In Medford meeting, state OKs nerve gas burning

The Army's chemical weapons incinerator in Eastern Oregon can resume burning secondary waste.

The state Environmental Quality Commission, meeting in Medford today, voted to accept a report that found continuing to burn the nerve agents, poisonous gases and their associated wastes at the Umatilla Chemical Depot poses minimal health and environmental risks.

It decided the best way to do that was to run the material through the existing incinerators, rather than build a new one, adopt a new process or ship the materials somewhere else.

Protective suits, old pumps and contaminated rags are examples of secondary waste.

The Army's contractor voluntarily suspended disposal of it after a watchdog group won a court judgment that there had not been enough public discussion of an earlier decision.

— The Associated Press

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