Bechtel National Inc. and AECOM announced the formation of the Waste Treatment Completion Company LLC (WTCC) – a company that will complete construction and lead the startup and commissioning of more than 20 facilities to safely treat low-activity nuclear waste at the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant. The plant is located at the Department of Energy’s Hanford Site in Washington state.
“This new company is the next step toward starting up and commissioning facilities that will safely and efficiently vitrify millions of gallons of nuclear waste,” said Barbara Rusinko, president of Bechtel’s Nuclear, Security and Environmental business. “We are now within the timeframe where nuclear facilities typically begin transitioning from construction to startup activities, so the time is now to implement these organizational changes.”
WTCC will be subcontracted to Bechtel, which will continue to provide project leadership, engineering, procurement, and other key functions. The new structure represents no new costs to the taxpayer and will deliver the facilities, management systems, and trained workforce to demonstrate turning waste to glass by hot commissioning the Low Activity Waste facility as early as 2022, as required under the WTP contract. The initial workforce will be composed of employees already on the project.
During commissioning, the Low-Activity Waste Facility and its support facilities will be handling radioactive waste in close proximity to construction occurring on WTP’s Pretreatment and High-Level Waste facilities, in a sequenced approach to startup that requires extra care.
Scott Oxenford, a veteran WTP leader named president and general manager of WTCC, said “Having an active nuclear facility within a construction site creates additional environmental and safety challenges. WTCC provides a single integrated team with line of sight to both startup and commissioning and construction and enables consolidated decision-making.”
Peggy McCullough will continue as the overall WTP project director. The new project structure takes effect March 27, 2017. Bechtel retains full accountability for all project deliverables.