Portman secures money for Piketon plant cleanup


By Jessica Wehrman } Washington Bureau

Sen. Rob Portman late last week said he has secured a commitment from the Department of Energy to clean up existing landfills and plumes at the former Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant.

The plant, which enriched uranium during the Cold War and later enriched uranium for nuclear power plants through 2001, has awaited cleanup for years, with Portman, R–Ohio, and Sen. Sherrod Brown, D–Ohio, among those fighting annually for cleanup money. Last September, Energy Secretary Rick Perry toured the site.

“I believe his visit here made a difference in securing today’s commitment form DOE,” Portman said.

Portman, citing a letter from the James Owendorff, principal deputy assistant secretary for Environmental Management for the Department of Energy to Ohio Environmental Protection Agency Director Craig Butler, said the letter meant the commitment is now “legally enforceable” and “will allow the entire site to be redeveloped to benefit the community.”

That letter reiterated that the Department of Energy would “excavate and consolidate the plumes and landfills within Perimeter Road as needed to meet the backfill requirements for the disposal facility.”

Portman made his comments at a meeting in Piketon Friday with key stakeholders including Rep. Brad Wenstrup, R-Cincinnati, who represents the Piketon area in the House.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Ohio Politics

21-year-old drowned trying to save child at the beach, family says
21-year-old drowned trying to save child at the beach, family says

Friends and family of a 21-year-old Cartersville, Georgia, man who drowned at Florida's Panama City Beach over Father's Day weekend say he died a hero. Tony Jackson Jr. was on vacation swimming with friends when a strong current pulled him under. WSB-TV's Michael Seiden spoke with Jackson's friend, Muhammad Qasim, who was at the beach with...
7-month-old baby dies in hot car in Georgia, police say
7-month-old baby dies in hot car in Georgia, police say

Police say they are not releasing any additional information about the death of a 7-month-old who was found in a hot car in Camden County, Georgia, near the Florida border. Kingsland officers were called to a motel Tuesday after reports that an infant was not breathing, the police department said. The child was declared dead. Neighbors told ...
Immigration: Babies and children held in 'tender age' shelters according to report (live updates)
Immigration: Babies and children held in 'tender age' shelters according to report (live updates)

Top Republicans responded Tuesday to the Trump administration’s hard-line immigration policy of separating families at the U.S.-Mexico border, a “zero tolerance” policy implemented six weeks ago. Many Republicans responded publicly to the harsh criticism over the policy, saying they support keeping migrant children and parents...
Opinion: Why only answer is to break up biggest Wall Street banks

Federal bank regulators are proposing to allow Wall Street more freedom to make riskier bets with federally insured bank deposits — such as the money in your checking and savings accounts. Watch your wallets. The new proposal waters down the so-called “Volcker Rule” (named after former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, who proposed...
Why leaving a water bottle in your car could be dangerous
Why leaving a water bottle in your car could be dangerous

On scorching summer days, taking a nice cold bottle of water for your drive seems like a natural fit. But it could lead to startling consequences, firefighters say. >> Read more trending news One Oklahoma fire department and a power company in Idaho recently demonstrated how a partly filled water bottle could magnify the sun’s rays and...
More Stories