New York, Nov.10 (ANI): Dismantled nuclear bombs, including Russian ones, provide about 10 percent of electricity in the United States.
By comparison, hydropower generates about six percent and solar, biomass, wind and geothermal together account for three percent.
Today, former bomb material from Russia accounts for 45 percent of the fuel in American nuclear reactors, while another five percent comes from American bombs, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute, an industry trade association in Washington.
"It's a great, easy source" of fuel, claimed Marina V. Alekseyenkova, an analyst at Renaissance Bank and an expert in the Russian nuclear industry that has profited from the arrangement since the end of the Cold War.
But if more diluted weapons-grade uranium isn't secured soon, the pipeline could run dry, with ramifications for consumers, as well as some American utilities and their Russian suppliers.lready nervous about a supply gap, utilities operating America's 104 nuclear reactors are paying as much attention to President Obama's efforts to conclude a new arms treaty as the Nobel Peace Prize committee did.tilities have been loath to publicize the Russian bomb supply line for fear of spooking consumers, but at times, recycled Soviet bomb cores have made up the majority of the American market for low-enriched uranium fuel.
In the United States, the agreements are portrayed as nonproliferation treaties - intended to prevent loose nukes in Russia.
In Russia, the arms agreements are portrayed as a way to make it harder for the United States to reverse disarmament.
Finding a substitute is a concern for utilities today because nuclear plants buy fuel three to five years in advance.
One potential new source is warheads that would become superfluous if the United States and Russia agree to new cuts under negotiations to renew the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, which expires on December 5.
Such negotiations revolve around the number of deployed weapons and delivery vehicles. There is no requirement in the treaty that bomb cores be destroyed. That is negotiated separately.
For the industry, that means that now, as in the past, there will be no direct correlation between the number of warheads decommissioned and the quantity of highly enriched uranium or plutonium, also used in weapons, that the two countries declare surplus. (ANI)