GTS Duratek awarded big nuclear-waste job

Aging power plant to be decommissioned

Waste disposal

July 28, 1999|By Amanda J. Crawford | Amanda J. Crawford,SUN STAFF

GTS Duratek Inc., a Columbia hazardous-waste-disposal company, said yesterday that it received a contract worth an estimated $40 million to $50 million to help take an aging New England nuclear power plant out of service.

The company will provide on-site radioactive-waste management, packaging, transportation, processing and disposal of all radioactive and hazardous waste related to the decommissioning of Connecticut Yankee's Haddam Nuclear Power Station in Haddam Nek, Conn., by Bechtel Power Corp.

GTS Duratek employs a process called vitrification to clean up low-level nuclear waste that involves melting the hazardous material and encasing it in glass.

"We think it is a recognition of our capabilities and abilities to solve the problem," Robert Shawver, the company's executive vice president and chief financial officer, said of the contract.

The final value of the contract will be determined by the amount of radioactive material GTS Duratek will handle over the next four years to five years as part of the decommissioning.

Shawver said the Haddam plant, which went online in 1968, is the third in a series of recent decommissionings of aging nuclear power plants. GTS Duratek was also awarded the waste-disposal contracts relating to the decommissionings of the other two plants, the Big Rock Point plant in Michigan and the Maine Yankee plant, which are currently in process.

"There will be a surge of decommissionings as these [nuclear power] plants age," Shawver said. "We think this leaves us pretty uniquely positioned to provide this service."

Shares of GTS Duratek closed yesterday at $6.875, up 37.5 cents.

Pub Date: 7/28/99

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