The Colorado Department of Health says it will issue an emission permit to the Army for a test disposal of a Pershing missile.
But the Health Department qualified the announcement, saying the permit will be issued, provided the test burning is conducted under specific weather conditions. And extensive air monitoring will have to be done to measure the environmental impact.Colorado Gov. Roy Romer said in a news release Friday, "I believe that we need this test to determine whether this procedure is safe before we approve additional dismantling here in Colorado. I have asked the Colorado Health Department to consider this test and all of its ramifications."
John Clouse, manager of the Air Pollution Control Division's Stationary Sources Program at the Health Department, said health and Environmental Protection Agency officials believe the test can be done safely.
The test will take place at the Pueblo Army Depot Activity about 16 miles east of Pueblo, possibly in late May.
Officials said the test will involve anchoring one stage of the missile to a concrete stand outside and firing it to burn the fuel.
The Army submitted the emission permit request for the test March 16 following an agreement between the United States and the Soviet Union to dispose of the intermediate-range and shorter-range missiles. One test has already been carried out in Utah.