Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant Monthly Recap – November 2023

Current Project Phase:
Transition to Closure

Chemical Weapons Destruction at the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant (PCAPP):

On June 22, 2023, the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant (PCAPP) completed destruction of the U.S. chemical weapons stockpile at the U.S. Army Pueblo Chemical Depot (PCD) in Colorado, which consisted of 780,089 chemical weapons containing mustard agent. The Colorado stockpile included three munition types: 155mm and 105mm projectiles and 4.2-inch mortar rounds.


Project Update:

  • Troy Worthen was named the PCAPP plant manager, replacing Kim Jackson, who left PCAPP for another Amentum project. Worthen has been with the project since 2015 and previously served as the Static Detonation Chamber plant manager.
  • Masking zone changes went into effect on Nov. 8 inside the Restricted Controlled Area (formerly the Chemical Limited Area) of the main plant and Static Detonation Chamber (SDC) complex. At the main plant, masking zones include the Agent Processing Building, Enhanced Reconfiguration Building, Automated Guided Vehicle corridor and Agent Filtration Area. Department managers will identify positions no longer requiring masks. Requirements are determined by position, job description and scope of work.
  • Simulated munitions used to train the workforce and the Pueblo plant’s automated systems and prove the safety of certain processes at the plant are being destroyed as part of the plant’s transition to closure. All remaining simulated munitions used at PCAPP will be turned over to the Defense Logistics Agency for final disposal decisions. The first batch has been sent to a Tucson, Arizona facility for disposal.
  • Entry Support Area tender Jude Sanchez reached the significant milestone of conducting 1,000 Demilitarization Protective Ensemble backup entries.
  • Walton Levi, site project manager, PCAPP, gave a plant update to the Pueblo Optimists Club on Nov. 29 at Brues Alehouse.
  • On Nov. 15, the Pueblo Chemical Depot and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released 22 black-footed ferrets to bolster the population of this endangered mammal. The black-footed ferret was one of the first species listed under the Endangered Species Act in 1967.

Closure-Related Activities:

  • The public notice for Permit Modification Request B071 was publicly posted on Tuesday, Nov. 28, kicking off the 30-day public comment period regarding the plant’s closure plan. A public discussion will be held on Dec. 6 during the regularly scheduled Colorado Chemical Demilitarization Citizens’ Advisory Commission meeting.
  • The Pueblo Chemical Stockpile Outreach Office permanently closed to the public on Nov. 17, but the outreach staff will continue to be available at PuebloOutreach@iem.com or 719-549-4959. All office content was transported to a PCAPP storage igloo until items can be dispositioned. All training activities formerly held at the PCAPP Training Facility at 4 Jetway have been relocated to on-site locations. This building will be returned to the Pueblo Economic Development Corporation at the end of the year.
  • More than 300 PCAPP and PCD employees attended a job fair on Nov. 8-9 with representatives from Bechtel, Amentum and Battelle projects. For those employees wishing to remain in Colorado after their release dates, a local job fair featuring employers from the region has been scheduled for Dec. 13-14.
  • The Pueblo Workforce Center continues to host Transition Help Tuesdays at PCAPP. One-on-one sessions are offered to employees, providing guidance and information for employment transition, including resume review, workshops, access to LinkedIn Learning and career coaching programming.

Upcoming Meetings

  • The next Colorado Chemical Demilitarization Citizens’ Advisory Commission meeting will be online at 3 p.m. MT Dec. 6. Along with Permitting Working Group and Biotreatment Utilization Group subcommittee meetings, a discussion regarding the Class 2 Permit Modification Request B071 (Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant Closure) will also be held at this time.

    Individuals interested in joining online may participate using the link and information below.
    To join by computer: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84432791550
    To join by phone, call: 1 (719) 359-4580
    Meeting ID:  844 3279 1550#

  • Walton Levi, PCAPP Site Project Manager, will provide a PCAPP update as part of a PuebloPlex board meeting at noon on Jan. 11, 2024.

New to PCAPP?

The Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant is a facility built to destroy the chemical weapons stockpile formerly stored at the U.S. Army Pueblo Chemical Depot. This video portrays PCAPP operations prior to the June 22, 2023, completion of destruction of the stockpile in Colorado. The main plant used neutralization followed by biotreatment and was supplemented by Static Detonation Chamber units to destroy mustard agent munitions. With destruction operations complete, the safety of the workforce, neighboring communities and the environment during the closure phase remains the project’s priority.

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