Published: February 2000
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announces the availability of a document relating to the environmental restoration activities at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL). The Plutonium Contamination Characterization and Radiological Dose and Risk Assessment Report is available for review at the libraries listed below.
This report describes the results of extensive sampling that took place in the spring of 1999. The objective of that sampling was to further characterize the extent of radiological contamination in the vicinity of the Peconic River relative to reference locations, particularly with regard to plutonium. Samples were taken from Peconic River sediments and surface water, soils on Laboratory property at the BNL sewage treatment plant, groundwater in the vicinity of this sewage treatment plant, and fish in the Peconic River from both on and off the Lab site.
The Spring 1999 study followed a study done in May 1998. The 1998 study indicated the potential presence of plutonium in the Peconic River, but the results were uncertain. Consequently, a more detailed study was conducted during the spring of 1999 to resolve the uncertainties of the 1998 investigation.
The results of this sampling were used to derive a risk assessment for both human health and aquatic life. This risk assessment is included in the Plutonium Contamination Characterization and Radiological Dose and Risk Assessment Report.
For more information on the Peconic River cleanup, the public may consult the Operable Unit V Feasibility Study Report, which was released in November 1999. This report describes and evaluates cleanup alternatives for contaminated Peconic River sediments and soils at the Lab's sewage treatment plant.
The preferred remedy for Operable Unit V will be detailed in the Operable Unit V Proposed Plan, which is scheduled to be made available to the public in Februrary 2000. The public will be able to comment on this plan during the public comment period.
After considering all comments received, a final remediation decision will be made by DOE, with the concurrence of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. This decision will be documented in the Operable Unit V Record of Decision. Following the signing of the Record of Decision, the selected remedy will be designed and implemented.
Located in Upton, N.Y., BNL is classified as an Inactive Hazardous Waste Site by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. BNL is on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's National Priorities List.
For more information, contact:
U.S. Department of Energy
Brookhaven National Laboratory
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
N.Y. State Dept. of Environmental Conservation
Copies of the Plutonium Contamination Characterization and Radiological Dose and Risk Assessment Report are available for review at:
Longwood Public Library
800 Middle Country Rd
Middle Island, NY
Mastics-Moriches-Shirley Public Library
301 William Floyd Parkway
BNL Research Library
U.S. EPA, Region II Library
New York, NY