Mixed-Oxide Fuel Fabrication Plant and Plutonium Disposition: Management and Policy Issues [December 14, 2017] [open pdf - 688KB]
"The Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility (MFFF) in South Carolina has been a key component of the current U.S. strategy for disposing of surplus weapons plutonium from the Cold War. Disposition of surplus plutonium is required by a 1998 agreement, amended in 2010, between the United States and the Russian Federation. Each country agreed to convert 34 metric tons of surplus weapons-grade plutonium to a form that could not be returned to nuclear weapons, to begin in 2018. Russia suspended its participation in the agreement in October 2016 due to what it called 'hostile actions' by the United States. However, both countries appear to be continuing their plans for surplus plutonium disposition. [...] The debate over U.S. plutonium disposition strategy raises several issues for Congress. The Administration asserts that the rising cost estimates for MFFF are unsustainable in the current budget environment and proposes a different disposal method. The effects of alternative disposal options on DOE's [Department of Energy] Savannah River Site in South Carolina, where MFFF is located, will also be an important element of the debate."
CRS Report for Congress, R43125
Federation of American Scientists: http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/index.html