CSWAB is pleased to report that EPA Headquarters in Washington DC has agreed to our request to include radiological wastes in two upcoming national reports on open air burning and open detonation (OB/OD) of munitions.
“One (report) will present all known alternative technologies and their status, and the other will present information on contamination found at OB/OD sites and associated clean-up costs,” EPA’s October 6 reply said. “We expect the (alternative technology) report to be finalized sooner, in February, and the contamination report finalized in April.”
CSWAB’s August 29 letter to EPA documented the open air burning and detonation of depleted uranium (DU), constituents (mixed waste), and low‐level radioactive wastes as a means of routine disposal by the Department of Defense and Department of Energy. Prior to CSWAB’s report, officials remained unconvinced that this was occurring.
When DU ammunition and wastes are burned, depleted uranium oxides are created in the form of dust that can be inhaled or contaminate wounds. These exposures have been linked to increased incidence of kidney abnormalities, leukemia, bone cancer and lung cancer.