Senior Advisor for Environmental Management David Huizenga, left, provides an update on the EM program at the recent Intergovernmental Meeting with the DOE as California Office of the Attorney General Supervising Deputy Attorney General Brian Hembacher listens.
NEW ORLEANS – EM and stakeholders met to discuss and collaborate on issues impacting nuclear cleanup across the complex. More than 150 people traveled to New Orleans for the 11th combined Intergovernmental Meeting with the DOE.
Oak Ridge, Tenn., Mayor Tom Beehan, Chairman of the Energy Communities Alliance, introduces Senior Advisor for Environmental Management David Huizenga at the recent Intergovernmental Meeting with the DOE.
"This was by far the best Intergovernmental Meeting I've attended," said Oak Ridge, Tenn., Mayor Tom Beehan, who serves as Chairman of the Energy Communities Alliance (ECA) Board. “EM leadership continues to strengthen relationships with our communities, and the timely information provided will help us make better decisions, despite the economic challenges we face. I was especially glad that a number of our recently elected local officials participated and received a great orientation."
Leaders from EM headquarters and around the complex were praised for their openness to speak about the program’s progress and challenges. Neile Miller, Principal Deputy Administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration, also presented to the group. The EM budget, groundwater cleanup, waste management and intergovernmental collaboration around high-level waste were other key topics.
“I appreciate the fact that Environmental Management leaders, particularly Senior Advisor David Huizenga, took the time to listen and engage in frank and productive discussions,” New Mexico Environment Department Cabinet Secretary Dave Martin said. “I look forward to continuing this open dialogue as we focus on future activities.”
New Mexico Environment Department Cabinet Secretary Dave Martin, a member of the Environmental Council of the States, leads a discussion on high-level waste at the recent Intergovernmental Meeting.
Participating intergovernmental groups included the ECA, Environmental Council of the States, National Association of Attorneys General, National Conference of State Legislatures, National Governors Association and the State and Tribal Government Working Group. Groups meet individually, and in a plenary session.
"EM remains the example for all other DOE offices on engaging with local, state and tribal governments,” ECA Executive Director Seth Kirshenberg said.
Energy Communities Alliance Executive Director Seth Kirshenberg poses a question to Senior Advisor for Environmental Management David Huizenga during the Intergovernmental Meeting.
Huizenga also highlighted the importance of involving stakeholders early in the decision-making process. He is committed to visiting DOE’s Tribal partners on their lands and reservations to better understand their values, culture and connection to EM sites.
Click here to learn more about EM's Intergovernmental Program.