alternatives identified in the Remediation of the Moab Uranium Mill Tailings, Grand and San Juan Counties, Utah, Final Environmental Impact Statement (DOE/EIS-0355) (Final EIS). By implementing the preferred alternatives, DOE will remove the uranium mill tailings and other contaminated material from the Moab milling site and nearby off-site properties (vicinity properties) and relocate them at the Crescent Junction site, using predominantly rail transportation. DOE will also implement active ground water remediation at the Moab milling site. In reaching this decision, DOE considered the potential environmental impacts, costs, and other implications of both on-site and off-site disposal. For off-site disposal, DOE considered three alternative sites in Utah (Crescent Junction, Klondike Flats, and the White Mesa Mill) and three transportation modes (truck, rail, and slurry pipeline). DOE identified off-site disposal as its preferred alternative for the disposal of mill tailings, primarily because of the uncertainties related to long-term performance of a capped pile at the Moab site. Issues, such as the potential for river migration and severe flooding contribute to this uncertainty. The Crescent Junction site was identified as the preferred off-site disposal location, rather than Klondike Flats or White Mesa Mill, because Crescent Junction has the longest isolation period (time it would take for contaminants to reach the ground water); the lowest land-use conflict potential; access to existing rail lines without crossing U.S. Highway 191; the shortest haul distance from the rail rotary dump into the disposal cell, reducing the size of the radiological control area; and flat terrain, making operations easier and safer. DOE identified rail as the preferred mode of transportation, because compared to truck transportation, rail has a lower accident rate, lower potential impacts to wildlife, and lower fuel consumption. In addition, compared to a slurry pipeline, rail transportation would have a much lower water demand and would avoid landscape scars caused by pipeline construction, which could create moderate contrasts in form, line, color, and texture with the surrounding landscape. This Record of Decision (ROD) has been prepared in accordance with the regulations of the Council on Environmental Quality (Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Parts 1500-1508) for implementing the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and DOE's NEPA Implementing Procedures (10 CFR Part 1021). The Final EIS also includes a Floodplain and Wetlands Assessment and a Floodplain Statement of Findings in compliance with DOE's Floodplain and Wetland Environmental Review requirements (10 CFR Part 1022).