WASHINGTON, D.C. – DOE officials today marked a historic landmark in EM’s mission as they celebrated the close of the Cold War cleanup program’s $6 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act Program.
DOE officials recognized the commitment, leadership, and hard work of thousands of workers who helped make Recovery Act work successful.
“I think it’s important to remember the bigger picture. The core of it was that DOE accomplished really, really, really important things,” David Klaus, DOE Deputy Under Secretary for Management and Performance, said of the Department’s Recovery Act work. “When you go to Hanford and you see the pump-and-treat facility, you understand what an important difference it makes on the Central Plateau. We’ve managed to put that facility in place for the protection of the surrounding community.”
At the ceremony, EM recognized federal project directors and their teams for their Recovery Act contributions by presenting gold, silver and bronze awards. Award categories included project management excellence, contracting excellence, innovation, outstanding outreach and stakeholder engagement, leadership and team building and best lessons learned.
EM supported the Recovery Act’s central goals to stimulate the economy and provide meaningful employment to workers impacted by the recession. The Recovery Act funding was instrumental in helping EM reduce its cleanup footprint from 931 square miles in 2009 — when EM’s Recovery Act Program launched — to less than 300 square miles today. To make this reduction possible, the Recovery Act program completed soil or groundwater remediation of more than 100 distinct release sites and demolished nearly 6 million square feet of contaminated facilities.
“I want to thank each and every one of you for what you did to make this a huge success,” EM Assistant Secretary Dave Huizenga told members of EM’s Recovery Act Team gathered at the ceremony. “The bottom line is, real work was getting done and you guys made it happen.”
Answering the Recovery Act call to quickly get workers engaged in shovel-ready projects, EM set an aggressive goal to complete its Recovery Act cleanup efforts 2 years ahead of the Recovery Act deadline. EM’s Recovery Act success included: