News from City Hall
City Communications Office
City of Kansas City, Mo.
CONTACT: Mary Charles, city communications officer, (816) 513-1356
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Jan. 26, 2010
DOE prefers Texas site for hazardous waste mercury storage facility
The City of Kansas City, Mo., has been informed that the U.S. Department of Energy has identified a facility near Andrews, Texas as the preferred site for locating a storage facility for elemental mercury. The Kansas City Plant at Bannister Road had been one of seven locations considered by the Department of Energy.
In its Draft Environmental Impact Statement, the Department of Energy provided information related to the seven locations under consideration for the storage facility, including the Kansas City site. The agency identified the Waste Control Specialists facility near Andrews, Texas as its “Preferred Alternative.”
The Draft Environmental Impact Statement was filed with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last week and a Notice of Availability of the draft will be published in the Federal Register on Friday, Jan. 29. The Draft Environmental Impact Statement, including an extensive executive summary, is available online at http://www.mercurystorageeis.com.
The issuance of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement and its listing of the Texas facility as the preferred location for the elemental mercury storage facility is welcome news for Kansas City residents, especially those living in the 6th District, according to Councilwoman Cathy Jolly, 6th District at large.
“This is wonderful news,” Jolly said. “At the Department of Energy’s Public Scoping meeting in Kansas City on July 23, 2009, area residents clearly expressed their concerns regarding the consideration of the Bannister Road facility as a potential storage site for mercury.”
Residents also will have the opportunity to express their opinions regarding the Draft Environmental Impact Statement directly to the Department of Energy. The federal agency will schedule public hearings, including one in Kansas City, to receive input on the draft. More information about the meeting dates and locations is expected to be available later this week on the agency’s Web site.
“We are extremely pleased that the Department of Energy listened to the City Council and the residents of Kansas City and has reached the conclusion that the Bannister Road Plant should not be used for the storage of elemental mercury by the federal government,” said Councilman John Sharp, 6th District. “The site’s proximity to residential areas and the negative impact upon anticipated economic development in the area made it a very poor choice for consideration of a hazardous waste storage facility,” Sharp said.
According to the Department of Energy, a review copy of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement and other pertinent information are now available at the Blue Ridge Branch of the Mid-Continent Public Library, 9253 Blue Ridge Blvd., in Kansas City, (816) 761-3382.
For more information regarding this issue, contact Dennis Murphey, chief environmental officer, City of Kansas City, Mo., Office of Environmental Quality, (816) 513-3459.