Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 32578
Verifying Environmental Performance through Inventory and Assessment: Case Study of the Los Alamos National Laboratory Waste Compliance and Tracking System

Authors: O. S. Saulters, S. D. Goldberg, W. A. Staples, E. I. Martinez, L. M. Sanchez, D. E. Archuleta, D. L. Williams, S. D. Johnson, A. M. Baker


To address an important set of unverified field conditions, the Los Alamos National Laboratory Waste Compliance and Tracking System (WCATS) Wall-to-Wall Team performed an unprecedented and advanced inventory. This reconciliation involved confirmation analysis for approximately 5850 hazardous, low-level, mixed low-level, and transuranic waste containers located in more than 200 staging and storage areas across 33 Technical Areas. The interdisciplinary team scoped, planned, and developed the multidimensional assessments. Through coordination with cross-functional site hosts, they were able to verify and validate data while resolving discrepancies identified in WCATS. The results were extraordinary with an updated inventory, tailored outreach, more cohesive communications, and timely closed-loop feedbacks.

Keywords: Circular economy, environmental performance data, social-ecological-technological systems, waste management.

Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 329


[1] Pew Research Center, “As Economic Concerns Recede, Environmental Protection Rises on the Public’s Policy Agenda” (2020).
[2] LARES, “Los Alamos Resiliency, Energy and Sustainability Task Force: Interim Report to County Council”, August 2021 (2021).
[3] Discover LANL, “From Climate and Cancer Solutions to Commitment to the Mission: Secretary of Energy Granholm ‘Visits’ Los Alamos for Packed Virtual Tour June 17, 2021” (2021). https://discover.lanl/gov/news/stories/granholm-visit
[4] Los Alamos National Laboratory, “Laboratory Agenda”, LA-UR-21-20301 (2021).
[5] M. Song et al., “Environmental Performance Evaluation with Big Data: Theories and Methods”, Ann Oper Res, 270: 459-472 (2018).
[6] S. Goldberg and E. Martinez, “2019 Wall-to-Wall Waste Compliance and Tracking System Inventory Report, EPC-DO-20-179” LA-CP-21-20529 (2020).
[7] M. Baker, “Waste Compliance and Tracking System (WCATS) Users Guide” LA-UR-20-23289 (2020).
[8] L. Hansen, et al., “Los Alamos National Laboratory 2019 Annual Site Environmental Report”, LA-UR-20-26673 (2020).
[9] Los Alamos National Laboratory, “Requirements Systems and Hierarchy”, PD311 Revision 4 (2021).
[10] Los Alamos National Laboratory, “Environmental Management System”, SD400 Revision 5 (2021).
[11] Los Alamos National Laboratory, “LANL Waste Management”, P409 Revision 8 (2021).
[12] New Mexico Environment Department, “Los Alamos National Laboratory Hazardous Waste Facility Permit”, EPA ID NM0890010515, (2010),
[13] S. Jones, et al., “Preparing Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Waste Management Program for the Future”, WM2012 Conference Proceedings, February 26 - March 1, 2012, Phoenix, Arizona USA (2012).
[14] L.A. Emelity, Waste Management at Los Alamos: Protecting Our Environment, pp. 3, Los Alamos National Laboratory, LALP-90-30 (1991).
[15] S. Stricoff, “Safety Leadership: Avoid the False Dichotomy of Systems vs. Culture”, Safety and Health Magazine, 190, 4 (2014).
[16] U.S. EPA, “Municipal Solid Waste in the United States: 2012 Facts and Figures”, EPA-530-R-13-001. Office of Solid Waste, Washington, DC (2014).
[17] S. Erkman, “Industrial Ecology: An Historical View”, J. Cleaner Prod, 5, 1-2: 1-10 (1997).
[18] R.L. Smith et al., “An Industrial Ecology Approach to Municipal Solid Waste Management”, Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 104: 317-326 (2015).
[19] A. Pires and G. Martinho, “Waste Hierarchy for Circular Economy in Waste Management”, Waste Management, 95: 298-305 (2019).
[20] S.C.L. Watson et al., “A Conceptual Framework for Assessing the Ecosystem Service of Waste Remediation: In the Marine Environment”, Ecosystem Services, 20: 69-81 (2016).
[21] B. Cosens et al., “Governing Complexity: Integrating Science, Governance, and Law to Manage Accelerating Change in the Globalized Commons” PNAS, 118, 36: 1-9 (2021).
[22] R. Biggs et al., “Toward Principles for Enhancing the Resilience of Ecosystem Services” Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 37: 421-48 (2012).
[23] Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), “Waste Compliance and Tracking System (WCATS): Managing Containers Wall-to-Wall” (2017).
[24] E. Rogers, Diffusion of Innovations, Fourth Edition. The Free Press: New York (1995).
[25] W. McDonaugh, and M. Braungart, Cradle-to-Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things, pp. 182-186, North Point Press: New York (2002).