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Bi-partisan Senate bill promotes nuclear energy

A new Senate bill would promote innovation of nuclear energy by enabling new procedures for licensing power reactors. The bill, S. 512, would establish new transparency and accountability measures to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s budget and fee programs. The process would more easily enable the licensing of advanced nuclear reactors. The Act would also improve the efficiency of uranium regulation. Legislation would also clarify the process used by the Department of Energy to dispose of the American public’s stockpile of excess uranium. The bill is sponsored by Wyoming Senator John Barrasso (R), chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. Co-sponsors include Idaho Senator Mike Crapo (R), and Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), and Joe Manchin (D-WV). “American nuclear energy has provided affordable, safe, and reliable power for decades,” said Barrasso. “Our bipartisan legislation will allow for innovation in the nuclear sector by simplifying regulations at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The commission needs a modern regulatory framework that is predictable and efficient. Advancements in nuclear energy development will create jobs, lower costs, and contribute to America’s energy security.” “Using more clean nuclear energy must be part of any forward-looking domestic energy portfolio,” Crapo said. “This bipartisan measure is important to Idaho because it will help ensure that the work being done at Idaho’s National Lab will have a path through the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and on to the commercial market. NEIMA pushes the commission to modernize so that it has the ability to license advanced reactors in a safe, timely, and transparent manner. It will also bring more openness and accountability to the NRC’s budget and fees, which will help stakeholders in-and-out of government better understand what the agency is doing with its resources.” The full text of S. 512 is available here.

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