By Frank Lockwood
(Dec. 25, Page A-3)
The Sept. 11 terrorist attacks have again redefined chemical weapons stockpile safety. Even the Department of Environmental Quality cannot come and go at the Umatilla Chemical Depot without an escort, and the Army says it wants a nondisclosure agreement with the DEQ as well.
If President Bush signs the recently passed Defense Appropriations Bill, the Army will be called upon to reassess the risks of incineration in view of Septembers terrorist attacks.
In addition, on Dec. 7, Lt. Col. Frederick Pellissier, commander of Umatilla Chemical Depot, called on the Environmental Quality Commission to cooperate with increased security demands.
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) got his amendment to the Department of Defense spending bill passed. The amendment requires the Army to consider an alternative approach to destroying chemical weapons, the disassembly of the weapons and neutralization of the agents. (For the full story please see the Dec. 25, 2001 issue of the Hermiston Herald.)