The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) is the United State’s (U.S.) first deep disposal facility for transuranic radioactive (TRU) waste generated as a result of defense activities. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA or “the Agency”) initially certified the WIPP in May 1998, and WIPP received the first shipment of TRU waste on March 26, 1999. Every five years thereafter, USEPA is required by law to recertify whether the WIPP continues to comply with the USEPA’s radioactive waste disposal regulations. USEPA is coordinating with the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE), which operates the WIPP, to prepare for the first recertification in 2004. This process involves many interesting technical and policy issues.

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