Alexander: Oak Ridge First in History to Clean Up an Entire Uranium Enrichment Site

Posted on October 13, 2020

“After years of demolition, the Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management has cleaned up the East Tennessee Technology Park – safely removing hundreds of old, contaminated buildings and making 2,200 acres available for economic development and recreation.” – Senator Lamar Alexander

 

WASHINGTON, October 13, 2020 – United States Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said that Oak Ridge has again made history by being the first to clean up an entire uranium enrichment site and by doing it four years early and under budget.

“After years of demolition, the Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management has cleaned up the East Tennessee Technology Park – safely removing hundreds of old, contaminated buildings and making 2,200 acres available for economic development and recreation. This is the first time in the world an entire uranium enrichment complex has been taken down,” Alexander said. “I’m so proud of these Tennessee workers, the contractors and the entire community, who have gone above and beyond to complete Vision 2020.”

Alexander continued, “I’m pleased not only at the magnitude of what was achieved at the East Tennessee Technology Park, but also the manner in which it was achieved. The Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management and its contractor UCOR completed this work four years ahead of schedule, saving taxpayers $80 million in estimated cleanup costs and $500 million in environmental liabilities. This is truly a model of how to successfully clean up Department of Energy sites." 

Alexander serves as chairman of the Senate appropriations subcommittee that has provided billions in funding and oversight for cleanup at Oak Ridge and other Department of Energy sites across the country.

“This environmental cleanup effort has also provided good jobs to everyone from engineers to craft and from large industries to local small businesses.”

Alexander concluded, “It is clearing away hazards, while creating new opportunities for the community, economy and for the Department of Energy’s important current and future missions.”

Today, Alexander joined Governor Bill Lee and U.S. Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette in attending the Vision 2020 celebration to mark the completion of all cleanup at East Tennessee Technology Park. Alexander today said, “While this is an historic achievement, there is more work to be done.” Cleanup of the Y-12 site and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory will take even longer to complete, and Alexander said, “The work done so far puts us on a good path toward meeting those goals.”

 

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