Natural resources (1 - 10 of 45 items)
Nuclear Weapons: NNSA Has a New Approach to Managing the B61-12 Life Extension, but a Constrained Schedule and Other Risks Remain
GAO-16-218: Published: Feb 4, 2016. Publicly Released: Feb 4, 2016.
The B61-12 life extension program's (LEP) managers have developed a management approach that officials from the Department of Energy's (DOE) National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and the Department of Defense (DOD) regard as improved over the management approach used for past LEPs, which experienced schedule delays and cost overruns. Among other things, the B61-12 LEP is the first LEP to...
DOE Project Management: NNSA Should Ensure Equal Consideration of Alternatives for Lithium Production
GAO-15-525: Published: Jul 13, 2015. Publicly Released: Jul 13, 2015.
The National Nuclear Security Administration's (NNSA) has identified various challenges in its lithium production strategy that may impact its ability to meet demand for lithium in the future, as well as actions that may mitigate these challenges. These challenges pertain to three key areas. First, NNSA may not have a sufficient supply of lithium material for defense program requirements. NNSA off...
Hanford Waste Treatment: DOE Needs to Evaluate Alternatives to Recently Proposed Projects and Address Technical and Management Challenges
GAO-15-354: Published: May 7, 2015. Publicly Released: May 7, 2015.
The Department of Energy's (DOE) two proposed facilities may help achieve Hanford's waste treatment mission by expediting treatment of some waste and addressing some technical challenges within the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant's (WTP) Pretreatment facility. However, DOE selected the facilities based on past proposals and excluded other potential alternatives from consideration. One fac...
DOE Loan Programs: Current Estimated Net Costs Include $2.2 Billion in Credit Subsidy, Plus Administrative Expenses
GAO-15-438: Published: Apr 27, 2015. Publicly Released: Apr 27, 2015.
The Department of Energy's (DOE) loan programs portfolio consists of 34 loans and loan guarantees totaling about $28 billion in support of 30 projects in a diverse array of technologies. DOE's Loan Guarantee Program (LGP) encourages certain types of energy projects by agreeing to reimburse lenders for the guaranteed amount of loans if the borrowers default. These guarantees have been for nuclear,...
Nuclear Weapons: Some Actions Have Been Taken to Address Challenges with the Uranium Processing Facility Design
GAO-15-126: Published: Oct 10, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 10, 2014.
In January 2013, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) completed a review to identify the factors that contributed to the space/fit issue with the Uranium Processing Facility (UPF), and identified a number of factors within both NNSA and the contractor managing the UPF design at that time. NNSA's review identified shortcomings in 1) federal oversight of the project, 2) design integra...
Drinking Water: EPA Program to Protect Underground Sources from Injection of Fluids Associated with Oil and Gas Production Needs Improvement
GAO-14-555: Published: Jun 27, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 28, 2014.
The Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) role in the Underground Injection Control (UIC) class II program is to oversee and enforce fluid injection into wells associated with oil and gas production, known as class II wells. EPA has approved 39 states to manage their own class II programs, and EPA regions are responsible for managing the programs in remaining states. EPA regions and states use a...
Fusion Energy: Observations on DOE's Cost and Schedule Estimates for U.S. Contributions to an International Experimental Reactor
GAO-14-750T: Published: Jul 11, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 11, 2014.
Since the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) Agreement was signed in 2006, the Department of Energy's (DOE) estimated cost for the U.S. portion of ITER has grown by almost $3 billion, and its estimated completion date has slipped by 20 years. DOE has identified several reasons for the changes, such as increases in hardware cost estimates as designs and requirements have been m...
Nuclear Weapons: Actions Needed by NNSA to Clarify Dismantlement Performance Goal
GAO-14-449: Published: Apr 30, 2014. Publicly Released: Apr 30, 2014.
How the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) measures progress toward its performance goal of dismantling all weapons retired prior to fiscal year 2009 by the end of fiscal year 2022 is unclear for two reasons. First, NNSA does not track the actual date that dismantled weapons were retired and may be counting some dismantled weapons retired after fiscal year 2009 as equivalent to weapon...
Nuclear Weapons: Information on Safety Concerns with the Uranium Processing Facility
GAO-14-79R: Published: Oct 25, 2013. Publicly Released: Oct 25, 2013.
The Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board (Safety Board) has raised concerns with the National Nuclear Security Administration's (NNSA) plans to construct the Uranium Processing Facility (UPF), and NNSA has taken steps to address many of these concerns. Specifically:In 2009, NNSA--a separately organized agency within the Department of Energy (DOE)--decided to expedite the construction of the UPF...
Department of Energy: Observations on DOE's Management Challenges and Steps Taken to Address Them
GAO-13-767T: Published: Jul 24, 2013. Publicly Released: Jul 24, 2013.
As GAO has reported over the last decade, the Department of Energys (DOE) management of major projects and programs, security and safety at DOE sites, and reliable enterprise-wide management information, including budget and cost data, are among the most persistent management challenges the department faces. Challenges managing major projects and programs. The Office of Environmental M...