State Approves WIPP Permit Change for Carlsbad Facility

Staff Report
The Associated Press

CARLSBAD, N.M. (AP) - The state Environment Department has approved a permit change for the federal government's underground nuclear waste dump near Carlsbad.

The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant had asked the department to modify its permit to do away with a requirement for sampling at 15 locations. WIPP said samples collected over a 10-year period
indicated the areas posed no risk to human health or the environment.

After reviewing the data, the state agreed to eliminate the sampling and analysis requirement for the 15 sites.

The sites included a number of mud pits built for exploratory boreholes, an evaporation pond and a material storage area.

A WIPP official says the permit change will in no way diminish WIPP's high standards for protecting human health and natural resources.