Strengthening American Nuclear Competitiveness Act
The Strengthening American Nuclear Competitiveness Act would streamline the export of U.S. nuclear energy technologies, improving the American civilian nuclear industry’s competitiveness in global markets.
The Strengthening American Nuclear Competitiveness Act would expedite nuclear energy technology exports by modernizing the Part 810 export process, which allows companies to sell their designs abroad. This will allow the U.S. to better compete in the global market by accelerating the deployment of innovative technologies. In addition, the Act directs multiple government agencies to consider how the U.S. can be more competitive internationally, how advanced manufacturing techniques can be used to support deployment, and how nuclear energy can be used for non-electric applications. Finally, the Act unlocks international investments, which will be important for the broad deployment of new nuclear technologies. The U.S. needs to continue to be a global leader in nuclear energy, which can both provide low-carbon electricity to countries looking to decarbonize and foster long-term partnerships that can lead to additional trade opportunities. This bill is a companion to the Senate’s American Nuclear Infrastructure Act.
The Part 810 process requires detailed agency review for each transaction a nuclear entrepreneur wishes to make. While the process used to take 130 days of review in the 1990s, the review has taken upwards of 400 days in recent years. This Act would establish an expedited pathway for nuclear energy technologies deemed “low-proliferation-risk” by the Secretary of Energy. Both China and Russia’s domestic, state-owned nuclear industries are also actively providing financing to export their technologies for new nuclear construction. Globally, Russia leads the number of exports with about half of the 53 units under construction around the world today. Modernizing our export process, leveraging investments from our allies, and determining how the U.S. can better compete globally is necessary to ensure that the U.S. remains a global leader in nuclear technology, including developing international safety and security standards.
The Strengthening American Nuclear Competitiveness Act directs multiple federal agencies to consider how to improve international competitiveness related to nuclear energy and modernizes the export process.
- Directs the Department of Energy, State Department, Department of Commerce, Environmental Protection Agency, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to develop a report to consider how to improve the competitiveness of the U.S. nuclear industry.
- Amends the Part 810 export process to expedite nuclear energy technologies deemed “low-proliferation-risk” by the Secretary of Energy and puts a timeline on approvals.
- Allows allied countries to invest in U.S. companies, which can strengthen international relationships and open up international markets.
- Directs the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to consider any barriers to license reactors for nonelectric applications, which is necessary for nuclear energy to help decarbonize more than just the electricity sector.
- Determines any barriers to using innovative manufacturing and construction techniques.
Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH), Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH)
Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI)
117th Congress: H.R. 1748
116th Congress: H.R. 7405