The U.S. Department of Energy Thursday approved a $2 billion loan guarantee for the French company Areva to build a nuclear power facility near Idaho Falls. The proposed $3.3 billion facility, called the Eagle Rock Uranium Enrichment Plant, could lead to 400 permanent jobs and up to 1,000 jobs to build the plant, and bolster the state’s nuclear energy efforts.
Gov. Butch Otter applauded the move. “The loan guarantee confirms that Idaho continues to lead the nuclear renaissance in America,” he said in a news release. “The decision also paves the way for new careers and economic recovery across the state." The governor had written to the federal energy department asking them to approve the loan for Areva, and mentioned the plant in Idaho Falls during campaign appearances.
Areva still must obtain a license from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission before it can begin construction of the facility.
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