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NNSA completes uranium fuel return campaign

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By Special to the Monitor

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today announced the removal of more than 450 kilograms (more than 1,000 pounds) of Russian-origin highly enriched uranium (HEU) spent fuel from Poland.  
The nuclear material, enough to make more than 18 nuclear weapons, was sent back to Russia in a series of five shipments over 12 months and marks the completion of the largest spent fuel shipment campaign in NNSA’s history.  
The campaign also included the largest single shipment of HEU spent fuel (187 kilograms) and involved the entire fleet of spent fuel transportation casks used for transportation of Russian-origin HEU.  
 “This major milestone brings us one step closer to achieving President Obama’s goal of securing all nuclear material around the world within four years,” said NNSA Administrator Tom D’Agostino.  “These shipments also support the goals of the April 2010 Nuclear Security Summit where 47 nations committed to strengthening nuclear security and reducing the threat of nuclear terrorism.  Our close partnership with Poland to eliminate this excess nuclear material reduces the risk that it could be stolen by terrorists and sets an important example for other countries to follow.”


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