Draft Generic Environmental Report to Support Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s Environmental Impact Statement on Uranium In Situ Recovery Facilities




НазваниеDraft Generic Environmental Report to Support Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s Environmental Impact Statement on Uranium In Situ Recovery Facilities
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Draft Generic Environmental Report to Support Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s Environmental Impact Statement on Uranium In Situ Recovery Facilities


Prepared for:

National Mining Association

101 Constitution Avenue, NW

Suite 500 East

Washington, DC 2001-2133


Prepared by:

Tetra Tech

950 17th Street, Suite 2200

Denver, Colorado 80202




CONTENTS


Section Page


ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS xii

PREAMBLE xvii


1.0 Introduction 1

1.1 Description of the Proposed Action 3

1.2 Purpose of and Need for the Proposed Action 3

1.3 Scope of the GEIS and Method of Assessment 5

1.3.1 Relevant Issues Studied in Detail 18

1.3.2 Non-Relevant Issues Eliminated from Detailed Study 20

1.4 Scoping Process 21

1.5 Applicable Regulatory Requirements, Permits, and Regional Consultations 22

1.6 Cooperating Agencies 23

1.7 Other State and Federal Agencies 23

2.0 Alternatives 1

2.1 Process Used to Formulate Alternatives 1

2.2 Proposed Action 2

2.2.1 Principal ISR Uranium Recovery Operating Characteristics 2

Ion-Exchange System - Higgin's Loop™ 19

2.2.1 Waste Management 27

2.2.2 Emission Source Terms 29

2.2.2.1 Non-radioactive 30

2.2.3.1.1 Radioactive 30

2.2.3 Well field Procedures and Equipment 34

2.2.3.1 Well Construction 34

2.2.3.2 Well Development 39

2.2.3.3 Well Field Operations 42

2.2.4 Lixiviant Chemistry 44

2.2.5 Processing Plant Facilities 45

2.2.5.1 Decommissioning Site Structures 51

2.2.6 Airborne Emission Controls 52

2.2.6.1 Control of Fugitive Particulate Matter 52

2.2.7.1.1 Yellowcake Drying and Packaging 52

2.2.7.1.2 Aerosols 53

2.2.6.2 Radon 53

2.2.6.3 Decontamination and Decommissioning Wastes 61

2.2.7 Instrumentation 61

2.2.8 Case Studies of Typical ISR Facilities 62

2.2.8.1 Uranium and Radium Values in Groundwater at ISR Facilities 63

2.3 No-Action Alternative 63

2.4 Other Reasonable Alternatives Considered but not Carried Forward for Detailed Analysis 63

2.4.1 Conventional Uranium Milling (Including Heap Leaching) 63

2.5 Preliminary Recommendations 68

3.0 Description of Model Region for ISR Uranium Recovery 1

3.1 Land Use 2

3.1.1 Use of Land for Well Fields 2

3.1.2 Use of Land for Processing Facilities 3

3.1.3 Use of Land for Waste Storage and Management 3

3.2 Transportation 7

3.2.1 Generic Regional Road Conditions for Transportation 8

3.2.2 Potential Truck Accident Assessment 9

3.2.2.1 Radioactive Truck Accident Scenario 9

3.2.2.2 Non-Radioactive Truck Accident Scenario 10

3.2.2.3 Considerations for Assessment of Truck Accident Impact 11

3.3 Geology and Soils: General Conditions for Uranium Deposits Amenable to ISR Method of Uranium Recovery 12

3.4 Water Resources and Hydrology 29

3.4.1 Groundwater 29

3.4.1.1 Generic Description of Regional Aquifer Conditions for ISR Projects 29

3.4.1.1.1 Hydrologic Characteristics of ISR Deposits 30

3.4.1.1.2 Generic Discussion of Nature of Uranium Deposits in Relation to Groundwater Conditions 31

3.4.1.1.3 Uranium and Radium Values in Groundwater at ISR Facilities 32

3.4.1.2 Examples of ISR Site Hydrology in the Three Primary ISR Regions 33

3.4.1.3 Groundwater Characteristics of Model ISR Site 38

3.4.1.4 Ongoing Characterization of the Groundwater System 38

3.4.1.5 Additional Permitting Safeguards 39

3.4.2 Surface Water 40

3.5 Ecology 41

3.6 Meteorology and Climatology, Air Quality, and Noise Levels 50

3.6.1 Meteorology and Climatology 50

3.6.2 Air Quality 53

3.6.3 Noise 57

3.7 Historic and Cultural Resources 58

3.7.1 Generic Overview of Historic and Cultural Resource Preservation 58

3.7.2 Nature of Historic and Cultural Resource Preservation Process 58

3.8 Visual and Scenic Resources 61

3.8.1 Wilderness Areas 61

3.8.2 Wild and Scenic Rivers 61

3.8.3 Designated Areas in Model Regions States 61

3.8.4 Generic Regional Aesthetic Conditions 66

3.9 Socioeconomic Conditions 67

3.9.1 Generic Demographics 67

3.9.2 Generic Income Statistics 68

3.9.3 Generic Earnings and Employment Structures 69

3.9.4 Generic Housing and Public Infrastructure 70

3.9.4.1 Housing 71

3.9.4.2 Water and Wastewater Systems 71

3.9.4.3 Police, Fire, and Emergency Protection and Response 72

3.9.4.4 Education Resources 72

3.10 Environmental Justice 72

3.10.1 Generic Background and Approach 72

3.10.2 Generic Discussion of Minority and Low-Income or Native American Populations in the Area of Effect 73

3.10.3 Natural Resource Consumption by Populations 74

3.10.4 Sensitivity of Native American Communities to Potential Impacts of Proposed Action 75

4.0 POTENTIAL ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS 1

4.1 Impacts of Proposed Action 1

4.1.1 Land Use Impacts 1

4.1.1.1 Liquid Waste Disposal Impacts 2

4.1.1.2 Solid Waste Disposal Impacts 4

4.1.2 Transportation Impacts 5

4.1.3 Geology and Soils Impacts 7

4.1.3.1 Construction Activities 7

4.1.3.2 ISR Uranium Recovery Operation 8

Restoration Process 10

Stabilization Phase 12

Reporting 12

4.1.3.3 Uranium Processing 13

4.1.4 Water Impacts 15

4.1.4.1 Groundwater Impacts 15

4.1.4.1.1 Groundwater Consumption 16

4.1.4.1.2 Groundwater Quality 17

4.1.4.2 Surface Water Impacts 21

4.1.5 Ecological Impacts 21

4.1.6 Meteorology, Climatology, and Air Quality Impacts 22

4.1.6.1 Construction Activities 22

4.1.6.2 Operation Activities 23

4.1.7 Noise Impacts 24

4.1.7.1 Construction 24

4.1.7.2 Operation 25

4.1.8 Historic and Cultural Impacts 27

4.1.9 Visual/Scenic Impacts 27

4.1.10 Socioeconomic Impacts 27

4.1.11 Environmental Justice 28

4.1.12 Public and Occupational Health Impacts 29

4.1.12.1 Non-radiological Impacts 29

4.1.12.1.1 Air Quality and Noise 29

4.1.12.1.2 Groundwater Contamination 31

4.1.12.1.3 Biological Impacts [PLEASE MOVE TO ECOLOGICAL IMPACTS SECTION 31

4.1.12.1.4 Socioeconomic Impacts 31

4.1.12.1.5 Worker Health and Safety 32

4.1.12.2 Radiological Impacts 33

4.1.12.3 Sample Exposure Data to the Public for ISR Facilities 47

4.1.12.3.1 Impacts to Nonhuman Biota 51

4.1.13 Waste Management Impacts 52

4.1.14 Cumulative Impacts 52

4.1.14.1 Air Quality and Noise 53

4.1.14.2 Geology and Soils 53

4.1.14.3 Groundwater 53

4.1.14.4 Surface Water 55

4.1.14.5 Transportation Risk 55

4.1.14.6 Health Physics and Radiological Impacts 55

4.1.14.7 Ecology 56

4.1.14.8 Land Use 56

4.1.14.9 Socioeconomics 56

4.1.14.10 Visual/Scenic 57

4.1.14.11 Cultural Resources 57

4.1.14.12 Environmental Justice 57

4.2 Impacts of the No Action Alternative 57

5.0 Mitigation Measures 1

5.1 Land Use Impact Mitigation 1

5.2 Surface Water Impact Mitigation 2

5.3 Ecological Impact Mitigation 2

5.4 Groundwater Impact Mitigation 2

5.5 Transportation Mitigation 3

5.6 Noise Mitigation 3

5.7 Historic and Cultural Resource Impact Mitigation 3

5.8 Visual/Scenic Impact Mitigation 4

5.9 Socioeconomic Impact Mitigation 4

5.10 Environmental Justice Impact Mitigation 4

5.11 Radioactivity Mitigation 5

6.0 Environmental Measurements and Monitoring Programs 1

6.1 Land Use Monitoring 1

6.2 Environmental and Operational Monitoring 1

6.3 Surface Water Monitoring 3

6.4 Ecological Monitoring 4

6.5 Groundwater and Wastewater Monitoring 6

6.5.1 Pre-Operational Activities 6

6.5.2 Recovery and Restoration Activities 7

6.5.2.1 Location of Monitor Wells 7

6.5.2.2 Sampling of Monitoring Wells 8

6.5.2.3 Upper Control Limits 8

6.5.2.4 Excursions and Corrective Actions 9

6.5.2.5 Well Casing Integrity Testing 9

6.5.2.6 Well Field Operational Flow and Pressure Monitoring 10

6.5.2.7 Retention Pond Leak Detection Monitoring [REFERENCE REG. GUIDES 3.11 AND 3.11.1] 10

6.6 Radiological Monitoring 11

6.6.1 Applicable Guidance 11

6.6.2 Monitoring Requirements by Project Phase 12

6.7 Air Monitoring 12

6.7.1 Pre-Operational Monitoring 13

6.7.2 Operational Monitoring 13

7.0 Cost-Benefit Analysis 1

7.1 Programmatic Cost-Benefit Analysis 1

7.1.1 Benefits of the Proposed Projects 2

7.1.1.1 Potential Production 2

7.1.1.2 Benefits from Employment and Royalty Income 3

7.1.1.3 Benefits from Tax Revenues 3

7.1.2 Costs of the Proposed Projects [MOORE RANCH?] 4

7.2 Guidelines for Site-Specific Cost-Benefit Analysis 5

8.0 Summary of Potential Environmental Impacts 1

liST oF preparers 1

DISTRIBUTION LIST 1

REFERENCES CITED 1

9.0 supplemental information of
ENVIRONMENTAL impact statement document 1

CONTENTS (Continued)


Appendices


A Transcripts of 2007 NRC Public Scoping Meetings for ISR GEIS

A-1 Transcript of August 7, 2007 Scoping Meeting in Casper, Wyoming

A-2 Transcript of August 9, 2007 Scoping Meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico

A-3 Transcript of September 27, 2007 Scoping Meeting in Gallup, New Mexico


B Examples of Regulatory Approvals for Completed Restorative Projects

CONTENTS (Continued)


FIGURES


Figure Page


2.1 Application Flow Chart 2-4

2.2 Typical Flowsheet for In Situ Recovery Process Flow at Main Plant 2-11

2.3 Typical Flowsheet for In Situ Recovery Process at Satellite Plant 2-12

2.4 Conceptual Well Construction Method No. 1 2-26

2.5 Conceptual Well Construction Method No. 2 2-27

2.6 Conceptual Well Construction Method No. 3 2-28

2.7 Typical Well Field Layout 2-31

2.8 Typical for Waste Management Process Flow Flowsheet 2-44

2.9 Typical Flowsheet for Groundwater Restoration Process Flow at Main Plant 2-51

3.1 Mines [?] and Other Locations with Uranium in the Western US 3-10

3.2 ISR Uranium Recovery Locations in U.S. 3-10

3.3 Approximate Locations of Active Mines ISR Uranium Recovery Operations,

and Mills in the US - November 2005 3-11

3.4 Crownpoint Geology and Soil - Simplified Cross-Section of Roll-Front Uranium Deposit 3-13

3.5 Crownpoint Geology - Structural Setting of the San Juan Basin 3-15

3.6 Crownpoint Geology and Soils - Surface Locations of Faults And Ore Zones in the Crownpoint Area 3-22

3.7 Crownpoint Geology and Soil - Stratigraphic Column of the Church Rock New Mexico Area 3-23

3.8 Crownpoint Geology and Soil - Stratigraphic Column of the Unit 1 and Crownpoint Sites 3-24

3.9 Texas Nonattainment and Near Nonattainment Areas 3-40

4.1 Exposure Pathways 4-28

7.1 Uranium Production Trends 7-2


TABLES


Table Page


1.1 Framework for Tiering and Checklist for Environmental Resources 1-8

1.2 Framework for Tiering ID Team Analysis Checklist for Environmental Resources 1-15

1.3 Non-NRC Permits That May be Required to Support Liquid Effluent Disposal at ISR Uranium Recovery Facilities 1-24

1.4 Selected Baseline Water Quality Parameters at ISR Sites 1-25


2.1 Generic ISR Process 2-5

2.2 Estimated Vehicle Requirements for Well Field Construction, Operations and Maintenance 2-21

2.3 Evaluation Parameters and the Resulting Emission Source Values 2-22

2.4 Potential Range of Parameters in Pregnant Lixiviant 2-34

2.5 Typical Baseline Water Quality Parameters 2-47

2.6 Crownpoint Site Water Quality Data. Wastewater Canyon Aquifer (HRI, 1997) 2-54

3.3c Irigaray Area Initial Groundwater Quality Data (NRC 1978) 2-55

2.8 Groundwater Quality in the Goliad Formation 2-57

2.9 Ranges in High and Average Values of Uranium and Radium in Groundwater at ISR Sites . NE, NM, TX, & WY 2-58


3.1 Chemicals That are Typically Used in ISR Facilities 3-8

3.2 U.S. Uranium In Situ Leach Plants by Owner, Capacity, and Operating Status at the

End of Year 3-12

3.3 Regional Geology of Three Primary U.S. ISR Regions and Example Sites 3-18

3.4 Flora and Fauna Descriptions for the Model ISR Facility 3-31

3.5 Corpus Christi, Texas Temperature, Precipitation, Relative Humidity, Pan Evaporation, Wind Speed and Wind Direction 3-35

3.6 Farmington, New Mexico Average Temperature Precipitation, Relative Humidity, Pan Evaporation, Wind Speed and Wind Direction 3-36

3.7 Gillette, Wyoming Average Temperature Precipitation, Relative Humidity, Wind Speed and Wind Direction 3-37

3.8 National Ambient Air Quality Standards 3-37

3.9 Monitored Values 3-38

3.10 Maximum Allowable PSD Increments 3-41

3.11 Respective State Historic Preservation Officers 3-43

3.12 Native American Entities (Tribes, Nations, Communities and Bands) 3-43

3.13 Designated Scenic Resources 3-46

3.14 Demographics Template 3-52

3.15 Income Statistics Template 3-52

3.16 Annual Average Unemployment Percentage and Income Template 3-53

3.17 Housing Comparison Data Template 3-55

3.18 Analytical Data Template for identification of Minority and Low Income Population Concerns for Site-specific Analysis 3-57


4.1 Estimated construction vehicle requirements from HRI for Crownpoint, New Mexico

ISR site 4-20

4.2 Estimated source terms for gaseous and particulate emissions from construction equipment 4-21

4.3 HRI Estimates of the Process Emissions 4-21

4.4 United States Nominal Average Levels of Natural Background Radiation 4-24

4.5 Water Consumed Over the Life of the ISR Uranium Recover 4-33


6.1 Pre-operational Surface Water Quality Parameters 6-4


7.1 Example Summary of Annual Community Earnings at Existing Facilities 7-3

7.2 Example Benefits to Communities Around Existing ISR Uranium Recovery Facilities 7-4

7.3 Costs to Communities Around Existing ISR Uranium Recovery Facilities 7-4

7.4 General Costs and Benefits That Will Be Considered in Site-Specific Studies 7-5

8.1 Summary of Proposed Activities 8-1

8.2 Summary of Potential Environmental Impacts 8-2


ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS


oC Degrees Celsius

oF Degrees Fahrenheit

% Percent


ACHP Advisory Council on Historic Preservation

ACL Alternative concentration limit

AEA Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended

AEC Atomic Energy Commission

ALARA As low as reasonably achievable

AMC ******

ANPR Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

ASLBP Atomic Safety and Licensing Board

ASME American Society of Metallurgical Engineers

ASTM American Society for Testing and Materials


Bi Bismuth

BCG Biota Concentration Guides

BLM U.S. Bureau of Land Management

BPT Best Practicable Technology


CaCO3 Calcite

CaSO4•2H2O Gypsum

CEQ Council on Environmental Quality

CERCLA Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act

CFR Code of Federal Regulations

Ci/yr Curies per year

cm Centimeter

CO2 Carbon dioxide

CUP ******

CZMA Coastal Zone Management Act


Db Decibels

dBA A-weighted decibel

DNR Department of Natural Resources

DQO Data Quality Objectives

DOE U.S. Department of Energy

DRMS Division of Reclamation, Mining, and Safety


E East

EA Environmental assessment

EIS Environmental impact statement

EJ Environmental Justice

EPA U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

ESA Endangered Species Act


FEIS Final Environmental Impact Statement

Fe2O3 Hematite

FeS2 Pyrite

FeSe2 Ferroselite

FR Federal Register

ft Foot

ft/day Feet per day

ft/ft Feet per foot

FONSI Finding of No Significant Impacts


g/L Grams per liter

gal/day/ft Gallons per day per foot

GEIS Generic Environmental Impact Statement

GER Generic Environmental Report

gpm Gallons per minute


Ha Hectares

H2SO4 Sulfuric acid

H2O2 Hydrogen peroxide

H2S Hydrogen sulfide

HCL Hydrochloric acid

HDPE High-density polyethylene

hr Hour


ID Identification

ID Checklist Interdisciplinary Team Record Checklist

in Inches

ICRP International Commission on Radiological Protection

IP Industrial Packages

ISL In situ leach

ISR uranium

recovery In situ uranium recovery

IX Ion exchange


kg Kilogram

km kilometer


lb.hr Pound per hour

L Liter

LISS Lower Irigaray Sandstone

LSA Low specific activity

LTSP Long-term strategic plan


m Meter

m/s Meter per second

mCi/yr MilliCuries per year

MARSAM Multiple Airborne Reconnaissance Sensor Assessment Model

MARSSIM Multiple Agency Radiation Survey and Site Investigation Manual

MCL Maximum concentration limit

mg/L Milligrams per liter

MIT Mechanical Integrity Testing

MoS2(c) Molybdenite

MoS2(am) Jordisite

mph Miles per hour

MW Megawatt

mrem Millirem


N North

NAAQS National Ambient Air Quality Standards

NaHCO3 Sodium bicarbonate

NaOH Sodium hydroxide

NDEQ Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality

NEPA National Environmental Policy Act

NHPA National Historic Preservation Act

NM New Mexico

NMA National Mining Association

NMFS National Marine Fisheries Service

NMSS Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards

NO2 Nitrogen dioxide

NOAA National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

NOI Notice of intent

NORM ******

NPS National Park Service

NRC U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

NRHP National Register for Historic Places

NSR New Source Review

NUREG U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Regulation

NWI National Wetlands Inventory


O2 Oxygen gas

OELD Office of the Executive Legal Director

OSHA Occupational Health and Safety Administration


Pb Lead

pCi PicoCuries

pCi/g PicoCuries per gram

pCi/L PicoCuries per liter

pCi/m2/s picoCuries per square meter per second

PM10 Particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter of 10 microns or less

PNL Pacific Northwest Laboratory

Po Polonium

ppm Parts per million

PRA Probabilistic Risk Assessment

PRB Powder River Basin

psi Pounds per square inch

psig Pounds per square inch gauge

PSV Prevention of Significant Deterioration

PV Pore volume

PVC Polyvinyl chloride


QA Quality Assurance


Ra Radium

RAP Rulemaking activity plan

RCRA Resource Conservation and Recovery Act

Rn Radon

RIS ******

Rn Radon

RO Reverse osmosis


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