Low Level Radioactive Waste Surveys
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health Radiation Control Program tracks the generation and disposal of low level radioactive waste produced in Massachusetts every year. This is accomplished through requiring all licensed facilities to complete an annual survey, with a deadline of March 1st for the preceding calendar year.
Generally speaking, low level radioactive waste is waste generated from long-lived isotopes having a half-life greater than 120 days. This waste must be disposed of at a facility licensed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission or an Agreement State. When shipping radioactive waste intended for disposal at a licensed land disposal facility, the information required on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s Uniform Low-Level Radioactive Waste Manifest must be documented.
Facilities licensed to work with radioactive material are able to decay in storage waste generated from isotopes with a short half-life. This waste is stored on-site in a dedicated storage location for ten half-lives, and then surveyed to verify proper decay prior to disposal. All disposal of radioactive waste must be done in strict conformance with MA DPH Radiation Control Program and NRC regulations.