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Bechtel’s Impact Report

Chemical Weapons Disassembly & Destruction

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Bechtel Destroys Last Munitions in U.S. Chemical Weapons Stockpile

Bechtel has partnered with the U.S. Department of Defense over the last several decades to destroy the U.S. chemical weapons stockpile before September 2023 as part of the Chemicals Weapons Convention. 

Using neutralization and bio-treatment technology, automation, and static detonation chambers, the Bechtel team has safely processed munitions at several different sites.  

In July of 2023, the Bechtel-led team at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant destroyed the final munition in the U.S. stockpile.  

Bechtel’s Long History in Chemical Demilitarization

Though never used by the United States, chemical weapons were stockpiled at a number of U.S. Army bases during and after World War II. Since the 1980s, Bechtel has had an active role in U.S. chemical demilitarization projects and international efforts to eliminate chemical weapons.  

With the completion of the destruction of the stockpiles in Kentucky and a sister plant in Colorado, along with previous projects in Alabama and Maryland, Bechtel has safely eliminated nearly 5,000 tons of chemical weapons rockets, artillery rounds, mortar shells and cannisters at four of the nine original U.S. storage depots. 

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Using Bechtel expertise and innovation, Bechtel teams have designed, built, tested, and operated first-of-a-kind facilities to destroy chemical weapons at several locations including: 

  • Pueblo Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant in Colorado

    The Bechtel-led team has safely destroyed 2,613 tons of mustard agent inside World War II era munitions stored at the U.S. Army Pueblo Chemical Depot using neutralization followed by biotreatment and explosive destruction technologies. While operating, the plant neutralized and biotreated projectiles and mortar rounds that made up eight percent of the original U.S. chemical weapons stockpile. The Pueblo Plant destroyed more than 780,000 mustard agent-filled projectiles and mortar rounds. The final munition at the Pueblo Chemical Depot was destroyed in June of 2023.

  • Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant in Kentucky

    The Bechtel-led team destroyed more than 100,000 mustard agent and nerve agent-filled projectiles and rockets. More than 523 U.S. tons of chemical agents were destroyed using neutralization and explosive destruction technologies. The final munition at the Blue Grass Army Depot was safely destroyed in July of 2023.

  • Aberdeen Chemical Agent Disposal Facility in Maryland

    Bechtel led the team that successfully completed the first destruction of a chemical weapons stockpile at a continental U.S. military site, the Aberdeen Proving Ground. The stockpile included 1,817 steel canisters, each containing almost a ton of liquid-form mustard agent. Bechtel designed a system for draining and neutralizing the agent from the cannisters. The final container was emptied and treated in 2006.

  • Anniston Chemical Agent Disposal Facility in Alabama

    Bechtel constructed the facility that destroyed 661,529 weapons containing 2,254 tons of chemical agent stored onsite. Facilities designed and constructed by Bechtel included four incinerators, the pollution abatement system, and the filtration system. The design and construction phase lasted between 1996 and 2001, and the plant operated between 2003-2011.

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