Nuclear Waste Partnership, the operator of the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, is working on a draft recovery plan following the February 14 radiation release and a previous fire. The Albuequerque Journal reported this morning:
A recovery is underway at a troubled New Mexico nuclear waste repository even as an investigation into the cause of a radiation leak there continues, according to an Energy Department contractor.
Nuclear Waste Partnership has presented a draft recovery plan for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant to the Department of Energy for review. The plan, scheduled for release in the coming weeks, is expected to offer details on how the contractor plans to deal with radiation contamination in the deep underground mine outside Carlsbad.
According to the Journal:
…NWP teams have begun making daily entries into WIPP for something called “rollback,” in which every area of the underground facility is being tested and characterized for radiation contamination. A map is emerging showing which areas are safe and which are not, with buffer zones labeled in between.
So far, so good. It’s the next step that worries me:
“They are looking at resuming limited operations in early 2016 and looking at resuming full operations in late 2017,” said New Mexico Environment Secretary Ryan Flynn, who has been briefed on the draft plan.
Let’s say you smoke a lot of crack, crash your car and wake up in jail. As part of a plea agreement, you have to outline a recovery plan. If your recovery plan seems to focus on how soon you can resume smoking crack, you may have a couple of problems.