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The U.S. Department of Energy/National Nuclear Security Administration Pantex Plant (hereinafter, Pantex) is located 17 miles northeast of Amarillo, in Carson County, Texas. Its primary mission is to assemble, evaluate, repair, retrofit, and disassemble nuclear weapons; provide interim storage for plutonium pits; and develop, fabricate, and test chemical explosives and explosive components for nuclear weapons.
The laboratory analyses were performed by the Texas Department of Health, Bureau of Laboratories. Each year’s summary disclosed the Quality Assurance and Quality Control evaluations for the laboratory in its appendices. The rationale for the BRC’s selection of sampling locations, duration of monitoring for specific radionuclides or types of radiation, and discussions about the reported analytical results were not included in the reports. The BRC stated that “analysis of samples is concentrated on determining presence of any special nuclear material” (BRC 2004, p. 61), and provided the conclusions that no regulatory limits or license limits were exceeded at any of the monitored facilities.
This review was undertaken to (1) identify and understand what media, constituents, and locations have been monitored; (2) review and compare the reported analytical results between and among media and locations; (3) identify data gaps; (4) identify any data trends to the extent possible; (5) compare results to available health standards; and (6) identify any questions about the radiation monitoring by the BRC that resulted from this review.
Also, it was hoped to determine whether the gathering of data was done in a comprehensive manner to enable the BRC to confidently determine the extent of any exposures and address any expected health concerns.
This research was completed money allocated during Round 6 of the Citizens’ Monitoring and Technical Assessment Fund (MTA Fund). Clark University was named conservator of these works.
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The Peace Farm of Texas, Inc.
nuclear weapons, nuclear weapons testing, environment, non-governmental organizations, United States Department of Energy, tribal governments, environmental cleanup, radioactive fallout, radioactive waste
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The Peace Farm of Texas, Inc. and Allison, Pam, "Radiation Monitoring at Pantex: A Review of the Bureau of Radiation Control Environmental Data 1993-2003" (2005). The Peace Farm of Texas, Inc.. 1.