NRC Taking Comments on Review of Wyoming Uranium Facility Expansion Plan

Strata applied to the NRC in early 2015 for approval to build and operate additional uranium recovery wells in the Kendrick expansion area, which covers about 7,800 acres adjacent to the facility, which is located 27 miles northeast of Gillette, Wyo.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is seeking public input on the environmental services to be covered in its review of Strata Energy Inc.'s application to expand the Ross in situ uranium recovery facility in Crook County, Wyo. NRC's announcement said the agency's environmental review will be documented in a supplemental environmental impact statement.

Strata applied to the NRC in early 2015 for approval to build and operate additional uranium recovery wells in the Kendrick expansion area, which covers about 7,800 acres adjacent to the facility, which is located 27 miles northeast of Gillette, Wyo. The agency published a notice of receipt of the license application and an opportunity to request a hearing on Feb. 29, 2016, in the Federal Register.

"The supplemental EIS will reference both the NRC's generic EIS for in situ uranium recovery and the Ross supplemental EIS, and will examine the potential environmental impacts of the proposed construction, operation, decommissioning, and aquifer restoration of the Kendrick expansion area," according to NRC.

The agency said NRC granted Strata a license in April 2014 to construct and operate the Ross facility. The process pumps a native groundwater solution through a series of injection wells into a sandstone ore body, then extracts the solution through a series of a production wells. The solution uses oxidants, such as oxygen or hydrogen peroxide, and other chemical compounds such as sodium bicarbonate, to mobilize uranium contained within the sandstone. After extraction, the solution would be transported through pipes to the Ross processing plant, and uranium removed from the extracted solution can be made into "yellowcake," a form of uranium that can be further processed into fuel pellets for nuclear reactors.

Written comments referencing Docket ID NRC-2011-0148 may be submitted until April 22 to Cindy Bladey, Office of Administration, Mail Stop: OWFN-12-H08, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, or by email to KendrickSEIS@nrc.gov.

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