DOE again awards $45 billion Hanford tank contract to H2C

March 4, 2024, 7:00AMRadwaste Solutions
Hanford’s Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant, also known as the Vit Plant. (Photo: Bechtel National)

The Department of Energy’s Office of Environmental Management once again awarded a 10-year, $45 billion contract to Hanford Tank Waste Operations and Closure (H2C) of Lynchburg, Va., for the cleanup of tank waste at the Hanford Site.

H2C is a limited liability company made up of BWXT Technical Services Group, Amentum Environment and Energy, and Fluor Federal Services. The DOE is working to disposition around 55 million gallons of mixed radioactive and chemical waste stored in underground tanks at the Hanford Site in southeastern Washington state.

Second go: DOE-EM previously awarded H2C the Hanford integrated tank disposition contract in April 2023. H2C was to take over the contract first awarded in 2008 to Washington River Protection Solutions, which is owned by Amentum and Atkins, with Orano as an integrated subcontractor.

The contract with H2C, however, was invalidated by a federal court after Hanford Tank Disposition Alliance—a team of Atkins, Jacobs, and Westinghouse—protested the award. The DOE subsequently extended its contract with WRPS through the end of September 2025.

The scope: Under this new contract, H2C will be responsible for the operation of Hanford’s tank farm facilities, including single-shell tank waste retrieval and closure; the design, construction, and operation of waste receiving facilities and treatment capabilities; and operation of the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant, which will convert tank waste to a stable form through vitrification.

The company will also be responsible for core functions like project management; environment, safety, health, and quality; security and emergency services; and business performance requirements.

According to DOE-EM, the contract includes requirements for meaningful work to be performed by small businesses and will promote robust community commitment and engagement, including support to site reindustrialization by the local community. DOE-EM also said that with continued stable funding for the Hanford Site, no site workforce impacts are expected. Competitive and comparable benefits will also continue under the new contract.

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