Defense-Related Uranium Mines Program

Office of Legacy Management

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The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Legacy Management (LM) completed a 2014 report to Congress on defense-related uranium mine (DRUM) sites in consultation with the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), other federal agencies (e.g., U.S. Forest Service [USFS]), affected states and tribes, and the interested public. This report examined the scope of the problem posed by the sites. DOE was able to determine the status of reclamation and remediation at 15 percent of the mines and concluded that more consultation and field work could be done to better define the scope of the problem.

As follow-up to the report, LM established partnerships with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and USFS to verify and validate (V&V) the condition of DRUM sites on lands managed by these agencies. DOE estimates that approximately 2,500 of the mines are on federal public lands. DOE will V&V these mines by 2022. In fiscal year 2017, LM established a DRUM program and began providing technical assistance to BLM and USFS to help them locate, inventory and assess the conditions of DRUM sites. LM also partnered with state abandoned mine land programs and established agreements for states to inventory mines on private and state lands. The results of these V&V activities will help BLM, USFS, and states determine the statuses of DRUM sites and whether they present physical safety hazards, and potential risks to human health and the environment.

DRUM Program site: Two sites in Colorado.
Cribbing and ore chute at the Merry Widow Mine in Colorado (main photo) and Ore Bin 4 at the Paradox 4 Mine in Colorado (inset photo).

Contact Information

To submit information, questions, and comments:

Legacy Management Support Public Affairs
U.S. Department of Energy Office of Legacy Management
11025 Dover St., Suite 1000, Westminster, CO 80021
DRUMinfo@lm.doe.gov
(866) 559-8316 (toll-free)