SAVANNAH RIVER SITE, SC (WFXG) - Energy officials are taking the next step in considering shipping German nuclear waste to the Savannah River Site.
The U.S. Department of Energy is considering shipping used nuclear fuel containing 900 kilograms of highly-enriched uranium (HEU) to the site for processing and disposal.
Officials said Thursday that they signed a notice of intent to study the environmental impact of the proposal. They also say the proposal is part of a plan to return the potentially dangerous materials to the U.S. and increase national security.
"By removing U.S.-origin HEU from Germany and returning it to the United States for safe disposition, DOE could render it unusable in a nuclear weapon or an improvised nuclear material dispersal device," officials wrote in the e-mail.
But one Columbia-based group, Savannah River Site Watch, opposes bringing the nuclear waste to South Carolina.
"While claiming that the import of German nuclear waste is being done for nuclear non-proliferation reasons, this scheme is simply nuclear dumping on Germany's part and business on the part of DOE," said Tom Clements, director of SRS Watch.
A public meeting on the issue is schedule for June 24 at the North Augusta Community Center.