Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Weber, Johnson, Smith co-sponsor bipartisan bill promoting nuclear research and development

Rep. Randy Weber (R-TX)
Rep. Randy Weber (R-TX)
U.S. Rep. Randy Weber (R-TX), chairman of the Energy Subcommittee, recently joined Full Committee Ranking Member U.S. Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) and U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), Science, Space and Technology Committee chair, in introducing legislation to promote nuclear research and development.

“The Nuclear Energy Innovation Capabilities Act directs [the Department of Energy] to prioritize its [research and development] infrastructure on capabilities that will enable the private sector to develop advanced reactor technologies that could yield inherent safety, less waste, higher thermal efficiency, zero air emissions, increased reliability, and greater resistance to proliferation,” Weber said.

The bill would ensure that the Department of Energy prioritizes research and development that paves the way for private investments in advanced reactor technologies, allowing for prototype development in the department’s labs.

“Nuclear power currently plays a pivotal role in providing our country with reliable energy,” Johnson said. “As a nation, it produces almost 20 percent of our total electric power, and it provides almost 9 percent of the electricity generated in the great state of Texas — all with essentially no greenhouse gas emissions. This bill will ensure that innovators at our national labs, universities, and in the private sector have the tools they need for nuclear energy to play a key role in enabling our nation’s clean energy future.”

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