An example of what the interior of a MOX plant looks like; The Siemens MOX plutonium fuel plant in Hanau, Germany (AP)
Washington, DC (WLTX) -- The construction costs for the Savannah River Site plutonium conversion plant has ballooned by almost $3 billion, according to a report from Bloomberg News (http://bloom.bg/16KgHTk).
The Savannah River Site MOX, or mixed oxide plant, being built to convert weapons-grade plutonium into nuclear reactor fuel, will reportedly cost more than $7.7 billion, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) in testimony to the House Spending Panel on Wednesday, March 20th.
The previous estimate was forecast at $4.9 billion dollars and had a projected completion of 2011 that is now being extended until late 2019, according to the GAO in testimony to the House Appropriations Committee panel on energy and water development.
The company contracted to build the plant, a European consortium called Shaw Areva MOX Services, LLC, is reporting to the Energy Department and GAO.
According to Tom Clements, southeastern campaign coordinator for the environmental group "Friends Of The Earth," the project is simply too expensive to continue, and "They chose the most expensive, most complex, and most complicated path and it's simply not working."