International Uranium Fuel Bank Partially Funded by Warren Buffett to Open in Kazakhstan

- June 11th, 2015

Reuters reported that an international uranium fuel bank will be opening in Kazakhstan in two years and will be partially funded by Warren Buffett, after the U.N. nuclear agency’s board approved a hosting agreement.

Reuters reported that an international uranium fuel bank will be opening in Kazakhstan in two years and will be partially funded by Warren Buffett, after the U.N. nuclear agency’s board approved a hosting agreement.

As quoted in the market news:

The scheme is designed to secure the supply of uranium for nuclear power plants should the commercial market be disrupted. Advocates also see it as a way to dissuade countries from building enrichment facilities that might be misused to purify uranium to weapons-grade levels — an issue that has bedeviled relations between Iran and the West for more than a decade.

“If the dozens of countries interested in nuclear energy also choose to pursue uranium enrichment, the risk of proliferation of dangerous nuclear materials and weapons would grow beyond the tipping point. This has been our experience with Iran,” said Sam Nunn, co-chairman of the U.S.-based Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI), a non-governmental organization.

The new fuel bank, the first outside the control of an individual country, “now gives countries an alternative to that choice and direction”, he said. The fuel bank, basically a storehouse in a metallurgical compound in northeast Kazakhstan, could house around 90 metric tonnes of low-enriched uranium (LEU) – enough to make fuel to run a 1,000-megawatt light-water reactor.

Out of 438 operational reactors worldwide, around 350 are such light-water reactors, which can power a large city for three years, according to the U.N.’s International Atomic Energy Agency. Any IAEA-approved country could access LEU from the fuel bank at market prices.

Click here to read the full Reuters report.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *