10 CFR 960.4-2-2 - Geochemistry.
(a) Qualifying condition. The present and expected geochemical characteristics of a site shall be compatible with waste containment and isolation. Considering the likely chemical interactions among radionuclides, the host rock, and the ground water, the characteristics of and the processes operating within the geologic setting shall permit compliance with (1) the requirements specified in § 960.4-1 for radionuclide releases to the accessible environment and (2) the requirements specified in 10 CFR 60.113 for radionuclide releases from the engineered-barrier system using reasonably available technology.
(b) Favorable conditions.
(1) The nature and rates of the geochemical processes operating within the geologic setting during the Quaternary Period would, if continued into the future, not affect or would favorably affect the ability of the geologic repository to isolate the waste during the next 100,000 years.
(2) Geochemical conditions that promote the precipitation, diffusion into the rock matrix, or sorption of radionuclides; inhibit the formation of particulates, colloids, inorganic complexes, or organic complexes that increase the mobility of radionuclides; or inhibit the transport of radionuclides by particulates, colloids, or complexes.
(3) Mineral assemblages that, when subjected to expected repository conditions, would remain unaltered or would alter to mineral assemblages with equal or increased capability to retard radionuclide transport.
(4) A combination of expected geochemical conditions and a volumetric flow rate of water in the host rock that would allow less than 0.001 percent per year of the total radionuclide inventory in the repository at 1,000 years to be dissolved.
(5) Any combination of geochemical and physical retardation processes that would decrease the predicted peak cumulative releases of radionuclides to the accessible environment by a factor of 10 as compared to those predicted on the basis of ground-water travel time without such retardation.
(c) Potentially adverse conditions.
(1) Ground-water conditions in the host rock that could affect the solubility or the chemical reactivity of the engineered-barrier system to the extent that the expected repository performance could be compromised.
(2) Geochemical processes or conditions that could reduce the sorption of radionuclides or degrade the rock strength.
(3) Pre-waste-emplacement ground-water conditions in the host rock that are chemically oxidizing.