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June 23, 2019     Sidney Herald
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June 23, 2019

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A6 SIDNEY HERALD. SUNDAY.JUNE 23. 20l9 AGRICULTUAL & LOCAL NEWS North Dakota looks at new approach for its T EN OHM waster BY RENEE JEAN rjean@willistonhera|d.tom A steady stream of naturally occurring but technologically enhanced radioac- tive wastes still heads across the Montana bor- der for disposal at the Oaks Disposal site near Glendive. That could change, however, if a pair of new slurry wells demonstrates a better, safer way to dispose of TENORM. Lynn Helms is the director of the Depart- ment of Mineral Re- sources, which oversees the Division of Oil and Gas. He has been work- ing with two companies to develop a new ap- proach to these low-lev- el radioactive wastes in North Dakota. North Dakota Indus- trial Commission has recently approved the development of two slurry wells in north- ern McKenzie County, the first of their kind in the state. They will dispose of TENORM wastes by grinding them up into fine par- ticulates and re—inject- ing them deep below the surface of the earth, back into the ground from which they came. Naturally occurring radioactive materi- als are part of North Dakota’s shale layers, which also includes layers like the Bakken that house oil and gas. NORM comes up as solid wastes in vary- ing amounts whenever crude oil and natural gas are extracted. It settles out into tank bottoms as a kind of sludge that must be re- moved before Bakken light sweet crude can be marketed. Processing these wastes causes them to become “technological- ly enhanced.” Hence, the waste is referred to as TENORM. “(Slurry wells) are not a brand new process or technology,” Helms said. “It is just new to the Bakken. Alaska has been deing this on the north slope with all of their solid waste for decades. You can- not have landfills in permafrost.” The radioactivity of TENORM in general is very low, Helms said. Despite that, however, disposal of the wastes has been controversial. A few years ago, North Dakota eased its radiation limits to 50 pi— co—curies, to allow prop- erly permitted landfills to accept the wastes. Permitting, howev- er, appears to have stalled. I’ve inquired as to whether we have any permits, in fact, at all. I don’t think we do, but am still awaiting confirmation. Helms said the slur- ry disposal well pro- cess has become more technical in how it’s managed. “With the modern measurement and com- puter systems, they are able to manage the process much better, so we wrote this order to AG NEWS take advantage of that,” Helms said. If the approach proves successful, it would be a safer way to dispose of the wastes than in landfills anyway, Helms said, and would reduce pressure on landfills. “As (these wastes) decompose, they pro— duce radon gas,” Helms said. “A lot of care has to be taken with the handling, processing and disposal of that. If this becomes commer- cial and widespread, it would be a much safer and more permanent way of disposing of that waste stream.” The wells will be owned by Hydroil and operated by Terralog Technologies, which has done this kind of work in Alberta, Sas- katchewan, California, Louisiana, Alaska, In- donesia, Saudi Arabia and Norway. Helms estimated the facility would be able to pro- cess 10 to 20 percent of the total volume of this kind of waste stream in USDA Montana livestock slaughter report Commercial red meat production for the Unit- ed States totaled 4.57 bil- lion pounds in May, up 1 percent from the 4.5 abil- lion pounds produced in May 2018. Beef production, at 2.33 billion pounds, was 1 percent above the pre- vious year. Cattle slaugh- ter totaled 2.94 million head, up 1 percent from May 2018. The average TEEN CAMP June 3rd-8th Entering 9-12 Grade Registration Mon 9—11 am Camp ends Sat. Noon 3150 JR ltl CAMP June 10111-15111 Entering 7—8 Grade tsnation Mon 9-11 am live weight was un- changed from the previ- ous year, at 1,316 pounds. Veal production to- taled 6.3 million pounds, 1 percent below May a year ago. Calf slaugh- ter totaled 46,200 head, down 1 percent from May 2018. Theaverage live weight was down 2 pounds from last year, at 236 pounds. Pork production to- .llil’éltlfi can? June 17th-21st Entering 5—6 Grade Registration Mon 9-11 am Camp ends Fri. 12 noon Plfil‘iEEE SAM? June 24th-June 28th Entering 3-4 Grade . Registration Mon 9-11 am “Camp ends Fri. 12 noon 1 $135,}; taled 2.22 billion pounds, up 2 percent from the previous year. Hog «slaughter totaled 10.4 million head, up 1 per- cent fr n l\ .iy 2018. The average live weight was up 2 pounds from the previous year, at 287 pounds. Lamb and mutton pro- duction, at 13.4 million pounds, was down 2 percent from May 2018. uni: BUGS on (an? Tues. July 16”! Entering 1-2 Grade ‘ Registration Mon 9 am Camp ends after supper 5:30 pm $50 "Parent may accompany child $10 Protect & Preserve Your Home WITH SEAMLESS GUTTERS all Jade 406.978.2942 A Variety of Colors lop Duoiity Materiel Affordable Pricing We use top quality materials... We know this from experience. MELBYS §EAMLES§ GuTTERs Sheep slaughter totaled 209,200 head, 4 percent above last year. The average live weight was 128 pounds, down 8 pounds from May a year ago. January to May 2019 commercial red meat production was 22.4 billion pounds, up 2 percent from 2018. Accumulated beef production was up 1 percent from last year, veal was down 1 percent, pork was up 3 percent from last year, and lamb and mutton production was up 1 percent. Our trained specialists will replace or repair your car‘s windshield quickly, carefully, and afiordably. Call the Auto Glass Experts! u WINDSHIEID'! North Dakota. “That was one reason that the commission felt comfortable approving this is that these people have the experience all over the world and the know-how and qualifi- cations to do it right,” Helms said. The wells are not yet operating. The North Dakota Industrial Com— mission will be review- ing elevated bonding re- quirements for the two wells this month. The usual bonding re- quirement for a dispos- al well is $50,000, but for these it will be $100,000. There will also be a third bond, yet to be de- termined, for the facili— ty that will process the waste and prepare it for injection. Helms said the state is being as cautious as possible about this new approach. “We are starting with a much higher level of surveillance than what Terralog is used to,” Helms said. “Typ- ically in states where they have been doing this a long time, they are doing monthly and annual reports. we are starting with weekly.” The company will be required to collect the data it is providing on an hourly basis, too. “We are starting out with everything we could learn from the Alaska and Louisiana. rules and experience, with a very high level of surveillance, and go from there,” Helms’ said. If everything goes well, then there could be more of the wells permitted in the state, perhaps six to 10 of the facilities, Helms“ estimated. “This is definitely. going to be a learning process for both of us,” he added. “Our intent‘ is, if it moves beyond this application, that we will actually write a statewide rule based on what we learn here.” LOCAL NEWS Montana Shakespeare in the Parks: “Henry IV, Part 1” at Makoshika State Park Makoshika State Park will host Montana Shakespeare in the Parks production of "Henry IV, Part 1”, directed by Kevin Asselin on Satur- day, June 29, at 7 pm. Ex- perience the power, honor and rebellion displayed in the fight for the throne, as a young prince must live up to his father’s expectations. The performance will be 1 held at Makoshika’s Hiatt Amphitheater and conces— sions will be available. At— tendees should bring what they may needto be com- fortable at an outdoor the- M A NEW mesons) mmamm, 406-482- 1544 ' 710w. Holly - Sidney, MT use Pvt-Ira couriers er 30x overca- Maw Home Print or Diattat Com: .' ‘ 60M" ONE CHILD “FREE ater event, such as appro- priate clothing and insect repellent. For more infor— mation, call the park visitor center at (406) 377—6256. ,. Montana Shakespeare in the Parks is the only fully . professional touring th'e—w atre program in the state' currently producing Shake- speare’s plays, the only Shakespeare company in. the country to reach as ex.— , tensively into rural areas, _, and the only company in, the state that offers its per- formances free to the pub—= lic, guaranteeing accessibil-s ity to all. This program is brought to you by the Friends of Mas ‘ koshika. What: Montana Shake- speare in the Parks: "Henry IV, Part 1" . When: Saturday, June 29, at 7 pm. Where: Hiatt Amphithe- ater, Makoshika State Park, t 1301 Snyder Ave.Glendive, makoshika/ m 9'!) 6001.1“ ’~ gnaw Use Print or affirm! ..