Senate Passes Bipartisan Bill to Ban Russian Uranium Imports

April 30, 2024

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senators John Barrasso (R-WY), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Jim Risch (R-ID), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Chris Coons (D-DE), and Roger Marshall (R-KS) applauded the unanimous passage of H.R. 1042, a bill to ban Russian uranium imports into the United States.

H.R. 1042 is Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers’ (R-WA) companion bill to Senator Barrasso’s S.763. The U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1042 by voice vote in December 2023.

“I have fought for years to end America’s reliance on Russian nuclear fuel. Our efforts have finally paid off with passage of our bill to ban these imports once and for all,” said Senator Barrasso. “Wyoming has the uranium to replace Russian imports, and we’re ready to use it. Our bipartisan legislation will help defund Russia’s war machine, revive American uranium production, and jumpstart investments in America’s nuclear fuel supply chain. This is a tremendous victory. I’m grateful to members of both parties for helping get this over the finish line.”

“It is unconscionable for the United States of America, as the superpower of the world, to contribute to Vladimir Putin's ability to finance his unlawful war against Ukraine through our reliance on Russia for the uranium we need to power our nuclear reactors. I am proud to have worked on this legislation with Ranking Member Barrasso to put an end to Russian uranium imports, which simultaneously unlocks $2.72 billion to ramp up domestic uranium fuel production. Building on initiatives I worked to include in the Energy Act of 2020, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, and the Inflation Reduction Act, this legislation is one more critical step toward reshoring our nuclear supply chains,” said Senator Manchin.

“America’s dangerous reliance on Russian enriched uranium must come to an end—our national security depends on it,” said Senator Risch. “With the passage of our legislation, America is taking an important step to spur uranium conversion and enrichment in the U.S., support advanced nuclear development and energy independence, and end Russian control of the global nuclear fuel supply chain.”

“Banning imports of Russian uranium will strengthen our nation’s energy security, reduce our reliance on Russia for nuclear fuels, and prevent American dollars from funding Vladimir Putin’s unjustified war in Ukraine,” said Senator Heinrich. “I am proud both chambers of Congress have passed this legislation that will shore up our nuclear fuel supply chain and invest in American producers like Urenco in Lea County, New Mexico.”

“Wyoming’s energy industry plays an integral role in powering not only our nation but the world,” said Senator Lummis. “ We should be capitalizing on Wyoming’s vast resources and boosting domestic mining, not jeopardizing our national security. I am proud to join my friend and colleague Senator Barrasso to deliver a bipartisan solution to unleash American energy.”

“Cutting off Russian uranium imports is one way we can disrupt Russia’s war efforts in Ukraine while promoting investment in supply chains for American nuclear technology,” said Senator Coons. “I’m glad that both chambers of Congress have passed this bipartisan bill that demonstrates our commitment to secure nuclear energy and increases our capacity for clean energy leadership around the world.”

"Nuclear energy is the way of the future," Senator Marshall said. "Its growing influence cannot be understated, as it proves to be a reliable solution that meets the escalating demand for base-load energy to power our communities in a decarbonized economy. However, we must put forth commonsense guardrails that end the United States' reliance on hostile powers like Russia for the fuel needed to power America. The passage of our legislation to block Russian imports is vital for our national security interests and our efforts to unleash American energy."


Background Information:

On March 9, 2023, Barrasso introduced S. 763, a companion bill to H.R. 1042. U.S. Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV), Jim Risch (R-ID), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Chris Coons (D-DE), and Roger Marshall (R-KS) cosponsored Barrasso’s legislation.

On May 17, 2023, the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources adopted S.763 as an amendment to S. 452, the Nuclear Fuel Security Act of 2023, and then ordered, by voice vote, the measure to be reported to the full Senate. 

On December 11, 2023, the U.S. House of Representatives passed by voice vote H.R.1042.

H.R. 1042 serves as a compliment to the Nuclear Fuel Security Act which was included in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2024.