132 Pounds of Spent Nuclear Fuel Removed From San Diego

Monday, November 8, 2010
City News Service

The federal government removed nearly 132 pounds of spent nuclear fuel from an undisclosed facility in San Diego in August and September, it was announced today.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the now-shuttered facility had a research reactor that had supported government research since the late 1950s.

Over the course of three weeks, the DOE's National Nuclear Security Administration arranged for three shipments of highly enriched uranium to be transported to a secure federal facility nearly 1,000 miles away from San Diego.

"This is a major accomplishment that exemplifies our commitment to work across the federal government and with the private sector to enhance nuclear security here at home and around the globe," said Thomas D'Agostino, the DOE's undersecretary for nuclear security.

The nuclear material was removed from a reactor that conducted government-sponsored research, according to the DOE.

When the facility was built, it was located in a remote area, according to the DOE. In recent years, however, the suburbs of San Diego have expanded to surround the area. It has since been shut down and is awaiting decommissioning.