The Southeast Compact Commission (SECC) selected Savannah River Remediation LLC (SRR) to receive the 2020 Richard S. Hodes Award (Award) for developing and implementing a technical, regulatory, and engineering strategy to work with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for the removal and treatment of liquid radioactive waste associated with reprocessing in a manner that allows its disposition as other than high-level waste.
The Award is given to an individual, company, or organization that contributed in a significant way to improve technology, policy, or practices of low-level radioactive waste (LLRW) management in the United States. The criteria for selection include innovation, safety, economics, and transferability.
SRR combined progressive waste processing policies with state-of the-art technologies to reclassify high-level wastes and then contain them for permanent disposal as LLRW. Using these innovative methodologies, SRR was able to save tax-payers over $55 billion. Additionally, many of the innovative solutions developed by SRR are directly transferrable to others for solving complex issues with treatment and disposition of complex radioactive waste streams.
John Lanza, one of the SECC commissioners participating in the Award recipient selection, said the creative work of SRR clearly exemplifies the spirit and commitment that the Hodes Award is intended to recognize.
“The primary strategic value of the SECC is that permanent disposal of low-level radioactive waste is preferable to storage,” Lanza said. “This value is exemplified by SRR as they successfully addressed a problem that was described by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control as ‘…the greatest environmental risk in the State of South Carolina.’”
The award will be presented Tuesday, March 10 during the 2020 Waste Management Conference, which will be held March 8-12, 2020 in Phoenix, Arizona. Immediately following the award presentation, a representative of SRR will present a lecture on its innovative efforts. The SECC will provide a $5,000 honorarium and will pay for travel expenses for the individual accepting the award and presenting the lecture in Phoenix.
The Commission established the Richard S. Hodes, M.D. Honor Lecture Award to honor the memory of Dr. Richard S. Hodes, who served as chair of the Southeast Compact Commission from its inception in 1983 until his death in 2002. He was a strong proponent of innovative approaches to improve the management of LLRW in the U.S.
The Commission would like to thank those individuals and organizations that participated in the 2020 awards program. Their involvement has helped to assure the continued success of the Richard S. Hodes, M.D. Honor Lecture Award.