President Bush was in India today working on something that could have a big impact on jobs in our area.
“By applying the most advanced technology and international standards to India’s civilian nuclear program we will increase safety and reduce the risk of proliferation,” Mr. Bush said.
The president is trying to include the country in a worldwide nuclear recycling program.
Mal McKibben with Citizens for Nuclear Technology Awareness thinks this recycling may hold a big future for the Savannah River Site and local jobs.
“We're very hopeful that we're going to create some jobs at the Savannah River and stop the downward trend, we really hope,” says McKibben.
Right now, used fuel is being buried under US soil. But President Bush wants to change that.
He just put $250 million in his budget to study recycling nuclear energy worldwide.
If all goes as planned, in six to eight years, a demo nuclear recycler would be built.
And McKibben thinks the Savannah River Site has a good shot at building the demo.
That would mean 400 new jobs.
Most of the nuclear reactors in the US are in the east coast.
The other possible recycling site is way over in Idaho.
SRS in Aiken County is in the center of all the action.
And landing the demo could give SRS a better shot at landing the recycling plant for all of North and South America.
“That’s where the real bucks are,” says McKibben. “That would be a
Commercial activity. A tax-paying business.”
That project would bring big tax benefits and a thousand jobs.
It wouldn't be built for at least 20 years...but aiming for it now could mean jobs for the future.
It shouldn't be long before the SRS finds out if they get to build the demo. The decision is expected to be made this year.