Economics for the Earth Blog

Friends of the Earth statement in approval of federal proposal to put nuclear fuel project on cold standby

Posted Mar. 4, 2014 / Posted by: Kate Colwell

WASHINGTON, D.C. — In his budget today, President Obama proposed putting the Mixed Oxide Plutonium Fuel Program in “cold standby.” The program, often called MOX, is located at the Savannah River Site in South Carolina and was supposed to make surplus plutonium unusable for weapons by mixing it with uranium in commercial reactor fuel. The request follows a year-long review of the MOX program, which GAO estimates will cost $30 billion. It also indicates that the Department of Energy is evaluating alternative technologies to reduce plutonium stockpiles in order to uphold a nonproliferation agreement with Russia.

Friends of the Earth's Nuclear subsidies campaigner Katherine Fuchs commented on the budget:

“Cold standby is a very fitting conclusion to the Department of Energy’s year-long review of the MOX program. The MOX program has been lagging behind schedule and shooting over budget for years and Congress should follow the President’s lead in redirecting funding to the search for faster, less expensive technologies to dispose of plutonium.”


Katherine Fuchs, Nuclear subsidies campaigner, (202) 222- 0723,
Ben Schreiber, Climate & energy program director, (202) 222- 0752,

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