A leaked one-page document seen by ENS confirms that the U.S. Department of Energy is considering the use of a nuclear fuel plant at the government’s Savannah River Site in South Carolina for production of plutonium “pits” for nuclear weapons. A pit is the plutonium core of a nuclear weapon. The undated “Summary of Results” was produced by the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration, NNSA, and was leaked earlier this week. It gives the costs and time frames for two ways of using the Savannah River Site to produce the plutonium pits.
ENS 8th Dec 2017 read more »
A uranium company launched a concerted lobbying campaign to scale back Bears Ears National Monument, saying such action would give it easier access to the area’s uranium deposits and help it operate a nearby processing mill, according to documents obtained by The Washington Post. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and top Utah Republicans have said repeatedly that questions of mining or drilling played no role in President Trump’s announcement Monday that he was cutting the site by more than 1.1 million acres, or 85 percent. Trump also signed a proclamation nearly halving the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, which is also in southern Utah and has significant coal deposits.
Washington Post 8th Dec 2017 read more »
Independent 9th Dec 2017 read more »
The Department of Energy plans to stabilize a second radioactive-waste storage tunnel at the Hanford nuclear reservation by filling it with concrete-like grout. The decision was announced Tuesday after an independent panel of experts considered several options for stabilizing the Hanford PUREX plant’s second and larger storage tunnel. It recommended grouting. On May 9, the older and smaller of the two PUREX plant tunnels storing contaminated equipment was discovered partially collapsed. No radioactive material is believed to have escaped. But DOE moved quickly to prevent further collapse.
Tri-City Herald 5th Dec 2017 read more »