|From:||CPEO Moderator <email@example.com>|
|Date:||16 Oct 2003 12:49:49 -0000|
|Subject:||[CPEO-MEF] Report urges Army to rush destruction of gelled sarin|
Alabama THE BIRMINGHAM NEWS Report urges Army to rush destruction of gelled sarin Mary Orndorff 10/16/03 WASHINGTON - The Army should speed up the destruction of M55 rockets filled with gelled sarin because it would be safer for the people of Anniston than storing them, according to a scientific report released Wednesday. The National Research Council, in a study sponsored by the Army, found that the chemical weapons incinerator in Alabama could safely destroy the tricky gel-filled rockets faster than did a similar facility in Utah. "Because there is a small chance that stored sarin- and VX-filled rockets might self-ignite at any time and release toxic agents and metals, these rockets need to be destroyed as soon as possible," said James Mathis, a retired engineer from Exxon Corp. and chair of the committee that wrote the report. The findings essentially support plans at the Anniston incinerator to process gelled rockets as fast as possible without violating the limits set by state regulators who monitor the incinerator's performance on safety and emissions. About 20 percent of the outdated M55 rockets in Anniston's stockpile, or about 8,706 rockets, are believed to contain sarin nerve agent that is no longer in liquid form. The gelled substance is tougher to handle and takes longer to destroy. Trial burns with the gelled rockets are scheduled for early next year. The National Research Council, a division of the National Academy of Sciences, suggests that the gelled rockets can be safely dealt with at a rate faster than the 1.6 per hour accomplished in Tooele, Utah. But the panel also cautioned against aspiring to run the rockets through at 34 an hour, fearing the speed could cause the temperature in the furnace to spike and some of the deadly agent to be released. During trial burns of non-lethal agents, the Anniston incinerator was able to destroy 34 gelled rockets per hour, according to spokesman Mike Abrams. But that rate is not being considered for actual burns, he said. This article can be viewed at: http://www.al.com/news/birminghamnews/index.ssf?/base/news/1066295816268160.xml ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ CPEO: A DECADE OF SUCCESS. Your generous support will ensure that our important work on military and environmental issues will continue. Please consider one of our donation options. Thank you. http://www.groundspring.org/donate/index.cfm?ID=2086-0|721-0
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