US Department of Energy (DOE) has chosen Four Rivers Nuclear Partnership (FRNP) to lead the Paducah deactivation and remediation (D&R) contract at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant in Kentucky.

FRNP is a joint venture of CH2M, Fluor Corporation, and BWX Technologies.

The contract is valued at around $1.5bn and covers more than 10 years, which includes a base term of five years valued at approximately $750m followed by three-year and two-year option periods valued at a total of $750m.

Fluor’s government group president Bruce Stanski said: “In just three short years, Fluor has made significant progress at the Paducah site and has built strong relationships within the community.

“We’ve made facilities safer by removing hazardous and radioactive materials, while improving the site’s infrastructure.”

“Most importantly, we’ve made facilities safer by removing hazardous and radioactive materials, while improving the site’s infrastructure. These efforts will save taxpayers millions of dollars over the next several years while improving safety for the workers, the general public and the environment. Fluor looks forward to our future at the site and continuing the mission, which will bring additional value to the government.”

Located on approximately 3,500 acres in western Kentucky, around 8 miles west of Paducah and 3.5 miles south of the Ohio River, the plant was built in the 1950s as part of the country’s nuclear weapons complex. From 1952 to 2013, the facility processed uranium for power plants, military reactors and nuclear weapons.

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The D&R contract covers management of more than 650 structures, properties, and buildings. FRNP will optimise costs of surveillance and maintenance to enable additional stabilisation, deactivation, and remediation activities, which in turn will reduce risk and future costs for demolition.

Fluor manages and operates the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, which is based in New Orleans, for DOE’s Office of Fossil Energy.