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Domestic Uranium Production Report - Annual

With Data for 2022 Release Date: May 31, 2023 Next Release Date: May 2024 full reportPDF
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Mining, production, shipments, and sales

U.S. uranium mines produced 194,000 pounds of of triuranium octoxide (U3O8), or uranium concentrate in 2022, a significant increase from th 21,000 pounds produced in 2021 as production resumed at White Mesa Mill in Utah. The production of uranium concentrate is the first step in the nuclear fuel production process, preceding the conversion of U3O8 into UF6 to enable uranium enrichment, then fuel pellet fabrication, and finally fuel assembly fabrication.

Facility status (mills, heap leach plants, and in-situ recovery plants)

At the end of 2022, the White Mesa Mill in Utah was operating with an ability to process 2,000 short tons of ore per day. Shootaring Canyon Uranium Mill in Utah and Sweetwater Uranium Project in Wyoming were on standby with a total capacity of 3,750 short tons of material per day. In Wyoming, the Sheep Mountain heap leach facility remains in the planning stages.

Regarding in-situ recovery facilities, at the end of 2022 the Lost Creek Project and the Smith Ranch-Highland Operation in Wyoming were operating with a combined capacity of 7.5 million pounds U3O8 per year. Nine in-situ recovery plants were on standby as of the end of 2021 with a combined annual production capacity of 13.8 million pounds U3O8. Ten in-situ recovery plants were planned for four states: New Mexico, South Dakota, Texas, and Wyoming with a combined annual production capacity of 15 million pounds U3O8.

Employment and expenditures

Total employment in the U.S. uranium production industry was 196 full-time person-years (one person year is equal to full-time employment for one person) in 2022, a decrease of 5% from the 2021 total.

Total expenditures for land, exploration, drilling, production, and reclamation were $84.7 million in 2022, a 17% increase from 2021 total expenditures.

Data tables and figures