Pandemic halts or slows work at uranium facilities

Several companies involved in the front end of the nuclear fuel cycle have announced temporary shutdowns or staffing reductions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the modest increase in uranium spot prices triggered by production cuts could be a silver lining, uranium prices are still below a level that would prompt idled mines to get back in production once public health mandates are lifted.

The uranium market is global, and it should come as no surprise that a global pandemic is having an impact on facilities around the world, including in the following countries.

Metropolis Works receives 40-year license renewal

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission on March 24 relicensed the only uranium conversion plant in the United States, Honeywell International’s Metropolis Works.

Metropolis Works can now operate until March 24, 2060, potentially logging operations for over a century. Built in 1958 to produce uranium hexafluoride (UF6) for the U.S. government, Metropolis Works began selling UF6 on the commercial market in 1968.