December 10, 2008

Delegation Members Congratulate INL Achievement

Say taxpayer money is well-invested at Idaho's National Lab

Washington, DC - Idaho's National Laboratory (INL) is tops in the nation when it comes to performance standards set by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Senator Mike Crapo and Congressman Mike Simpson today applauded the work done by the site's workers and said it should be seen as a national model for efficiency and cost-effectiveness for such federal research and development installations.

Under DOE's performance evaluation and management plan, the INL received an "A" rating of 97 percent---far surpassing the evaluations of other such plans at similar sites around the nation. DOE-Idaho Manager Beth Sellars told Laboratory Director John Grossenbacher that the decision to maintain "the contract term through September 2014 is also reflective of your improved performance and our confidence in Battelle Energy Alliance's … ability to realize the DOE vision for INL."

"This 'A' rating is just the latest example of the superior work performed by the employees the Idaho National Laboratory," Crapo said. "The nation looks to the INL for leadership and excellence in nuclear R&D and in the development of domestic alternative energy sources. This recognition is timely given the upcoming change in presidential administrations. Taxpayers, agency leaders and government officials alike see where the superior work is being performed-right here at the Idaho National Lab."

"This announcement is a testament to the exceptional work being done at INL by BEA and its Idaho workforce," said Simpson. "I offer my congratulations to BEA and its employees and look forward to working directly with them on another successful year in 2009."

The Idaho National Laboratory conducts sciences and technology across a wide range of disciplines. As a multi-program laboratory, the INL plays a key role in ensuring the nation's security by applying its technical expertise to helping protect the country's critical infrastructure and preventing the spread of nuclear material.

The INL was singled out for achievement in an international research and development effort to create an advanced nuclear energy technology called the Next Generation Nuclear Plant (NGNP). The NGNP will be a Generation IV nuclear system that will produce both inexpensive electric power and large quantities of cost-effective process heat to support the development of cleaner, more efficient domestic transportation fuels in the United States and reduce the nation's dependence on imported fossil fuel.

The laboratory has also led the establishment of the Center for Advanced Energy Studies, a collaboration of the department, the state of Idaho, the laboratory and universities in Idaho and across the country. This center brings academia into the life of the laboratory in a substantive way and provides students and professors access to the laboratory's unique capabilities.