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NNSA Ships Additional Special Nuclear Material from LLNL

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today announced that Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) has removed 90 percent inventory of nuclear material requiring the highest level of security protection.

The move is part of NNSA’s efforts to consolidate Category I and II special nuclear material, requiring the highest level of security, at five sites by the end of 2012. This initiative will further improve security and reduce costs as part of NNSA’s overall effort to transform the Cold War era nuclear weapons complex into a 21st century nuclear security enterprise.

“I applaud the safe and efficient work done at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to package and remove nuclear material no longer needed at the site,” said Don Cook, NNSA’s Deputy Administrator for Defense Programs. “The men and women at Livermore continue to make big strides in reaching NNSA’s goal of removing Category I and II special nuclear material from Livermore by the end of 2012, and they are doing this while continuing to perform vital national security work. The removal of the material meets NNSA’s goal of transforming a Cold War nuclear weapons complex into a more robust nuclear security enterprise that is smaller, safer and more efficient.”

All shipments have been completed in full compliance with safety and environmental laws and procedures. All federal and receiver site requirements were met for these shipments. The deinventory project was initiated in October 2006.

NNSA had originally planned to remove high-security material from LLNL by 2014. However, NNSA has developed an accelerated timeline to remove the material safely and securely by 2012.

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Established by Congress in 2000, NNSA is a semi-autonomous agency within the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science in the nation’s national security enterprise. NNSA maintains and enhances the safety, security, reliability, and performance of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile without nuclear testing; reduces the global danger from weapons of mass destruction; provides the U.S. Navy with safe and effective nuclear propulsion; and responds to nuclear and radiological emergencies in the U.S. and abroad.