Home Text Only Default Large Extra Large Site Map United States Senator Lindsey Graham, South Carolina
United States Senator Lindsey Graham, South CarolinaUnited States Senator Lindsey Graham, South Carolina
FAQ's
Visiting Washington D.C.
Washington Office
290 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
(202) 224-5972
Press Room
Press Releases


Print this page
Print this page


Senator Graham Press Releases
Contact: Kevin Bishop (864) 250-1417
Date: 03/13/2014

Senators Pen Letter to Secretary Moniz on MOX


WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) was joined by six Senate colleagues in a bipartisan letter to U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz expressing their concern the President's budget request was inadequate and would do serious damage to the Mixed Oxide (MOX) Fuel Fabrication project at Savannah River Site.

The letter was signed by South Carolina Senator Tim Scott along with Senators Richard Burr (R-North Carolina), Saxby Chambliss (R-Georgia), Kay Hagan (D-North Carolina), Johnny Isakson (R-Georgia), and Mary Landrieu (D-Louisiana).

"The President's budget request funds the plutonium disposition program at a level that would place the Mixed Oxide (MOX) Fuel Fabrication project in cold standby," wrote the senators. "The $221 million request is significantly lower than what is needed to maintain on-going operations and construction for MOX, will force major layoffs, and threaten the viability of the only congressionally authorized disposition path for weapons grade plutonium. It is our understanding that the Department of Energy (DOE) is planning to use FY2014 funds to begin this process. This would be inappropriate and we discourage this in the strongest possible terms."

The senator's letter is below and attached:

Dear Secretary Moniz:

The President's budget request funds the plutonium disposition program at a level that would place the Mixed Oxide (MOX) Fuel Fabrication project in cold standby. The $221 million request is significantly lower than what is needed to maintain on-going operations and construction for MOX, will force major layoffs, and threaten the viability of the only congressionally authorized disposition path for weapons grade plutonium. It is our understanding that the Department of Energy (DOE) is planning to use FY2014 funds to begin this process. This would be inappropriate and we discourage this in the strongest possible terms.

Under both the FY2014 National Defense Authorization Act and the FY2014 Consolidated Appropriations Act, funding is provided for construction activities at the MOX facility. No funds are provided to put the program in cold standby. While we share your concerns regarding the increased costs associated with the plutonium disposition program, we are concerned that the budget request will end up adding to the costs while we still try to consider options regarding the program. As such, to not foreclose options and drive costs, it is our opinion that construction activities continue until the Department of Energy (DOE) receives further guidance through the legislative process.

Further, the budget submission claims the "Administration remains committed to the U.S.-Russia Plutonium Management and Disposition Agreement." We remind you that under the terms of this agreement, MOX is the only acceptable disposition path for the 34 metric tons of American weapons grade plutonium. If the Administration does remain committed to this agreement, it does not make sense to stop construction of this facility at this time.

We look forward to working with you to ensure that there is a path forward for this important program and look forward to your response.

####





March 2014 Press Releases




Download Real One Player You will need to have Real One Player installed on your computer to be able to listen or watch the clips above. Real One Player is free software that lets you play audio and video files. Download Real One Player
Greenville Office
Upstate Regional Office
130 South Main Street, 7th Floor
Greenville
(864) 250-1417
Columbia Office
Midlands Regional Office
508 Hampton Street, Suite 202
Columbia
(803) 933-0112
Florence Office
Pee Dee Regional Office
McMillan Federal Building
401 West Evans Street, Suite 111
Florence
(843) 669-1505
Mount Pleasant Office
Lowcountry Regional Office
530 Johnnie Dodds Boulevard, Suite 202
Mt. Pleasant
(843) 849-3887
Rock Hill Office 2
Piedmont Regional Office
235 East Main Street, Suite 100
Rock Hill
(803) 366-2828
Pendleton
Golden Corner Regional Office
124 Exchange Street, Suite A
Pendleton
(864) 646-4090
Privacy Policy