At the request of two senior lawmakers on the Senate Energy Committee, the Air Force has been exploring whether an Air Force base would be “an appropriate host for a nuclear [energy] facility,” according to William Anderson, the Air Force’s lead for energy initiatives. He told Pentagon reporters last week that the service is “in the very infancy stages” of considering this request. USAF officials have met with the Energy Department and talked with technology leaders—most of whom, Anderson said, are foreign “at this point.” They believe the latest technology, something called a “small-packaged nuclear facility,” has potential. This spring, the service plans to gather financiers, developers, and operators together for a discussion. Anderson added, “It’s worth continuing to look at.”
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.