[ RadSafe ] Iraqi Uranium
Dan W McCarn
hotgreenchile at gmail.com
Mon Jul 7 12:20:53 CDT 2008
Dan W. McCarn, Geologist; 3118 Pebble Lake Drive; Sugar Land, TX 77479; USA
HotGreenChile at gmail.com mccarn at unileoben.ac.at UConcentrate at gmail.com
By my calculation, the 550 metric tonnes U amounts to 1,430,000 lbs U3O8
having a commercial value of $107,250,000 at $75 / lb U3O8. As memory
serves, I think that most of this material came from byproduct phosphoric
acid production from the marine phosphorites in Iraq similar to those in
Israel and Syria.
Iraqi uranium transferred to Canada
54 minutes ago
WASHINGTON (AFP) - At Iraq's request, the US military recently transferred
hundreds of metric tons of yellowcake uranium from Iraq to Canada in a
secret, weeks-long operation, a Pentagon spokesman said Monday.
The 550 metric tons of uranium, which was sold to a Canadian company, was
moved by truck convoy to Baghdad's "Green Zone," then flown by military
aircraft to a third country where it was put on a ship for Canada, said
Bryan Whitman, the spokesman.
"The operation was completed over the weekend, on Saturday," Whitman said.
The yellow cake was discovered by US troops after the 2003 US invasion of
Iraq at the Tuwaitha Nuclear Research Facility south of Baghdad, and was
placed under the control of the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Yellowcake is a form of processed uranium ore that can be used to make fuel
for nuclear reactors, or if further enriched as fuel for nuclear weapons.
Whitman said the Iraqi government asked the United States for help in
selling and transferring the uranium to another country.
Cameco, a Canadian company, agreed to buy the yellowcake for a reported sum
in the tens of millions of dollars.
The cost to the United States of transferring the uranium came to about 70
million dollars, Whitman said. He said the Iraqi government has agreed in
principle to repay part of the transfer costs.
The US State and Energy Departments also played roles in the operation,
Whitman said. But the Defense Department took the lead in carrying out the
transfer, he said.
It took 110 shipping containers to carry the drums loaded with yellowcake,
They were transferred by convoy from Tuwaitha to a secure facility within
the Green Zone, the international zone, Whitman said.
Then they were flown by C-17 military transport planes to an undisclosed
third country. Whitman said it took 37 planeloads to complete that portion
of the transfer.
"At this intermediate location the cargo was loaded onto a US-flagged cargo
ship, a military sealift container ship, the USS Gopher State," he said.
Whitman said the arrangements for the sale began several months ago, but the
transfer itself took "weeks not months."
With the transfer, no yellowcake was known to be left in Iraq, Whitman said.
News of the operation broke over the weekend when Cameco acknowledged the
arrival of the uranium shipment at Montreal.
Lyle Khran, a Cameco spokesman, said the company had responded to a bid
request made last year by the US government.
"We are satisfied at having been able to remove uranium from one of the most
unstable regions of the world, and to have transferred it to a stable region
to produce our own electric power," he said on Sunday.
He said the yellowcake would be used at the Blind River and Port Hope
nuclear power plants north of Toronto.
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