1997 Annual Report:

NJ Low Level Radioactive Waste Disposal Facility Siting Board

1997 Accomplishments

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The Siting Board continued its statewide outreach effort, publishing a quarterly update, adding two brochures to its arsenal of informational materials, establishing a Web page, and discussing the issue of siting a disposal facility in New Jersey at a variety of public forums. These efforts have helped put the issue of public responsibility for low-level radioactive waste into the arena of public policy issues that need to be addressed. Certainly, many more New Jerseyans now have an appreciation of the issues (even if most are reluctant to site a disposal facility in their backyard).


The Board provided funding to the Rutgers University Environmental Sciences Training Center to develop a series of fact sheets on various aspects of radiation science and low-level radioactive waste; and the New Jersey Office of Dispute Settlement to develop a sourcebook of organizations that provide information on low-level radioactive waste from diverse perspectives and points of view. The Board also asked the National Low-Level Radioactive Waste Management Program/Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory to develop a question-and-answer booklet, Answers to Some Often Asked Questions About Low-Level Radioactive Waste, that addresses issues that have surfaced during the Board's dialogue with communities.
Residents of several communities, including Bethlehem and Delaware Townships (Hunterdon County), South Harrison Township (Gloucester County), and Carneys Point Township (Salem County) initiated public discussions that indicated preliminary interest in learning about the issues with an eye toward volunteering to host the disposal facility.


The Board's siting consultant, Foster Wheeler Environmental Corporation, developed a quality assurance program and began developing detailed procedures for performing field work in preparation for characterizing potential sites. Foster Wheeler assisted the Board in revising the Preliminary Site Investigation Program to better meet the needs of potential host communities.


The voluntary siting process continued to garner favorable press coverage, not only in towns in which active discussion was going on, but in more general articles on the need for securing a dependable, long-term disposal option for New Jersey generators.

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1998 Agenda

Because it has become clear to the Board that the reduced volume of low-level radioative waste generated in New Jersey combined with the short-term availability of disposal in South Carolina and Utah call into question the need to pursue siting a facility in New Jersey at this time, the Board voted to suspend the siting process at its February 1998 monthly meeting.


As the Board redefines its mission, it will continue to track the management of low-level radioactive waste in New Jersey and monitor the availability of disposal options nationally.


The Board will reduce its staff size, consolidate its office operations, and cut back its activities.


The Board will continue to interact with and support the activities of the Northeast Compact Commission in its role to ensure safe, reliable disposal of low-level radioactive waste.
The Board will prepare a "Report to the Governor and the Legislature" which will recount the lessons the Board has learned during the siting process and enumerate a list of recommendations for the time when the need to find a site again becomes an imperative.


The Board will be updating the New Jersey Low-Level Radioactive Waste Disposal Plan to provide information on current and projected low-level radioactive waste management needs, disposal alternatives, transportation impacts, and economic viability. In addition, the Board will continue to evaluate the current and projected availability of disposal capacity for New Jersey generators.


The Board will seek to promote greater public knowledge of the management of low-level radioactive waste.

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Fiscal Year 1997

(July 1, 1996 - June 30, 1997)



Siting Board Operations $763,412

Staff (Salaries, Fringe & Indirect)


Office Administration & Equipment


Public Outreach, Exhibits & Conferences


Professional Services from State Departments $321,694

Department of Environmental Protection


Office of the Attorney General $10,244

Office of Dispute Settlement


Other Professional Services $317,016

*Eagleton Institute of Politics, Center for Public Interest Polling, Rutgers University


**Environmental Sciences Training Center, Rutgers University


Foster Wheeler Environmental Corporation


New Jersey Chapter, League of Women Voters Education Fund


Northeast Compact Commission $74,214

*The Eagleton Institute conducted a poll of residents of Fairfield (Cumberland County) after the Township publicly considered and then rejected volunteering to host the disposal facility. The poll was designed to help the Board gain insights into what citizens knew and believed about the issues surrounding low-level radioactive waste in order to help the Board better respond to concerns that might be raised by residents of other communities.

**The Environmental Sciences Training Center researched, wrote, and printed a series of "Fact Sheets" on radiation and low-level radioactive waste.

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Last updated June 1998