U.N. atomic agency approves nuclear fuel bank

It will be the second such facility from which countries can draw nuclear power in emergencies

Published December 3, 2010 7:44PM (EST)

The U.N. atomic agency has approved a nuclear fuel bank that nations can draw on for their atomic programs in emergencies.

It is the second such facility. A Russian-run fuel bank went into operation earlier this year.

But the one approved Friday by the International Atomic Energy Agency will be run by the IAEA. That is meant to be a further guarantee of its impartiality.

Both fuel banks are meant to ensure a reliable supply of nuclear fuel in case commercial supplies are interrupted.

They are meant as alternatives to nations developing their own uranium enrichment programs to produce fuel. Enrichment can also make fissile warhead material.

By George Jahn

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