OAK RIDGE, Tenn. – The U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced recently the award of a contract to Wastren Advantage, Inc. (WAI) to manage waste management activities at the Oak Ridge Transuranic (TRU) Waste Processing Center, enabling a new small business to contribute to environmental cleanup efforts on the Oak Ridge Reservation.
The contract is a cost-plus-award-fee contract with a three-year base and one two-year option period with a total value of $160 million.
“This award enables us to continue our work in moving transuranic waste out of the State of Tennessee,” said Gerald Boyd, Manager of DOE’s Oak Ridge Office. “We also have an opportunity to utilize the capabilities of a new small business in the performance of critical environmental cleanup activities.”
WAI is a Piketon, Ohio-based 8(a) small disadvantaged business as certified by the U.S. Small Business Administration. The company has a teaming arrangement with EnergX, LLC, which has offices in Oak Ridge and is the incumbent operating contractor. Following a transition period, which begins immediately, WAI will assume full responsibility for operations from EnergX on January 1, 2010. The processing center began operations in 2004 and today employs 260 people.
TRU waste is a special class of highly-radioactive waste. It contains man-made isotopes, such as plutonium, and is especially hazardous to human health and the environment. This type of waste results from decades of defense-related research and development activities at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, with some of the waste dating back to the early 1970’s. Examples include debris, clothing, tools, rags, soils, and residues.
DOE is aggressively working to prepare TRU waste for removal from Tennessee. As a result of funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, DOE plans to have contact-handled transuranic debris processed by September 2011, ahead of the original date of September 2012. Remote-handled transuranic waste that was originally anticipated for completion in 2016 is now slated for 2014.