KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Supply chain issues are impacting all sorts of things, so the Office of Environmental Management (EM) is stepping up to help its neighbors in Oak Ridge.
EM, along with the cleanup contractor called UCOR gave the city several transformers and more than 100 other pieces of electrical equipment. The equipment was being used at the East Tennessee Technology Park (ETTP) but it is no longer needed.
“Supply chain issues are making access to this type of equipment challenging,” said Ardo Ba, electric director for the City of Oak Ridge. “Having access to this equipment, especially the transformers, is essential to the operation and maintenance of the electrical power distribution infrastructure servicing the site. The wait can be up to two to three years to purchase substation transformers.”
EM plans to covert the ETTP, a former uranium enrichment plant, into a multi-use industrial park. To reach this goal EM has been transferring land and infrastructure at ETTP to the surrounding community. As of May 2022, 1,300 acres of ETTP have been given to the community. In addition, much of ETTP’s infrastructure, including emergency services, roads, electrical power, and water, has been transferred to the city.
“We are always looking to identify beneficial uses for excess materials whenever possible rather than disposing of them in landfills, and we are pleased to have the opportunity to provide this equipment to the city for its use,” Acting ETTP Portfolio Federal Project Director Morgan Carden said. “This is a win-win situation for everyone involved.”
EM plans to transfer more than 250 additional pole transformers in the near future.