NNSA, National Labs At Odds | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 90 Issue 9 | p. 34 | Concentrates
Issue Date: February 27, 2012

NNSA, National Labs At Odds

Department: Government & Policy
News Channels: Environmental SCENE
Keywords: National Nuclear Security Administration, weapons labs

“A breakdown of trust” exists between the three national nuclear weapons laboratories and the National Nuclear Security Administration, a semi-independent part of the Department of Energy that oversees the labs, according to a recent report by the National Research Council. The report blames NNSA micromanagement and close oversight for the problem, which the report says is most prominent at Los Alamos National Laboratory. The other weapons labs are Sandia National Laboratories and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Security problems that led to the close oversight have largely been resolved, NRC notes, but an “intrusive level” of oversight and a perceived lack of independence remain. The report says the oversight has resulted in restrictions in lab science. It urges NNSA to back off on reporting requirements and other oversight measures at the labs. This is the first of two reports of NRC’s review of the weapons labs.

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