There is a faction in Aiken that wants you to believe that SRS is nothing more than a drain on the national budget. However, allow me to explain what is gained both nationally and locally by this facility.
Nationally, this facility offers research in nuclear energy and environmental issues. It also is currently hosting a project known as MOX, the Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility.
From a purely economic view point, the site employs thousands of personnel in all disciplines, from science, engineering and the trades.
Their employment brings to surrounding South Carolina towns, and those in Georgia as well, an enormous amount of revenue. The salaries of SRS individuals are spent on local markets for real property, automobiles, clothing, restaurant’s and many other commodities.
Also, unknown to many, Savannah River Nuclear Solutions donates countless thousands of dollars to Aiken Technical College, offering education to individuals in the science of the nuclear industry. Nuclear power is the most economical and cleanest form of energy.
The education of science and engineering personnel in this industry is unique and essential. SNRS personnel donate millions of dollars to charitable organizations such as United Way, Golden Harvest Food Bank and others.
To believe that SRS is merely a drain on the federal economy is perhaps the most narrow minded view that one could imagine.
The financial benefit for Aiken alone is enormous. Remove this source of revenue from the Aiken economy and you will see a huge reduction in the services offered by the City and County as well as small businesses closing their doors. Real estate value will plummet, and many families will suffer foreclosure.
Count your blessings, Aiken, that SRS is part of your local economy.
George W. Sargent