Another Failed Government Energy Policy

Jeff Siegel

Written By Jeff Siegel

Posted April 15, 2013

Recent history is filled with taxpayer-funded energy failures.

From the Bush Administration’s FutureGen Clean Coal project (which was actually shelved during Bush’s second term, only to be later revived by President Obama), to the downfall of Solyndra under the Obama Administration, we’ve all seen our fair share of disappearing tax dollars in the energy game.

Well today, we have another failed government energy project to share with you.

We recently learned that a government-funded project designed to convert weapons-grade plutonium into mixed oxide fuel used in nuclear reactors has cost taxpayers $7.7 billion so far – with little to show for it.

The initial cost estimate was $1.6 billion. But now, ten years behind schedule, combined with a recent life-cycle cost estimate shows a projected cost of about $22.1 billion when it’s ready to open in 2019.

moxKind of puts some of those other boondoggles in perspective, huh?

In any event, the project was caught off guard after it lost a contract to sell the fuel to Duke Energy. To date, there is still no buyer.

According to a DOE budget report, this particular plutonium disposition approach may be unaffordable due to cost growth and fiscal pressure.


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