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Environmental Cleanup

Learn more about the history, cleanup activities and possible future uses of the Hanford Site, a 586-square-mile government site in southeast Washington State. | Video courtesy of the Energy Department.

The Energy Department is committed to a safe, complete cleanup of the environmental legacy of five decades of government-sponsored nuclear weapons development and nuclear energy research. As part of this mission, we safely and cost-effectively transport and dispose of low-level wastes; decommission and decontaminate old facilities; remediate contaminated soil and groundwater; and secure and store nuclear material in stable, secure locations to protect national security.


EM’s Paducah Site Completes Building Removals
Once the building was down, heavy equipment operators began “top-down” shearing to safely remove the remaining structure. Demolition debris was then downsized and loaded into rail cars for shipment off site.

PADUCAH, Ky. – EM recently completed demolition of the last of 32 inactive facilities to be removed as part of the cleanup scope that existed before commercial uranium enrichment operations ended at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant and the plant facilities were returned to DOE.

Moving Forward to Address Nuclear Waste Storage and Disposal
Three trucks transport nuclear waste from the Savannah River Site in South Carolina. | Energy Department photo.

Today, Secretary Moniz announced that the Energy Department is moving forward with planning for a separate repository for high-level radioactive waste resulting from atomic energy defense activities.

Commemorating the Historical Contributions of the K-25 Site in Tennessee
The 44-acre K-25 superstructure made significant historical contributions during its years of operation. | Photo credit Oak Ridge Office photographer Lynn Freeny.

A new project will turn the old K-25 site in Tennessee into a new industrial park for future economic development.

The New Gold Standard: Environmental Management Introduces the First LEED Gold Industrial Facility
The 200 West Groundwater Treatment Facility is shown here after completion of construction this summer. | Photo courtesy of Zachary Carter with Mission Support Alliance (MSA) at Hanford.

The building’s efficient design is expected to result in an energy cost savings of more than 70 percent over the life of the facility.