U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.), Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), and Tim Kaine (D-Va.), members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, have introduced legislation to ensure that Congress has the legislative authority to review all materials related to so-called “Part 810 authorizations” and is aware when the U.S. government authorizes persons or companies to transfer certain nuclear technologies and services to governments overseas.
Part 810 agreements authorize the transfer or nuclear technologies and information related to the production of “special nuclear materials” as defined in Title I of the Atomic Energy Act. Some authorizations, which are approved by the Secretary of Energy, may be non-public and can thus be withheld from Congressional oversight. These 810 authorizations are different than civil nuclear cooperation – so-called “123” – agreements, which are subject to Congressional approval. The Senators are introducing this legislation after revelations that seven undisclosed authorizations were recently granted for companies to engage in nuclear cooperation with Saudi Arabia.