Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear has given the go-ahead for a transfer of state-owned land across from the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant to build the Global Laser Enrichment facility. GLE has advised the Nuclear Regulatory Commission of their plans to construct and operate the facility.
McCracken County Judge Executive Van Newberry calls the transfer for the GLE project critical to the project's success. "They need some land out there," Newberry said. "They're interested in land that’s right outside the fence but adjacent to the USEC or the Department of Energy site.” Newberry says uranium stored at PGDP is also attractive to GLE for enrichment.
PGDP clean-up is moving forward with a $324 million appropriation from the Department of Energy. Federal lawmakers approved the funding in an omnibus-spending bill earlier this year.
In a press release, Gov. Beshear said, “Jobs will be created during the construction and ultimate operate of the GLE facility.”
40 employees were laid off at USEC in January with around 110 more in February. PGDP still employs around 875 workers at the site.