IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
May 26, 2011
Mr. McConnell (for himself and Mr. Paul) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources
To provide for the reenrichment of certain depleted uranium owned by the Department of Energy, and for the sale or barter of the resulting reenriched uranium, and for other purposes.
This Act may be cited as the
Energy and Revenue Enrichment Act of
In this Act:
The term Department means the Department of Energy.
enrichment plant means a uranium
enrichment plant owned by the Department of Energy with respect to which the
Nuclear Regulatory Commission has made a determination of compliance under
section 1701(b)(2) of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C.
The term qualified operator means a company that has experience in operating an enrichment plant under Nuclear Regulatory Commission authorization and has the ability and workforce to enrich the depleted uranium that is owned by the Department of Energy.
The term reenrichment means increasing the weight percent of U–235 in uranium in order to make the uranium usable.
The term Secretary means the Secretary of Energy.
The Secretary shall enter into a contract with a qualified operator for a 24 month pilot program for the reenrichment at an enrichment plant of the depleted uranium described in section 2(3) that the Secretary finds economically viable. The Secretary shall seek to maximize the financial return to the Federal Government in negotiating the terms of such contract.
Amount of enrichment
The Secretary shall, during each year of the pilot program under this subsection, conduct uranium reenrichment under such program in an amount (measured in separative work units) equal to approximately 25 percent of the aggregate uranium enrichment conducted in the United States during calendar year 2010.
For purposes of paragraph (1), uranium shall be considered economically viable if the cost to the United States of the reenrichment thereof, including the costs of the contract entered into under paragraph (1), are less than the revenue anticipated from the sale of the reenriched uranium.
Commencement of reenrichment activities
Reenrichment activities under the contract entered into under subsection (a) shall commence as soon as possible, but no later than June 1, 2012.
Sale of reenriched uranium
The Secretary may from time to time sell the reenriched uranium generated pursuant to the contract entered into under subsection (a).
Allocation and use of proceeds
Any funds received by the Secretary from the sale of reenriched uranium generated pursuant to the contract entered into under subsection (a) shall be allocated as follows:
First, such funds shall be available to the Secretary, without further appropriation and without fiscal year limitation, to carry out this section, including amounts required to be paid under the contract entered into under subsection (a).
Any amounts not required for the purposes described in paragraph (1) shall be transferred to the Uranium Enrichment Decontamination and Decommissioning Fund established in section 1801 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. 2297g), to be available for use, without further appropriation and without fiscal year limitation.
Title and responsibility for disposition
The Secretary shall assume title to, and responsibility for the disposition of, all depleted uranium generated pursuant to the contract entered into under section 3(a).
Funding for reenrichment
To provide funding for payments under the contract entered into under section 3(a), the Secretary may—
assume title to, and responsibility for the disposition of, depleted uranium in addition to the depleted uranium specified in subsection (a); and
transfer to the qualified operator title to uranium generated as a result of the reenrichment pursuant to the contract entered into under section 3(a).
Limitation on Federal uranium sales
Notwithstanding section 3112(d) of the USEC Privatization Act (42 U.S.C. 2297h–10(d)), during the 24 month pilot program and the subsequent 24 months after that program is complete, the Secretary may not during any calendar year sell an amount of uranium that exceeds 15 percent of the United States’ domestic uranium supply for that year.
After the expiration of the 48 month period described in subsection (a), the Secretary may not during any calendar year sell an amount of uranium that exceeds 10 percent of the United States’ domestic uranium supply for that year, except to the extent that the Secretary determines that such sales will have no significant effect on uranium markets.