Friday, May 2, 2008

Interview With Jeffrey M. Allison, Savannah River Project

Mr. Jeffrey M. Allison, left, was appointed Manager of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Savannah River Operations Office (SR), Aiken, South Carolina, in March 2003. He is a career member of the Senior Executive Service with more than 24 years of experience in engineering, safety, health, process development, and management of DOE’s nuclear operations, including chemical processing facilities, and laboratories.

EJ Conference, Inc. What is the Savannah River Site (SRS)?

Mr. Allison: The SRS is a DOE Environmental Management (EM) program owned, 310-square mile site with about 11,000 employees and a $2 billion budget. SR’s current mission is to solve critical cleanup challenges with smart solutions; secure nuclear materials for safe consolidation, reuse or disposal; and transform the site for our nation's future. Today, SRS leads the DOE Complex in cleanup of the nuclear waste legacy, which is yielding important results for the site and the nation, such as:

Turning radioactive liquid waste to a solid, safe form;
Emptying and closing waste tanks with key support from regulators and the community;
Closing-in on completing the safe disposal of solid waste;
Protecting groundwater with early actions using unique technologies; and
Completing cleanup of large contaminated areas with smart approaches
EJ Conference, Inc. How has Environmental Justice (EJ) changed over the last 10 years at SRS?

Mr. Allison: Due to the culture during the Cold War era (1950s – 1980s), and the nature of our mission, SRS was under a shroud of secrecy for national defense reasons. However, in the mid 80s and after the Cold War ended, we began an active public outreach program to communicate the mission, vision, and goals. Given the many years of silence, SRS initially struggled to gain credibility and stakeholders’ trust. Continuing to broaden the EJ Program by collaborating with the Medical University of South Carolina and the National Small Town Alliance, has allowed us to communicate with more people.

No comments: