SRS Watch Watch Requests Modified Agreement with Germany for Research on Illegal Plan to Export Spent Fuel to SRS
Savannah River Site Watch has filed another Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for an amended “work for others” agreement between SRS (Savannah River National Lab) and the Jülicher Entsorgungsgesellschaft für Nuklearanlagen (JEN).
The agreement concerns research being conducted by SRNL into processing and dumping of highly radioactive graphite fuel balls that were irradiated in the long-closed experimental AVR and THTR nuclear reactors. The spent fuel is currently stored at facilities in Jülich and Ahaus, Germany. Under German law, the export of the spent fuel is illegal and if export moves forward there will be various challenges to the operation, which also poses security risks.
SRS Watch learned of the dumping-for-profit scheme in 2014 and informed the public and the SRS Citizens Advisory Board. The SRS Watch director toured the spent fuel storage facility in Jülich, which is operating under an expired license. SRS Watch endorses a new storage facility at the Jülich site or an upgrade to the facility.
Though some of the spent fuel contains US-supp highly enriched uranium (HEU), DOE has determined that there is no proliferation risk to leave it in Germany. (DOE memo on no proliferation risk of AVR spent fuel August 1 2013.)
FOIA request for “modification 6” to original SRS-Germany agreement – request for WFO modification number 6 August 30 2019
FOIA response for request for “modifications 3 & 4” – “WFO agreeement SRS JEN obtained via FOIA Feb 19 2019” and “modification 5” – “WFO SRS JEN final response rcvd April 24 2019“
September 4, 2019
Savannah River Site Watch
„SRS Watch will also continue to work with German organizations and officials against a scheme to process and dump at SRS highly radioactive spent fuel from Germany. The irradiated fuel, in the form of uranium-impregnated graphite spheres, was used in the long-closed experimental AVR and THTR gas-cooled reactors. The spent fuel is currently stored at facilities in Jülich (operated by Jülicher Entsorgungsgesellschaft für Nuklearanlagen – JEN) and Ahaus. NNSA has determined that leaving the material in Germany poses no proliferation risk. Under German law its export is illegal and any move to ship it to SRS will face challenges in Germany and the European Union.
By searching for “Plutonium Bomb Plant” or “MOX” or “Germany” on the new SRS Watch website a host of information on the issues above will be found.“