US, South Korea open facility to dispose of old munitions
SEOUL — The U.S. and South Korean militaries on Tuesday opened a $40 million facility for disposal of aging munitions.
Officials say the demilitarization facility in Hwanggan, in southern South Korea, will save both countries tens of millions of dollars while allowing for a more environmentally friendly disposal of the munitions.
The facility will reclaim TNT and scrap metal while destroying any residual explosives, a U.S. Army Joint Munitions Command statement said. When operating at full capacity, it will be able to process 270 rounds per day, with a target of dealing with more than 1.6 million rounds by 2020.
A South Korean Defense Ministry spokesman said South Korea covered about two-thirds of the facility’s cost; the U.S. covered the rest.
“The facility will contribute greatly to upgrade the [safe handling] of ammunition,” the ministry official said.