Secondary wastes generated during the mustard agent neutralization process at the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant (PCAPP) are disposed of properly.
“We define secondary waste as any waste generated from process areas and systems within the Chemical Limited Area,” said Brian Jackson, waste management supervisor.
Secondary wastes can be classified as either hazardous or non-hazardous, agent-contaminated or non-contaminated, and include aluminum, steel, protective suits, rubber gloves and boots, charcoal filters, used air hoses, tools, wood, packing materials and hydraulic fluid.
Agent-contaminated wastes are double bagged in heavy plastic and sealed into U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)-approved, 55-gallon polyurethane drums. The drums remain in storage at PCAPP until moved to an off-site regulated and permitted Treatment Storage and Disposal Facility (TSDF).
The first shipment of agent-contaminated wastes greater than one Vapor Screening Level (VSL) were shipped to Veolia North America Port Arthur, Texas Treatment Complex Nov. 7. Upon arrival, the drums were fed to an incinerator unopened, to reduce worker hazards.
“VSL is defined as the concentration of a chemical agent in a headspace below which the materiel can be treated as uncontaminated and workers can work using only a slung protective mask,” Jackson said.
Drums containing agent-contaminated wastes less than one VSL were shipped to Clean Harbors, Inc., in Kimball, Nebraska Nov. 10. There, the wastes were sorted for shipment to other Clean Harbors TSDFs in Deer Trail, Colorado, or El Dorado, Arkansas. Waste streams characterized as non-organic went to the Colorado site while organic items were sent to Arkansas for incineration.
Only DOT-approved routes are used for transport. Climate-controlled trailers carrying the wastes meet DOT requirements and are operated by two-person teams of experienced and licensed hazardous waste transport operators, Jackson said.
“PCAPP is committed to disposing of its wastes in a manner that is safe for the workers, the public and the environment, while complying with applicable rules, regulations and laws,” Jackson said.