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LANL slapped with fines

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By Tris DeRoma

The New Mexico Environment Department may fine the Los Alamos National Laboratory $10,000 day for a slew of violations last year, when Los Alamos National Security was still managing the lab.

Many of the reported violations were regarding mislabeled waste shipment containers and failure to label and identify waste streams going out to landfills in Los Alamos and Santa Fe.

NMED listed a total of 16 violations.

Some of the most serious were LANS’ failure to label waste generated at LANL’s Tech Area 50, where the lab’s radioactive liquid waste treatment plant is located. About 40 tons of concrete and 18,000 cubic yards of soil from a renovation project at the site were taken off site between March 13, 2016, and Dec. 12, 2016. It was later to be determined low-level waste. The mistake was caught in time and was sent to a licensed disposal facility.

In a September 2017 email, LANS failed to characterize 265 tons of concrete and 240 tons of waste asphalt from the demolition of a “pedestrian portal” in Tech Area 16 that was later sent to the Los Alamos landfill. The waste was not classified as harmful.

The letter also cited a failure to report 15 demolition bins and eight dumpsters of construction waste from Tech Area 16 where high explosives are manufactured that were later sent to a Santa Fe landfill.


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