New top leader for Hanford, DOE is confirmed by the Senate

The U.S. Senate confirmed the nomination of a new head of the Department of Energy’s environmental management program, which is responsible for the Hanford nuclear reservation.

The nomination of Anne M. White of Michigan as DOE assistant secretary for environmental management was approved on a voice vote late Thursday night. She next must be sworn in.

The position, called EM1 by DOE insiders, previously was held by Monica Regalbuto at the end of the Barack Obama administration.

White’s confirmation appeared to be slowed by Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., over his concerns that a DOE policy of putting its excess surplus uranium on the market was hurting the uranium mining industry in his state.

But Energy Secretary Rick Perry told Barrasso at a hearing Tuesday of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee that he was working to end the program.

White is a nuclear engineer and the founder of Bastet Technical Services, a consulting firm on international nuclear regulatory development and compliance; radioactive waste management and policy; environmental restoration and documentation of environmental compliance.

James Owendoff now is leading DOE environmental management work in an acting capacity.