Company chosen to clean up old uranium enrichment facility
The Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant is one step closer to being deactivated.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), awarded a Task Order to Fluor Federal Services, Inc. to cleanup the former uranium enrichment facility.
The award, valued at $420 million over thee years, will support transitioning and preparing the site for deactivation and decommissioning.
Services provided by the task order include project management, facility modification, decontamination, demolition, and environmental services.
Senator Mitch McConnell, Senator Rand Paul, and Congressman Ed Whitfield released a joint statement on the award saying quote, “Last year we fought hard to secure funding for the deactivation of the gaseous diffusion plant and environmental cleanup at the Paducah site and since then have pushed DOE to expedite this contract so vital cleanup work may begin. We are pleased that DOE has responded by awarding the IDIQ contract for deactivation of the gaseous diffusion plant, which we hope will create job opportunities in the community. While the IDIQ award is a positive development, there is more work to be done to ensure full cleanup at the site is completed in a safe and timely manner.”
The three politicians are also sending a letter to the DOE asking that cleanup begin as soon as possible. You can read that letter here.
Local leaders also released a joint statement on the award saying in part, “The protection and safety of our community as the DOE begins to dismantle this huge complex and remediate the environmental impacts from 60-plus years of operations is of paramount concern to all. Today’s action is the first step in this long process. Our community is committed to maintaining its partnership role with the DOE, the state, our congressional delegation, and FLUOR to accomplish this work.“
You can read the full statement here.
Governor Steve Beshear has also released his remarks on the decision saying, “I spoke with U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz today about the awarding of a $420 million, three-year contract to Fluor Federal Services to transition the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant. This is good news for all of Kentucky, the Paducah region in particular. For months, I’ve stressed the importance of this action to federal leaders, emphasizing that quick action on site cleanup and other decisions are critical to the area’s viability. I am very pleased the federal government is listening and moving on this important project.
The Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant is one of our top priorities. Hiring a contractor will create jobs to handle this next phase of the facility. I appreciate the partnership between the Commonwealth and the Department of Energy, as well as the cooperation of Kentucky’s Congressional delegation and the Paducah community.”
State Attorney General Jack Conway had this to say about the decision, “The awarding of a $420 million, three-year contract to Fluor Federal Services to transition the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant is welcome news for Kentucky, especially the Paducah region. I have remained committed to ensuring that the federal government stood by its promise to clean up the site, and I have made it clear to the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) that it has a moral and legal obligation to do so. I am very pleased that the USDOE is standing by Paducah and is now moving on this important project.
My office and I have kept in close contact with economic development leaders in Paducah, and I recognize that the area has been hard hit by the closing of the plant. This news is the first step toward ensuring the future of the site and creating a significant amount of jobs, especially for employees who’ve been out-of-work since the plant closed.”