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Safety

Chemical Arms Disposal Facility Completed

by Glenn Hess
February 11, 2013 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 91, Issue 6

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Credit: U.S. Army
Mustard blister agent stored at Pueblo Chemical Depot awaits destruction.
Photo shows mustard nerve agent stored at the Pueblo Chemical Depot awaiting destruction.
Credit: U.S. Army
Mustard blister agent stored at Pueblo Chemical Depot awaits destruction.

Government contractor Bechtel Corp. has finished building a $1.6 billion chemical weapons disposal plant in Pueblo, Colo., and is now testing its systems. The facility was built to destroy 2,611 tons of mustard blister agent that has been stored for decades at the U.S. Army Pueblo Chemical Depot. The plant is expected to be operational in 2015 and finish its work in 2019. More than 300 subsystems at the plant, which is spread over an 85-acre site, are undergoing tests to make sure they work and function together properly. Pueblo holds one of the two remaining U.S. stockpiles of chemical warfare materials. The other is at the Blue Grass Army Depot in Kentucky, where a disposal facility is under construction.

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