Key findings

  • A federal nuclear fuel factory project in South Carolina that experienced billions of dollars in cost overruns has been kept alive by the aggressive support of the South Carolina congressional delegation, which includes many professed fiscal conservatives.
  • Supporters have received millions of dollars in campaign donations from firms with a financial stake in the project.
  • Those firms have also conducted a successful, $6 million lobbying effort on the plant’s behalf in the past two years.
  • Under a unique arrangement, Washington may have to pay a fine of up to $100 million a year to South Carolina if the plant is not opened, giving the state’s politicians added leverage in the ongoing debate over the project’s future.