The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Buffalo District is pleased to announce the release of the Feasibility Study and Proposed Plan for the Interim Waste Containment Structure (IWCS) Operable Unit (OU) of the Niagara Falls Storage Site. The public is encouraged to review the Proposed Plan and provide their comments. The comment period begins on December 7, 2015, and ends February 6, 2016.
The Proposed Plan documents the Corps of Engineers’ Preferred Alternative for the IWCS OU: Alternative 4, excavation, partial treatment, and off-site disposal of the entire contents of the IWCS. After evaluating the alternatives in the Feasibility Study pursuant to the criteria described in the National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan (NCP), the Corps of Engineers considers Alternative 4 to provide the best overall protection of human health and the environment.
"The release of the Proposed Plan for the Niagara Falls Storage Site represents the culmination of years of hard work and informational exchanges and interaction with the local community and stakeholders," said Buffalo District Commander Lt. Col. Karl D. Jansen. "The Preferred Alternative in the Proposed Plan will provide the best overall protection of human health and the environment, and is responsive to the feedback and input received from the community and stakeholders during development of the Feasibility Study."
The Niagara Falls Storage Site, located in the Town of Lewiston, is a 191-acre plot owned by the federal government. It is divided into three operable units: the IWCS OU, the Balance of Plant OU, which includes all materials outside of the IWCS excluding groundwater, and the groundwater OU. The IWCS is a 10-acre containment structure which was engineered and constructed during the early 1980s by the U.S. Department of Energy. The IWCS contains within it 193,230 cubic yards of radioactive residues and wastes. The Buffalo District performs maintenance, monitoring, and environmental surveillance activities at the site to verify that the IWCS remains protective of human health and the environment and is performing as designed.
"Based on a thorough analysis of over 25 years of environmental monitoring data, the Corps of Engineers is confident that the IWCS continues to function properly and is safely containing the radioactive material stored within it," said John Busse, Acting Chief of the Buffalo District's Special Projects Branch. "A final decision regarding the IWCS Operable Unit will not be made until after all public comments have been considered. We look forward to discussing the proposed plan with the community during the public meeting."
The public meeting will be conducted at the Town of Lewiston Senior Center, 4361 Lower River Road, Youngstown, New York, 14171, on Wednesday, January 13, 2016, beginning at 6:30 p.m. The agenda for the meeting is:
6:30 p.m. – NFSS history video
7:00 p.m. – Poster session (court recorder available)
7:30 p.m. – Proposed Plan and Preferred Alternative presentation
8:00 p.m. – Public comments recorded
A court recorder will be available to record comments during the poster session portion of the meeting and after the presentation. Written comments may be provided that evening; emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org; or, mailed to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Buffalo District, Attention: Environmental Project Management Team, 1776 Niagara Street, Buffalo, New York, 14207.
The Proposed Plan and supporting documents, including the Feasibility Study, are available on the web in the Reports Section at: http://www.lrb.usace.army.mil/Missions/HTRW/FUSRAP/NiagaraFallsStorageSite.aspx and have been placed in the administrative record file for the site available electronically for review in the Town of Lewiston Public Library, 305 South Eighth Street, Lewiston, New York, and the Youngstown Free Library, 240 Lockport Street, Youngstown, New York. The administrative record file is also available for review by appointment at the Buffalo District library, 1776 Niagara Street, Buffalo, New York.
The Corps of Engineers issued the Proposed Plan and Feasibility Study under its authority to execute the Formerly Utilized Sites Remedial Action Program (FUSRAP). When implementing FUSRAP the Corps of Engineers follows the phased investigation process required in the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act, as amended, and the NCP.
For further information regarding the Niagara Falls Storage Site, please visit the project website (www.lrb.usace.army.mil/Missions/HTRW/FUSRAP/NiagaraFallsStorageSite.aspx), send an email to email@example.com or, call (800) 833-6390.