TENORM hearing scheduled in Williams County

Published: Sep. 26, 2019 at 9:38 PM CDT
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Secure Energy Services wants to increase the amount of radioactive materials they can accept at its 13-mile landfill from 5 to 50 pico curies per gram. Most would come from their own trucks.

”We’ll save hundreds of thousands of miles of truck traffic on our highways, and keep our waste safely in the state. We’re generating the waste, we should be taking care of some of it here,” said Kurt Rhea, Secure Energy Services radiation safety officer.

TENORM is the build-up of radioactive materials during extraction processes, usually in the form of dirt. It’s all being hauled out of state right now, and some dispose of it improperly to avoid the drive.

“They’ll be able to accept it in-state, giving them an in-state option to curb any illegal disposal,” said Diana Trussell, North Dakota Department Environmental Quality solid waste program manager.

Nearby families are concerned that their land value will decrease just due to people’s fear surrounding radioactive waste, even if it is properly handled.

Marlene Sandaker lives one-quarter mile from the landfill.

“I really do believe that land value is huge. Nobody is going to want to live or buy next to a waste like that. I can’t imagine anybody wanting to," said Sandaker.

A TENORM hearing is scheduled for October 17 at 6 p.m. in the Williams County Administration Building.