Pueblo plant operators received state approval to operate the Static Detonation Chamber, or SDC, complex at full capacity after months of environmental testing and analysis.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment recently approved the Multiple Pathway Health Risk Assessment, submitted in November, which estimates potential risks and hazards to human health and the environment from emissions from the SDC complex at the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant (PCAPP). The complex has been running at 75% capacity since elimination of 4.2-inch mortar rounds began in February 2022.
“Even at 75% capacity, the SDCs destroyed more than 29,000 4.2- inch mortar rounds since processing began 11 months ago,” said Walton Levi, site project manager, PCAPP. “The SDCs were close to maximum daily throughput at 75%, averaging 180 to 200 munitions a day, but the additional capacity will certainly boost our numbers.”
The PCAPP team is awaiting approval of a permit modification request regarding updates for waste-treatment activities before full operations can commence.
The plant is required by the Chemical Weapons Convention treaty to eliminate the chemical weapons stockpile stored at the U.S. Army Pueblo Chemical Depot by Sept. 30, 2023. Public law mandates stockpile destruction by Dec. 31, 2023. As of Jan. 31, 2023, the Pueblo plant had destroyed more than 2,410 U.S. tons of chemical agent, or more than 91% of the stockpile.