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(OWN-2057) Managing a Large Mill Tailings Cleanup Project

Primary Author: Mr Donald R Metzler

Audience Focus: Basic
Application Type: Application
Venue: 2015 AACE International Annual Meeting, Las Vegas, NV, USA

Abstract: The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) manages the Moab Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project in Utah. As DOE designed and constructed tailings-removal and disposal systems, and now relocates the 16 million tons of uranium mill tailings for permanent disposal, its highest priority continues to be workplace safety.

In 2008, the Moab Project received approval for its lifecycle estimate of approximately $1B to be completed in 2028. Additional funding received in 2009 through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act accelerated tailings shipments, and as work has progressed on the Moab Project, the lifecycle estimate is now $928M – $936M to be completed in 2025.

Current funding supports moving approximately 900,000 tons annually. Through December 2014, roughly 7.3 million tons, or 45 percent of the tailings pile, has been relocated. Other work scope, such as excavation of the remainder of the disposal cell and placement of interim cover and final cover is required to be completed while continuing to excavate, transport, and dispose of tailings; however, the project plans to be complete on schedule and within budget.