NNSA Issues Amended Record of Decision to Build Nuclear Facility at LANL

Press Release
Oct 13, 2011

LOS ALAMOS, NM – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has issued an Amended Record of Decision (ROD) concerning the Nuclear Facility portion of the Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement project (CMRR-NF).

Following a supplemental environmental impact analysis and public input process, NNSA has selected the Modified CMRR-NF Alternative described in the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) to proceed forward with the design and construction of the nuclear facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

As described in the final SEIS, the facility will be constructed at Technical Area 55 and co-located with the other component of the Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement project - the recently completed Radiological Laboratory/Utilities/Office Building (RLUOB). RLUOB was constructed directly east of the prospective CMRR-NF site consistent with the 2004 ROD.

NNSA has incorporated updated seismic safety design information into development of the Modified CMRR-NF design that is described in the final SEIS.  Two construction options were considered and analyzed under this alternative: the Deep Excavation Option and the Shallow Excavation Option. NNSA will select the appropriate Excavation Option for implementing the construction of this building after initiating final design activities, when additional geotechnical and structural design calculations and more detailed engineering analysis will be performed to support completing the facility design.

The CMRR-NF and RLOUB will replace the 60-year-old Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Building and consolidate existing research capabilities at LANL to ensure continuous support of NNSA stockpile stewardship and strategic objectives. The new facility will provide labs for analytical chemistry, materials characterization and actinide research and development activities that not only support the safety, security, and reliability of existing nuclear weapons but also benefit nonproliferation, fundamental physics, basic science, medical isotopes, and technology development for waste treatment and minimization.

The Final SEIS for the Nuclear Portion of the CMRR, the Amended Record of Decision and other related documents can be found at: http://nnsa.energy.gov/aboutus/ouroperations/generalcounsel/nepaoverview/nepa/finalcmrrseis

The ROD CMRR-NF is located here: 20111013085344689.pdf

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Established by Congress in 2000, NNSA is a semi-autonomous agency within the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science in the nation’s national security enterprise. NNSA maintains and enhances the safety, security, reliability, and performance of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile without nuclear testing; reduces the global danger from weapons of mass destruction; provides the U.S. Navy with safe and effective nuclear propulsion; and responds to nuclear and radiological emergencies in the U.S. and abroad. Visit http://www.nnsa.energy.gov/  for more information.