Efforts to Improve DOE's Management of the Nuclear Weapons Complex

T-RCED-90-64: Published: Mar 28, 1990. Publicly Released: Mar 28, 1990.

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GAO discussed the Department of Energy's (DOE) efforts to resolve environmental, safety, and health problems at its nuclear weapons facilities. GAO found that DOE: (1) took a number of initiatives to deal with major problems involving facility deterioration, noncompliance with environmental, safety, and health standards, improper disposal of radioactive wastes, and contaminated groundwater; (2) issued strategic plans for modernization and environmental cleanup activities at its facilities, and made efforts to hold its contractors more accountable; (3) restructured its oversight and management functions to ensure the safe operation of its facilities; and (4) began facility assessments to determine whether they met federal, state, and local environmental, safety, and health standards. GAO concluded that successful management of DOE nuclear facilities depended on: (1) effective coordination among program offices; (2) recruitment of technically qualified staff; and (3) the commitment to resolve environmental, safety, and health problems at all departmental levels.

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