Click here to watch Chairman Barrasso’s remarks.  

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW), delivered the following remarks at a committee business meeting to consider S. 512, the Nuclear Energy Innovation and Modernization Act. The bipartisan legislation later passed the committee with a vote of 18 to 3.

The legislation is cosponsored by EPW Ranking Member Tom Carper (D-DE), and Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Bob Casey (D-PA), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), and Mike Rounds (R-SD).

To watch video of the full business meeting click here.

Senator Barrasso’s remarks:

“The Nuclear Energy Innovation and Modernization Act is comprehensive, innovative nuclear energy legislation I introduced with Senators Whitehouse, Inhofe, Booker, Crapo, Fischer, Capito, and Manchin and additionally cosponsored by Ranking Member Carper and Senators Duckworth, Casey, Flake, and Rounds.

“Our bipartisan bill seeks to modernize the Nuclear Regulatory Commission by providing a flexible regulatory framework for licensing advanced nuclear reactors, while maintaining the ability of the commission to assess a variety of technologies and still meet its mission of ensuring safety and security.

“Our legislation will also update the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s fee recovery structure.

“This measure will bring increased transparency and accountability to the NRC, while improving the commission’s efficiency and timeliness.

“This bill will also help America’s uranium producers who are essential to powering this technology. 

“Finally, the bill addresses the Department of Energy’s mismanagement of the public’s stockpile of excess uranium.

“Since 2009, the Department has repeatedly violated its own written policy and federal law when managing the public’s excess uranium.

“As a result, the Department of Energy has failed to obtain a fair return on this uranium for American taxpayers. 

“The Department of Energy’s mismanagement has also contributed to volatility in the uranium market and has led to job losses in states like my home state of Wyoming.

“Our bipartisan legislation will enable the development of innovative reactors with bold, new technologies.

“We need to create an environment where entrepreneurs can flourish and create jobs here at home that will revitalize our nuclear energy sector. 

“This legislation does that.”