42 U.S. Code § 2297h–10a - Incentives for additional downblending of highly enriched uranium by the Russian Federation

(a) Definitions
In this section:
(1) Completion of the Russian HEU Agreement
The term “completion of the Russian HEU Agreement” means the importation into the United States from the Russian Federation pursuant to the Russian HEU Agreement of uranium derived from the downblending of not less than 500 metric tons of highly enriched uranium of weapons origin.
(2) Downblending
The term “downblending” means processing highly enriched uranium into a uranium product in any form in which the uranium contains less than 20 percent uranium-235.
(3) Highly enriched uranium
The term “highly enriched uranium” has the meaning given that term in section 2297h (4) of this title.
(4) Highly enriched uranium of weapons origin
The term “highly enriched uranium of weapons origin” means highly enriched uranium that—
(A) contains 90 percent or more uranium-235; and
(B) is verified by the Secretary of Energy to be of weapons origin.
(5) Low-enriched uranium
The term “low-enriched uranium” means a uranium product in any form, including uranium hexafluoride (UF6) and uranium oxide (UO2), in which the uranium contains less than 20 percent uranium-235, including natural uranium, without regard to whether the uranium is incorporated into fuel rods or complete fuel assemblies.
(6) Russian HEU Agreement
The term “Russian HEU Agreement” has the meaning given that term in section 2297h (11) of this title.
(7) Uranium-235
The term “uranium-235” means the isotope 235U.
(b) Statement of policy
It is the policy of the United States to support the continued downblending of highly enriched uranium of weapons origin in the Russian Federation in order to protect the essential security interests of the United States with respect to the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons.
(c) Promotion of downblending of Russian highly enriched uranium
(1) Completion of the Russian HEU Agreement
Prior to the completion of the Russian HEU Agreement, the importation into the United States of low-enriched uranium, including low-enriched uranium obtained under contracts for separative work units, that is produced in the Russian Federation and is not imported pursuant to the Russian HEU Agreement, may not exceed the following amounts:
(A) In the 4-year period beginning with calendar year 2008, 16,559 kilograms.
(B) In calendar year 2012, 24,839 kilograms.
(C) In calendar year 2013 and each calendar year thereafter through the calendar year of the completion of the Russian HEU Agreement, 41,398 kilograms.
(2) Incentives to continue downblending Russian highly enriched uranium after the completion of the Russian HEU Agreement
(A) In general
After the completion of the Russian HEU Agreement, the importation into the United States of low-enriched uranium, including low-enriched uranium obtained under contracts for separative work units, that is produced in the Russian Federation, whether or not such low-enriched uranium is derived from highly enriched uranium of weapons origin, may not exceed—
(i) in calendar year 2014, 485,279 kilograms;
(ii) in calendar year 2015, 455,142 kilograms;
(iii) in calendar year 2016, 480,146 kilograms;
(iv) in calendar year 2017, 490,710 kilograms;
(v) in calendar year 2018, 492,731 kilograms;
(vi) in calendar year 2019, 509,058 kilograms; and
(vii) in calendar year 2020, 514,754 kilograms.
(B) Additional imports in exchange for a commitment to downblend an additional 300 metric tons of highly enriched uranium
(i) In general In addition to the amount authorized to be imported under subparagraph (A) and except as provided in clause (ii), if the Russian Federation enters into a bilateral agreement with the United States under which the Russian Federation agrees to downblend an additional 300 metric tons of highly enriched uranium after the completion of the Russian HEU Agreement, 4 kilograms of low-enriched uranium, whether or not such low-enriched uranium is derived from highly enriched uranium of weapons origin and including low-enriched uranium obtained under contracts for separative work units, may be imported in a calendar year for every 1 kilogram of Russian highly enriched uranium of weapons origin that was downblended in the preceding calendar year, subject to the verification of the Secretary of Energy under paragraph (10).
(ii) Maximum annual imports Not more than 120,000 kilograms of low-enriched uranium may be imported in a calendar year under clause (i).
(3) Exceptions
The import limitations described in paragraphs (1) and (2) shall not apply to low-enriched uranium produced in the Russian Federation that is imported into the United States—
(A) for use in the initial core of a new nuclear reactor;
(B) for processing and to be certified for reexportation and not for consumption in the United States; or
(C) to be added to the inventory of the Department of Energy.
(4) Limited waiver authority
(A) In general
Notwithstanding paragraph (1)(C), if the completion of the Russian HEU Agreement does not occur before December 31, 2013, the import limitations under paragraph (1)(C) shall be waived, and low-enriched uranium may be imported into the United States in the quantities specified in paragraph (2) in a calendar year after 2013, if—
(i) the Secretary of Energy and the Secretary of State jointly determine that—
(I) the failure of the completion of the Russian HEU Agreement arises from causes beyond the control and without the fault or negligence of the Government of the Russian Federation; and
(II) the Government of the Russian Federation has made reasonable efforts to avoid and mitigate the effects of the failure of the completion of the Russian HEU Agreement; and
(ii) the Secretary of Energy and the Secretary of State jointly notify Congress of, and publish in the Federal Register, the determination under clause (i) and the reasons for the determination.
(B) Notice and wait
A waiver under subparagraph (A) may not take effect until the date that is 180 days after the date on which Secretary of Energy and the Secretary of State notify Congress under subparagraph (A)(ii).
(C) Termination
A waiver under subparagraph (A) shall terminate on December 31 of the calendar year with respect to which the Secretary makes the determination under subparagraph (A)(i).
(5) Adjustments to import limitations
(A) In general
The import limitations described in paragraph (2)(A) are based on the reference data in the 2005 Market Report on the Global Nuclear Fuel Market Supply and Demand 2005–2030 of the World Nuclear Association. In each of calendar years 2016 and 2019, the Secretary of Commerce shall review the projected demand for uranium for nuclear reactors in the United States and adjust the import limitations described in paragraph (2)(A) to account for changes in such demand in years after the year in which that report or a subsequent report is published.
(B) Incentive adjustment
Beginning in the second calendar year after the calendar year of the completion of the Russian HEU Agreement, the Secretary of Energy shall increase or decrease the amount of low-enriched uranium that may be imported in a calendar year under paragraph (2)(B) (including the amount of low-enriched uranium that may be imported for each kilogram of highly enriched uranium downblended under paragraph (2)(B)(i)) by a percentage equal to the percentage increase or decrease, as the case may be, in the average amount of uranium loaded into nuclear power reactors in the United States in the most recent 3-calendar-year period for which data are available, as reported by the Energy Information Administration of the Department of Energy, compared to the average amount of uranium loaded into such reactors during the 3-calendar-year period beginning on January 1, 2011, as reported by the Energy Information Administration.
(C) Publication of adjustments
As soon as practicable, but not later than July 31 of each calendar year, the Secretary of Energy shall publish in the Federal Register the amount of low-enriched uranium that may be imported in the current calendar year after the adjustments under subparagraph (B).
(6) Authority for additional adjustment
In addition to the adjustment under paragraph (5)(A), the Secretary of Commerce may adjust the import limitations under paragraph (2)(A) for a calendar year if the Secretary—
(A) in consultation with the Secretary of Energy, determines that the available supply of low-enriched uranium and the available stockpiles of uranium of the Department of Energy are insufficient to meet demand in the United States in the following calendar year; and
(B) notifies Congress of the adjustment not less than 45 days before making the adjustment.
(7) Equivalent quantities of low-enriched uranium imports
(A) In general
The import limitations described in paragraphs (1) and (2) are expressed in terms of uranium containing 4.4 percent uranium-235 and a tails assay of 0.3 percent.
(B) Adjustment for other uranium
Imports of low-enriched uranium under paragraphs (1) and (2), including low-enriched uranium obtained under contracts for separative work units, shall count against the import limitations described in such paragraphs in amounts calculated as the quantity of low-enriched uranium containing 4.4 percent uranium-235 necessary to equal the total amount of uranium-235 contained in such imports.
(8) Downblending of other highly enriched uranium
(A) In general
The downblending of highly enriched uranium not of weapons origin may be counted for purposes of paragraph (2)(B), subject to verification under paragraph (10), if the Secretary of Energy determines that the highly enriched uranium to be downblended poses a risk to the national security of the United States.
(B) Equivalent quantities of highly enriched uranium
For purposes of determining the additional low-enriched uranium imports allowed under paragraph (2)(B), highly enriched uranium not of weapons origin downblended pursuant to subparagraph (A) shall count as downblended highly enriched uranium of weapons origin in amounts calculated as the quantity of highly enriched uranium containing 90 percent uranium-235 necessary to equal the total amount of uranium-235 contained in the highly enriched uranium not of weapons origin downblended pursuant to subparagraph (A).
(9) Termination of import restrictions
The provisions of this subsection shall terminate on December 31, 2020.
(10) Technical verifications by Secretary of Energy
(A) In general
The Secretary of Energy shall verify the origin, quantity, and uranium-235 content of the highly enriched uranium downblended for purposes of paragraphs (2)(B) and (8).
(B) Methods of verification
In conducting the verification required under subparagraph (A), the Secretary of Energy shall employ the transparency measures and access provisions agreed to under the Russian HEU Agreement for monitoring the downblending of Russian highly enriched uranium of weapons origin and such other methods as the Secretary determines appropriate.
(11) Enforcement of import limitations
The Secretary of Commerce shall be responsible for enforcing the import limitations imposed under this subsection and shall enforce such import limitations in a manner that imposes a minimal burden on the commercial nuclear industry.
(12) Effect on other agreements
(A) Russian HEU Agreement
Nothing in this section shall be construed to modify the terms of the Russian HEU Agreement, including the provisions of the Agreement relating to the amount of low-enriched uranium that may be imported into the United States.
(B) Other agreements
If a provision of any agreement between the United States and the Russian Federation, other than the Russian HEU Agreement, relating to the importation of low-enriched uranium, including low-enriched uranium obtained under contracts for separative work units, into the United States conflicts with a provision of this section, the provision of this section shall supersede the provision of the agreement to the extent of the conflict.

Source

(Pub. L. 104–134, title III, § 3112A, as added Pub. L. 110–329, div. C, title VIII, § 8118(2),Sept. 30, 2008, 122 Stat. 3647.)
Codification

Section was enacted as part of the USEC Privatization Act and also as part of the Omnibus Consolidated Rescissions and Appropriations Act of 1996, and not as part of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 which comprises this chapter.

 

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