“And lest you think the B61 [nuclear bomb] is an isolated incident of an American nuclear program whose budget has spiraled out of control, keep this in mind: the [National Nuclear Security Administration]’s 10 largest programs are all over budget, all behind schedule, and have combined cost increases of $16 billion.”
“When the Uranium Processing Facility was first sold to the Congress in 2006, it was expected to cost between $600 million and $1 billion and to be completed in 2018. But as with so many Energy Department projects before it, poor contractor oversight and inaccurate cost estimates contributed to astonishing cost increases and schedule delays. After it was discovered in late 2012 that the facility’s ceiling would have to be raised by 13 feet to accommodate the uranium processing equipment that would go inside it, $500 million was added to the price tag for re-design, and the project was delayed 13 months. And this is just one extra cost; the Army Corps of Engineers has estimated that facility will eventually cost between $6.5 billion and $11.6 billion. Shockingly, it is not expected to be fully operational until 2038.”
It’s time to find alternatives to the Uranium Processing Fiasco.
Cutting funding to the B61 nuclear bombs in Europe and the Mixed Oxide Fuel facility in South Carolina are smart budget and strategic decisions. We need to make sure Congress and the public knows the facts about these wasteful programs.