Eagle Rock Enrichment Facility
The Eagle Rock Enrichment Facility in Idaho is a multi-billion dollar direct investment in domestic nuclear energy infrastructure that will provide vital American energy security. The Eagle Rock plant will enrich uranium for use as fuel for nuclear reactors. This facility will advance the nation’s drive to secure domestically produced clean energy sources to fuel our economy, while creating thousands of jobs and bringing billions of dollars in economic benefits to the Idaho economy.
Eagle Rock Facility in Idaho
AREVA is developing its Eagle Rock Enrichment Facility in Bonneville County, Idaho, 20 miles west of Idaho Falls. The new state-of-the-art facility will be located on a site of approximately 4,000 acres. The nearby community of Idaho Falls has a long and positive history with nuclear energy, and AREVA hopes to create a productive, sustained partnership and long-term development to the regional economy.
Making Direct Investments in the U.S.
In addition to its strategic importance, construction and operation of the Eagle Rock facility will be a major economic boost for the local, regional, and national economies. It is estimated that the region will see more than $5 billion in economic impact and continued development. This is in addition to the more than 5,000 direct and indirect jobs created throughout the United States over the construction period, and once complete, the 400 permanent jobs to support the operation of the facility.
Providing American Energy Security with Domestic Supply
Nuclear power plants generate one-fifth of all American electricity, and today, the United States imports a significant percentage of its enriched uranium from other countries.
The nation’s first new nuclear power plants in more than three decades are anticipated to start operating within the decade, and these new plants will require reliable supplies of enriched uranium to operate efficiently. Even without these new plants, there is a continuing demand in the United States for clean, emissions-free energy produced by its 104 existing nuclear power plants. The demand for enrichment services to fuel these plants will soon outpace supply.
By developing a viable competitive and domestic enrichment capacity in the United States, AREVA will provide critical resources to increasing energy independence and strengthening national security. This American based facility will help the U.S. to be less reliant on fuel materials supplied by foreign countries.
That’s why AREVA plans to build the Eagle Rock Enrichment Facility – to help meet the country's demand for enriched uranium to provide secure energy sources for the needs of today and tomorrow.
Advanced Technology with a Sustainable Impact
Eagle Rock will use state-of-the-art gas centrifuge technology to enrich uranium in an environmentally-friendly facility with nearly zero emissions, requiring 50 times less energy than the current gas diffusion enrichment plants, and and will use significantly less water than the previous technology.
This state-of-the-art enrichment facility will use world renowned Enrichment Technology Company Limited (ETC)* technology and AREVA enrichment plant design that has been executed safely and efficiently in western Europe for over three decades. Eagle Rock will have a yearly production capacity of approximately 3.3 million SWU—enough capacity to serve 25 reactors producing 1,000 megawatts— with the possibility of doubling that capacity if market conditions are favorable. (A SWU, or Separative Work Unit, is the industry’s standard unit for measuring enrichment services.)
* ETC is a joint venture between URENCO and AREVA.