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Assessment of the Continuing Operability of Chemical Agent Disposal Facilities and Equipment
ance between assigned responsibility, resource adequacy, and granted authority is attained. (Tier 1)
Finding 19. Adoption of the site-focused management system, while promoting some improvements in the workforce culture and performance at chemical agent stockpile incineration facility sites, risks allowing a degree of independence in contractor decision making and action that could result in a loss of a critical capability for interchangeability crucial to continuing operability.
Recommendation 19. The Chemical Materials Agency should exercise sufficient centralized management control to ensure that there is appropriate programwide interchangeability of resources important to the continuing operability of chemical agent disposal incineration facilities. (Tier 1)
Finding 20. The Chemical Materials Agency has initiated an obsolescence management program that is based on using contractual means to incentivize chemical agent stockpile incineration facility site contractors to develop site-specific programs and then to share approaches and specific strategies across sites. Although the program is still evolving, the sites have begun to approach some obsolescence issues collectively.
Recommendation 20. The Chemical Materials Agency should strengthen its obsolescence management strategies programmatically and at each chemical agent stockpile incineration facility site to incorporate measures for intersite coordination and cooperation to facilitate continuing operability through to the completion of the chemical stockpile disposal program. (Tier 1)
Finding 21. The current lessons-learned system is much better organized and user-friendly than the original system, and is actively used to retain past and current programmatic knowledge of operational and hardware improvements.
Recommendation 21. The current lessons-learned program should be continually evaluated and improved as appropriate to ensure the safety and continuing operability of the chemical agent stockpile incineration facilities as obsolescence challenges increase. Wider topical aspects should be incorporated, including near-miss information and root cause accident analyses. Provision should also be made for incorporation of lessons learned into all training programs, as well as for incentives at the individual employee level when appropriate contributions to the lessons-learned program are made. (Tier 2)
Finding 22. Factors impacting the chemical stockpile disposal program include:
scheduling pressure driven by compliance with the Chemical Weapons Convention;
safety demands of dealing with highly toxic materials;
requirements of detailed and demanding environmental permits;
high public and political visibility; and
a mandate to minimize risk to the public, to workers, and to the environment.
To ensure the continuity of operations in view of these circumstances, a stable workforce and a stable, continuous source of funds are required. Failure to provide for funding continuity will undoubtedly lead to program interruption and adversely affect the completion date for demilitarization operations as well as program costs. Adequate, stable, and dependable funding of the chemical stockpile disposal program is an essential element of program success.
Recommendation 22. The Department of the Army, Department of Defense, Office of Management and Budget, and Congress should recognize the critical need for adequate, continuous, and predictable funding of the Chemical Materials Agency as a basis for operational planning essential to accomplishing the mission of chemical agent stockpile disposal. (Tier 1)
Finding 23. Plans for mitigating the obsolescence of key equipment that will be required for closure of chemical agent stockpile incineration facilities, such as the LIC and MPF furnaces with their PAS/PFS systems, have not yet been developed.
Recommendation 23. Key equipment required for closure of chemical agent stockpile incineration facilities should be identified now, and steps to mitigate and manage obsolescence should be extended to include that equipment’s operational life. (Tier 3)