Contract procurement and transition could significantly delay the development of the Uranium Processing Facility.
Many Oak Ridge folks, and their elected representatives in Washington, have opposed and continue to oppose the NNSA’s plan to consolidate the management contracts at the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant in Oak Ridge and the Pantex Plant in Texas (posssibly later adding the tritium work at Savannah River).
There are multiple reasons for the opposition, but one that’s being pushed in Washington is that the contract procurement and transition could significantly delay the development of the Uranium Processing Facility at Y-12.
One knowledgeable staffer in Washington estimated the contract merger could delay UPF by about 2 years.
The project already isn’t due to come online fully until around 2022 and with a price tag already pushing up towards $6.5 billion, additional delays would seem to pose a problem from an economic standpoint and a safety standpoint (longer use of 9212).
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Source: Frank Munger| Knoxville News Sentinel
Photo: National Nuclear Security Administration