AREVA Selects Bonneville County, Idaho, for its U.S. Uranium Enrichment Facility
May 06, 2008
AREVA Inc. announced today that it has selected the state of Idaho for its new U.S. uranium enrichment facility. The site is located in Bonneville County, 18 miles west of Idaho Falls, close to the Idaho National Lab.
The selection was made after an extensive technical, environmental, and socio-economical analysis of several potential sites throughout the United States. With its decision, AREVA will move forward to seek all necessary approvals from federal, state and local agencies, including a license from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to construct and operate the facility.
“The United States needs more clean energy to support its economic growth. To enable us to meet those needs we have to expand our domestic nuclear infrastructure, secure our supply of enrichment services, and reduce our reliance on foreign imports. This new enrichment plant is a critical part of this process,” said Michael McMurphy, President of AREVA Inc.
He added, “While we had several attractive sites to choose from, we opted for Idaho Falls, which has strong ties to nuclear energy and which welcomed AREVA and its proposed enrichment facility to become a new member of its community. We look forward to a productive and long-term partnership that will deliver diversity and strength to the regional economy.”
The new state-of-the-art facility represents a multi-billion dollar investment that would create hundreds of high-skilled jobs during the construction and operation phases.
The Idaho Falls plant will provide enrichment services to U.S. nuclear plant operators using advanced proven centrifuge technology developed by the Enrichment Technology Company, Ltd. (ETC), an AREVA subsidiary, and world leader in enrichment services technology. This centrifuge technology has been successfully deployed in Europe for more than thirty years, using 50 times less electricity than the gaseous diffusion process.
AREVA is a major supplier of enrichment services. It owns and operates the Georges Besse enrichment plant in France, which has safely operated for nearly three decades. AREVA is currently constructing a new gas centrifuge enrichment facility in France – Georges Besse II – with first deliveries expected for 2009.
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