Gov. Haley asks SC prosecutor to sue feds over MOX project

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Gov. Nikki Haley is seeking to sue the U.S. Department of Energy for the agency’s failure to meet a Jan. 1 nuclear fuel deadline.

In a letter obtained Tuesday by The Associated Press, Haley told state Attorney General Alan Wilson to proceed with legal action against the agency to collect a $1 million daily fine.

The Savannah River Site’s mixed-oxide project — known as MOX — is intended to turn weapons-grade plutonium into commercial nuclear reactor fuel. But it’s years behind schedule.

Since MOX isn’t operating, by law the federal government was supposed to remove 1 metric ton of plutonium from South Carolina by Jan. 1 or face penalties.

Haley warned Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz in December the state would be forced to sue if his agency didn’t start making payments.