DOE issues final RFQ for WIPP clean energy initiative

April 19, 2024, 12:01PMRadwaste Solutions
The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, near Carlsbad, N.M. (Photo: DOE)

The Department of Energy’s Office of Environmental Management has issued a request for qualifications for interested parties and prospective offerors looking to enter into a realty agreement for carbon-pollution-free electricity (CFE) projects at the department’s Waste Isolation Pilot Plant site in southeastern New Mexico.

Potential projects include nuclear energy, wind, solar, hydrogen development, energy storage, and other clean energy technologies. The anticipated deadline for proposal submissions is 11:59 p.m. eastern time on Wednesday, May 15, 2024.

The details: The WIPP RFQ, issued today, marks the next phase of the DOE’s Cleanup to Clean Energy initiative to increase clean energy production by making DOE land available for potential CFE projects.

The DOE has identified about 40,000 acres of potentially available lands for consideration for development for CFE generation and storage projects. In addition to the WIPP site, DOE-owned sites identified with these potential lands include the Hanford Site in Washington state and the Savannah River Site in South Carolina. Additional land was identified at other DOE cleanup sites, including Idaho National Laboratory and the Nevada National Security Site.

At WIPP, the DOE has identified approximately 9,000 acres of contiguous land that could potentially be used for industrial activities, including CFE generation and storage. The department may decide to lease part or all the available land for CFE projects, or award leases to one or multiple entities for CFE projects.

Additional info: The WIPP RFQ follows a request for information, which closed on March 20. The RFI invited industry, government, and community members to comment on the potential use of WIPP land for CFE projects. The DOE also held a Cleanup to Clean Energy Information Day on March 27, to which interested parties and community members were invited to learn more about the initiative, the RFI, and the WIPP site.

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