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Newhouse, Lamb Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Support Nuclear Energy Research & Development

March 9, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Reps. Conor Lamb (D-PA) and Dan Newhouse (R-WA) introduced H.R. 6097, the Nuclear Energy Research and Development Act.  This bipartisan bill expands critical research programs at the Department of Energy for a broad range of commercial nuclear reactors, lowering the price of electricity and extending the lifespan of these critical assets.  The legislation also encourages the development of new, advanced reactor designs and funds training programs for the next generation of engineers.

“We need nuclear energy now, and we will need it in the future.  This bill helps us save today’s jobs and create more for tomorrow,” said Lamb.  “Western Pennsylvania has been a leader providing clean electricity through nuclear power, at places like Beaver Valley and Westinghouse, and this bipartisan bill shows that we plan to continue.”

“As the United States continues to lead in reducing carbon emissions, nuclear energy will play a critical role,” said Rep. Newhouse. “Key investments in this bill will create a strong pathway forward for nuclear research and innovation and will create jobs in communities like ours in Central Washington.”

The House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology Energy Subcommittee is scheduled to markup this legislation on Thursday, March 12, 2020. 

Click here to learn more about H.R. 6097.

Nuclear power plants currently provide more than 55 percent of the nation’s emission-free electricity and the industry employs tens of thousands of Americans.

Maria Korsnick, President & CEO, Nuclear Energy Institute: “NEI applauds the work of Representatives Conor Lamb (D-PA) and Dan Newhouse (R-WA) for introducing legislation to ensure the U.S. civil nuclear energy industry continues to be a global leader of carbon-free nuclear energy. This legislation signals nuclear energy’s vital role in our country’s commitment to a cleaner environment and strong national security.”

Rich Powell, Executive Director, ClearPath Action: “The U.S. must lead the world in developing and commercializing advanced nuclear reactors that are smaller, safer, cleaner, cheaper, more efficient and scalable than conventional power technologies. R&D, and partnering with our amazing national labs, are the foundation to ensuring our leadership.”

Josh Freed, Senior Vice President for Climate and Energy, Third Way: “The Nuclear Energy Research and Development Act is a great example of the consistent bipartisan support we have seen in Congress for bringing the next generation of carbon-free nuclear energy to market. The world needs advanced nuclear to help put us on the fastest and fairest path to net-zero emissions. The country that leads in this field will define the safety, security, and nonproliferation values that are exported along with this technology. This bill is an important next step, which will help American innovators and American companies take the lead.”

Michele Stockwell, Executive Director, BPC Action: “BPC Action applauds the introduction of the Nuclear Energy Research and Development Act. These many research, development, and demonstration efforts are necessary for America’s continued leadership in nuclear energy, particularly advanced nuclear reactors. We look forward to working with Congress to make progress on these important issues.”

Background:

Energy Northwest’s Columbia Generating Station in Tri-Cities is the only nuclear power plant in the Pacific Northwest, generating enough electricity to power a city the size of Seattle. Energy Northwest recently commissioned a study to review the best options to meet future clean energy needs. The results show Columbia Generating Station’s operation must be maintained and the development of new small modular reactors should be prioritized. Learn more here.

 

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