U.S. destroys 85 percent of its chemical agent stockpile

The U.S. Chemical Materials Agency recently announced that it has successfully destroyed 85 percent of the U.S. stockpile of chemical agents since entering into the Chemical Weapons Convention treaty in April 1997.

The CMA is left with eliminating only five percent more of the stockpile before the final 10 percent will be destroyed by the U.S. Army Element Assembled Chemical Weapons Alternatives program. The CMA expects to have its mission completed by April 2012, according to CMA.Army.mil.

“Reaching 85 percent demonstrates how dedicated CMA’s work force is to the safety of the community, the workers and the environment,” Conrad Whyne, the CMA director, said, according to CMA.Army.mil. “It shows dedication to their country and the safe disposal of the stockpile. I am looking forward to celebrating the end of the mission and a safer tomorrow when we reach 90 percent.”

CMA has destroyed, in total, 26,019 tons of agent and more than 2.3 million munitions.

Workers at the Pine Bluff Chemical Agent Disposal Facility finished the destruction of the Pine Bluff chemical stockpile in 2010. In April 2010, the  CMA’s Non-Stockpile Chemical Material Project completed a mission at the Pine Bluff Explosive Destruction System site, destroying 1,200 recovered munitions, CMA.Army.mil reports.

Chemical weapons continue to be destroyed by the CMA at operation sites in Anniston, Alabama; Tooele, Utah and Umatilla, Oregon. The CMA continues to safely store chemical material at the ACWA sites near Richmond, Kentucky, and Pueblo, Colorado.