Idaho State Journal

    Foster Wheeler brings experience to INEEL

ARCO DESERT - Foster Wheeler Environmental Corp. of New Jersey and the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory will combine efforts to make a dry spent nuclear fuel storage facility.
The Department of Energy's Idaho Operations Office selected Foster Wheeler to help design, construct and operate the storage facility for the INEEL.
Congress will review the corporation for 30 days, and a $217 million contract good through 2009 will be awarded if it passes.
"The Foster Wheeler proposal included key personnel with decades of experience in the nuclear industry," said Beverly Cook, manager of DOE's Idaho Operations Office. "Foster Wheeler already has a licensed storage concept. They have demonstrated to DOE that they have a thorough understanding of the requirements of this project."
The storage facility will be built outside the security perimeter of the Idaho Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center and the INEEL. It will be privately owned by Foster Wheeler and licensed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
The storage facility will allow the DOE to remove spent nuclear fuel from underwater storage. Other fuel from aging, underground dry storage also can be removed. This will help get rid of long-term safety concerns and environmental concerns.
Once the fuel is removed, it will be stored in canisters. When a permanent repository is built, the containers can be used to transport and dispose the fuel there.
If Foster Wheeler gets the contract, it has the option to handle and store other Idaho spent fuel. The contract will require the corporation to store 55 metric tons of spent fuel now stored at the Idaho Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center.
The contract isn't expected to affect the existing Paper, Allied-Industrial, Chemical and Energy Worker International Union workers at the site.
The DOE has agreed to apply the hiring preference, wage and benefit protections in a previous agreement with PACE in the event that any of these employees need to be relocated.

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