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WCS Opens Federal Waste Disposal Facility

First shipment of waste disposed of at WCS Federal Waste Disposal Facility
Andrews -- It's been a little over a year since Waste Control Specialists started disposing of low-level radioactive waste in their compact waste disposal facility, and now, they've reached another major milestone. On Thursday, WCS cut the ribbon on their new federal facility.
   
It's a facility offering 26 million cubic feet for disposal of Class A, B, and C Low-Level Radioactive Waste for the Department of Energy.
   
After speakers from WCS, Department of Energy, TCEQ, Los Alamos National Laboratory, New Mexico Environment Department, and Texas Tech Chancellor Kent Hance spoke, the ribbon was cut and the facility was officially opened for business.

The crowd also got to witness the first shipment of low-level radioactive waste coming from Los Alamos being delivered and then disposed of at the site. It was one of many shipments of waste that can now be disposed of safely.

"DOE needs options. They've got a lot of compact waste," said WCS President Rod Baltzer. "When we did the Manhattan Project over 60 years ago, things weren't  quite as well known about radiation and nuclear weapons and things, and so as they clean up some of that legacy material, we need a facility like WCS to dispose of that waste."
   
Not only is it beneficial for the Department of Energy, it's also of huge benefit to nearby communities, economically and otherwise.

"The need to dispose of  nuclear waste in a safe and responsible way is a privilege for us really," said Andrews Mayor Robert Zap. "I think Andrews thinks more of this than just the money involved."

WCS officials said the facility has been 17 and a half years in the making and so it feels great to finally begin disposing of that waste.

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