Richland, Wash. – Beginning in 2011, Mission Support Alliance contracted with Environmental Assessment Services to provide dedicated support to the Department of Energy’s Public Safety and Resource Protection program. The program is charged with long-term monitoring of the Hanford Site to foster preservation of important natural and cultural resources and assess potential impacts from site operations.
The Hanford Site contains an abundance of rare species and habitats as well as cultural resources and archaeological deposits that been protected from disturbance for more than 65 years. Because of this protection, native plant and animals thrive on the site that no longer exist in other parts of the region. An estimated 100 federal and state special-status species are known to occur on the site. Federal and state laws protect these species and numerous archeological and historical sites and districts, traditional cultural properties and artifacts dating from approximately 11,000 years ago to the present. EAS continues to work with MSA, DOE-RL, and its stakeholders to preserve biological and cultural resources and minimize impacts to them through the Ecological Monitoring and Compliance project and Cultural and Historic Resources Program.
EAS also conducts multimedia environmental surveillance to assess contaminant levels in the Hanford environments and nearby communities. Based on these measurements and surveys scientists can calculate potential carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic risks to humans, aquatic organisms, and terrestrial biota. The Department of Energy shares this information with tribes, regulators, stakeholders, and the public through its annual Hanford Site Environmental Report, which has been produced since 1959.