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Nuclear explained Where our uranium comes from

The United States imports most of the uranium it uses as fuel

Uranium is the fuel most widely used by nuclear power plants for nuclear fission. Uranium is a common metal found in rocks all over the world. Uranium occurs in combination with small amounts of other elements. There are economically recoverable uranium deposits in the western United States, Australia, Canada, Central Asia, Africa, and South America.

Owners and operators of U.S. nuclear power reactors purchased the equivalent of about 48.9 million pounds of uranium in 2020.

  • Sources and shares of total U.S. purchases of uranium in 2020 were:
  • Canada22%
  • Kazakhstan22%
  • Russia16%
  • Australia11%
  • Uzbekistan8%
  • Namibia5%
  • U.S. and five other countries combined14%

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Last updated: July 2, 2021